Menu
The Tree of Life
Credit: Matthew Cooper

From the Bottom to the Top: Ranking the Attractions in Disney’s Animal Kingdom

No visit to the Walt Disney World Resort is complete without enjoying time at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, the newest of the property’s Disney Parks that opened in April 1998. The Disney Park celebrates the beauty and diversity of nature and offers Guests the opportunity to learn about conservation in entertaining ways through attractions, entertainment, dining, and more.

Nighttime

Credit: Disney Parks

With so much to see and do in Disney’s Animal Kingdom, many Guests love focusing on the attractions and entertainment options throughout the Disney Park, which offer up everything from family-friendly experiences to big thrills. Let’s check out just how each of these attractions rank from worst to best and see which one reigns at the top!

Credit: Disney

13. TriceraTop Spin

Coming in at the bottom of the Animal Kingdom list is TriceraTop Spin in the Dinoland area of the Disney Park. This attraction is themed to feel like a carnival ride at Chester & Hester’s Din-O-Rama and invites Guests to sit inside teal triceratops for a gentle, spinning tour of the area. There’s nothing particularly wrong with TriceraTop Spin, however, it’s a basic spinner attraction that can be found in various forms elsewhere at the Walt Disney World Resort, including Dumbo the Flying Elephant and The Magic Carpets of Aladdin.

It's Toug to be a Bug!

Credit: DIsney

12. It’s Tough to be a Bug!

Next up, we have It’s Tough to be a Bug! which is a 3D show performed inside a theater tucked in the roots of the beautiful Tree of Life. Hosted by Flik from A Bug’s Life, the show features a large cast of various insects who showcase their special abilities and characteristics which actually help keep the planet thriving. With several intense scenes featuring Hopper and a catchy musical finale, It’s Tough to be a Bug! has its moments, but doesn’t rank anywhere near the top of the list.

Photo Credit: Disney

11. Wildlife Express Train

In the very back of the village of Harambe is a station for the Wildlife Express Train, a slow-moving experience that serves as both functional transportation and the opportunity to see backstage at the Park. The Wildlife Express Train is the only way to reach Rafiki’s Planet Watch, where Guests can check out the Conservation Station and Affection Section and learn more about how the animals in Disney’s Animal Kingdom are taken care of. The journey also showcases some backstage areas where the animals are housed and fed each day.

Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail

Credit: Disney

10. Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail

Found not far from the Wildlife Express station in Harambe is the Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail. This self-guided walking trail invites Guests to explore lush jungles and various animal habitats at their own pace, and oftentimes features quiet corners that feel miles away from the center of the Walt Disney World Resort. In addition to grassy hills where gorillas can be found, Guests can also check out hippos, zebras, meerkats, and more while wandering through the Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail.

Finding Nemo Show Animal Kingdom

Credit: Disney

9. Finding Nemo: The Big Blue…and Beyond!

One of the best live shows at the Walt Disney World Resort can be found in the Theater in the Wild, nestled on the Animal Kingdom pathway connecting Dinoland and Asia. Finding Nemo: The Big Blue…and Beyond! invites Guests to dive into the oceans and enjoy a performance using larger-than-life puppets of favorite characters who whisk them everywhere, from P. Sherman’s dentist’s office to the Marine Life Institute. Catchy musical numbers and beloved characters from Finding Nemo make this live performance one that Guests can’t skip!

Guests in Raft

Credit: Disney

8. Kali River Rapids

One of the most thrilling attractions in Disney’s Animal Kingdom is also one that Guests love on a hot and humid day. Kali River Rapids can be found in the Asia area of the Disney Park and brings Guests down the Chakranadi River on a family-style raft to enjoy a serene journey through the forests before running into illegal logging and devastation. Kali River Rapids combines an important message of conservation with some big thrills and drops, and the only reason it doesn’t rank a little higher on the list is that Guests can walk away completely drenched from head to toe, which can make the rest of the day uncomfortable.

