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Opening Magic Kingdom

Opening Magic Kingdom

Monday, June 28, 2010

Kilimanjaro Safaris--Animal Kingdom

A headline attraction at Disney's Animal Kingdom is Kilimanjaro Safaris. This is a "not miss" for us when we head to Animal Kingdom.



To get to Kilimanjaro Safaris, head to Africa. You can either ride the attraction or get a FASTPASS for later. We have done both and it mostly depends on the weather. If the temps are cool, we know the animals will be out all day, so we head to Dinoland for Dinosaur and Triceratop Spin while sending the husband off to run for FASTPASSes. (Click here to read more about FASTPASS.) If the weather is warmer, we know it is going to heat up during the day so we head to Kilimanjaro first thing when the park opens.



Once you go through the queue, know that it eventually divides into left and right. Note: It divides at the point where the FASTPASS return joins and there will be a Cast Member at this location. When the line divides, you can go left or right. We usually go to the left. You will find through the queue a few more times then be counted off by the number of people in your party and assigned to a row. This row will be the row you sit in on the safari vehicle.



Here comes the safari vehicle! Notice the brushing trim that goes all the way to the ground. This is to keep birds and other small creatures from heading under the vehicle.

The trucks usually come in twos and they load two at a time. Here are two safari trucks ready to be loaded.



Here's our safari vehicle with its driver. Let's load!



We are ready to go! Now, as with all Disney attractions, theming and story are very important. So, you as a guest on Kilimanjaro Safaris are not just taking a tour through the savanna, you are ready for a two week safari in the depths of Africa.




Harambe Wildlife Reserve is your first stop. After meandering the various animal habitats--what you will encounter is a bit up to chance--your driver will get a call on the radio. In the meantime, enjoy the sites and the music on the radio.



Here are some rhinos we have seen on the safari. We have also seen the lions active, giraffes, and hippos.
Be prepared for the wild ride when chasing down the poachers. Unfortunately, your safari will get cut short and will not last the two weeks it was intended. But, you can always come back again for another safari!
Hints and Tips:
  • The rows in the back of the vehicle are the bumpiest. Sit here and you will get lots of "air time."
  • Have your camera ready. The photo opportunities come fast.
  • Children are expected to sit on the insides of the vehicle, but this does make it more difficult for them to see. Use your best judgement.
  • There are animal guides on the roof of the vehicle. Pictures along with animal names are included.
  • Pangani Forest Exploration Trail entrance is near the Kilimanjaro exit. This is good time to visit. On the trail you will see the gorillas, the hippo pool, and naked mole rats. If you can't find the entrance, just ask a cast member at the exit or near the stroller parking.
  • Get into the story! We've participated in this attraction many times and we still play along with the story.
  • Be in awe of the animals!

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