Posts Tagged ‘Disney’s Animal Kingdom’

Newsworthy Notes – Disney’s Animal Kingdom Edition

by on December 12, 2014

We all know that there is a massive amount of refurbishment work taking place at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, preparing the theme park to become a full day park and to support the upcoming Avatarland, as well as Rivers of Light. A few updates have come to my attention, so I wanted to make sure to share them with you.

The first is that for those who like experiencing character dining at Tusker House, you’ll now have the option to do so at dinner. You see, beginning on March 8, the restaurant located in the Africa section of the park will introduce the Donald’s Safari Dinner. (For those who don’t know, breakfast and lunch were already character meals.) The dinner option will begin at 4:00 p.m. daily.

Tusker House

©Disney

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Walt Disney World Newsworthy Notes – 12/3/14

by on December 3, 2014

It’s been a while since I’ve brought you the Newsworthy Notes, but now I have a whole bundle of new small Walt Disney World news pieces to share with you all! So, let’s jump right in and get to it.

  • For those who will be in the Magic Kingdom during the beginning of next week, you’ll be able to catch the taping of the Disney Christmas Day Parade. (I mean the Disney Parks Frozen Christmas Celebration.) The parade will be filmed on Monday, December 8 and Tuesday, December 9.
  • Guests can now make Advanced Dining Reservations for the Morocco Pavilion’s Spice Road Table. In addition, the restaurant has seen an updated menu; while most of the tapas options are still offered, now as appetizers, the restaurant is also serving full entrees as well. The new entrees include: Mix Grill Skewers – Beef and Chicken skewers; Coriander-crusted Rack of Lamb; Yellowfin Tuna; All Natural Roasted Chicken; and Mediterranean Vegetable Platter. Hopefully these changes will cause more guests to visit this fledgling Epcot restaurant.

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Walt Disney World Newsworthy Notes – 9/25/14

by on September 25, 2014

Who’s ready for more news? I’m back with more for you today! Here we go:

  • There has been a change to the Disney Gift Card Program. New Disney gift cards can now only be activated with a minimum amount of $15. (The previous minimum amount you could load on a new card was $5.) Guests who are re-loading a gift card may still do so with a minimum of $5.
  • The FastPass+ kiosks outside of Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin at the Magic Kingdom are officially closed. Guests looking to book a FastPass+ reservation will now be directed to the FastPass+ kiosk location near Stitch’s Great Escape.
  • The rules for visiting Walt Disney World have been updated. The biggest change seems to focus on those who are e-cigarette smokers, who are now asked to smoke in designated smoking areas.
  • For those of you who read my previous article about Tower of Terror getting on-ride videos, you’ll have noticed that I mentioned that it was likely just the beginning. It turns out that I was completely right, as it another attraction has already received the on-ride video treatment. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is the next attraction that will capture your ride experience while you are on the attraction. Much like the Tower of Terror ride video, when you ride the attraction with a MagicBand and a linked Memory Maker, you will have your photo and video automatically associated to your My Disney Experience account. Here is the sample video giving you a peek at what to expect.

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Hidden Details of Animal Kingdom

by on August 23, 2014

There are many reasons why the Disney Parks stand apart from other theme parks around the world, but one of the biggest has to be Disney’s incredible attention to detail. You can see the extra mile in the form of details just about everywhere on Disney property, from attractions to parade costumes to resorts to transportation to even the bathrooms! Personally, I love the details. They are not only appealing to the eye and fun to find, but almost always meaningful to the history of an attraction or to the story the Imagineers are trying to tell. For today’s post, let’s take a look at the hidden details of Animal Kingdom!

Expedition Everest Height Measurement

Expedition Everest Height Measurement

Over at Asia’s Expedition Everest, be sure to notice the special height measurement for young riders. Only at Disney would the measurement be a giant, wooden Yeti foot! I’ve always thought that Expedition Everest has one of the most clever, detailed themed queues, and this fun detail just proves it!

Inside of the Dinosaur attraction, look up to see red, white, and yellow pipes running through the queue. Chemical combinations are printed on those pipes, which isn’t anything special, unless you realize the combinations are actually the chemical names for ketchup, mayonnaise, and mustard! Weird, right?

Animal Kingdom Harambe Sign - A Glass Slipper Vacation

Animal Kingdom’s Harambe Village

Animal Kingdom’s Africa is meant to look and feel as if you have just walked into a real African village called Harambe. Disney Imagineers really went to new heights with the details here, as Harambe appears lived-in and authentic with thatched roofs, posters for the village’s Harambe Wildlife Preserve, handpainted signs on the sides of local businesses, and so much more. This particular sign welcoming you into Harambe features ads of the village’s establishments, and the lights above it are even rusted to show age.

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Disney World Summer Tips: Keeping Cool in the Kingdom

by on July 23, 2014

BoardWalk sunrise Disney World

As the sun rises over Walt Disney World, prepare yourself to beat the heat

Though it’s no secret that Florida summers can be hotter than the surface of the sun, it’s also one of Walt Disney World’s busiest seasons. There’s no way to avoid the high temperatures, but there are some things you can do to plan for hot fun in the summertime. As a follow up to TouringPlan’s previous Disney World summer tips, here are some additional ideas to keep you cool in the kingdom!

