8 Rookie Mistakes People Make At Walt Disney World’s Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Guests who enjoy a vacation in Walt Disney World simply must spend time in Disney’s Animal Kingdom. The massive park celebrates the beauty and diversity of nature while stressing the importance of conservation and preservation. Within the park are several lands that are filled with wonderful attractions, dining, shopping, and entertainment of all varieties. Guests who spend time in Disney’s Animal Kingdom can embark on an African safari, shrink down to the size of a bug, go white water rafting, travel back in time, and explore beautiful walking trails filled with wildlife. With so much to do and see in the park, guests might make some mistakes in trying to see it all. Disney pros know that there are some rookie mistakes that can easily be avoided to make each moment in the park amazing. Here are eight rookie mistakes that people make at Walt Disney World’s Disney’s Animal Kingdom.


1.     Not Arriving For Rope Drop —

One of the biggest rookie mistakes that many guests make in Walt Disney World is not arriving to the parks for rope drop. Arriving for rope drop entails getting to a park before it officially opens and waiting to be let inside. Guests who arrive for rope drop at Disney’s Animal Kingdom can listen to a welcome speech that tells them all about the amazing experiences waiting inside. Once the gates are officially open, guests who arrived early are some of the first inside where they can enjoy low wait times, few crowds, and quiet areas of the park.

2.     Not Visiting Kilimanjaro Safaris First —

Disney pros know that the best attraction in Disney’s Animal Kingdom to visit first thing in the morning is Kilimanjaro Safaris. The attraction invites guests into the Harambe Reserve where they can embark on a two week safari filled with up close encounters with animals like lions, cheetahs, zebras, elephants, and hippos. The absolute best time of the day to visit Kilimanjaro Safaris is early in the mornings when the animals tend to be more active. Since the temperatures are cooler and breakfast is being served, the animals tend to be moving more, making it the perfect time to enjoy a safari.

3.     Not FastPassing Kali River Rapids —

An extremely popular attraction in Disney’s Animal Kingdom can be found nestled in the Asia section of the park. Kali River Rapids brings guests on a thrilling journey down the Chakranadi River and guarantees to soak them along the way. The attraction showcases the beauty of nature and the devastation of illegal logging to guests. Since Kali River Rapids is very popular with guests, it tends to have long wait times on busy days in the parks. The best way to avoid losing lots of time spent waiting on line is by booking a FastPass for the experience.

4.     Using The Expedition Everest Stand-By Line —

Another very popular attraction in Disney’s Animal Kingdom can also be found in the Asia section of the park. Expedition Everest brings guests deep into the Forbidden Mountain where they find themselves scrambling to escape the clutches of the fabled yeti. Since the attraction packs some big thrills and fast speeds, it is very popular with many guests who visit the park. While guests can avoid the Stand-By line by booking a FastPass, there is another way to also save time and save that FastPass for use on a different experience. Guests who want to enjoy a ride on Expedition Everest with a relatively low wait time should opt to use the Single Rider line which typically is shorter than the Stand-By and offers the same experience so long as guests don’t mind being split up at the loading platform.

5.     Not FastPassing Dinosaur —

Dinoland in Disney’s Animal Kingdom is home to some of the most popular and quirky attractions that guests are sure to love. Those looking to enjoy big thrills should head over to Dinosaur which invites guests into the Dino Institute where the technology to travel back in time has been perfected. There guests can board Time Rovers and travel back to the time of the dinosaurs while trying to escape a massive asteroid impact in time. Since Dinosaur is so popular, it tends to have long wait times and guests are smart to book a FastPass for the experience to save time.

6.     Skipping The Trails —

Disney’s Animal Kingdom is home to two amazing self-guided walking trails that allow guests to enjoy nature in beautiful and peaceful settings. The first walking trail is the Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail which can be found near the exit of Kilimanjaro Safaris in the Africa section of the park. The walking trail brings guests through lush plant life, various habitats, and a massive gorilla habitat filled with rolling green hills and flowing waterfalls. Guests are sure to love spending plenty of time enjoying the gorillas in their huge home. The second walking trail in Disney’s Animal Kingdom is the Maharajah Jungle Trek found near Kali River Rapids. There guests can enjoy walking through lush temple ruins that are the home to many different bird species as well as beautiful Asian Tigers.


7.     Skipping The Shows —

Guests who spend time in Disney’s Animal Kingdom simply must experience two live shows that are Broadway caliber. The Festival of the Lion King is housed in the Harambe Theater and brings the amazing story of The Lion King. Guests can remember one of their favorite stories through familiar characters and songs, aerial ballet, fire dancing, and acrobatics. Found in Dinoland in the Theater in the Wild is Finding Nemo – The Musical which brings Nemo, Dory and other favorite friends to life through larger than life puppets. The show follows the story of Nemo’s adventure and introduces some new musical numbers along the way.

8.     Leaving Before Dark —

You don’t want to skip out early from Animal Kingdom! Now coming to life at night, guest have the opportunity to enjoy an amphitheater style show called Rivers of Light where nature is celebrated in an incredibly beautiful way! And who’s ready to dance? The Discovery Island Carnivale is a fun event to dance with colorfully costumed dancers, stilt walkers and musicians. Plus, the Tree of Life Awakenings is a perfect way to cap off the evening with its projections and music lighting up the iconic Animal Kingdom symbol.

About Caitlin Kane

Caitlin Kane first started visiting Walt Disney World when she was two years old, and despite spending most of that trip quarantined with the chicken pox she managed to fall in love with the place. Visiting WDW every year since, she especially loves learning all about the history and small details of the parks and eating/drinking her way through the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival each fall. When she's not in Disney, Caitlin lives in New York and spends her time counting down the days to her next trip.