Our Guide to Animal Kingdom for Beginners is full of the latest information to plan your Walt Disney World Vacation. Our tips and tricks are family-focused and will ensure you have a great vacation, whether you are a first-time or repeat visitor. Remember, even if you have visited the Animal Kingdom before, there are many changes to how you plan your vacation in 2021. Our Guide to The Animal Kingdom has been updated following the reopening of Walt Disney World and includes all the latest information for 2021.
For 2021 we have split our Guide to Animal Kingdom into 2 parts:-
- Part 1 Essential information if visiting the Animal Kingdom during the reopening of Walt Disney World. This section of the guide contains all the latest tips & tricks, plus information on differences you will encounter during Walt Disney World’s reopening.
- Part 2 Our regular Guide to the Animal Kingdom. We have left for reference our full Guide to the Animal Kingdom. This section of the guide includes information on all the attractions at the Animal Kingdom. However, not all information is currently relevant, e.g., information on FastPass+. Unless you are familiar with the Animal Kingdom, we recommend reading Part 1 of this guide first. When current restrictions end, we will merge both sections of this guide.
If you want to learn more about Walt Disney World in 2021, visit our 2021 Guide to Walt Disney World.
Essential Information when visiting Animal Kingdom during 2021
The Animal Kingdom reopened for guests on July 11th, 2020, but guests experienced a very different day from previously. However, this does not mean you can’t have a great time in the Animal Kingdom. Some of the changes guests will encounter include:
- The Animal Kingdom will be subject to limited capacity.
- Not all attractions will be available.
- You will need to reserve a place to visit the park through the Disney Park Pass reservation system. To access the park your first park each day, you must have a valid ticket and reservation.
- A more limited version of Park Hopping is available after your first park each day.
- FastPass+ is suspended.
- Extra Magic Hours isn’t returning in 2021. In its place, Early Theme Park Entry will be introduced later in 2021.
- All Guests ages two and up, and Cast Members, are required to wear face coverings.
- Temperature screening will occur. Any guest with a 100.4 F or above temperature, including their party, will not be allowed entry.
- Physical distancing and limited contact will be in place throughout the park.
- Playgrounds are closed.
- Cashless transactions will be encouraged, including mobile food ordering.
- The majority of experiences and tours have been canceled.
- There will be no character meet and greets.
- Entertainment offerings will have changed.
One thing that hasn’t changed is the need to plan your vacation. There are significant changes in how you plan your time at the Animal Kingdom. We will explain the details of these changes further in this guide and how you can still have a fantastic vacation.
Keeping Guests safe at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
At the moment visiting any theme park is not without some degree of risk to your health. Disney has made clear that “By visiting Walt Disney World Resort you voluntarily assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19.”
However, there are 3 guiding principles Disney have introduced to keep guests safe at the Animal Kingdom:
- Enhanced Cleaning Cleaning procedures are enhanced throughout Walt Disney World Resort.
- Physical Distancing Temporary adjustments are in place to promote physical distancing.
- Reduced Contact Experiences may be modified in order to reduce contact.
Currently not available at the Animal Kingdom
Several changes have been introduced during Animal Kingdom’s reopening and have continued into 2021. During the reopening period, the following have been suspended:
- Single Rider Lines
- Extra Magic Hours(it has been confirmed that this will not be returning)
- Disney Dining Plan
- Character meet and greets
- Fireworks and parades
- The majority of tours and special experiences
It is possible over the course of 2021 some of these experiences will restart.
Not returning to Animal Kingdom
While we expect many services and attractions to return to Animal Kingdom, the following have been confirmed to be not returning:
- Primeval Whirl
- Rivers of Light
The closure of Rivers of Light means that there will no longer be a nighttime show at the Animal Kingdom. Few guests will miss Primeval Whirl.
New Entry Requirements
Face coverings are now required by all guests aged 2 and over at the Animal Kingdom. The only exception is when actively eating or drinking.
