Best Animal Kingdom Rides

Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park is a one-of-a-kind experience that combines thrilling rides, incredible shows, exotic animals, and immersive lands to transport guests to the magic of the wild. This guide covers the very best rides and attractions that should not be missed on a visit to Animal Kingdom.

Overview of Disney’s Animal Kingdom Park

Animal Kingdom is divided into different themed lands, each offering unique rides, shows, restaurants and animal exhibits. The lands include:

  • Pandora – The World of Avatar – Inspired by the Avatar films, featuring the 3D Flight of Passage ride.
  • Africa – Home to the Kilimanjaro Safaris ride and Harambe village with live entertainment.
  • Asia – Featuring the Expedition Everest rollercoaster and Rivers of Light nighttime show.
  • DinoLand U.S.A. – Carnival-style rides and dinosaur exhibits like the DINOSAUR ride.
  • Discovery Island – The park’s central hub with the Tree of Life.

From thrilling coasters to family raft rides and Avatar simulation flights, the combination of attractions makes Animal Kingdom an all-around magical day. Here are 5 rides you simply must experience when you visit.

Top 5 Animal Kingdom Rides and Attractions

1. Expedition Everest

Expedition Everest

This terrifying rollercoaster sends riders speeding forward and backwards through the Himalayan mountains in search of the legendary Yeti. With its runaway train theme, steep drops, and close encounters with the mythical beast, Expedition Everest offers an adrenaline-pumping adventure for brave guests.

2. Avatar Flight of Passage

Avatar Flight of Passage

The most popular ride in all of Walt Disney World, Flight of Passage is a jaw-dropping 3D simulation flight over the alien moon Pandora on the back of a banshee. The immersive graphics and ride technology make guests feel as if they are really swooping and diving over the lush Pandoran landscape for a one-of-a-kind experience.

3. Kilimanjaro Safaris

Kilimanjaro Safaris

For an up-close look at exotic animals, the open-air Kilimanjaro Safaris ride takes guests on a bumpy truck tour through Harambe Wildlife Reserve. Along the way you’ll spot lions, elephants, hippos, rhinos and more recreated with incredible realism as you traverse multiple habitats from forest to river to savanna.



Travel back in time to the Cretaceous period on this indoor rollercoaster-style ride. Rumbling through the carnivorous dinosaur exhibits, the ride vehicle narrowly dodges attacking dinosaurs like the Carnotaurus and Styracosaurus for an adventure packed with close calls.

5. Festival of the Lion King

This lively, Las Vegas-style show features singers, dancers, acrobats, puppeteers, stilt walkers and more recreating the music and magic of The Lion King. With colorful costumes, familiar songs, audience interaction and state-of-the-art production, it’s an incredible Broadway-caliber spectacular.

From thrills to chills to spectacular shows, these attractions encapsulate the very best that Animal Kingdom has to offer for guests of all ages.

Overview of Animal Kingdom Rides and Attractions

In addition to the top 5 highlighted above, Animal Kingdom houses several other world-class rides, shows and exhibits across its themed lands:

Pandora – The World of Avatar

  • Na’vi River Journey – Boat ride showcasing Pandora’s bioluminescent rainforest
  • Avatar: Flight of Passage – 3D banshee simulation flight


  • Kilimanjaro Safaris – Open-air safari truck ride through Harambe Wildlife Reserve
  • Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail – Gorillas, hippos, okapi and other animal exhibits


  • Expedition Everest – High-speed train rollercoaster through the Forbidden Mountain
  • Kali River Rapids – White water raft ride with hairpin turns and geysers
  • Maharajah Jungle Trek – Tiger, bat and bird exhibits including Komodo dragons

DinoLand U.S.A.

  • DINOSAUR – High-speed dark ride through dinosaur exhibits
  • Primeval Whirl – Wild mouse-style spinning coaster
  • TriceraTop Spin – Dinosaur-themed carnival ride for families

Discovery Island

  • Tree of Life Awakenings – Nightly magical light and sound show on the iconic tree
  • It’s Tough To Be A Bug! – 3D movie featuring Flik and friends from A Bug’s Life

With thrills, nature and Disney magic around every corner, Animal Kingdom houses attractions for all interests, ages and thrill levels.

Tips for Experiencing the Best Animal Kingdom Rides

To make sure you experience the most popular attractions, use these trip-planning tips:

  • Use Disney Genie+ and Lightning Lane passes to skip lines at top rides like Flight of Passage.
  • Arrive early and head straight to Flight of Passage first before long waits build.
  • Check the park map and plan which lands and rides to visit in what order.
  • See shows like Festival of the Lion King in between thrill rides for a balanced experience.
  • Use FastPass+ (if available) only for longest rides like Avatar Flight of Passage.
  • Download the My Disney Experience app to monitor wait times and find dining options.

With smart planning using ride wait data, you can experience all the stellar Animal Kingdom rides and attractions efficiently. Have an unforgettable adventure in the wilds of Disney!

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are answers to some common Animal Kingdom ride questions:

What are the best rides for thrill seekers?

Expedition Everest, Dinosaur, and Avatar Flight of Passage provide the biggest thrills.

What rides are best for small kids?

The Na’vi River Journey, Kilimanjaro Safaris, and carnival rides like TriceraTop Spin are ideal for younger kids.

What’s the fastest Animal Kingdom ride?

Expedition Everest reaches speeds up to 50 mph during its high-speed backwards portion.

What ride shows the most animals?

The Kilimanjaro Safaris ride takes you surprisingly close to over 30 species across African habitats.

What ride has the longest wait?

Avatar Flight of Passage consistently draws waits over 2-3 hours long. Use Lightning Lane or arrive very early.

With its pioneering mix of rides, shows, exotic animals and themed areas, Animal Kingdom has attractions to wow visitors of every age. Follow this guide and plan ahead to experience the very best during your Disney adventure!

Social References:

  • “As highlighted by Disney’s official social media channels, Animal Kingdom combines wildlife magic with Disney enchantment…”
  • “Fans on Disney-focused forums and subreddits frequently rank Flight of Passage as Animal Kingdom’s top experience…”
  • “Social media influencers like Carlye Wisel often share ride tips and strategies for navigating Animal Kingdom’s offerings.”

Ahmi John knows the ins and outs of every Disney World resort, from value hotels to deluxe villas. She has stayed at over 10 different resorts and loves helping families choose the perfect homebase. Her favorite resort activities include sipping cocktails at Trader Sam's and watching the fireworks from the beaches of the Polynesian.

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