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The Disney's Animal Kingdom One Day Must See Guide

Disney World Guests are often overwhelmed when they visit the Disney World Theme Parks since there is so much to do and see.  Only WDWorld will help guide you to the best attractions, entertainment, and dining for the Disney World visitor that only has one day to experience all they can.

In this article we look at Disney's Animal Kingdom and present: The Disney's Animal Kingdom One Day Must See Guide!

This Disney World Park is the newest, opening in 1998, and most highly themed of the 4 Disney World Theme Parks.  Although sometimes confused with a zoo, because of its inclusion of live animals, this park has more details to take in and enjoy than the other parks, as well as, top notch use of technology in the premier thrill rides, and two of the best lives shows at Disney World.  Don't ever let anyone tell you that this is only a half day park.

One Day To Do It All
One day is not enough to see and do it all in any of the four Disney World Theme Parks, but if you only have one day available to spend at a Disney World Park you want to see the best entertainment, experience the best attractions, and eat the best food.  From experience the Editors at Only WDWorld can tell you that Disney World is not best experienced as a race, but rather at a pace where you have time to enjoy not only the main attractions, but also many of the details that the Disney Imagineers have painstakingly included throughout the Parks.  These details are what makes Disney World different from any other Theme Park or Resort vacation that you will experience, and it is the reason that so many people come back to Disney World year after year.

The Disney's Animal Kingdom One Day Must See Guide!This guide will help you get the most out of your day at Disney's Animal Kingdom.  If you visit the attractions in the order presented you will minimize your wait time during the day which will allow you to see more and spend less time waiting in lines.  Take advantage of the Disney FastPass System.  It is free and it will also help you minimize you time spent waiting in line.
Arrive at Disney's Animal Kingdom before the park opens and get a Park Guide to familiarize yourself with the layout of the park.  From the park entrance you proceed to Discovery Island which houses the Tree Of Life, the iconic feature of Disney's Animal Kingdom.  From there the park branches off into 4 additional lands: Camp Minnie Mickey, Africa, Asia, and Dinoland.

  1. Expedition Everest - Once the park opens head directly to Expedition Everest, the park's premier thrill ride.  Get a FastPass and then get in the regular line if the wait is under 20 minutes.  This attraction is one of the best themed attractions start to finish of any Disney attraction anywhere.  As you proceed through the lines, take the time to take it all in and learn about the legend of the Yeti and how it is both respected and feared.  The ride mechanism is state of the art in this roller coaster that has segments that go both forward and backwards.  This is a great way to start out your day and by riding it first thing in the morning, you avoid waiting in the lines that will exceed 60 minutes later in the day.

    Use the FastPass later in the day if you decide that you would like to experience this attraction again.  Feel free to ride two or three times if the lines are still short at the beginning of the day.  If the lines grow quickly, ride once and then move on.
  2. Dinosaur - Near Expedition Everest is Dinoland which is home to the state of the art Dinosaur attraction.  Here you are transported via time machine back to the time of the dinosaurs and see some of Disney's best audio animatronic creations in the form of life sized dinosaurs.  You experience it all on Disney's Patented state of the art ride vehicle that makes the adventure feel real.  By visiting this attraction early in the morning you avoid the lines that develop later in the day.

  3. Kilimanjaro Safari - Walk to Africa and get a FastPass for Kilimanjaro Safari.  While you wait for the time to ride, consider grabbing breakfast (or morning snack) at Pizzafari.  This restaurant area is filled with incredible theming with each room representing a different group of animals.  Take the time to check out each room.  The carved wooden figures come from craftsman from Oaxacan, Mexico.

