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8 Facts and Secrets About The Tree of Life

The Tree of Life is the impressive icon for Disney’s Animal Kingdom Park.  It is probably the least talked about of the park icons, but that doesn’t mean that it is any less impressive, as it is also the most unique of all four Disney World theme parks.  Here are 8 facts and secrets that you may not know about the Tree of Life:





 

8 – It’s not as tall as you might think.

When we think about the park icons, we would expect heights to be around 180-199 feet tall based on height restriction guidelines.  The tree of life actually comes in at 145 feet tall.  It is 50 feet wide at the base of the tree, too.  It may not be as tall as the other park icons, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t impressive.  It is still a beautiful icon for the park and has tons of impressive features.  This icon took about 18 months to build when it was originally conceived, so a lot of care when into its creation.

Tree of Life-2

7 – “It’s Tough to Be a Bug”

There is a show inside of the trunk of the Tree of Life.  It is based on the Pixar movie, “A Bug’s Life” and has remained pretty constant since the attraction opened.  The show is a 3D show where you put on your bug eyes so you can become honorary bugs.  The show is actually a little scary and intense at times, but still a lot of fun.  It lasts about 8 minutes, and the walk to get to the show is a great way to get an up close view of the impressive details of the Tree of Life.

6 – Don’t miss the walking path.

There is a path close to the Tree of Life where you can get and up close view of the tree without having to get in line for “It’s Tough to Be a Bug”.  It is a great way to stroll around and enjoy the beauty of the tree away from many of the crowds.  Most guests walk right past the path and don’t even notice it as they head right along to many of the other attractions the park has to offer.

5 – There are over 8,000 branches with over 102,000 leaves.

I dare you to try to count them all… just kidding!  There really are over 8,000 branches that hold the thousands and thousands of leaves!  Even cooler, the leaves are all man-made.  The leaves are each over a foot long and designed exclusively for the Tree of Life to make the tree look perfect each and every time that guests come to visit.

 





 

4 – Like a real tree, the Tree of Life shed its leaves (sort of).

Well, maybe not exactly like a real tree, but the leaves on the Tree of Life were removed and upgraded to leaves that had LED lighting effects to prepare for the park having more of a nighttime presence.  With 102,000 leaves to remove and get perfectly in place, this was definitely no small feat for the Imagineering team. However, the nighttime effects including the Tree of Life Awakenings are so amazing they proven the work well worth it.

3 – Can you spot all 300 animals?

You will notice that animals are carved into the base of the tree.  What you may not realize is that there are around 300 animals carved into the tree! It is extremely impressive and the level of detail is amazing.  You will definitely want to get an up close view of the amazing detail and look for many of your favorite animals.

Owl Carving-Tree of Life

2 – If there is a hurricane, the Tree of Life will still be standing.

When the tree of life was built, it was built to withstand strong winds like would be encountered in a hurricane.  With the strong base and the extra care put into the construction, we feel pretty confident that the tree will still be standing if a hurricane should happen to come through the area.  A few leaves may end up being lost, but the tree in general would remain intact. The base of the tree and the branches have steel in the skeleton to help ensure that the beloved tree doesn’t budge.

1 – Touch the tree!

The impressive painting and work to create the Tree of Life really make it look like it is actually tree bark.  If you touch the tree you will get to feel a little different feel and know that it isn’t really bark.  The imagineers used the perfect blending of browns and greens to make the tree look like perfectly aged tree bark.  Everything about the details is spot on and is what makes the tree absolutely perfect.



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About Christy Caby

Hi! I’m Christy, and I am a wife and mother of 2 young boys (ages 5 and 2). I first fell in love with Disney when my mom took me when I was a child. After that I proceeded to go to WDW for my senior trip with my friends, and I completed a year in the Disney College Program (working in merchandise at Mickey’s of Hollywood at Disney’s Hollywood Studios). I shared my love of Disney with my now husband and sucked him in. He proposed at Disney, we honeymooned at Disney, we started bringing our boys before they were born and then as early as 8 weeks old. We then continued to vacation to Walt Disney World 2-3 times per year. We decided that what makes more sense than just moving to Orlando so that we could live the Disney life and be here for all of our favorite events and seasons every year. That is exactly what we did! Now we are at the parks a couple times a week and go for most events and major holidays. We can’t get enough and get to experience Disney in a whole different way. I love to share this love and passion for all things Disney with the world and hope that I can help others appreciate the magic that Walt Disney World has to offer!