All face coverings should:
- Be made with at least 2 layers of breathable material
- Fully cover the nose and mouth and secure under the chin
- Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
- Be secured with ties or ear loops and allow the Guest to remain hands-free
- Neck gaiters and open-chin triangle bandanas are not acceptable face coverings. Costume masks are also not considered appropriate and are prohibited from being worn
Temperature screening will be required to enter. Guests who record a temperature of 100.4 F or above will not be allowed entry to the Animal Kingdom; those in their party will not be permitted entry either.
Disney Park Pass and Park Hopping
Just turning up at the Animal Kingdom is no longer possible. There is now a new park reservation system to access the park.
Disney Park Pass was introduced during the reopening of Walt Disney World. Park Pass allowed Disney to strictly control the number of guests entering a park each day. Since the reopening period, the number of guests has gradually increased, but Disney Park Pass remains.
To access a park at Walt Disney World, you need to prebook a reservation through the new Disney Park Pass System. To access any park, guests have to present both their park reservation and a valid park ticket. Guests who do not have either of these will be refused entry.
To learn more about the Disney Park Pass System visit our dedicated guide.
A limited Park Hopping option, has now been introduced. However, your first park entry each day must be confirmed through a Disney Park Pass Reservation. Guests will be able to enter a second park during Park Hopper Hours. Park Hopping Hours are subject to change, but initially, they will be between 2 pm to close at all parks. Park Hopping will be subject to park capacity, and Disney advises you to check My Disney Experience for the latest information.
Visit our Guide to Park Hopping to learn more.
Animal Kingdom Park Hours in 2021
Park hours usually get released around 6 months in advance. However, they often change as you come closer to the actual date! Unfortunately, hours are currently reduced at the Animal Kingdom but have slowly been increasing. Click the link to get all the latest Walt Disney World Park Hours.
Open Attractions at the Animal Kingdom
The Animal Kingdom is continuously changing, and it is almost inevitable there will be some attraction refurbishments & closures whenever you visit. During the initial reopening of Walt Disney World, you may find more attractions than usual are not open. We expect during 2021, the number of operating attractions will increase. We recommend checking My Disney Experience for the latest information.
Curren entertainment options at the Animal Kingdom
To maintain physical distancing, there has been a significant reduction in entertainment offerings at the Animal Kingdom. Any entertainment that causes the gathering of crowds has currently been postponed, including character meets and the majority of shows.
We expect the entertainment options will increase during 2021, but at the time of writing, the following options are available:
- Character Cruises throughout the day, with Guest-favorite Disney friends appearing in boats around Discovery River—including the following:
- Discovery River Character Cruise
- Discovery Island Drummers
- Donald’s Dino Boat Bash!
- Mickey & Friends Flotilla
- Goofy and Pals Set Sail
- Feathered Friends in Flight! at the Caravan Stage
- Animal Encounters: Winged Encounters – The Kingdom Takes Flight
- The Festival of the Lion King has been confirmed to be reopening in Summer 2021
Dining at the Animal Kingdom during 2021
In 2021 there are some significant changes to Animal Kingdom Dining arrangements. Not all restaurants are currently open, and capacity is reduced at many locations. Many guests are struggling to obtain Dining Reservations, and we recommend booking early. Also, we recommend making use of mobile ordering at quick-service locations. The restaurants open do change, and you should check My Disney Experience for the latest information.
We run through all the essential information in our 2021 Guide to Disney World Dining.
Early Theme Park Entry
It has been confirmed that Extra Magic Hours will not be returning to Animal Kingdom. In its place, Early Theme Park Entry will be introduced later in 2021. Disney Resort hotel guests and guests of other select hotels will be able to gain 30-minute early entry to any theme park every day. Unlike Extra Magic Hours, this will be at all 4 theme parks. We suspect this might provide the best chance of riding Flight of Passage.
To gain access to a park, you will still need a Disney Park Pass. Visit our Guide to Early Theme Park Entry to learn more.
My Disney Experience is a free online guide to Walt Disney World that allows guests to plan their day at the Animal Kingdom. Through this free service you can:
- Keep track of your plans & reservations including those of your family & friends.
