Continuing with my Disney World vacation review, next up is Animal Kingdom. It’s very close to say that this was may favorite park in Disney World we visited. I really, really liked it. The day we went here was on a Monday and that was when Tropical Storm Isaac was spinning up the Gulf. So the weather was heavy rains. No thunderstorms, no lightning, no wind just lots and lots of rain. Which was good because with no lighting everything remained open.
On a side note I am an outdoors guy, or used to be at a greater extent before children arrived, so I am all about having the right equipment. Cheap things fail and make you miserable, quality is quality for a reason. Before we headed down there I went and got good quality, camping level ponchos about $25 each, they are compact yet durable. The alternative is to buy ponchos at the park as you need them for $8 each… Hefty garbage bags are thicker than those.
The majority of the day we were in the ponchos and our core body, pockets and backpack was dry. Everything else from the knees down soaked, head and hair soaked. But it was still muggy, warm and tolerable. The other nice thing was it kept all the crowds away.
I don’t have any real pictures from that day at the park because it was raining so much no way I was going to get the nice camera out. Oh well.
I’ll start with the top thrill ride at Animal Kingdom. From the outside this is a spectacular site. Even up close it looks like a real mountain, the amount of detail amazes me all over the Disney parks. This one is near the top of perfection. The ride however I didn’t think it was all that it was hyped up to be. The big attraction of this ride is that in the middle the cars stop then you go backwards through the dark. After watching all videos and how they made it stuff I was pretty excited for it. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a very fun roller coaster but not quite as thrilling and crazy as you may have thought. The best part is right near the end when you leave the mountain tunnels there is an animatronic Yeti, huge, right over the tracks. That was the best part. Stunning. One last aspect of this ride that made it awesome and I wished more of the Disney rides did this, is that they had a Single Rider Line. So for people like us traveling in a 3 some with one too small to ride we can use that line and get on very quickly. Now the heavy rain we walked right on the coaster and the train was mostly empty. Even better! I recommend this one for sure but if you are a coaster junkie the hype is a little high.
I love animals. I love zoos. I loved the Safari. All the people that I talked to that have been here before and ridden this all said it’s a crap shoot. You are driving through a mini reserve, most of the non-dangerous animals are roaming around some feet from the truck. Seeing the animals is not guaranteed and the driver/guide even tells you come back because you may see something else as the animals move. Most of the time the animals hunker down in the hot Florida sun, but because of the heavy rain and clouds most of the animals were out and we saw them. Even the Bull Elephant. Awesome.
Festival Of The Lion King
This is a live performance with Lion King characters, it doesn’t follow the movie but is kind of intertwined. The stage is right in the middle and the audience sits all around. They bring out huge animatronics of the characters and have everything from singers, a crazy gymnastics with trampolines, rings, high bards, trapeze (the monkey part), to fire spinner. I thought it was very, very excellent performance. However, it’s very loud, very up close and some of the little ones including mine freaked out at parts. Once you are in you really can’t leave either. The show runs about 25 min.
Finding Nemo – The Musical
This is inside a nice air conditioned theater and is a must see. You have to see this show. It was the best show we saw. It is a live action with puppets and they run through the Finding Nemo story from the movie. To get it in 45 minutes some of the details are cut out, but they did a wonderful job and added in new stuff and a really catchy song that they use in Epcot. So if you hit Epcot and hit the Nemo attraction you won’t know the song until you see this show.
Kali River Rapids
This is your typical river raft ride. However this is not as rapids as others. You may get wet but you won’t get drenched. The cool stand out feature of this that I have not seen or been on a ride like this before is at the end there is a huge drop, roller coaster type hill. That was cool but the rest was just ok.
This is a standard round about kid ride that goes up and down at you control. The kids love it.
The rest of the attractions either were with the animals in a Zoo setting or were too intense for the sub-4 year old like the Dinosaurs and the It’s Tough To Be A Bug ride. We are members to the Minnesota Zoo and going through Animal Kingdom really put it into perspective how good the Minnesota Zoo is. The animal attractions at Animal Kingdom we see on a monthly basis at home. On our return trip to Disney we won’t be going back to Animal Kingdom. It was a park that you need to see once, but I think once you see it once you won’t need to see it again. However, I immensely enjoyed it.
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Binary Blogger has spent 20 years in the Information Security space currently providing security solutions and evangelism to clients. From early web application programming, system administration, senior management to enterprise consulting I provide practical security analysis and solutions to help companies and individuals figure out HOW to be secure every day.