Put on your Walt Disney World Vacation Pants, Part 5 of 6

Animal Kingdom…not your average zoo. -2015

We are near the end of this very detailed Walt Disney World series.  Part 5 of 6 will focus on the newest park in the pack, Animal Kingdom.  Take a look at how you can plan a jam packed day full of fun at this park, that is definitely not just a zoo.  If you haven’t seen my other posts on WDW, check them out below.  

Animal Kingdom is a fantastic place.  Walt always wanted to put real animals in his parks, and in 1998 that dream became a reality.  I actually just read a fascinating blog post about the history of the park and how it almost never was.  Read it here.  I am so happy that did became a reality though because we always have a blast here.  It is also home to my favorite attraction on Earth.  More on that later.  Read on to find out how to get the most out of a trip to this park.  

Animal Kingdom -Tips and Tricks
  • Fast Pass + – Make sure you have reserved your fastpasses for the day on your Walt Disney World account.  See my tips on Fast Pass + in part 1 of this series.  Attractions worth getting fast passes for, if possible:  
    • Expedition Everest
    • Kilimanjaro Safari
    • Kali River Rapids
    • Dinosaur
    • Primeval Whirl            

                    Expedition Everest – The thrill of a lifetime!    

    • Remember: If you get three attractions reserved early in the day, you can go back and order more fastpasses on the My Disney Experience App once you have used them all.  That is the only way to get more than three fastpasses in a day. Also, don’t forget to take advantage of the Extra Magic Hours at this park.  
    MVP (My Vacation Pants) Tip:  This park is worth getting to when it opens.  In fact, make sure you go to early hours if possible, because many of the animals are most active in the morning, and they are snoozing by noon.  Ride and experience the non animal exhibits after the animals start escaping the heat.  
    • Educational Guide – Obviously this park is smothered in education.  Bring life science to life by reading the exhibits and asking the animal caretakers questions.  In fact, even in the bathroom stall I learned all about animal poop.  It was great.  Make sure you see all the animal exhibits.  They are all tucked into hidden crevices.  Not all of them are listed on the map, so keep an eye out.  Follow any sign that says “trail” because you will see a lot of really cool animals.  Also, make sure you check out the bird aviary.  They are beautifully ornate, with breathtaking vegetation, and beautiful birdies.  

                Bird watching fun.  They even have cards to spot the birds.

    • Vintage Cool Attractions – Okay, so this park is pretty new in terms of Disney years, so vintage is kind of a stretch, but I guess if you are in your teens, this park will bring back some nostalgia.  For one, you have to check out the Bug’s Life movie located in the tree of life.  It’s so funny and has interactive fun.  The Dinosaur area also reminds me of a late 50s, early 60s vibe.  They have a fun little carnival style land, and the Dinosaur ride is very cheese in a fun way.  Like an old TV show.

    • Pacing – This park used to be half day park like an actual zoo, but they have added a lot of fun attractions since it opened and you can definitely spend a full day there now.  It’s also open much later than it used to be in the early years.  Like I mentioned before, spend the morning watching the animals while they’re active and spend the afternoon and evening riding the attractions.  Make the first attraction of the day the Kilimanjaro Safari because the animals will be jumping around.  

    • My Vacation Pants Recommendations:  Okay my favorite ride in the entire galaxy is at this park.  Make sure you hit Expedition Everest multiple times during your visit.  I don’t want to give too much away, but it’s like no other coaster you will ever ride.  It’s thrilling, amazingly themed, great technology.  You’ll love it.  We also love the Kali River Rapids.  If you can hit it on a rainy day, you are golden because for some reason no one wants to get wet when you are already getting wet.  We just put our ponchos on and they let us go round and round a couple times.  Another must do attraction is Dinosuar.  The premise is you go back in time in a jeep.  You see some crazy dinos along the way.  It can be quite scary for young children, so make sure your kiddos can handle it because you do only have to be 40 inches to ride.  

                                                    My favorite ride in the world…Expedition Everest.

      What To Eat
      Yak and Yeti (sit down and counter service) – We love eating lunch at the counter service Yak and Yeti.  They have a fantastic honey chicken and tangy teriyaki chicken bowl.  The egg rolls are amazing too.  They used to serve pot stickers there as well, but now you have to do the sit down restaurant to get those gems.  We loved the open air ambiance of the restaurant.  The food was tasty, but I miss those pot stickers being at the counter service restaurant.  It was a perfect little lunch/snack spot.  The sit down restaurant is also very beautifully decorated.  You almost feel like you’re on top of the Himalayas.

                                             The Asian Chicken Salad was HUGE and YUMMY!

      Pot stickers are the BEST.
      The kiddos posing out front.

      Rain Forest Cafe – So they have two locations at Disney World, but I had to give you this little tip.  Go to the Rain Forest at Disney Springs instead of this one.  They are both cool.  They have animantronics, waterfalls, and aquariums, but the one at Disney Springs is inside of a volcano that fake erupts every once in awhile.  I think the architecture is so cool there.  Make sure you make your reservations for at least one of these, especially if you have never been to a Rain Forest Cafe.  

      Have a great day at Animal Kingdom.  I think you will agree this is not your average zoo experience.  Feel free to write in or comment if you have any additional questions about the park.  

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      Trip Links
      Walt Disney World Webpage – https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/
      Theme Park Tourist – http://www.themeparktourist.com/
      Part 1 of this Post – http://myvacationpants.blogspot.com/2016/04/put-on-your-disney-world-vacation-pants.html
      Part 2 of this Post: http://myvacationpants.blogspot.com/2016/04/put-on-your-walt-disney-world-vacation.html
      Part 3 of this Post: http://myvacationpants.blogspot.com/2016/04/put-on-you-walt-disney-world-vacation.html
      Part 4 of this Post: http://myvacationpants.blogspot.com/2016/04/put-on-your-walt-disney-world-vacation_26.html

      Also click on headings in the post above.  I linked the important information you need. 

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