- Make Dining & Ticket Reservations
- Order in advance your food at select Quick Service Locations
- Access maps, wait times, showtimes, park hours, and a lot more essential information via the app.
Walt Disney World encourages all guests to have downloaded the latest version of My Disney Experience on their mobile device before entering the Animal Kingdom. Also, they recommend having location services, and notifications enabled.
During the reopening of the Animal Kingdom, My Disney Experience will be providing several new enhancements to promote social distancing and reduced contact.
Our Guide to My Disney Experience provides more information including how to get the App.
2021 Animal Kingdom Tips & Tricks
Planning your visit to the Animal Kingdom is an essential activity, although it can initially feel overwhelming for the first-time visitor. We have created numerous guides here on Modern Life is Good, which provides tips on how to plan the perfect Walt Disney World Vacation.
If you are visiting in 2021 you might find the following guides particularly useful:
- 2021 Guide to Walt Disney World
- Our Top 10 Walt Disney World Tips for 2021 & A Few New Ones
- All-New Walt Disney World Mistakes to Avoid in 2021
- Disney World Park Bag What You Really Need
- Guide to Planning a 2021 Vacation
- Our Number One 2021 Walt Disney World Tip
- 2021 Animal Kingdom Hacks
Free Vacation Planning Sheets
After your initial research, you will want to start putting down your vacation plans in writing. Our Free Walt Disney World Planners are a great resource that can help create a perfect day at the Animal Kingdom. While the planning process might seem simpler in 2021, there is still plenty to consider.
We have just redesigned these planners for 2021 and they include:-
- A vacation overview
- A Disney World budgeting planning sheet
- A weekly Walt Disney World planning sheet
- Park Pass Reservation planner
- A dining planner
- Daily planners
Make sure you download this free resource.
- To learn more about the Animal Kingdom visit Part 2 of this guide.
- To learn more about Walt Disney World in 2021 visit our Guide to Walt Disney World
Jump Right Into Our Guide to
The following section is our traditional Guide to the Animal Kingdom. This section includes details on the lands and attractions at the Animal Kingdom. As the picture at Walt Disney World is starting to become more apparent, we have removed elements that will no be relevant in the future. Eventually, we will merge the two sections of this guide. However, you should note that not all experiences mentioned in this section are currently available, e.g., FastPass+ and the majority of shows. When experiences are presently not available, we have indicated this in the guide.
Kingdom The Basics includes park history & facts. Animal
- Essential Knowledge to Planning Your Visit to Animal Kingdom All the Essential Knowledge to have a great vacation including FastPass+, meeting characters, Single Rider Line, Rider Switch, & dealing with crowds. Make sure you read part 1 of this guide for the latest 2021 information.
- Disabilities at Animal Kingdom details the services available for guests with disabilities.
- Animal Kingdom Useful Information answers some of your most common questions including charging mobile phones, paying for goods, lost items & guest services.
- Tips, Tricks, Mistakes & Must-Do Attractions at the Animal Kingdom follow our tips to have a fantastic time at the Animal Kingdom. Make sure you read part 1 of this guide first
- The Animal Kingdom Lands All the lands at the Animal Kingdom including Pandora – The World of Avatar.
- Animal Kingdom Dining All about dining at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Read Part 1 of this guide for current information.
- Entertainment at the Animal Kingdom What can you do at the Animal Kingdom apart from rides? There are some fantastic shows and street entertainment.
- Coming to Animal Kingdom All the latest updates from the Animal Kingdom
Disney’s Animal Kingdom The Basics
Welcome to a kingdom of animals… real, ancient and imagined: a kingdom ruled by lions, dinosaurs and dragons; a kingdom of balance, harmony and survival; a kingdom we enter to share in the wonder, gaze at the beauty, thrill at theMichael D. Eisner, April 22, 1998
Disney’s the Animal Kingdom was the 4th park to open at Walt Disney World on April 22, 1998. Attendance at the Animal Kingdom rose 15% in 2017 following the opening of Pandora – the World of Avatar. 2017 attendance at the Animal Kingdom was 12.5 million making it the second most popular park in Walt Disney World.
