Can Walt Disney World keep everyone happy? – Animal Kingdom

If there is one thing that Walt Disney World is, it is fun for ALL the family.

Walt Disney World is a champion of family time with four theme parks and two water parks, each with unique theming and attractions, plus dining shopping and entertainment experiences, there really is something for everyone at Walt Disney World and I have already shared my thoughts on Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios.

Animal Kingdom

My kids love discovering all about the natural world around them, so were really excited about visiting Animal Kingdom.

Hubby, on the other hand, was more excited about visiting Pandora: The World of Avatar.

Animal Kingdom’s 500 acres are home to some 1700 animals representing 250 different species throughout the park and with the exception of the Pandora area, seemed a lot quieter than the other three parks.

Pandora: Flight of Passage

As with my last two posts, it is recommended that if you are staying in a Walt Disney Hotel, get to the parks during their Magic Hours as it’s the best chance to get on the rides queue free, however, with Pandora being so new and with all the fastpass+ tickets booked weeks in advance, you were always going to queue for Pandora: Flight of Passage and Hubby waited a staggering 210 minutes to ride it. (Thankfully parent swap passes were available so I got to ride too).

Pandora - World of Avatar

Whilst he queued for this ride, the kids and I enjoyed the Na’Vi River ride which had a much more reasonable 15 minute queue and then headed off to explore the rest of the park.


With Pandora being so busy we almost had the rest of the park to ourselves and found ourselves amidst dinosaurs and digging for fossils in the Boneyard with Donald Duck.

Animal Kingdom

With the rest of Disney being so full on, the Boneyard made a relaxing change which allowed the kids to climb atop rocks, cross rickety rope bridges, roam mysterious caves and hurl themselves down twisting slides.

The Boneyard

Opposite the Boneyard was a funfair themed area called Dino-Rama with games to play, the Primeval Whirl rollercoaster and the Triceratop Spin. Sadly Sebby was 2cm too short to ride Dinosaur, a moving simulator ride but we had fun nonetheless.


By now, Hubby had re-joined us and it was time to see what the rest of the park had to offer and take advantage of our photo pass.

Animal Kingdom

A definite highlight of Animal Kingdom is a ride on the Kilimanjaro Safari which gives you a chance to see many of the parks resident animals as they drive you through the African Savannah.


I envisaged a Longleat style safari but it was so much better. It honestly felt as if we were in the African Savannah seeing animals in their natural habitat in the Harambe Wildlife Reserve.

Animal Kingdom

The tour guide had bat like vision and managed to spot and point out animals that I would have missed, stopping so we could get a good photograph.

Animal Kingdom

I love elephants so it was a real treat to see them wandering around and watching a hippo swimming underwater was fascinating.

Harambe Wildlife Reserve

I think the animals are so used to seeing the jeeps trundle around the track that they just carry on with whatever they are doing and don’t bat an eyelid.

Harambe Wildlife Reserve

The safari takes around 20 minutes and we then boarded the Wildlife Express train to get a sneak peek of some of the behind the scenes wildlife areas before heading into Rafiki’s Planet Watch, home to fun exhibits dedicated to animal conservation and a petting area for the kids.

Animal Kingdom

The kids were given some challenges to complete which allowed them to earn wildlife badges, just like Russell from the film Up!!

Animal Kingdom

Sadly we missed our photo opportunity with Rafiki but we did manage to find Russell.

Animal Kingdom

Another of our highlights from Animal Kingdom were the shows and thanks to the Festival of the Lion King, I have a family of new fans.

Festival of the Lion King

Festival of the Lion King is a kaleidoscope of colour with giant puppets, acrobats, spirited dancers, regal stilt walkers and brilliant singers, all in imaginative costumes with ornate beads, feathers and fringe and of course Simba, Timon and Pumbaa. You will be expected to join in too!

Lion King

Another amazing show was Finding Nemo – the Musical, 40-minute show features original songs that bring the big, blue world to life, along with extraordinary puppets and vibrant sets that plunge you right into the depths of Nemo’s fin-tastic terrain.

Animal Kingdom

We stopped to have lunch under the Tree of Life, which celebrated all living creatures, making this the iconic centrepiece the symbol of Disney’s Animal Kingdom park.

Tree of Life

Inside the Tree of Life root system is where It’s Tough to be a Bug! is performed. This 8-minute, 3D movie and multimedia show stars Flik and Hopper from the Disney•Pixar film A Bug’s Life—along with a supporting cast of insects and arachnids who provide a surprising glimpse into the animal kingdom. It is a great show, but beware of some unexpected surprises!

Animal Kingdom

For adrenalin junkies there is Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain rollercoaster which not only goes forwards, but sends you hurtling backwards to avoid ‘missing track’, the Kali River Rapids, Dinosaur and Pandora: Flight of the Avatar.

Animal Kingdom

All four main Disney Parks have evening entertainment and Animal Kingdom certainly doesn’t disappoint. As you are waiting for the main show to begin, the Tree of Life awakens and watch in awe as animal spirits light up the whole of the tree.

Rivers of Light

The main show is the Rivers of Light, a brilliant fusion of water, sound and light and quite unlike anything I’ve experienced before!

Rivers of Light

With projections on fountains, boats, floating flowers and animals, it was a truly stunning show.

Rivers of Light

It is also worth noting that Pandora: World of Avatar has Disney Magic Hours at nightime too and is well worth a visit to see it in all its bio-luminescent glory in the dark too.


Disclaimer:  This post is in partnership with Walt Disney World and Mumsnet. I am a member of the Mumsnet Bloggers Panel, a group of parent bloggers who have volunteered to review products, services, events and brands for Mumsnet. I have not paid for the product or to attend an event. I have editorial control and retain full editorial integrity and all opinions here are my own.

animal kingdom

22 thoughts on “Can Walt Disney World keep everyone happy? – Animal Kingdom”

  1. This is the other park that I am most excited about visiting as I havd never been before. J loves animals, trains and digging so I can see this park being his favourite. I can’t wait to take him on safari!

  2. Yes, definitely Disney can make everyone happy. I guess, every kid enjoys Disney and its already a family’s favorite destination. I think I will also never get tired of visiting Disney theme parks.

  3. I’ve heard so many things about the animal kingdom park at Walt Disney. It looks amazing! My two would absolutely love it, I’ll have to book us in for a night or two if we ever visit!

  4. I LOVE Animal Kingdom. I even thought the nighttime show was excellent given there are obviously limits on it due to the fact they can’t use fireworks because of all the animals.

  5. This looks like an incredible place to visit and a great trip for all the family, your pictures are amazing as well 🙂 making me want to go now ha x

  6. It definitely looks like somewhere that everyone in the family would enjoy. I find this tricky as there are 10 years between my boys and finding places they’d both enjoy is hard work 🙂


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