Walt Disney World is home to four theme parks: Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom. Animal Kingdom has 6 different areas: Discovery Island, Pandora, Africa, Rafiki’s Planet Watch, Asia and DinoLand U.S.A. Today’s blog is going to focus on everything guests can see, do and eat in Animal Kingdom’s Asia.
At Animal Kingdom’s Asia you’ll find 5 attractions for a variety of heights and interests. There is certainly something for everyone in this part of the park, making a stop here mandatory on your visit to the Animal Kingdom.
Maharajah Jungle Trek
Walk among ruins and peer at the many animals you’d find in Asia. This trek is semi lengthy, making it a great place to walk while littles are grabbing a park nap in the stroller. There are a multitude of animals you’ll see on this journey: Tigers, Water Buffalo, Komodo Dragons, and many many species of birds. The path can narrow in places, so if this is a must on your list I would do this before noon because it becomes very hard to see the different animals when the crowds get denser. The Jungle Trek Attraction closes a couple of hours before the park closes, so be sure to check your daily park schedule when you arrive to confirm the times on your day at the Animal Kingdom.
Stop by the Wilderness Explorer kiosk to begin your wilderness explorer adventure or complete one of the 30 tasks on the quests to get all your badges. This attraction is deemed appropriate for every age and height but is certainly more suitable for those guests in the elementary school age. The kiosk is open at 10am and closes a few hours before the park, so double check your park schedule for the times on your park day.
Disney Animals- Gibbons
Throughout the whole park day, guests can watch Gibbon monkeys monkey around. Found playing around on what looks like an old abandoned temple, these Gibbons can be found as you are walking into Kali River Rapids, while dining at the Yak & Yeti Cafe, or when making your way towards Mount Everest from Africa. They are magnificent to watch. If you strategically place yourself while grabbing a bite at Yak & Yeti cafe you’ll have some terrific monkey entertainment.
Kali River Rapids
One of my favourite rides at all of Walt Disney World. This flume ride is guaranteed to get some guests soaked. A change of clothes is always a good idea if you’re planning on taking this rapid ride. Guests board a large circular water craft and will climb high to the top of the attraction. The boat will then make a slow decent before it becomes faster, spinning the boat close to waterfalls that will get some guests covered in the water. This ride is actually open to guests 38″ and taller which includes many preschoolers. This is an attraction you’ll want to grab a FastPass for. The line is long and doesn’t move very quickly. Because they have to balance the watercraft they can’t always load up every single boat, which means you’ll be waiting in line for a long time.
Expedition Everest- Legend of the Forbidden Mountain
This attraction is for thrill seekers, it’s a roller coaster ride with lots of climbs and descents. Many at top speed. The first time I rode the ride we went so fast backwards I thought we were going upside down. This ride is unique because it has a single rider line. Which means you can get on and off the ride quickly without needing to use a FastPass. Perfect if you’re hoping to get on one of the newer attractions in Pandora. To ride Expedition Everest guests must be 44inches but that doesn’t mean they’re old enough to ride it. There’s a couple of appearances by the Yeti himself that scares even the bravest of souls. It’s a fantastic ride that should be ridden by everyone at some point in time.
Serka Zong Bazaar
Found at the exit of Expedition Everest, here you’ll find everything to do with Yeti’s. From pushed toys to t-shirts. This is also the place where you’ll find survival shirts, implying that you survived your climb and interaction with the Yeti of Everest. A great place to find souvenirs. Open during park hours. If you find an item you like here, it’s likely you won’t find it anywhere else so buy it. You can always return it anywhere else.
Do you find the store at the exit of Everest much to busy? The Everest Kart located by the water view and entrance to Rivers of Light seating has some of the items you’d find a Serka Zong Bazaar. Because it’s just a kart it won’t have the same selection but you’ll find a few things. Open park hours.
Found in the shadow of Everest, Kali Kart has a great selection of Mickey Ears, toys, and the ever popular arm monkeys. Open park hours.
This shop is a small little spot but it has some of the essentials you may have forgot to bring with you or didn’t realize you needed. Like hats and sunglasses. You’ll also find some fashionable scarfs and coverups. It’s a great spot to kill time while you’re waiting for family members on Kali River Rapids.
Yak & Yeti Bhakatapur Market
Found in and amongst the Yak & Yeti Eateries,the market has flip flops, toys you can directly from Asia and shirts with all kinds of logos. Meander through here while you’re walking off your lunch and you’ll find some unique items you won’t want to leave behind.
The perfect place to grab a Walt Disney World towel, after getting soaked on Kali River Rapids. A few other knick knacks that are exclusive to Animal Kingdom can also be found at this cart. It’s strategically located as you’re exiting Kali River Rapids.
Rivers of Light- FastPass Location
Rivers of Light is the nighttime entertainment show at Animal Kingdom. The show takes place on Discovery River, between Asia and DinoLand U.S.A.. There are two types of stadium seating for this show, one is on the DinoLand U.S.A. side of the water and the other is on the Asia side. The one on the Asia side is for guests with a FastPass reservation for Rivers of Light. Even if you have a FastPass for this event I would recommend showing up at least a half hour before so you and your group can stay together. Grab a drink or quick bite from one of the closely located dining choices and relax before the show begins.
UP! A Great Bird Adventure
This is the newest entertainment instalment at Animal Kingdom, formerly Flights of Wonder, UP! A Great Bird Adventure features some of your favourite characters from the Pixar film UP! Including Russell and Doug. In this covered outside theatres guests will seat as many types of birds will be brought out onto the stage and flown in the air above them. The cast members in the show will share plenty of facts and tidbits about the animals involved in the show, just be ready to duck as many birds will fly right over your head. The show takes place a few times during the day, there is FastPass + available if this is a must do on your list. The show last approximately 25 minutes.
