Review of "Disney's Animal Kingdom"

published 15/08/2006 | CRAFTYDONNA
Member since : 30/11/-0001
Reviews : 81
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Pro Educational, Fun
Cons Tired Feet
very helpful
Is it worth visiting?
Transport links
Family Friendly


Everest and The Tree

Everest and The Tree


This is Disney newest Park, opened April 1998. A Safari Park with a difference.

Walt Disney World® Resort is located southwest of Orlando, off Interstate 4, west of the Florida Turnpike. Follow direction to Animal Kingdom, very easy once on Disney property.

You can use the Disney Resort buses to reach here from Downtown disney, Disney Hotels and other Disney Parks.

Opening Times? and Admission costs?

Animal Kingdom is open all year including Christmas Day. This park doesn't stay open too late because they have to respect the animals. Opening times change from day to day so the best thing to do is check out the Disneyworld website which will give you times. Or your hotel should help you with this.

We had an 14 days pass which was in our Virgin package deal so can't really comment on this many different companies have deals which you can buy so i would hunt around for a good price. Try your local travel agents or your local disney store.

THE THEME PARK - Anima; Kingdom is Split up into the following 6 Areas and each area has different experiences and rides.

1. Camp Minnie-Mickey

Character Greeting Area -
This is an area where you can meet a selection of Disney Character. When we went here we met Mickey mouse, Minnie, Goofy and Pluto. As it was near christmas when we went they were all dressed in winter clothes. Lovely area to meet the characters as they are set out in making Queuing easier and less boring. Best time to go here is first thing in the morning, Avoid when the Lion King Show finishes as it gets very crowded.

Festival of the Lion King-
This show was just amazing, i just could not take my eyes off everything going on. The show is based on the Lion King film and has lots of well known song for you to join in on. The acrobats, singers and dancers are just stunning, this is one of my favourites. The show last Approx 30 minutes, make sure you get here early.

Pocahontas & Her Forest Friends
This show is based on Pocahontas with real animals, its a great way to teach children about the animals of our land and how they live in the wild. This show is 20 minutes long. Sorry can't review this ride too much as we always missed this show.

2. Discovery Island (Safari Village)

The Oasis-
This is the area you walk through to get to the rest of the park, please do not by pass this and go and explore the caves, bridges etc. This area has never been busy when we have been but i would avoid the area on opening and closing time. Animals that we found in this are were Ducks, Parrots, Iguana, deer. There is suppose to be more but that's what we found.

Tree of Life-
This is the centre piece of Animal Kingdom like the castle is to Magic Kingdom. This tree is just huge and everyone crowds the area in front to have their pictures taken. Carved into the tree are hundreds of animals, see how many you can find. You can also explore this more closely by going to see the bugs life show.

It's Tough to be a Bug-
3-D animation show, you will be provided with Glasses. This show is based on the movie Bugs Life with all the characters. Beware- This can be scary for some children and its doesn't matter about the age as my son was 11and hated it but my daughter at 7 years old loved it. It can get very dark and load and the things that come down from the ceiling don't help.

3. Africa

Kilimanjaro Safaris-
This is just the best and not to be missed, i have lost count on how many times we went on Safari. You ride on a 32 seated truck and go through a large open planned area where animals run free. We have seen Giraffes up close and a baby Rhino, Elephants, Lions (These are hard to see). You can see lots of Deer, Crocodiles and Hippos in Pools. This is a very bumpy adventure but worth it. The drivers make this trip very interesting and there are many surprises throughout the ride.

Pangani Forest Exploration Trail-
This is a walkthrough area and is host to many East African animals including gorillas, Reptiles, Birds, Fish and mush more. All throughout you will meet cast members who are all willing to chat about the animals, so don't be afraid to ask. We watched the Gorillas playing for ages, they are just huge. When they are playing its just amazing to watch as they just have a huge area to explore and the areas are just like home with rocky hills, water falls, steams, trees etc. to run around and play in.

Wildlife Express to Conservation Station-
This is a Train which takes you to Rafiki's Planet Watch which is the only way to get there. On the trip you will go behind the scenes and see the night time enclosures, veterinary hospital. The Train ride takes Aprrox 5 minutes.

4. Rafiki's Planet Watch
This Area can only be reached by Train, see above.

Hall of Animals -
This is a huge colourful Mural with hundreds of animals on.

Rafiki's Planet Watch -
Hosts Interactive touch screens for you to explore about animals of the world past and present. My children loved this area, they could have provided us adults with more seats.

Indoor animal stage -
Meet animals close up and learn about where the animals live. My children loved this and we got to see a possum and porcupine.

Veterinary Treatment Room - the highly-skilled animal care staff invite you to observe the treatment & care of the animals in this fully-operational veterinary facility.

Nursery - Learn about the care & feeding of the new-borns.

Food Prep Lab - There are over 1000 inhabitants to feed. The animal keepers show you how they prepare meals for the animals.

Affection Section - Here you can come and touch the many tame animals on offer i.e Goats, sheeps and bunnies. They have excellent cleaning facilities for you afterwards.

This area also has some other sections which change on a regular basis depending on the time of year. We spent aprrox 2 hours in the area alone. There are lots of cast members to chat to about the animals.

5. Asia

Flights of Wonder-
This is a bird show where you can see different types of birds. The birds Soar over the top of you so you can see them up close. This is also very education as you learn about how the birds hunt and live in the wild. The show is 30 minutes long and can get very crowded so arrive early. We only went once to this show as it was just similar to others you might have seen in other parks.

