Walt Disney World Animal Kingdom theme park is loved by many people throughout the world. The size and beauty of this park is one of a kind. You won’t find another theme park quite like this one.
From the thrill rides to the animal walk throughs. Animal Kingdom has just about everything you could ask for from a theme park. However, there is so much more to this place than just that. Once you walk through the front gate you realize that your visit is going to be something special.
In celebrating the 24th birthday of Animal Kingdom we put together a list of 10 things you might not know about Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Let us know in the comments below how many you didn’t know about.
Largest Theme Park in the World
Did you know that Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park is the largest theme park in the world? It’s true. While many theme parks offer more rides than Animal Kingdom. When it comes to pure size, Animal Kingdom is at the top.
Did you know Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey is the second largest theme park in the world?
Animal Kingdom is so large that you could almost fit two EPCOTs in the land that makes up Animal Kingdom. Disney’s Magic Kingdom theme park could almost fit in the safari. Just stop for a second and really think about that.
I always find it funny when people think of Animal Kingdom as a half day park. This place is huge and deserves a full day or at least a morning day and an afternoon day.
Tree of Life
Did you know that the icon of Animal Kingdom is the only WDW park icon that you can not see when you first enter the park? Animal Kingdom’s Tree of Life cannot be seen when you first enter the park. You have to walk a couple of minutes to finally see this detailed icon.
Did you also know that the Tree of Life isn’t a real tree? It’s an upside down oil rig that is made up of cement and plaster and paint. There are also over 300 animals carved into the tree. Do you think you could find them all?
Animal Sightings are almost guaranteed
Have you ever ridden the safari at Animal Kingdom and wonder how you always see so many animals? That’s because Disney came up with some genius ways to almost guarantee that you will see lots of animals on the 18 minute ride.
They have hidden food and salt licks in trees and rocks. Placed heated and cooled rocks for the lions. Plus different animals like to be out at different times.
Not only will you see animals on your safari ride. No two rides will be the same. Also be sure to keep your ears open and listen to the driver. They will point out some of the harder to see animals.
Considered by many to be the best roller coaster in Walt Disney World. Expedition Everest comes in at 195.5 feet tall. But why didn’t they just add the other six inches?
If the mountain was 200 feet tall. Disney would be required to have a red light at the top. Having a red light at the top would take away the feel for the ride and the park itself. Plus without the light it makes the mountain look that much taller.
Okay, yes they do have straws and I know all the other parks have started to use paper straws too. But did you know that Animal Kingdom was the first park to do this? Paper straws are better for the environment and the animals.
Along the same line as the straws. You won’t find any balloons for sale in Animal Kingdom. You can’t even bring in your own balloons that you bought at one of the other theme parks.
The balloon could come loose and fly away. It will pop at some point and could land in one of the animal enclosures.
Animal Kingdom was planned to feature living animals, extinct animals, and mystical animals. Beastly Kingdom was going to feature dragons. Sadly, that never happened and probably never will since the space that Beastly Kingdom was going to take up is now Pandora.
However, if you look around the park you will still see references to this mystical land. You can find dragons in the front of the park and even on the lamps around the park.
It was going to be called…
Disney’s Animal Kingdom was once going to be called…. Wait for it…. Disney’s Wild Animal Kingdom. All they did was drop the Wild. I’m glad they did. I would hate to be calling it WAK.
Around the Globe
In Animal Kingdom you will find over 4 million trees, flowers, shrubs, grasses, and more from all the continents except Antarticia. Now with Pandora you can even find plants that are not from this world. Okay, someone might believe that Disney flew to Mars and grabbed some plants. That hasn’t happened….. yet.
Animal Kingdom averages about 10 degrees hotter than the other Orlando theme parks. It is a little crazy when you think about it because there are so many trees creating a lot of shaded areas. In fact it is because of all the trees why Animal Kingdom is hotter.
All the vegetation creates a “rain forest” effect. You would think all the shade would make the park cooler. While it does help keep the sun off of you. You will just sweat a little more. But HEY, at least you have a better chance of not getting sun burn that day.
There you have it our 10 things you might not know about Disney’s Animal Kingdom. How many did you know about? Was there anything we forgot to mention? Let us know in the comments below.
Be sure to come back when we post our other 10 things you might not have know post about the other Disney theme parks and even Universal Studios. Also check out our Universal tab for all things about Universal Orlando. It’s an underrated destination that many Disney fans skip.