The park’s icon is The Tree of Life a 145-foot tree sculpture. The tree was engineered from a former oil platform and has 325 carvings.
In total, there are around 2000 animals, representing 300 species at the Animal Kingdom. The park is accredited by the Association of Zoos and
However, animals are not all you will find in this superb park. The Animal Kingdom has some of the biggest E-Ticket attractions in Walt Disney World, and after the opening of Pandora – World of Avatar this is at least a 2-day park.
Despite being the newest theme park at Walt Disney World, Animal Kingdom has plenty of interesting statistics and facts.
For example, did you know that the original plans for the Animal Kingdom featured an area called the Beastly Kingdom? Eventually, a new land Pandora – The World of Avatar was built on this land.
Essential Knowledge for Planning Your Visit to the Animal Kingdom
Please read part 1 of this guide for information on how to plan in 2021
To experience the Animal Kingdom, you should spend time planning your experience. In the past, it was possible to do all the major attractions in one day, but following recent park expansions, this is now impossible.
The majority of guests will need 2 or even 3 days to experience the full park. Not having a plan could mean you miss your top attractions. Do not believe any blog which still claims this is only a 1-day park!
There are key booking windows to secure dining reservations and make ride reservations at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. In this section, we will guide you through all the Essential Animal Kingdom knowledge you need to enjoy your vacation.
Animal Kingdom Park Hours
Park hours are published about six months in advance. However, they often get extended as you come closer to the actual date! Click the link to get all the latest Walt Disney World Park Hours.
Refurbishments & Closures
Walt Disney World is constantly changing and it almost inevitable there will be some refurbishments & closures whenever you visit. This handy guide contains all the current renovations and closures at Animal Kingdom.
FastPass+ is currently suspended at the Animal KIngdom
FastPass+ is Disney’s attraction reservation system & allows you to book attractions in advance of your visit. It is essential you understand FastPass+ before your visit and the key booking windows. Failing to make Fastpass+ reservations will mean longer lines and completing fewer attractions.
The Animal Kingdom does not allow an equal booking to all Fastpass attractions. You can only pre-book one Tier 1 Fastpass for either Navi River Journey or Flight of Passage. Due to the popularity of these attractions do not expect to get an extra Fastpass later in the day.
We have created a Guide to Fastpass at the Animal Kingdom which includes our top tips to have a great day.
Are you big enough to ride?
Don’t create a strategy that includes all family members riding to realize too late; not all of you can. Many of the Walt Disney World attractions do carry restrictions, and these are enforced rigidly. At the Animal Kingdom these are:
- Avatar Flight of Passage at least 44 inches tall to ride
- Dinosaur at least 40 inches tall to ride although many children will find it scary
- Expedition Everest at least 44 inches tall to ride
- Kali River Rapids at least 38 inches tall to ride
- Primeval Whirl at least 48 inches tall to ride
In addition, many small children do find It’s Tough To Be a Bug petrifying.
However, if the kids are too small to ride, it does not mean adults and older siblings can’t. Rider Switch, also sometimes known as child swap, allows guests with small children to take turns riding while another adult stays with the child. Our Guide to Rider Switch has all the information you need to know.
Disney After Hours at Animal Kingdom
Currently there are no After Hours events scheduled at the Animal Kingdom. We expect they may return later in 2021.
If you are short of time when visiting Walt Disney World, Disney After Hours might be your answer! These special ticketed events have run at the Magic Kingdom for a while but started being offered at the Animal Kingdom in 2019 and will continue in 2020.
These hard-ticket events allow you to experience the park for 3 hours after regular closure. You are promised little-to-no wait for attractions, unique experiences, and character greetings. Ice cream, popcorn, and select beverages are also included in your admission price.
Current attractions which are open at the Animal Kingdom during After Hours are:
- Avatar Flight of Passage
- Na’vi River Journey
- Pandora Drummers – Swotu Wayä
- Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain
- Mickey & Minnie Greeting at Adventurers Outpost
- Rivers of Light: We Are One
- Tree of Life Awakenings
- It’s Tough to be a Bug!