Yak & Yeti Restaurant
We loved our dining experience here. One of four table service restaurants found at Animal Kingdom, Yak & Yeti is by far the best. It’s a great location, as Asia is in the middle of the park. Fantastic selection, the menu is plentiful for both kids and adults. Lots of room, the restaurant is two stories which creates lots of space for guests looking to grab lunch or dinner. We dined here back in January and had a wonderful experience. I would recommend it to anyone, better quality food than Tusker House, found in Animal Kingdom’s Africa, better cost than Tiffins, a Signature restaurant and better location than Rainforest Cafe, you have to go back to the main entrance of the park to get to the restaurant. For a full review on Yak & Yeti’s click this link. They are open from 11am until park close.
Yak & Yeti Local Food Cafe
The primary place to grab a quick-service meal at Animal Kingdom’s Asia is Yak & Yeti Local Food Cafes. Open from park open to park close, guests can grab breakfast, lunch or dinner at the counter service restaurant. This is definitely one of those places you want to check the menu before or while you’re in line by using the MyDisneyExperience app. When you get to the front of the line you’ll want to have your order prepared so you don’t get confused or flummoxed into ordering something you don’t really want. For breakfast you can choose from a variety of breakfast sandwiches or opted for a breakfast burrito or taco. For lunch and dinner you can enjoy one of their rice bowls or a Kobe Beef Cheeseburger or Hot Dog. The tables for this eatery are found to the right, they are partially covered, it’s a very busy spot so divide and conquer. Have one person in your party grab the food while the other grabs a table. Don’t forget you can choose from one of the many alcoholic beverage offerings if you’re dining on any of the dining plans.
Yak & Yeti Quality Beverages
This little gem is open from 11:30am until 6pm. Found at the back of the Yak & Yeti eatery area, this counter service restaurant has margaritas, draft beer, sangria, and frozen non-alcoholic beverages. They also serve Egg rolls, which count as a dining plan snack credit, as well as a Asian Chicken Sandwich and Ginger Chicken Salad. Great offerings without the large line you’ll find at the Yak & Yeti Local Food cafe just steps away.
Thirsty River Bar and Trek Snacks
Found nearby Expedition Everest, this location is a great refurb of an old FastPass location. Guests can grab all kinds of things at this handy dining destination. You can grab snacks anytime of the day, soft pretzels, popcorn, chocolate chip cookies and a PB&J Sandwich. You can find some refreshing beverages including the Pink Lotus and Flying Yak. Frozen Lemonade, Strawberry Lemonade and Orangeade Cups are found here and of course there’s all kinds of alcoholic beverages served from 11am until park close.
Anandapur Ice Cream Truck
This bright blue bus is waiting to take your ice cream order. Found as you are approaching Expedition Everest, the Anandapur Ice Cream Truck serves just that: soft-serve ice cream. Served in a waffle cone you can choose between vanilla, chocolate and swirl. You can also try one of their floats made with your choice of pop. Open from 11am until 8:30pm, a great use of your Dining Plan snack credits.
This food cart, located on the western side of the Yak & Yeti Restaurant, serves some snacks but it’s main selection is margaritas. Mango, Strawberry and Lime are the flavours to choose from or you can try all three in the Triple Yeti Blast. Even though this place is a destination for beverages don’t rule out their snacks. They carry cake push pop, described as having layers of chocolate cake, green and blue buttercream and balloons of white chocolate. You may want to add that to your snack goal list. The outpost is open around lunch time and closes before the park so be sure to double check the times on your MyDisneyExperience app on the day of your visit.
Found on the outskirts of Asia, as your entering Africa, Caravan Road has a very small menu serving a Teriyaki Beef Slider and Edaname. Open during peak season, the beef slider is actually a snack credit, making it an ideal choice for those looking to use snack credit for their lunch meal while visiting at the Animal Kingdom.
Drinkwallah is a great spot to grab a cool drink, alcoholic or non. They serve frozen coca-cola, frozen lemonade, and frozen blue raspberry lemonade. Grab a Frozen Coca-Cola with rum or you can Coconut-Lychee Lemonade. Great choices for adults and kids. Drinkwallah is found near the bridge taking guests from Asia to Discovery Island, in the hub of Yak & Yeti’s many eateries. It opens at 11am and shuts down half an hour before the park closes.
Royal Anandapur Tea Company
THE place to fill your caffeine needs in Animal Kingdom’s Asia. Whether you’re looking for a regular cup of joe or and iced variety, Royal Anandapur Tea Company is the place to go. They also have a vast selection of baked goods. It’s here where we grabbed milk to fill Linc’s bottle on his first Disney visit to finally calm him down for an afternoon nap. Found right across from Yak & Yeti Local Cafes.
Found on the outskirts of Asia, as you’re entering Africa, Mr Kamal’s offers only a handful a snack options that are great for a lunch supplement. In the past they’ve carried Falafel, Samosa and Hummus platters. It’s just a counter service spot that doesn’t have place to sit at, so it’s a perfect snack to grab and go, especially if you’re on your way to wait in a long attraction line.
Asia is definitely a happening spot at the Animal Kingdom. With the excitement of Pandora any of the other areas of the Animal Kingdom can be overlooked and Asia is an area you want to spend some time in. Between the delicious dining options, great shopping, thrilling attractions and impressive entertainment you’ll want to make your way to this area of the park for at least a couple of hours. Happy Planning, Friends.