The Ervings Return to WDW Day 4- Animal Kingdom
Lightning Lane & Park Opening
Park opening still had a line for Flight of Passage snaked all the way to the land’s entrance, and we were glad we had secured the paid Lighting Lane for later that day. We used our first Genie+ reservation for a later Navi River Journey LL, and at 11am were able to pick up a Dinosaur LL.
Africa Wildlife Trek
Asia Wildlife Trek
The behind the scenes shows on Disney+ have added immensely to Alice’s experience at Animal Kingdom. At many of the exhibits on the Asia and African wildlife trails, she chatted easily with the Cast Members about the animals she had come to know, and could share with us each one’s name and relationship to the other animals. As always, we spent an extended amount of time in the African Aviary, this time being strangely entertained by a duck swimming against the current of a waterfall. (Last time it was weavers building nests that commanded our attention.)
Shows & Attractions
On a longer trip (prior to 2020) we would spend two full days at Animal Kingdom. Without street shows and character interactions, the park is currently easier to enjoy in one day on a first visit. With just a half day, we skipped seeing Lion King and the ride to Rafiki’s Planet Watch, but we were still able to enjoy the other attractions and shows before 2pm. We did miss experiencing the Tree of Life and Pandora: World of Avatar after dark.
The addition of KiteTails provides a cute break from lines and an excuse to get a treat from the Amanpour Ice Cream truck. The show rotates between Lion King and Jungle book themed performances.
Pandora: World of Avatar
Pandora: The World Avatar seemed to be the most unchanged part of the parks since our 2019 visit, aside from the lack of the musical performances. There were multiple PhotoPass cast members throughout the land also.
Satu’li Canteen is still a great quick service option; the line for drinks at the Pongu Pongu lounge was exceptionally long, so pre-ordering drinks and a bite from the restaurant saves time in line.
8:35am Kilimanjaro Wildlife Trek (the ride was walk-on during the early opening for Resort guests, but grew quickly at park opening)
9am- “Breakfast of champions” from the Harambe Food Cart: Coffee and a Mickey Pretzel with nearly fluorescent orange “cheese”
9:15am- Africa Wildlife Trek
10am- Asia Wildlife Trek (We could have easily walked onto the Kali River Rapids at this point, but it was only 55 degrees…..so, no.)
10:30 am- Winged Encounters- The Kingdom Takes Flight bird show
11:15 am- KiteTails
11:45am- Dinosaur ride (Lighting Lane; standby would have been 45 minutes)
12:30pm- Avatar: Flight of Passage (Lighting Lane; standby would have been 120 minutes)
1:00pm- Quick Service lunch at Satu’li Canteen
1:45pm- Navi River Journey (Lighting Lane; standby would have been 60 minutes)