How Well Do You Know Animal Kingdom at Walt Disney World?

tree of life animal kingdom park disney
Credit: Disney PhotoSnapper

Animal Kingdom is Walt Disney World’s newest theme park.  Opening on April 22nd, 1998 this theme park recently celebrated its 21st anniversary.  How well do you know Animal Kingdom?  From the animals to the new Pandora: World of Avatar, there is tons to know about this amazing park.

1. How tall is the Tree of Life?

Animal Kingdom’s Tree of Life is the icon of this forth Walt Disney World park.  Taking 18 months to build, imaginers worked hard to bring to life between 300-325 animals throughout the tree.  Based on a bonsai tree with over 8,000 branches and 102,000 man-made leaves, the Tree of Life stands at 145 feet tall and 50 feet wide at the base.  Guests can get up close to the tree using one of the walking paths.  This is a great way to enjoy a Mickey Bar while searching for animals throughout the tree.

2. How many acres is Kilimanjaro Safari?

Kilimanjaro Safari takes guests on an 18-minute ride through the Harambe Wildlife Reserve.  Guests experience an open-air safari where they are able to see glimpses of up to 34 different animal species.  From lions to cheetahs, guests have the opportunity to see animals in more of a natural environment.  At 110 acres, Kilimanjaro Safari is larger than the whole Magic Kingdom theme park which expands 107 acres.  Don’t miss this great adventure.

3. Where does the legend of the Yeti come from?

Expedition Everest: Legend of the Forbidden Mountain is found in the Asia section of Animal Kingdom.  This rollercoaster is one of Disney’s most intense with Rock n’ Roller Coaster being the other.  Riders will twist, turn and race through the dark as well as backwards as they try to escape the Yeti.  This ride is based on the Royal Anandapur Tea Company that used to take goods through the Forbidden Mountain.  After many mysterious issues with trains, the Yeti was blamed starting the legend.  Guest will enjoy the excitement of this ride.  Make sure to keep your eyes open to see the Yeti.


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4. How big is the screen for Flight of Passage?

Pandora:  World of Avatar is the newest land to join Animal Kingdom.  The main attraction for this new land is Flight of Passage.  This 3D, first person flight simulator takes guests through the land of Pandora on the back of a banshee.  A screen of 70 feet by 100 feet tall brings guest right into the story.  On Flight of Passage, guests are immersed in the breathtaking views throughout the ride.  It can be argued that Flight of Passage is currently the number one ride in Walt Disney World.

5. What does Pongu Pongu mean?

In Pandora, guest can find two great food options.   At Satu’li Canteen and Pongu Pongu (meaning party, party), guests can enjoy delicious and unique food.  Pongu Pongu is a specialty beverage kiosk.  Here guests can enjoy bioluminescent frozen cocktails, specialty drinks such as the Night Blossom and even some beer.  Satu’li Canteen is the quick service location in Pandora where guests can enjoy fresh food bowls with meat, veggies and a base of their choice.  Guests are sure to love the unique and delicious food offered throughout Pandora.

6. As guests exit Flight of Passage, whose handprints can be seen on the wall?

Three handprints can be seen in red paint when exiting Flight of Passage.  Located on the lowest level, these three handprints include initials from three leaders in the creation of Pandora.  James Cameron, the director of the Avatar film, Joe Rohde, lead Imagineer for Pandora (as well as Animal Kingdom) and finally Jon Landau, the producer of Avatar all have left their mark on the land that they spent so long working on together.

7. Dinosaur used to be sponsored by what fast food franchise?

One of the original rides in Animal Kingdom, Dinosaur opened in 1998.  This thrill ride takes guests on an adventure back into prehistoric times.  On a mission to bring back an Iguanodon, guests face dangers and excitement around every turn.  Once sponsored by McDonald’s, you can still see the piping for ketchup, mustard and mayo in the loading area of Dinosaur.

8. What is the name of the animatronic at the end of the Na’Vi River Journey?

Na’Vi River Journey is the boat ride in Pandora.  This water ride takes guests through the amazing bioluminescent world of Pandora.  With amazing plant and animal life throughout the ride, guests experience the breathtaking beauty of the land.  At the end of the ride, guests are greeted by the Shaman of Songs.  This is one of Disney’s most detailed and sophisticated animatronic characters yet.

9. Camouflage to blend in to Animal Kingdom’s landscape, what is the name of this character that is covered in vines and leaves?

A graceful and beautiful creature, DiVine joined Animal Kingdom in 1998.  She can be found between Asia and Africa and sometimes in the Oasis.  This beautiful creature covered in leaves reminds guests that nature is important and invaluable.  Although she doesn’t talk, guests can watch her interact with her surroundings in a magical way.

10. How many animals make Animal Kingdom their home?

The dream to have live animals in a theme park came from Walt Disney himself.  When building Disneyland, Walt Disney wanted to have live animals throughout the ride.  It wasn’t until Animal Kingdom opened in 1998 that this dream came true.  Around 2000 animals and 300 species make Animal Kingdom their home.  Although many of these animals are found on the safari, guests can also discover animals around the Tree of Life as well as in the Oasis.

How much did you know about the animals, landscape and beauty of Animal Kingdom?  Hopefully you learned a lot and now have more to look for when visiting.

About Jennifer Retzlaff

My name is Jennifer Retzlaff and I became a lifelong Disney fan during my first trip to Walt Disney World in 6th grade. From that moment, Disney became a big part of my life. I live in Iowa with my husband and two kids who are growing up too quickly for my liking. I started introducing my love for Disney early to my family with a Disney honeymoon and then trips when our youngest of 18 months. Since then, our family has been to Walt Disney World over five times and we continue to plan and dream for the next trip. I love the magic that Disney brings to people through the theme parks, cruises, adventures and movies they create. As a teacher, I try to bring that magic into my classroom to help kids believe that “If You Can Dream It, You Can Do It.” I recently reached a dream of mine as I joined Magic Vacation Planner as a personal travel advisor. With this team, I can now help others plan magical vacations. As a passionate writer, I also have my own blog at magicalvacationsbyjen which is also where you can follow me on instagram for trip reviews along with tips and tricks for your next magical vacation.