PlanningThe ParksTips

5 to Skip, 5 Not to Miss- Breaking Down Disney’s Animal Kingdom Experiences

Continuing with our series of 5 to skip and 5 not to miss in each of the Walt Disney World Parks, we are headed to Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

If you have already looked at our over Walt Disney World rides, Magic Kingdom and Disney’s Hollywood Studios, you know that the 5 to skip aren’t ones that we think are terrible, we just typically skip them for other experiences in the Disney Park.

Get ready for a wild ride as we look at the five rides we skip in Disney’s Animal Kingdom and five rides we can’t miss when we are visiting.

Let’s change things up a bit and look at the five rides we can’t miss first!

Kilimanjaro Safaris Night Time
credit: Disney

Kilimanjaro Safaris- Africa

The first experience we never miss while in Disney’s Animal Kingdom is a ride on Kilimanjaro Safaris.  This is a one-of-a-kind experience that we can’t really get anywhere else in the US.

Guests board an open-area truck that takes them around the amazing Harambe Wildlife Reserve which is an amazing 110 acres of breathtaking experiences.  Around 34 species make this area one each and every day and Guests have the opportunity on this ride to see them up close and personal.

Each and every ride on the safari is different making it one that we enjoy riding each time we are in Disney’s Animal Kingdom because we never know what new animal we will spot or new experience we will have.

Festival Of The Lion King
Photo Credit: Disney

Celebration of Festival of the Lion Kingdom- Africa

It is amazing to us that such an outstanding performance can be found inside of Disney’s Animal Kingdom.  This Broadway level show is 40 minutes and brings the story of the Lion King to life through outstanding singing, puppetry and more.

Guests are able to enjoy beautifully performed favorites such as “Hakuna Matata” and “Can You Feel the Love Tonight?” by extremely talented performers.

This is one show that we make sure we schedule into our Disney’s Animal Kingdom day as it leaves us breathless each and every time we see it.

Avatar Flight of Passage
Credit: Disney

Avatar Flight of Passage- Pandora

Still one of the most popular rides in all of Walt Disney World is Avatar Flight of Passage found in Pandora.

One this ride Guests are connected to their very own banshee as they soar over Pandora’s outstanding landscapes.

This thrilling experience is one that we never miss and each and every time we find the ride takes our breath away by the beauty and full immersion we feel.

Expedition Everest at Night
Photo Credit: Disney Tourist Blog

Expedition Everest- Legend of the Forbidden Mountain- Asia

One of the most thrilling coasters in all of Walt Disney World is Expedition Everest.  The theming begins right away as Guests travel through the queue on their way to board.  They can see all sorts of amazing artifacts from different explorers.

The ride itself is amazing as Guests begin with a steep climb and then quickly come across a broken track.  From there they are dropped backwards into total darkness as they rush to escape the Yeti.

This high-speed coaster is fantastic and has so much thrill and excitement that we don’t want to miss it when visiting.

Credit: Disney Tips

Discovery Island Trails- Discovery Island

This might seem strange, but when we look at our trips to Disney’s Animal Kingdom one experience we never skip is walking the Discover Island Trails.

On these paths, Guests can get up close to the amazing beauty that is the Tree of LIfe.  We love discovering all the unique carvings as well as enjoying the tranquil setting hidden along these paths.

Those are the five experiences that we never miss when visiting Disney’s Animal Kingdom, now let’s look at the ones that we normally skip.

Credit: Disney Tips

Na’vi River Journey- Pandora

The first ride that we typically skip while visiting Disney’s Animal Kingdom is Na’vi River Journey.  This slow moving boat ride through the mysterious river is beautiful but one that we don’t always ride.

Wait times are actually really long for this ride because of the extremely popularity of Pandora and overall, the theme and storytelling of the ride is something we feel is lacking.  Although little ones will love this ride, we tend to skip it for other experiences.

Credit: Disney

TriceraTop Spin- DinoLand U.S.A.

This classic spinner ride is found over in DinoLand U.S.A. and is one that we skip when visiting Walt Disney World.  There isn’t anything exciting or unique about this ride as it is a basic spinner with a dinosaur theme.

If you have little ones that have to wait for the older kids to finish riding some of the big rides, it might be a good spot to stop, but overall we sit this one out.

Kali River Rapids
credit: Disney

Kali River Rapids- Asia

The only water ride in Disney’s Animal Kingdom is Kali River Rapids.  We skipped this one because we don’t like being wet as we travel around the Park.

Kali River Rapids is known to get Guests not just wet but soaked and that is something we prefer not to be during the long day in the Park.

If you really do want to ride, you can bring extra clothes, ponchos or just enjoy the water on hot days, but we personally skip this one.

It's Tough to Be a Bug

It’s Tough to be a Bug!- Discovery Island

Hidden within the Tree of Life is the 3D film and live show It’s Tough to be a Bug.  Featuring the characters from A Bug’s Life, this show tries to teach the audience about the importance of bugs and how they live.

We skip this one because we don’t like bugs and there are parts that are dark, scary and super intense.  It can be super funny, but we prefer to not feel stressed during our vacation so we skip this one.

Rafii’s Planet Watch

Our final experience that we tend to skip out on is Rafiki’s Planet Watch.  Guests can enjoy the Affection Section, a petting zoo, Conservation Statin and so much more.

There is so much to see and do but we tend to skip it because it is hard to get to.  Guests need to ride the Wildlife Express Train to and from Rafiki’s Planet Watch and sometimes it can have a long way to get to and from the area.

Because of this additional step we tend to skip by which is unfortunate because we do think this area has a lot to offer and is a great way to skip the crowds in the main area of the Park.

Those are the five experiences we tend to skip in Disney’s Animal Kingdom.  You might have different opinions depending on your family’s likes and dislikes.

Disney’s Animal Kingdom has a variety of experiences for Guests of all ages to enjoy.  We hope that our list of five to skip and five not to miss will help you determine what you want to do when you visit Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Check out our other top five lists below:

5 to Skip, 5 Not to Miss- Breaking Down Walt Disney World Rides

5 to Skip, 5 Not to Miss- Breaking Down Magic Kingdom Attractions

5 to Skip, 5 Not to Miss- Breaking Down Disney’s Hollywood Studios Attractions

Jennifer Retzlaff

Jennifer became a lifelong Disney fan during her first trip to Walt Disney World in 6th grade. From that moment, Disney became a big part of her life. She quickly started to introduce her love of Disney to her family with a Disney honeymoon and then family trips when her youngest was 18 months old. She loves the magic that Disney brings to people through theme parks, cruises, and adventures. As a teacher, she tries to bring Disney magic into her classroom to help kids believe that “If You Can Dream It, You Can Do It.” She is also part of the Magic Vacation Planner team as a personal travel advisor. With this team, she can now help others plan magical vacations. She loves bringing her love to Disney to readers with How to Disney.

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