So you’re visiting Walt Disney World and you want to get the most out of your day in Animal Kingdom? We’ve got 7 ways to make your Animal Kingdom day awesome.
1. Show Up to Animal Kingdom Rope Drop
Without a doubt, rope drop at Animal Kingdom is one of the best rope drops in all of Disney parks (yes, including Anaheim). If you ever plan to rope drop a park, you need to be there a bit before opening hours (checkout Walt Disney World’s website for the most up-to-date hours). When you experience Animal Kingdom rope drop, you’ll feel immersed in the park and might even experience a pandemonium of parrots.
2. Ride Kilimanjaro Safari Twice
Kilimanjaro Safari is a staple of Disney’s Animal Kingdom and is truly one of the great attractions. When we visit WDW, we like to experience Kilimanjaro Safari once in the morning and once at twilight. This is a little pro tip for you. You’ll get a different experience if you do it when it’s dark outside. Because there are different animals that are active at different times of the day. The lions are especially active in the evenings and, if you’re lucky, you might even be able to hear them roar.
3. Don’t Skip Out on Rivers of Light
Rivers of Light is a phenomenal show that is in an amphitheater that overlooks Discovery River. There is no better way to end a day at Disney’s Animal Kingdom than to enjoy this seemingly meditative production with luminescent lights and melodic music. The show features water, mist screens, floating lanterns, lights, fog, projection mapping and live performers and incorporate the park’s Tree of Life into the show.
The show is only be able to seat 5,000 guests, giving it the smallest capacity of Walt Disney World’s night-time shows.
- “Of all the gleaming planets in our vast universe, it is only here on Earth that water and light harmoniously unite to create the wonder of life. We most graciously welcome you to a timeless celebration of water and light with roots as far reaching as time itself. Here, where the forces of nature meet in harmony, the spirits of the animals are free to dance together in the night sky creating Rivers of Light. We are united in this special place to celebrate the magnificence and wonder of all living creatures, for in life we are all one.”
4. Grab a Pineapple Dole Whip
There’s not too much to say about this other than you have to get a Pineapple Dole Whip at Tamu Tamu Refreshments. Walk up to this window in the heart of Harambe Village to satisfy your sweet tooth. The new desserts-only menu at Tamu Tamu includes exotic treats like the Simba Sunset featuring DOLE Whip® Pineapple with watermelon, strawberry, and coconut-flavored syrup.
Pro tip: get a Pineapple Dole Whip and enjoy it while waiting in line for Festival of the Lion King. We love this spot and it’s such a great place to take 5 and relax.
5. Hang Out on the Patio at the Nomad Lounge
Nomad Lounge feels like a secret at Animal Kingdom. It is such a great space and is right off of the walkway towards the World of Pandora. The Nomad Lounge invites all to stake a claim in their own wanderlust over mouth-watering small plates and a large selection of beer, wine and mixed drinks.
Festive banners hang in the center of the lounge, each posing a different question about traveling the world and the thrill of discovery. During your visit, take a few moments to jot down answers to these questions on decorative tags provided by Cast Members. We absolutely love this spot and it’s a great place to just stop and grab a hand-crafted cocktail and some appetizers.
6. Traverse the Maharajah Jungle Trek
This trail feels like another little secret in Animal Kingdom. We love taking time to explore this area and encounter wildlife, architecture, art, and botanicals. When you explore the Maharajah Jungle Trek, you will be wowed at how many beautiful secrets it holds and just how many photo opportunities you might stumble upon. This might be one of the best ways to take a breather after spending a long day in the park.
7. Take Time for the Tree of Life Awakenings
We love this experience! The Tree of Life is beautiful during the day, but when it comes to life at night, it is a must see. Typically, we like to see the projections on the Tree on our way out of the park after Rivers of Light. The Tree of Life Awakenings occurs every 10 minutes (approx) from 8:15 pm to park close. This is truly an experience to behold and, from our perspective, a can’t miss.
There are so many more attractions and experiences at Animal Kingdom that will make your day awesome. These are just a handful of things that we love about Animal Kingdom. Next time you’re in the park, check out some of these suggestions. For more ideas, subscribe to the Parks Academy Podcast.