Maharajah Jungle Trek

Credit: Disney

7. Maharajah Jungle Trek

Found right near the exit of Kali River Rapids is Maharajah Jungle Trek, another self-guided walking path that delves into the beautiful Anadapur Royal Forest. While wandering through lush forest scenes, a large aviary, and temple ruins where Asian tigers can be found, Guests truly feel as though they have traveled across the world. The Maharajah Jungle Trek is the perfect spot in Disney’s Animal Kingdom to escape from the crowds, enjoy some beautiful animals, and wander through completely immersive areas.

Credit: Disney

6. Dinosaur

Dinosaur in the Dinoland area of Disney’s Animal Kingdom is a fun and very popular attraction that brings Guests into the Dino Institute, where scientists have perfected the technology to travel back in time. Instead of embarking on a serene and safe journey. Dr. Seeker resets the coordinates of the Time Rover and sends Guests back dangerously close to the massive asteroid impact to save one particular dinosaur that is the key to unlocking many of the beasts’ secrets. With thrilling moments in the dark, scary dinosaurs around every corner, and some groan-worthy humor along the way, Dinosaur is a must-do.

Na'vi River Journey

Credit: Disney

5. Na’vi River Journey

Breaking into the top five attractions in Disney’s Animal Kingdom, we have the Na’vi River Journey, which can be found in Pandora – The World of Avatar. This calm boat ride brings Guests into a stunning bioluminescent forest where all sorts of exotic creatures and vegetation glow brightly. While moving down the river, the Na’vi slowly start to emerge and music begins to build, culminating in coming face to face with the Shaman of the Songs, one of the most advanced audio-animatronics ever created. While on the slower side, Na’vi River Journey features immersive and stunning details, making it a must-do in the Park.

 

 

A Celebration of The Festival of the Lion King

Credit: Disney

4. Festival of the Lion King

No visit to Disney’s Animal Kingdom is complete without enjoying the Festival of the Lion King, which is performed several times each day in the Harambe Theater in the Africa section of the Disney Park. This wonderful show features a central stage where Guests can enjoy favorite music and characters from The Lion King singing, dancing, fire dancing, performing aerial ballet, and more. With fun moments like the Tumble Monkeys’ acrobatics and the chance to participate in the action, Guests absolutely cannot miss out on a performance of the Festival of the Lion King.

Expedition Everest

Credit: Disney

3. Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain

Dominating the skyline of the Asia area of Disney’s Animal Kingdom is Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain, a thrilling and high-speed adventure Guests won’t forget. The attraction has Guests board gentle trains to take a shortcut to Mount Everest’s base camp, however, things soon become perilous as Guests scramble to escape the Yeti. With one steep drop, high-speed moments of going backward in darkness, and a very close brush with the Yeti, Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain is a must-do at Animal Kingdom.

Elephant habitat Kilimanjaro Safaris

Credit: Disney

2. Kilimanjaro Safaris

Coming in second is Kilimanjaro Safaris, one of the most iconic attractions in both Disney’s Animal Kingdom and the Walt Disney World Resort. The attraction can be found in the Africa area of the Disney Park and has Guests board massive safari vehicles to set off into the Harambe Reserve for a two-week safari through lush forests and savannas. Guests can spot lions, elephants, giraffes, cheetahs, hippos, rhinos, flamingos, zebras, warthogs, and more. Each experience is unique thanks to the free-roaming habitats for each animal.

Avatar Flight of Passage

Credit: Disney

1. Avatar Flight of Passage

The very top attraction in Disney’s Animal Kingdom that Guests simply have to enjoy is Avatar Flight of Passage in Pandora – The World of Avatar. This incredible attraction uses impressive technology to link Guests with Avatars, providing them the opportunity to soar high over Pandora on the back of a banshee. Immersive technology and special 3D glasses make Guests feel like they are truly flying and there are thrilling moments of chase, quiet moments in a bioluminescent forest, and stunning panoramic views of Pandora that make Avatar Flight of Passage unforgettable.

And there you have it, our rankings for attractions in Disney’s Animal Kingdom. What are some of your favorite picks and which rides do you typically skip?

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.