Family Travel, Orlando Theme Parks

Animal Kingdom’s Pandora: The World of Avatar

When they announced that Disney World’s next expansion would be based on a more than a decade old R-rated movie, I think we were all a little skeptical. It doesn’t hurt to watch the movie in advance and to show the milder scenes to your kids. However, you can also have an immersive experience on another planet without a whole lot of prior knowledge.

Mo’ara Valley

The landscaping seamlessly mixes sculptures in with exotic tropical plants to create the illusion of an alien planet. At night the features glow.
While the Swotu Waya Drummers are currently on hold due to Covid, they are still listed as entertainment on the website, so hopefully we can anticipate the return of their audience-involved show in the future.

Rides

In my family’s opinion, the best ride in all of Walt Disney World is Avatar: Fight of Passage. The experience begins with the queue that introduces the story of the Avatar-Human connection. Finally you are paired with your banshee and go on a 3-D flight through Pandora. Alice is not a fan of roller coasters, but she has no trouble with the simulation in Flight of Passage.

The Na’vi River Journey immerses you in the natural side of Pandora. Episode six of The Imagineering Story on Disney+ highlights the complicated animatronics of one of the ride’s features.

Dining

I am going to include Tiffins in the dining options, even though it is technically on Discovery Island just outside the entrance to Pandora. Pre-booking reservations gets you a signature dining experience. For a more casual Tiffins experience, the Nomad Lounge on the patio was our go-to spot for drinks and a meal.

Satu’li Canteen is quick service with a create-your-own style option for vegetarian bowls. Dining inside transports you to Pandora; dining outside on the patio you may catch a visit from a Pandora Ranger. Walt Disney World is famous for its photo backdrop walls, so make sure to snap a pic on the popular moss wall.

The Nomad Lounge

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