|Animal Kingdom Attractions||Rafiki's Planet Watch|
Tiffins will have waterfront views, indoor and outdoor seating for 252 people and will be open for both lunch and dinner. The menu will celebrate the art of traveling and will feature foods from Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Americas, the locations that inspired Animal Kingdom. "Tiffin" means midday meal or a container to carry food while traveling. Some of the menu items will include: Berbere-Spiced Lamb Chop with Mustard Greens, Lentil Stew and Mint Chutney (Africa); Berkshire Pork Tenderloin with Huitlacoche Tamale, Hominy Succotash and Red Mole Sauce (South America), and Miso-glazed Black Cod with Forbidden Rice in Steamed Bok Choy with Turmeric Sauce (Asia). Beverages will be sustainable and organic.
The Nomad Lounge will not require reservations and will feature small bites such as vegetarian summer rolls, seared Wagyu beef skewers, and honey-glazed coriander-spiced pork ribs.
Information about reservations will come out on May 20.
Details about the new nighttime entertainment experiences coming to Animal Kingdom:
Rivers of Light
Opening has been delayed from April 22. No new date was announced, but should be announced mid to late May.
This will take place on Discovery River, between Discovery Island and Expedition Everest with the Tree of Life in the background. This innovative show will use live music and performers, floating lanterns, water screens and swirling animal imagery. The show begins with the storyteller hosts setting out "from the shore on elaborate lantern vessels for a dramatic dance of water and light to summon animal spirits." The show will then continue to build and the Tree of Life will be brought to life by magical fireflies and bring the stories of the animals to the guests.
Imagineer Joe Rohde said, "It takes the idea of the special nature of the animals that are in this park and turns it into a celebration of the beauty of these animals. It starts simply and humbly, continues to unfold and grow as bigger and more elaborate lanterns appear, and then huge curtains of water and light emerge from the water with animals within them. And ultimately it takes off into the sky.”
Sunset Kilimanjaro Safaris
Coming in spring 2016, guests will travel over the African savanna on this special nighttime version of the safari, complete with two new animal species - African wild dogs and hyenas.
The fireflies will be returning to the Tree of Life.
The Lion Guard Adventure
This interactive experience will take place through April and is based on the Disney Channel movie The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar. A new Lion Guard series has also debuted on Disney Channel and Disney Junior. This Adventure lets kids join the Lion Guard, exploring the park to find character statue photo-ops of the movie's five friends: Kion, Bunga, Fuli, Beshte, and Ono. Kids learn about the importance of protecting animals and nature. When their Adventure is complete, kids can take a pledge to become an honorary Lion Guard member and they will receive a commemorative button.
Animal Kingdom Overview
by Pete Werner Founder, Webmaster
On April 22, 1998, Disney unleashed its newest theme park on the world in the form of Disney's Animal Kingdom.
Whatever you do, don't call it a zoo (they get touchy about that word around Animal Kingdom).
This newest venture marked a departure from what Disney had been turning out in the way of theme parks for many years. Any park banking its success on "edutainment" was bound to have issues, and Disney knew it. Epcot proved it was effectively kryptonite for children, and Disney was challenged to make sure that Animal Kingdom didn't suffer the same fate. In spite of some of its early preachiness (and some unfair press about animal care at the park)- Disney's Animal Kingdom opened to generally good reviews.
At a cost of nearly $1 Billion to complete, Animal Kingdom was an expensive theme park. In fact, one of the planned 'lands' for Animal Kingdom was eventually cut from development due to cost overruns in the budget. The never realized land was to be called the "Beastly Kingdom" and feature a myriad of rides themed around mythical creatures. The Imagineers who were laid off when the plans were scrapped, were eventually hired by Universal Orlando to build the Dragon Challenge coaster for Islands of Adventure - arguably one of the best roller coasters in North America. Oops.
Tip: If you are planning on taking pictures on the Safari, try to get a seat on the end of the row. That way you won't have peoples' heads in your pictures. Plan on riding it twice to get the animals on each side of the truck.
Animal Kingdom's 500 acres are home to some 1700 animals representing 250 different species throughout the park. A ride on the Kilimanjaro Safari will give you a chance to see many of them as they take you through the African Savannah (though the jeeps you ride in will rarely slow down long enough to allow you a good picture. This has led us to refer to this attraction as the "Kilimanjaro 500"). If you do want a chance to get better pictures, Animal Kingdom offers the Wild Africa Trek, a tour that gives you up-close views of the animals, sends you on a rope bridge over hippos and crocodiles and lunch in a private safari camp on the savannah. Of course, this is Disney, so these "extras" will come at a cost.
As the Park's perennial Icon, the Tree of Life is truly a work of art in the best Disney tradition. At 145 ft, this 14 story artificial tree has the images of more than 300 animals hand-carved into its trunk. The base of the Tree of Life is home to the 3D film "It's Tough to be a Bug." On your way to see the show, you will invariably encounter those holding up the line to stare at each and every one of the animals on the tree. Feel free to push those people to the ground and keep going :)
A good portion of Animal Kingdom's growth came with the opening of Asia in 1999. The Maharaja Jungle Trek - which is a walking tour that features bats, komodo dragons, bats, deer, birds, did I mention bats? The 'bat cage' is just plain creepy, and if you have an aversion to bats the way I do, you'll find this part of the walking tour uncomfortable. The second notable attraction in Asia is Kali River Rapids. If you have trouble finding it, just look for the people going on the water ride wearing big yellow ponchos (to this day I can't figure out why you'd go on a water ride wearing a poncho - isn't it just easier not to ride if you don't want to get wet?). As water rides go, Kali River Rapids is okay - like most attractions these days it's a bit too short, and keeping with Animal Kingdom's general preachiness, you learn about the evils of deforestation while riding on machinery and materials that will still be trying to biodegrade in 500 years. Gotta love irony.
Gracing the landscape in Asia is the incredible Expedition Everest. The attraction features a two way track system that takes guests forward, then backward when attacked by the mythical yeti that guards the "forbidden mountain". While technically a roller coaster, it's a roller coaster of the Big Thunder Mountain variety - which means it's family friendly. I don't do well on coasters at all, and I enjoyed this one thoroughly.
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from Dreams Unlimited Travel