    Once it is time to ride Kilimanjaro Safari, Disney's Animal Kingdom's Signature Attraction, you will get to experience the "two week" safari on 110 acres of Disney's own African Savannah.  Here you will encounter a wide variety of African creatures that will vary with each ride as many of the animals will be roaming freely, possibly getting in the way of the safari vehicles.  Make sure that you bring your camera as there are excellent opportunities to take create pictures of these impressive animals.  Favorites include: Elephants, White & Black Rhinoceros, Crocodile, Hippos, Giraffes, Wildebeests, Warthogs, Lions, Cheetahs, Flamingos, Bongos, Ostriches, Thompson's Gazelles, Ankole Cattle, and many more.
  4. Festival Of The Lion King - The entertainment at Disney's Animal Kingdom is top notch.  It is hard to decide which of their shows is best so make sure that you make time to see the Festival Of The Lion King and the show mentioned in #5.  This show features singing, dancing, comedy, audience participation, and amazing costumes.  The enclosed theater is air conditioned, which also makes it a nice escape from the heat.  This is a show that the entire family will love and is a must do on every visit to Disney's Animal Kingdom.
  5. Finding Nemo The Musical - Disney's Animal Kingdom's other highly regarded show is Finding Nemo The Musical.  In a twist, Disney took a movie that wasn't a musical and turned it into a musical production for this attraction.  Combining great songs, and unbelievable puppetry, you will see the Finding Nemo story told in a whole new way.  This is another great show for the entire family.
  6. Yak & Yeti - There are no shortages of places to eat at Disney's Animal Kingdom.  If you are looking for a table service meal in order to take a break and relax, consider eating at Yak & Yeti.  This restaurant with the Asian inspired menu has great food and more incredible theming to enjoy while you are dining.  Other options to consider if you would prefer Quick Service would be to visit the Flame Tree Barbeque.  Here you can enjoy BBQ Ribs or Chicken with some of the best outdoor seating areas at Disney World.
  7. Kali River Rapids - When you are ready to cool off, then it is time for the only ride at Disney World where you are guaranteed to get wet.  In the warmer months you will want to get a FastPass for this attraction.  If you do, you can skip ahead to #9 while you wait for your return time.

    At Kali River Rapids you take a wild rafting ride through the forest and learn of the struggle of nature versus man's interference.  This is a thrilling ride that is lots of fun.  Take notice of all of the interesting artifacts while you are waiting in line.
  8. Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade - Don't forget to catch the unique daily parade that occurs each day at Disney's Animal KingdomMickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade feature Disney Characters and unique Animal Based Puppets and vehicles.  There is also a lively music track to accompany the parade.  This is a very good parade, that doesn't get the attention it deserves.
  9. Maharaja Jungle Trek - Journey through Asia to see a variety of its native animals.  You will see Bats, Tigers, and a multitude of color birds along this self guided walking tour through the well-themed area.
  10. It's Tough To Be A Bug! - Based upon the movie A Bug's Life is the 4-D movie spectacular called It's Tough To Be A Bug!  Disney Imagineers combine a 3-D movie with audio-animatronic creatures, water sprays and other surprises for its guests in this fun presentation featuring all manner of bugs.  Warning:  Some parts may be too intense for young children.
  11. DeVine - There are no Disney entertainers that make as much of an impression as DeVine.  This mysterious living vine moves slowly and hides amongst the forests of Disney's Animal Kingdom.  If you walk by too quickly, you will never even know she was there.
  12. Pangani Forest Exploration Trail - A self-guided walking trail where you will encounter research stations, gorillas, hippos, and many more African animals.  Disney Cast Members are available to answer questions that you may have about the animals.
Details Everywhere You Look!
Everywhere you go there are incredible details to notice at Disney's Animal Kingdom.  From the animal carvings adorning the buildings, the wonderful signage to the impressions in the pavement, there are details everywhere you look.

Make sure that you take time when you are walking from one attractions to another to take in the sights.  Spend time seeing how many animals you can recognize in the carving on the trunk and branches of the Tree of Life or check out the authentic details in the fictional Asian village of Anandapur and the African town of Harambe.  These aren't listed as attractions per se, but are a great part of the Animal Kingdom experience.

By following this guide you are sure to get a good taste of Disney's Animal Kingdom, but realize that it is very unlikely you can see everything in only one day.

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