- TriceraTop Spin
However, Disney After Hours is not cheap.
The Single Rider Line is currently not open.
Struggling to get a Fastpass for all your top attractions?
Expedition Everest has a single rider line that can cut your wait if you are happy to ride on your own. Read our Guide to the Single Rider Line to find out more.
Currently the Disney ParkPass system has made this information inaccurate
No matter when you visit the Animal Kingdom, there will be crowds. However, you can still have a great day in the Animal Kingdom, even when it is crowded. You can read tips & hints in our guide, Avoiding Crowds at Walt Disney World.
Read our guide to learn everything which you are not allowed to do at the Animal Kingdom. Make sure you note the few additional rules in place at the Animal Kingdom compared to the other parks.
Regular meet and greets are currently suspended at the Animal Kingdom. Also Tusker House is currently not operating.
Characters are probably not the main reason guests visit the Animal Kingdom. However, there are several characters you can meet which you will not find in other parks.
At the time of writing characters that can only be met in the Animal Kingdom include:
- Launchpad McQuack
- Kevin who is my personal favorite!
- The mysterious and confusing Divine.
In the Animal Kingdom, there is 1 Character Meal located at Tusker House in Africa. Donald’s Safari Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner offers the opportunity to visit Donald and pals in an African Safari setting. Our Guide to Character Meals at Walt Disney World has further information.
Make sure you check the My Disney Experience App to find where your favorite character is located. Our Guide to Finding Characters at Walt Disney World has further information.
The Animal Kingdom provides extensive facilities for all forms of disabilities including visual, auditory, mobility & cognitive disabilities. Guests are able to contact Walt Disney World at (407) 560-2547 or [email protected] prior to their visit to discuss requirements.
Our Guide to Disabilities at the Walt Disney World has plenty of essential information including ECV Hire, Dietary Issues and details on the Disability Access Service.
Clicking this link will take you to a copy of the current Animal Kingdom Guide for Guests with Disabilities.
Useful Information when visiting the Animal Kingdom
Sometimes it is difficult to find the answers to all your questions before your visit to the Animal Kingdom. We have grouped a collection of the most common Animal Kingdom questions in a new Guide on Modern Life is Good.
If you have a specific Animal Kingdom question the links will take you straight to the advice:
- Available to Hire at The Animal Kingdom
- Guest Relations at The Animal Kingdom
- Accessing the Internet at Animal Kingdom
- Lost & Found at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
- Smoking at Animal Kingdom
- Baby Care Center at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
- Pregnant at Animal Kingdom
- Charging your Mobile Phone at the Animal Kingdom
- Locker Hire at Animal Kingdom
- What you should pack in your Park Bag
- Payment for Goods & ATMs
- Animal Kingdom Tours
- Translation Services at Animal Kingdom
In addition, you might find our Walt Disney World Useful Information Guide, which has been updated for 2021, has the answer if it isn’t here.
Tips, Tricks, Mistakes & Must-Do Attractions at the Animal Kingdom
Many of these guides currently carry out-of-date information. Please read the 2021 section for the latest planning tips.
Anybody who has ever visited The Animal Kingdom will have a list of Tips & Mistakes not to make at a future visit.
Here is a selection of our top tips which we have learned from previous visits to the Animal Kingdom. Learning from other guest’s experiences is a great way to create your Ultimate Animal Kingdom Plan.
- Our Top Animal Kingdom Tips and Tricks
AnimalKingdom Mistakes to avoid to have a great day.
- If time is tight, these are attractions we would skip at the
- These are our must-do attractions when we visit
- The whole Modern Life is Good Family got together recently to decide which were our Favorite and Least Liked Experiences at Animal Kingdom.
The Lands at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
There are seven lands at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. The newest land Pandora – The World of Avatar, opened in 2017. The former land Camp Minnie-Mickey closed in 2014 to make way for Pandora.
