Guests who visit Walt Disney World love to spend time in Disney’s Animal Kingdom enjoying the beautiful scenery and wonderful attractions. The park aims to bring guests deep into the heart of nature and the environment in a celebration that hopes to teach about the importance of conservation and preservation. Disney’s Animal Kingdom is home to amazing attractions, entertainment, dining, and shopping, and is sure to leave guests smiling after spending time there. While there are plenty of great attractions to enjoy while visiting the park, there are certain attractions which are so amazing that they simply can’t be missed. Here are the top six headliner attractions that can’t be missed at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
Editor’s Note: We understand that with the phased reopening of Walt Disney World, some of the advice in this article may not apply if you visit while park hours are reduced, capacity limits and physical distancing are in place, and some of our favorite experiences—fireworks, parades, and character greetings—are temporarily suspended. (You can read everything you need to know about the phased reopening by clicking here). We will continue to share articles that give guidance on a “normal” vacation to Walt Disney World, along with any special changes or instructions you may need to be aware of during the phased reopening to provide the best tips we can regardless of when you are visiting. ~ Chad & Cindy
1 – Pandora – The World of Avatar Attractions
Editor’s Note: During the phased reopening of Walt Disney World, FastPass+ is temporarily suspended.
Pandora – The World of Avatar has two attractions in the land that offer FastPass options. The two attractions within Pandora are Avatar Flight of Passage and the Na’vi River Journey. Disney has instituted a tiered selection process for Animal Kingdom with the addition of these two attractions. You will only be able to select one of these options on any particular day. So, if you want FastPasses for both, you will need to visit Animal Kingdom on two separate days during your visit. Both attractions are popular with long wait times, especially Flight of Passage. If you only have one day, out of the two attractions, Flight of Passage is the one to get a FastPass for since waits for this attraction can still be over two hours long. The technology and imagineering that went into Flight of Passage have proven to be amazing experiences that will keep people coming back again and again. For more on what to expect be sure to read our article about Pandora – The World of Avatar.
2 – Kilimanjaro Safaris
The flagship attraction of Disney’s Animal Kingdom can be found in the Africa section of the park which is home to a cozy fictional village called Harambe. Kilimanjaro Safaris invites guests into the Harambe Reserve for a two-week safari through the savannahs and forests of Africa. Guests can ride in authentic safari vehicles and enjoy beautiful views of animals like cheetahs, elephants, giraffes, zebras, lions, flamingos, hippos, and rhinos. Since Kilimanjaro Safaris features live animals, guests who enjoy the attraction more than once can have unique experiences each time as the animals might be found in different areas or engaging in different activities.
3 – Expedition Everest
One of the most thrilling attractions in Disney’s Animal Kingdom is Expedition Everest in the Asia section of the park. The attraction is home to the Forbidden Mountain which is said to be guarded by the fabled Yeti. Guests board tea trains and begin their journey through the foothills of the mountains before climbing a steep lift hill which offers beautiful views of all of Walt Disney World. Suddenly the journey takes an ominous twist as a torn-up section of track sends guests deep inside the mountain where they must scramble to escape the clutches of the Yeti.
4 – Kali River Rapids
Guests who are looking for a thrilling way to cool off in Disney’s Animal Kingdom can head over to the Asia section of the park for a fun and exciting attraction. Kali River Rapids has guests board family style rafts and set off down the Chakranadi River. While the ride is serene at first and passes through lush jungles and waterfalls, the trip soon takes an ominous turn as guests are showed the devastation and destruction caused by illegal deforestation. With plenty of twists, turns, and dips along the way, Kali River Rapids is sure to leave guests soaked!
5 – Festival of the Lion King
The most popular stage show in all of Walt Disney World can be found in Disney’s Animal Kingdom near Kilimanjaro Safaris in the village of Harambe. The Festival of the Lion King is housed in the Harambe Theater and brings the story of the classic Disney animated film to life through song, dance, familiar characters, aerial ballet, fire dancing, acrobatics, and a lively parade. The show is a favorite of many guests and runs several times throughout each day in Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
6 – Finding Nemo – Live on Stage
Editor’s Note: During the phased reopening of Walt Disney World, Finding Nemo is temporarily unavailable. Unfortunately, the Finding Nemo cast are among the cast members who have been laid off. Disney retains the rights to call them back. We hope and expect at some point in the future when conditions permit they will be called back and the entertainment that is critical to making the parks magical will return. If you feel that the entertainment staff are a big part of making the magic happen, we encourage you to let Disney know how important the entertainers are to your experience.
Another amazing live show in Disney’s Animal Kingdom can be found in the Theater in the Wild in Dinoland. Finding Nemo – Live on Stage brings the classic Pixar film Finding Nemo to life through larger than life puppets and familiar characters. Guests can enjoy the favorite story and sing along to a brand new song called “Big Blue World.” Like the Festival of the Lion King, Finding Nemo – Live on Stage is very popular with guests and has several showtimes each day in Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
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