Twenty years ago on Earth Day, Animal Kingdom opened its doors for the very first time. Owned by Disney, and located in Bay Lake FL, Animal Kingdom is open 365 days a year, from 9am-10pm, and sits on over 500 acres; it is one of the biggest theme parks in the world, with seven different themed areas, and over 1,500 animals. Whether you are looking for a safari ride or a dinosaur experience, Animal Kingdom has it all.
Park Hours, Parking & Transportation
Standard parking for Animal Kingdom is $22. Preferred parking is $45. Preferred parking lots are closer to the park.
Seven Themed Areas
- Discovery Island
- Dinoland U.S.A.
- Rafiki’s Planet Watch
- Pandora – The World of Avatar
Oasis is the main entrance to Animal Kingdom, you will see luscious forests, animal prints, a waterfall, exotic animal exhibits, and the Rainforest Café. Truly an oasis, living up to its name, you may want to spend all of your time here, but this is only your first destination.
Discovery Island is the center of Animal Kingdom; the other themed areas (except Rafiki’s Planet Watch) are connected from Discovery Island. The Tree of Life is located inside Discovery Island and it is a breathtaking sight worth seeing. Two of the parks utmost restaurants and the parks biggest gift shop is located here.
Welcome to the village of Harambe, featuring African style huts, an outdoor bar, and a marketplace. Animal Kingdom’s Africa is home to the Kilimanjaro Safari ride, where you load up in safari trucks, this ride features a variety of African animals through 100 acres of the savannah.
The first expansion area added to Animal Kingdom, Asia features two villages located in the fictional kingdom of Anandapur. There is a beautiful mountain rollercoaster with a hidden Yeti and dense forests. Some of the animals featured here are Komodo dragons, Sumatran tigers, and Large Flying Foxes.
If you’re looking for prehistoric and extinct animals, then Dinoland U.S.A. is the area for you. Walk under a Brachiosaurus skeleton, save an Iguanodon, or uncover dinosaur bones.
Rafiki’s Planet Watch
The only area not attached to Discovery Island, Rafiki’s Planet Watch only connects to Africa. You board a Wildlife Express Train to and from the area. This area is made up of three sub-areas; Habitat Habit!, with Cotton-Top Tamarins, Conservation Station, which shows the conservation efforts by Disney, touch screens with animal cams around the park, and a behind the scenes look at the care of the animals in Animal Kingdom. The third sub-area is Affection Section, a petting zoo with exotic species of deer, sheep, pigs, etc.
Pandora – The World of Avatar
The newest area of Animal Kingdom opened in 2017. If you loved “Avatar” the movie then you will love Pandora-The World of Avatar! Including bioluminescent rainforests, a 3D flight simulator, and a river journey, this magical area should not be missed.
Rides and Attractions
There are over 30 rides and attractions at Animal Kingdom. Africa has the Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail, a trail walk through featuring Gorillas, Meerkats, and an underwater Hippopotamus viewing area. Cool off in Asia with the Kali River Rapids ride, river rafting through a jungle, where you will get wet. Travel back in time to Dinoland U.S.A. where you can uncover fossils in the Boneyard or take a ride on the Dinosaur dark enhanced motion vehicle ride, featuring an Iguanodon. The Tree of Life, a beautiful animal carved Baobab tree is located on Discovery Island; this attraction should not be missed. Pandora – The World of Avatar is best for viewing at night, as everything lights up bioluminescent style. Looking for an exotic petting zoo? Head over to Rafiki’s Planet Watch.
- Festival of the Lion King
- Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail
- Kilimanjaro Safari
- Wildlife Express Train
- African Birds
- African Elephants
- Expedition Everest
- Kali River Rapids
- Maharajah Jungle Trek
- Donald’s Dino-Sue
- Fossil Fun Games
- Primeval Whirl
- TriceraTop Spin
- Discovery Island Trails
- It’s Tough to be a Bug!
- Tree of Life
- Migratory Birds
Pandora – The World of Avatar
- Avatar Flight of Passage
- Na’vi River Journey