 

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Favorite Parks Series: Disney’s Animal Kingdom

by on July 16, 2014

We’re at the half way point in our Favorite Parks journey! (Read about Disney’s Hollywood Studios here.) Before doing research for this article, I’ll admit that Disney’s Animal Kingdom was my least favorite park. However, the more I delved into the MAGIC* behind the park, the more I realized how spectacular and incredibly unique Animal Kingdom is.

Memorable Moments

Since Animal Kingdom is known for its hot environment, Kali River Rapids is just the attraction to cool you off. As the unpredictable rapids decide which way the raft spins, no one is safe from the surprising splashes and torrents. Once you’ve become thoroughly soaked, dry yourself off by enjoying two delightful shows; Finding Nemo – The Musical and the Festival of the Lion King. Adrenaline junkies will love running into the Yeti on Expedition Everest, while those looking for further adventure can experience DINOSAUR. An underrated attraction at Animal Kingdom worth attending is Flights of Wonder, an educational and entertaining exotic bird show. You’ll be ‘squawking’ about it for days!

How many animals can you spot?

How many animals can you spot?

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Best Evening Extra Magic Hours Attractions at Disney World

by on July 15, 2014

The Kiss Goodnight is a light show projected on the castle when the park closes.

Staying on property during your next Walt Disney World vacation? Then you should absolutely be taking advantage of Disney’s Extra Magic Hours, which offer resort guests the opportunity to get to a park early or stay late. Simply show that you’re staying in a Walt Disney World resort and you can have fun in the parks beyond the normal operating hours. And if you’re using our Personalized Touring Plans, you can also extend your plan hours for both morning and evening Extra Magic Hours. As stated, Extra Magic Hours are offered both in the morning and the evening but for now we’re going to concentrate on some of my favorite Evening Extra Magic Hours attractions. While not every attraction is operating for Extra Magic Hours, some of the best and most popular attractions across Magic Kingdom, Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios are open to resort guests. Unfortunately, as of this writing, Disney’s Animal Kingdom does not offer evening extra magic hours. Perhaps that could change with the eventual opening of the park’s new Avatar Land but for now, park guests will have to get their Extra Magic Hours fill at the first three Walt Disney World theme parks. So without further ado, here are my top Evening Extra Magic Hours attractions for each park.

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Wild Africa Trek – An In-Depth Review of the VIP Backstage Tour at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

by on July 9, 2014

Disney describes the Wild Africa Trek as “[a] privately guided VIP expedition offering close encounters with exotic African wildlife in their native habitat.” In other words, the Wild Africa Trek is a tour that builds upon the experience of Kilimanjaro Safaris by taking you to areas of the Harambe Wildlife Reserve that you may have seen on Kilimanjaro Safaris, but only from afar. This article takes an in-depth look at the Wild Africa Trek experience, details the cost associated with the tour, responds to possible FAQs from those considering the tour, and, ultimately, attempts to the answer the question: Is the Wild Africa Trek worth its cost?

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Walt Disney World Changes Park Hours and Extra Magic Hours For Several Dates Through 2014

by on June 26, 2014

2014-02-15 22.33.39Changes are a taking place! If you have a trip to Walt Disney World scheduled from starting anywhere from July 13 through the remainder of the year, you may want to double check park hours and Extra Magic Hour offerings, as both of these will be changing at most the the theme parks. Here’s what you need to know:

Magic Kingdom: On many days, the park’s operating hours have been extended. In addition, Evening Extra Magic Hours have been moved to different days. (Most of the time, the change is that Evening Extra Magic Hours have been added on Saturday evenings; they will no longer take place on Sunday or Monday evenings.) Also, additional Main Street Electrical Parade performances have been added.

Disney’s Hollywood Studios: On many days, the park’s operating hours have been extended. There are also changes to Extra Magic Hour days. Plus, additional Fantasmic! shows have been added.

Disney’s Animal Kingdom: On many days, the park’s operating hours have been extended. In addition, Morning Extra Magic Hours have changed; they will now take place for the most part on Sundays, with a few exceptions.

Epcot: Has seen no changes. Its park hours will remain consistent with before.

If you are planning a trip to Walt Disney World in the next six months, be sure to check out the Crowd Calendar for the latest updates.

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Two New Animal Encounters Introduced at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

by on June 19, 2014

©Disney

©Disney

Lately it seems like Disney has been introducing quite a few new offerings at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. The park has seen some new food options (like pineapple soft serve), new animals (like the Grevy’s Zebra and Sumatran Tigers), and new experiences.  Today, I’m here to tell you about two new, relatively minor experiences that you should certainly check out on your next visit, especially if you are an animal lover.

The first is one that had been announced about a month ago, “Winged Encounters – The Kingdom Takes Flight,” which is now being performed daily at 9:15 a.m., 10:15 a.m., 1:00 p.m., and 2:00 p.m. While there are set showtimes, the show is still technically in testing mode, so times are subject to change.

The show is an animal experience featuring macaws that fly over the park, back and forth between a perch found on Discovery Island and a perch found near the DinoLand U.S.A. bridge. The main component of this new show features an up-close encounter where avian experts share conservation stories and insightful information about the birds. The experience features six different types of macaws: hyacinth, green-winged, blue and gold, scarlet, blue-throated, and military. 

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