Day 5 – Animal Kingdom

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After having breakfast at ‘Ohana yesterday, we took a bus to Animal Kingdom. This is a shadier park, and it doesn’t feel quite as hectic and jam-packed as Magic Kingdom. And I love the authentic African feel of the park.

The key things to do here: Kilimanjaro Safari, a safari tour through a wildlife preserve where the animals roam free; Khali River Rapids, a river rafting ride where you are likely to get soaked; and Dinosaur, an indoor dinosaur-themed thrill ride. It’s pretty rocky and herky-jerky. You’re riding in a jeep sort of like the ones they tooled around in  in Jurassic Park, and you travel back in time in search of a particular dinosaur. The kids thought it was too scary. We thought it was harmless fun. In fact, it was probably my favorite ride at Animal Kingdom.

We had fast passes for all three rides. Barrak loaded all our meal reservations and fast-pass times in his phone calendar so he could easily check our schedule as we ran around.

People were waiting for hours for Khali River Rapids. We were through in 10-15 minutes. It’s such a short ride too. I can’t imagine waiting hours for it. They have free lockers for stashing your stuff before riding the Rapids. You do run the risk of getting soaked. Some people in the raft get it worse than others.

I didn’t carry a bag to the parks. Instead, we just carried essentials in Barrak’s small technical backpack. Essentials: visors & hats, sunblock sticks, autograph books and pens, our phones, wet wipes, Cortaid. When we’d ride rollercoasters, we’d also stick sunglasses, bottles of water, and the like.

We ate our quick-service lunch at Flame Tree Barbecue. Like last year, we sat on an outdoor patio with a view of Expedition: Everest. The kids are too young/small to ride this coaster yet.

Here are some pictures from the day!

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Greta and Mag in front of the Tree of Life.

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The kids met Pocahonas just past the Tree of Life, on Discovery Island Trail. She gave them the third-degree on where they were from (“Ohio”), what we have in Ohio (“corn and football”) and how you play this strange game called football (oh, these girls really get into their characters). It was pretty funny hearing Greta explain to her what football is.

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Mag and Barrak got the most soaked on the Khali River Rapids raft ride. The ride wasn’t scary at all, and was actually shockingly short.

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A great view of the Expedition: Everest roller coaster across the water from the outdoor sitting area (there’s no inside, it’s just a food counter) where we ate our Flame Tree Barbecue. They have smoked turkey and ribs, smoked chicken, cole slaw, and of course, Uncrustables. We learned that Magnus really likes baked beans. He ate the whole cup.

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This is the outside of the indoor Dinosaur thrill ride, which is inside Dino-Land. It’s very dark and frenetic, and animatronic dinosaurs growl and snarl as your vehicle careens past.

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My boys on the bus ride home. Little Magpie, he’s had a rough week. He fell out of the bed our first night here, peed the bed twice (he’s recently graduated from Pull-Ups but apparently so exhausted here that he couldn’t hold it), bonked his head on the side of the water slide, and got his little fat knee stuck in the railing while waiting in line for Chester & Hester’s Flying Dinosaur ride at Animal Kingdom.

 

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