The Oasis is the Main Street, USA of Animal Kingdom and the first land guests enter after entering the park. The Oasis has various guest facilities including locker hire, stroller hire, wheelchair hire, and guest relations, plus several exhibits. Exhibits include wallabies, babirusa and a variety of birds.
The Animal Kingdom has a Rainforest Cafe located at its entrance, which provides a secondary entrance to the park. This restaurant is officially outside the park & you must show tickets again to get back into the park after your meal.
The maze of paths, at the Oasis, all lead to Discovery Island including The Tree of Life.
Discovery Island is the main hub of the Animal Kingdom & is located around the Tree of Life. The Tree of Life is home to It’s Tough to Be a Bug! and several animal trails.
It’s Tough to Be a Bug! is a 4D adventure starring the cast from A Bug’s Life. While the film is good fun many small children do find it scary.
The animal trails are missed by many guests especially those in a hurry. Take your time there is plenty to see here.
Rafiki’s Planet Watch
Reached via the Wildlife Express Train the area has a conservation station & petting zoo.
Rafiki’s Planet watch closed in late 2018, and was rumored that it would not be reopening. However, it opened in summer 2019, with a few new enhancements celebrating the Lion King.
The Animation Experience at Conservation Station opened in Summer 2019. At the attraction, you will learn how real-life animals were used at the inspiration to bring your favorites to life. You will even learn how to draw a beloved Disney character.
It does take quite a bit of time to get to Rafiki’s Planet Watch, but as the attraction might not be available long term you should consider visiting.
This is one of my favorite lands in the Animal Kingdom. The theming of the land is outstanding.
Africa is home to:
- Kilimanjaro Safaris a ride through animal exhibit taking the theme of an African Safari Vacation. An informative commentary accompanies your ride. No 2 rides are ever the same & the unexpected can happen. Usually, animals are more active in the morning, but evening rides offer a different experience.
- Festival of the Lion King a great sing along with the cast of the Lion King. This will be reopening Summer 2021
- The Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail formerly known as The Pangani Forest Exploration Trails. This walkthrough exhibit includes hippos, meerkats, and of course gorillas.
Asia opened in 1999, 1 year after Animal Kingdom’s opening. Expedition Everest & Kali River Rapids are the big attractions here. In addition, you will find the Maharajah Jungle Trek.
The land is set in the fictional kingdom of Anandapur. There are 2 villages full of old ruins and the odd historic temple. The theming is fantastic and is centered around animal conservation.
Attractions in Asia are:
- Expedition Everest Embark on a thrilling expedition through the Himalayas before coming face to face with the Yeti. A great fast thrilling coaster that has a backward section. If you don’t have a spare Fastpass option consider using the single rider line. Remember this ride will close during afternoon storms so try and ride early in the day.
- Kali River Rapids is a fantastic raft ride. You will get wet and make sure you store your belongings in the free lockers before you ride. There is nowhere guaranteed to stay dry on your raft and the former onboard storage has been removed. This ride will also close during afternoon storms so try and ride early in the day.
- Maharajah Jungle Trek. This stunning exhibit includes tigers, Komodo dragons & a walk through bird exhibit.
- UP! A Great Bird Adventure opened in 2018. In this show, featuring characters from Up!, you can discover some of the world’s most exotic birds. Temporarily unavailable.
Dinoland U.S.A. contains the excellent Finding Nemo: The Musical(Temporarily unavailable) and Dinosaur. Make sure you check the showtimes for Finding Nemo & arrive early when the park is busy.
Dinosaur is a ride many young children will find scary, but it is great fun.
The awful tacky Chester and Hester’s Dinorama previously contained Triceratops Spin and Primeval Whirl. Chester and Hester’s Dinorama continues to feel out of place in the otherwise stunning Animal Kingdom park. Primeval Whirl has now closed and we suspect the land will soon be redesigned.
- Triceratops Spin is a Dumbo-like ride on a triceratops.
At Donald’s Dino-Bash! You can meet Donald, Daisy, Goofy, Pluto, Chip
Pandora – The World of Avatar
The newest area of Animal Kingdom opened in 2017 and contains 2 fantastic attractions.
