Today is the last full park on our Disney World park guide series, so for this penultimate guide, it’s time to talk about the home of Disney’s personal and massive zoo— the Animal Kingdom park. We’ve explored the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, and Hollywood Studios, so it’s time to discuss this animal wonderland in the everglades.
If Epcot didn’t have enough animals for you, then come pay a visit to the home of so many animals that it’s basically five zoos in one. This park, much like Epcot, has a lot you can learn from, but it also has a healthy dose of coasters, meaning there are still incredible rides here for any animal and roller coaster lovers. Much like how the Magic Kingdom is laid out, Animal Kingdom is a series of prongs off a central section, this time landmarked by the Tree of Life from A Bug’s Life.
Oasis is a great introduction to the animal experience that will be available inside the Animal Kingdom. This small introductory section of the park starts with a micro-zoo with animals from around the world, as well as rotating guest animals from other parts of the zoo. Watch some adorable barking deer and wallabies inside the Oasis Exhibits, or test your fears at the Invertebrates Animal Encounter with tarantulas. Be sure to drop off anything you don’t want to carry at the lockers here because this park is massive and you’ll be doing a lot of walking.
Discovery Island is the central island of this park and home to the Tree of Life, which has a stage inside of it for the It’s Tough To Be A Bug show. This show has a stinger that will pop out in the middle of the show, and it can hurt for younger kids, so either lean forward or skip this if you have a low pain tolerance. That said, there are plenty of things to see above ground at the expansive zoo section here, filled with animals from all around the world, from flamingos to tamarins.
If you have a dinosaur fan in the family, then make sure you pay a visit to the animals of the past at DinoLand U.S.A. Guests get the chance to dig for fossils in the Boneyard or take a spin on the prehistoric Primeval Whirl. There are plenty of rides that feature the colossal giants that once walked the earth, so be sure to get a chance to see them before riding the River of Lights boat to see the rest of the park.
For an adventure with animals that could be, be sure to visit Pandora from Avatar. This section of the park explores the distant planet of Pandora, home of the Na’vi, through their vibrant and dangerous world. Walk through the floating islands at the Valley of Mo’ara, explore the bioluminescent flora on the Na’vi River Journey, or meet a Pandora Ranger in their exosuit walking around by Satu’li’s Canteen. Wherever you visit, it’s sure to be out of this world.
In sheer space, the Africa section of this park takes up the most of any of the park sections. That’s because it houses an entire African safari on top of its other wild rides and attractions. This section highlights a number of African cultures at the entrance with a marketplace broken down into more than 10 different cultures represented. Beyond that, visit the Gorilla Falls Exploration Trails for a walking zoo, or you can hop in a safari bus to see the whole savanna on Kilimanjaro Safaris.
Rafiki’s Planet Watch
Taking a train out of the Wildlife Express Train in the Africa section, Rafiki’s Planet Watch is a small section that focuses on endangered animals and conservation efforts. There’s a petting zoo for the little ones and an interactive museum for the older guests. This park isn’t that big, but getting there and heading back is another way to see all of the amazing animals out in the safari.
Home to the two biggest rides in this park, Asia is yet another thrill-seeker’s stopping point. Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain is a thrill ride, no doubt about it, and the Kali River Rapids are sure to get you soaked on this river rapid ride. For the animal lovers here, visit the gibbons near the rapids, or watch the majestic tigers at play before taking a trek through the Maharajah Jungle Trek to feel like a real jungle explorer searching for the park’s elusive Komodo dragons.
That’s the Animal Kingdom and all its wilderness. Be sure to explore it for yourself the next time you head to Disney and to keep your car safe from the wildness of parking near DIA, choose ParkDIA. We’ll keep your car safe in our 24-hour surveillance lot while you enjoy the magic at Disney. Reserve your spot today, and be sure to follow our blog for the latest park addition in the last blog of our Disney trip guide series as we visit a galaxy far, far, away.