Disney movies’ landscape are known for being some of the most stunning creations in animation. But as magical as these fantasy worlds may appear, did you know that they are actually based on real places? Whether it’s a castle in the heart of the Swiss Alps or a desert road winding through the middle of Texas, these are 25 real life places that inspired the makers of Disney Movies.
U-Drop Inn (United States)
In Cars, Ramone’s House of Body Art is based on this real-life hotel along Route 66.
Chateau de Chillon (Switzerland)
Sitting on the shores of Lake Geneva, this quaint little fortress is believed to be the inspiration for Prince Eric’s castle in the Little Mermaid.
The Forbidden City (China)
The design of the emperor’s home in Mulan is based on the design of the Forbidden City in Beijing although the Forbidden City wouldn’t be built until over 1,000 years later (Mulan is set during the Han Dynasty which lasted from 200BC to 200AD).
Eilean Donan (Scotland)
Although you probably already knew that the Pixar movie Brave was set in the Scottish Highlands, this castle in particular was a big inspiration.
Hotel de Glace (Canada)
This ice hotel in Quebec was the inspiration behind Elsa’s Palace in Frozen.