- Na’vi River Journey guests are taken through the Kasvapan River of Pandora. On your journey, you will see native animals and bioluminescent flora. The ride is stunning and will appeal to all the family.
- Flight of Passage guests take a flight on a Banshee across Pandora. This 3D simulator is unbelievable and has raised the bar on theme park experiences. It does get better the more times you ride and in my opinion is one of the only rides I would consider a lengthy wait for. You should not miss it!
Make sure you leave plenty of time to explore Pandora and try to visit both during the day and night. Pandora is even more magical at night.
We have created a Guide to Pandora – The World of Avatar which has plenty of additional hints and tips.
Dining at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
During the reopening period this information is inaccurate. Visit the 2021 section of this guide for the latest information.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom has 4 table service restaurants.
- Rainforest Cafe part of the worldwide chain. The restaurant can be entered both from inside and outside the park. Click here to see our video review.
- Tusker House in Africa offers safari-themed Character Meals for breakfast, lunch & dinner. Your meal is hosted by Donald Duck.
- Yak & Yeti an Asian-themed restaurant. Click to read our review of Yak & Yeti.
- Tiffins this signature restaurant opened in 2016 and has the Nomad Lounge adjacent.
Table Service locations at the Animal Kingdom fill up fast & you should arrange an Advanced Dining Reservation prior to your visit. There is also a selection of quick-service restaurants in the park in addition to various food carts serving a wide range of snacks.
Dining at the Animal Kingdom is some of the best at Walt Disney World, and only Epcot locations tend to be better. Our Guide to Dining at Walt Disney World has further information to plan your dining experience at the Animal Kingdom.
Entertainment at the Animal Kingdom
Please see Part 1 of this guide for current entertainment offerings
Disney’s Animal Kingdom is one of the best parks for entertainment offerings. While there is no longer a parade in the park there is plenty of other entertainment you should not miss.
There are 3 fantastic stage shows at the Animal Kingdom:
- Festival of the Lion King
- Finding Nemo the Musical
- Up! A Great Bird Adventure.
Shows can be very popular and if you are not using a FastPass you must arrive well before the scheduled start.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom is perhaps the best park at Walt Disney World to fall upon unexpected entertainment. From fantastic African Bands to the mystical Swotu Wayä Na’vi Drum Ceremony In Pandora, there is so much to discover.
Tree of Life Awakenings(Currently suspended)
This show is incredibly clever and happens every 10 minutes nightly. A combination of light, projections, and music make the animals on the Tree of Life come to life. Currently, the show features animals and themes inspired by The Lion King. The show is impossible to describe but you shouldn’t miss it.
Wilderness Explorers(currently operating)
Walt Disney World offers several free interactive games within the parks. Wilderness Explorers is a scavenger hunt in which guests earn badges for completing activities inside the Animal Kingdom. The games are loosely based on the film Up! Examples of badges you can earn include:
- Veterinary Badge – Help diagnose a sea turtle’s health issue
- Dinosaur Badge – Join in the exploration for dinosaur fossils
- Animal Find Badge – Check off each of the animals you see
- Yeti Badge – Find Yeti artifacts and hear about the folklore
In total there are 30 badges to collect. To get started, guests need to collect a field guide from the headquarters which is located on the bridge between the Oasis and Discovery Island.
Coming To Animal Kingdom
After all the new fun at the Animal Kingdom over the last few years, things feel a little quieter at the moment. Currently, there are no confirmed new permanent attractions at the Animal Kingdom. However, there are rumors of additional attractions at Pandora and a Zootopia area to replace Chester and Hester’s Dinorama.
At Modern Life is Good we try and keep you up to date with all the latest news & rumors from Animal Kingdom. Visit our Walt Disney World News Section for all the most recent information on the
Read More Animal Kingdom Tips
To learn more about Walt Disney World visit our 2021 Guide to Walt Disney World.
This Guide is part of our “Road to 2021 at Walt Disney World” series. Check out the rest of the guides for the latest information.