6 Cool Facts About Walt Disney World’s Animal Kingdom

Guests who spend time in Walt Disney World love to explore and enjoy the four theme parks which are filled with amazing attractions and entertainment. Of the four theme parks, Disney’s Animal Kingdom is the newest as it opened on Earth Day in 1998. The park aims to showcase nature in all of its beauty and providing wonderful experiences for guests while stressing the importance of conservation and preservation. Guests who spend time in Disney’s Animal Kingdom can embark on an African safari, come face to face with a Yeti, conquer thrilling rapids, explore a moon called Pandora, shrink down to the size of bugs, and travel back in time to see the dinosaurs. With so many amazing experiences to enjoy, it is no wonder why guests love to spend time in Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Part of what helps to make the park so amazing is its in depth attention to detail which brings the stories ad environments to life in wonderful depth. What many guests might overlook is the fact that there are many hidden secrets and details found throughout Disney’s Animal Kingdom which are all amazing. From living characters to special tea blends, there are plenty of wonderful secrets to uncover in the park. Let’s see if you know these six secrets about Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

6. Hidden Oil Rig

The icon of Disney’s Animal Kingdom is the massive Tree of Life which can be found on Discovery Island and features thousands of vibrant green leaves that sway gently in the breeze. The impressive trunk of the Tree of Life is carved with hundreds of intricate animals which seem to come to life thanks to their amazing detail. While the Tree of Life may seem like a real tree, it was crafted by Disney for the park and many guests may be surprised to learn what supports the structure from within. When building Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Imagineers were having trouble figuring out a system to support the massive icon while also leaving space in the roots for the theater that houses It’s Tough to be A Bug. The answer came in an old oil rig that was recycled to provide the perfect support for the Tree of Life.

5. Massive Hidden Mickey

Guests who visit Kilimanjaro Safaris can embark on a two week safari in the Harambe Reserve where they can come face to face with animals like giraffes, elephants, lions, cheetahs, hippos, and rhinos. While the entire experience is amazing, it is also home to one of the largest Hidden Mickeys in all of Walt Disney World. At one point during Kilimanjaro Safaris, guests pass by an island on the left featuring tons of vibrant flamingos. Those who look past the flamingos will notice that the island itself forms a classic Hidden Mickey.

4. DiVine

The pathway between the Africa and Asia sections of Disney’s Animal Kingdom is filled with wonderful details and many lush plant life and vegetation which make the area feel alive. A special performer can be found along this pathway who truly looks like a plant come to life! DiVine is a performer who is delicately perched on stilts and decorated to look like a living, breathing vine. She can be found at certain times along this path and guests can definitely walk right past her if they aren’t looking closely!

3. Paddle Initials

Guests who are looking to cool off in Disney’s Animal Kingdom should head over to Kali River Rapids where they can board family style rafts and end up soaking wet by the end! The queue of Kali River Rapids is home to many amazing details which help to bring the story of the attraction to life, including some unique looking paddles. The paddles feature strings of letters and numbers that may seem random but actually stand for the initials and birthdays of the Imagineers who helped work on the project.

2. An Interesting Blend

Expedition Everest is a favorite attraction of many guests in Disney’s Animal Kingdom as it invites them to plunge deep into the Forbidden Mountain to come face to face with the fabled protector, the Yeti. While moving through the queue of Expedition Everest, guests can check out shrines, a Yeti museum, and the offices of the expedition company. Part of the offices is a room that features supplies for climbing the mountain. One cabinet in particular features a unique blend of tea that is perfect for the experience. Guests should keep their eyes open and see if they can spot the Ye-Tea!

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1. A Groan Worthy Name

One of the most popular attractions in Disney’s Animal Kingdom can be found in Dinoland and invites guests into the Dino Institute. Dinosaur brings guests on a thrilling adventure back in time alongside Dr. Seeker. Dr. Seeker sends guests back to an unauthorized time period in order to bring one particular dinosaur back to modern times. While the mission may be thrilling and entertaining, Dr. Seeker’s full name is pretty groan worthy. Dr. Grant Seeker is definitely a scientist looking to forward his research!

About Caitlin Kane

Caitlin Kane has been visiting Walt Disney World since she was a child and has developed a deep love and appreciation of the Disney Parks with a particular interest in the small details and history that can be found all around. Visiting every chance she gets, Caitlin loves to enjoy the ambiance of the Disney Parks and try something new every time. She can often be found eating and drinking her way through the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, riding the Haunted Mansion, sipping on a Lapu Lapu, pretending Illuminations: Reflections of Earth was still in existence, and enjoying seeing the magic through the eyes of her children. When not in WDW, Caitlin can be found at home in New York dreaming of a ride on Living with the Land and counting down the days until her next trip.