In honor of Earth Day, all of us at Disney Insider wanted to pay tribute to the Disney Park that celebrates the circle of life every day of the year. What better way to do that than with some staff picks? Here are some of our collective favorites from Disney’s Animal Kingdom:
When we think of Animal Kingdom, we think of this attraction. Watching giraffes and hippos roam free as we ride through the savanna never fails to astound us all over again. Leave it to the Disney Parks to create a completely magical, immersive experience.
From the moment we enter the queue, we feel transported to a different time and place. That feeling continues as we head up the tracks in the beginning of the ride and see what the Yeti’s done … we won’t spoil it for those of you who haven’t been yet, but trust us when we say this attraction’s thrills and surprises are a welcome addition to any Animal Kingdom day we plan.
The story world is so much fun, we don’t even mind when our family laughs at us for screaming when we get to the T-Rex. This attraction also gets bonus points for high quotability—we find ourselves saying, “They’re not gonna make it! They’re not gonna make it!” more often than we care to admit.
Yak & Yeti
We all love some delicious pan-Asian flavors, and when you add in an atmosphere of beautiful, exotic artifacts, you’ve got a recipe for success. One of our writers is also addicted to Yak & Yeti’s fried green beans. Interventions may or may not have been staged.
The character breakfast and lunch are perfect for resting and recharging mid-adventure, but we also adore the dinner buffet and its creative vegetarian options, as well as the African wines and beer. As an added bonus, Disney characters now visit during dinnertime as well!
This bar next to Tusker House is another great option for adults looking to get off their feet for a bit. Our favorites include the elusive Tusker Lager, the cool atmosphere, and the hilarity of the fact that “Dawa” is Swahili for “medicine.”
Wild Africa Trek
We firmly believe that anyone who has the chance to take this tour should jump on it. It’s a three hour, privately guided expedition that offers guests the chance to have some once-in-a-lifetime up-close encounters with African wildlife (not to mention an absolutely delicious meal, prepared by the chefs in Tusker House). We’d go on it again any day.
Pangani Forest Exploration Trail
What other self-guided tour lets you see African animals in their natural habitats? Our team is split down the middle on whether we’d rather spend hours watching the meerkats’ hilarious antics, or watching the gorilla family’s hilarious antics.
This area of Rafiki’s Planet Watch is a huge hit with kids, but we’ve been known to spend a long time exploring here too. Our favorite parts are the Animal Encounters stage and seeing what’s happening in the veterinary treatment room. One of our writers also has fond memories of Song of the Rainforest, an audio adventure narrated by Grandmother Willow.
From all of us at Disney Insider, happy Earth Day! What’s your favorite thing to do in Animal Kingdom?