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Thread: Animal Kingdom

  1. #1
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    Hi,

    I only been to this park once and didn't enjoy it as I felt it was very much like a zoo.

    Am I wrong to think like this, as we going back this year and we are not sure if the Animal Kingdom will be on the agenda....

    I refuse to go to any zoo in the UK, should Animal Kingdom be any different?




  2. #2
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    oooooh can of worms! i feel it's more like a safari park like we have in the UK and the animals always seem well care for. I don't go to Zoos myself if that helps.


    Besides the animals you have some good rides too, dinosaur, expedition everest, kali river rapids, primeval whirl and some dinosaur thing akin to dumbo. Don't forget the fantastic west end worth Lion King Show and the Wonder of Flight.

    hope that helps a bit














  3. #3
    Administrator Tink's Avatar
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    Great topic!

    Here, the advertizements for DAK are "NAHTAZU!

    It's more than a matter of semantics though. Disney does incredible research behind the scenes. It's because of such research that the code for elephant language was deciphered! Disney zoologists/biologist/psychologists broke that code. That's the sort of research they do; long term; long reaching effect.

    Now, there is another side. I love gorillas. Passionately. My great missed dream in life was to have been able to work with gorillas... so, I have paid much attention and spent much time at DAK watching the gorillas.

    Early on, we'd get to the park before opening, and be let in! We'd head directly for the Pangani Forest trail, and sometimes be there before the CMs. We've seen some incredible things. The (former, he's been moved ) dominant male silverback signs! We actually saw him, and it was incredible.

    The CMs on the trail used to be quite firm about keeping everyone quiet, reminding us that we were in the animals' world, ect. The gorillas were active, lively. The first little boy gorilla was too funny!!! We saw him go into a whole routine one time because he had a leaf stuck to his foot! What a treasure to have seen him. The first little girl was a daredevil! She would climb high in the tree then "cry" for Mama who would come along and snatch her down!

    All events that I would never have seen, things I would have never learned.

    However, over the course of time, CMs stopped controlling the visitors as closely, the gorillas have become acclimated and some have been switched out (none of the original family are there any longer, save one ) so it's lost some of it's "personal" feel for us. We are no longer allowed in early (that's ok...) and we no longer then have that private time.

    The CMs are noisier than the guests sometime. They drive me nuts.

    The bachelor side has had a dramatic fight where one gorilla was killed by the dominant, and another lost some fingers. That really made me sick, and very sad. I know these things happen in the wild but I can't get past the thought that perhaps the gorillas would have been able to run away in the wild? (Where there was more space to run)??? I don't know.

    So, do we still go there? Yes. Do we learn things still? Oh yes. But it has changed, and not necessarily for the better.

    Not a real answer, but as honest as I could be.

    Oh, and we don't do zoos either.






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  4. #4
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    its my least fave park because im not a zoo fan but plenty else to do in around half a day really
    Mick

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  5. #5
    Administrator Tink's Avatar
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    See? I can spend the entire day there. The park itself is so highly detailed that you can easily lose hours just taking in the whole thing. The village of Harambe is so well done that when I walked across the bridge that very first day, I stopped dead in my tracks and asked Herself, "THIS is DISNEY????" It was that real.

    Look at everything. Everything from the ground you are walking on, to the light poles, to the benches, to the walls of the buildings... everything is detailed. Look at the stone sculptures. Depending upon the time of the year, even some of the trees will become more elaborate. There is one that we call the sausage tree as it has salami sized "flowers" hanging off of it. They are brown and really resemble a sausage or salami in a casing!

    There are orchids growing from the trees, and other very exotic flowers.

    There is DeVine. Keep an eye out for that particularly elaborate flora!

    There is the tree where all sorts of little items are left to appeal to a particular deity.

    There are many opportunities to learn from the little open air school that features a cast member from an area of Africa. We've listened to presentations from a young woman from Botswana (yes, they really do eat a certain caterpillar like bug there ) and a young man from Tanzania (wish I could say it like he did) and South Africa, Nigeria... we've learned so much from them.

    Rafiki's Planet Earth also called the Conservation Station is a place that gets a short shrift in my opinion. There is much, much information there but it takes time to absorb it all. When you enter the building there you can stand for as long as your legs will hold you studying the mural of the animals. How many animals can you find, and how many hidden Mickeys?

    Animal Kingdom is a departure from the other Disney (and other companies) theme parks. It's not a thrill park, it's a learning park, that tries to bring the African and Asian continents alive, through culture and through animals. That they work hard behind the scenes to contribute to our knowledge base of animals, and conserve the natural habitats of the animals is one of the most important things they do.

    Goodness! I am running on. I do love the place. EPCOT and DAK are my two favorite parks.

    Now, as for DHS? You can have it! I'll stop by yearly for the Star Wars Weekends (long story, don't ask ) and for the Spectacle of Lights, but that's about it for me.

    MK, when the boy (or other visiting guests) wants to go, or on that first Saturday in June...

    Look for me in the World Showcase or on the Pangani Forest Trail.






    Welcome to our new home! It's a lovely and friendly place. If you haven't joined yet, do register. It's a great place to make friends and share all those Disney secrets!!

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  6. #6
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    I have to agree with Tink, we love th AK and Epcot ,HS not so much after Ty does TOT and the Aerosmith Coaster ride We spend hours on the trail and just love the whole research bit. Places like this help maintain the education level that we need. I get the fact that in the ideal situation the animals would be in their natural habitat but this allows for some close up research in animal behavior. And we do support certain zoo's like our own and Cleveland. These places would remain open regardless and financial help is crucial to the rain forest areas that both zoo's have

  7. #7
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    I like AK. They treat the animals really well and the cast members are really happy to share any info about the animals in their care.

    TIP: instead of eating breakfast at your resort, eat at Pizzafari. It's faster, quieter, and the same food as a resort cafeteria breakfast (probably better).

    DEFINITELY see Finding Nemo and Festival of the Lion King. At Lion King, when you enter the auditorium, bypass the ushers and head for the bleacher section pretty much straight ahead and sit on the end on the right. This is the "elephant" section and the performers come out of the curtains RIGHT THERE.

    Expedition Everest is the best coaster I've been on. It's a super-smooth ride but, it's still exciting with the backwards drop and the Yeti trying to get you.

    They have beer.

    The afternoon parade is so fun! The cast members interact WAY more with the crowd than the MK parades (in my opinion). By 5pm I'm definitely done for the day. AK is the perfect park to visit if you need a "low impact" day.
    Gwen

  8. #8
    Moderator Beccaberry's Avatar
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    Another TIP:

    Watch the parade from the area that runs right in front of Festival of the Lion King. Then, immediately following the end of the parade, turn back & walk straight to the Festival of the Lion King show and catch the last showing. It's the perfect ending to the day, and when you come out most people have already exited the park, so it can be a lovely stroll at the end of a lovely day.

    We love DAK, for any number of reasons that may change throughout our trip.




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