While you probably think those spectacular Disney scenes that you've seen over the years were rooted in someone's imagination, many of them are actually based on real-life locations.

And, they're so stunning, they might just make you believe in magic.

The Sultan's Palace, Aladdin

Razvan Ciuca, Disney

The Sultan's Palace in Aladdin was inspired by the Taj Mahal in Agra, India. Though many believe it's a palace, the Taj Mahal is actually a tomb that Emperor Shah Jahan began building in 1632 for his favorite wife, Mumtaz Mahal.

Beauty and the Beast Castle

The Baroque-style castle in Beauty and the Beast was inspired by Chateau De Chambord in Loir-Et-Cher, France. After a spell is cast on it, it becomes a dark, ominous place - until Belle manages to break the curse, that is.

Village Square, Beauty and the Beast

Disney, Tambako The Jaguar

The small village square in Belle's hometown was inspired by Alsace, France, with many of the architectural details reminiscent of this charming region. The design on the wine bottles even offers hints of Alsace culture.

Sleeping Beauty Castle



The Royal Castle in Sleeping Beauty was inspired by Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria, Germany. Not only did it provide the inspiration for the castle in the film, you can see a real-life version of Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland.

Kingdom of Corona, Tangled

Disney, PEC Photo

"Tangled" took literal inspiration from Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy, France. The island is topped by the towering castle and surrounded by the sea. When the tide is high, it's cut off from the mainland.

Prince Eric's Castle, Little Mermaid


In the popular film, Prince Eric's Castle looks over Ariel's underwater home. It was inspired by the Château de Chillon, an island castle located on Lake Geneva.

Queen's Castle, Snow White


Fernando de Antonio

Snow White's Castle was inspired by Segovia Castle in Spain. It majestically rises out on a rocky crag above the confluence of two rivers near the Guadarrama mountains.

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