Kali River Rapids-
This is a Water Raft ride, expect to get wet. 12 People can fit in each raft and are shaped like a circle. You have a small space in the middle to put a few bits if you don't want them getting wet, this is not big enough for everyone on the raft to include stuff. The raft takes you on a wet and bumping journey, many surprises on the way.

Maharajah Jungle Trek-
This is another walk through area where you can discover animals of the wild. Animals in this area include Gibbons, tigers, birds, Giant Fruit Bats ( Just amazing), Lizards and more. There are many cast members to chat to about the animals.

Expedition EVEREST-
I am afraid we have not been on this yet because it wasn't open on our last visit Nov 2005. This will be our first port of call on our next trip. This is a white-knuckle ride, you ride on out-of-control railcars racing forward and backward. This is a yeti themed ride.

6. Dinoland USA

Dinosaur -
Based on the movie, This is a fast and really bumpy ride, you will need to hold on tight but this ride is well worth it. You ride in 12-passenger jeeps on a track, this is an indoor ride. Your taken back in time to the dinosaur age, you dodge dinosaurs and have many other surprise on your way. This ride is also very dark and load. My children refuse to go back on this ride, you will either love it or hate it. I really enjoyed it.

Cretaceous Trail - This is a walkthrough area where you can see plants that have survived since the dinosaur age. Children found this quit boring, my husband was interested and had a look while we got an ice cream.

The Boneyard - Well what an area for the children, if i had let them they would have spent allday here. Its lovely for parents to have a good old rest. This is a play ground with things for the children to climb on, tunnels and more. There is also an area where children can dig for dinosaur bones. i would give this 10/10 for keeping my children entertained.

Primeval Whirl- A spiining coaster ride, you will get dizzy. You never know what's going to happening on the coaster as your spinning so much you will lose yourself in the moment. This is a great ride a favourite of my sons.

Triceratop Spin - A kiddie ride where you ride on little dinosaurs. We did not ride this but looked great fun for the little ones.

In this area you will also find stalls where you can win dinosaur related Prizes.


Flame Tree Barbecue - Counter service restaurant. You can sit beside the river here and eat your dinner. This restaurant serves smoked beef, smoked Chicken and Salads. We did not eat here so cannot give an Opinion.

Pizzafari - This is a counter service restaurant that is mainly sells Pizzas but you can buy other items including salads and waffles. The waffles are lovely with ice cream. I thought it was a bit pricey here, can't remember exact price but remember saying 'HOW MUCH'.

Rainforest Cafe- This Restaurant needs a review for its self. We just love going here. This is a sit down service restaurant and is pricey but well worth it. We spent $75 on our meal which included drinks, main and afters. The restaurant is set out in a jungle theme with tree's, animals and sound effect. The thunderstorm might be a bit scary but only happens every 20 minutes or so. We have found the service here just excellent, never waited too long. I would advise booking first thing in the morning as it does get very busy here. The restaurant is outside the park entrance so you can go out and come back in. You have plenty of food choices here and an excellent childrens menu. My husband had Burger and Chips, me Chicken and chips with a lovely sauce and the children both had animal shaped nuggets and chips. We also go to rainforst cafe plastic cups with the drinks which flash we use them all the time at home. This restaurant has its own shops, t-shirts are price nicely, $15 for 2 rainforest cafe children t-shirts.

Restaurantosaurus- Donald's Prehistoric Breakfastosaurus takes place every morning, this is a buffet style character breakfast, we booked two days before hand for this. We really enjoyed this and met Mickey, Minnie, Goofy and Donald duck. We did not pay for our character breakfast as we had a deal through virgin. For Dinner and Lunch this is Mcdonalds meals and costs abit more than your normal macdonalds.

Tusker House Restaurant - This is a counter service that sells Salads, Chicken sandwiches, Lasagnes. This restaurant was a bit limited on their childrens meals.

There is also many carts through the park selling drinks, hot dogs etc.

Carparks cost $9.00 per car.

Your bags are searched on the way into the park for security reasons, make sure you have your bag ready for them. They was also check video camera bags as well.

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade- This is the Parks Parade and is once aday, on our visit parade was at 3pm and follows a set route, this can be found on the park Map by a dotted line. We have seen this Parade and the Christmas one both were excellent. This is one of the best Parades at all of the disney parks as the Characters interact with the children more. My daughter go cuddled by several characters that are walking. The main Characters like Mickey, Minnie, goofy etc are in jeeps etc. This lasts approx 15 minutes.

Animal Kingdom does not allow straws in the park or have them in cafes or shops, this is for the animals safety.

Shops- Animal Kingdom has many shops and stalls to buy from. We brought my daughter a Safari Suit and my son a cowboy hat with pins. They just love these.

This Park does not have any Firework shows due to the animals.

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Comments on this review

  • wailor published 23/04/2007
    Wow, was going to write a review but yours is an encyclopedia. Just got back from there and couldn't agree with you more. Had a fantastic time but left there exhausted!!!
  • nemesis2004 published 17/09/2006
    I see you enjoyed your time in Florida - it's a wonderful place, been there 3 times within the past 6 years!
  • bumbleball published 02/09/2006
    Thanks for the great review, also glad to see some photos too.
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Listed on Ciao since: 17/09/2000