We spent our second full day in Disney at Animal Kingdom. I was really excited about this park, having never been there. We had to wake the sleepyheads up at 8 o’clock. But is there any more magical way to wake up than fireworks on the headboard at the push of a button?
It was a gorgeous day, sunny and chilly. This photo op didn’t go so well; it was bright!! As you can see, the princess hairdo lasted through the night. Hannah is no calm sleeper; we were impressed.
I had those Mickey shirts made for them and love how they turned out!
We made a beeline for Pocahontas, probably right behind Belle in our list of favorites. She was in her winter wear. I loved the Uggs.
Of course we had to tell her that Hannah was Pocahontas for Halloween. She also told her that she likes to climb trees. Both Pocahontas and Meeko climb trees! She signed the pillowcase in brown because we thought that was fitting. Then she kissed Hannah’s, making her smile from ear to ear.
Heading into Africa we arrived at Kilimanjaro Safaris! Our first FastPass of the day was well spent. This attraction usually draws a huge crowd all day long, so we were told beforehand to make sure we had a pass for this. It was great! You really feel like you are on an actual safari (Disneyfied). It lasted about 20 minutes and you see all kinds of animals. Our driver was funny and the kids really enjoyed it. So did we! I have to tell you, it was a pretty neat way to have morning coffee.
We got to see several animals up close and even saw an elephant drinking water. Not sure I’ve seen that in person before…
Passing Harambe Market, we hurried over to hopefully make it into Festival of the Lion King.
WOW. It did not disappoint. I’ve seen The Lion King Broadway show and, I’m telling you, I was impressed. The singing, costumes, and all the special effects were just awesome. Hannah and Joseph have never seen the movie, but we’ve read the book and know the story. This was a trip highlight for sure.
Next, we meandered around, slowly making our way to Asia.
It was time to use our Expedition Everest FastPasses. To us, the most exciting ride Disney has to offer, this roller coaster was the best. If the speed, turns, and drops aren’t enough, you get to do a portion of it backwards. This ride had a long wait time all day.
Hannah loved every thrilling second of it, of course riding twice.
From Asia to Discovery Island, we made our way to Adventurers Outpost to see Mickey and Minnie in their globetrotting getup. This wasn’t necessarily planned but, when we saw how short the line was, we went for it. Can you ever get too many hugs from the main two?
Joseph was so cute when he saw Mickey up close and personal for the first time. He was a little starstruck and when Mickey reached out his arms for a hug, his face was priceless.
Just a little bit later we would see these Mouses (do you say mice?) again. We had late-lunch reservations at Tusker House. Friends of ours told us how good this place was and, once hearing the details of the food and character sightings, it was a done deal.
Tusker House is a full-service “marketplace eatery” with a huge buffet filled with authentic African cuisine. The atmosphere and decor are really cool and Mickey and the gang make their way around the restaurant. You do nothing but enjoy the food; they come to you. So nice! I guess since the restaurant wasn’t crowded we were lucky; we were visited by each character at least once.
Goofy was, well, goofy and we liked getting to see him more than once. The kids told him how Daddy can do the hotdog dance just like Goofy. Yep…and he did.
We walked across the bridge from Discovery Island into Dinoland U.S.A. to the Theater in the Wild, where we saw Finding Nemo-The Musical. Again, Disney did not disappoint; we loved it. Really well done and a packed house.
In Dinoland, we rode a couple rides. Joe and Hannah went on the Primeval Whirl (below) while I took Joseph on the TriceraTop Spin. Then we played at The Boneyard, where Joe and I did our best to keep track of the kids running around this huge playground with all sorts of bridges, slides and contraptions.
It was loads of fun for these two playground-loving kids. I stared at those slide holes quite a bit waiting for Joseph to decide to come down.
Next up was DINOSAUR, the ride. Not going to lie, it was a little intense. And a bit too much for Hannah. We did not even attempt it with Joseph. It’s dark and jolting and dinosaurs jump out at you. Yeah, she was terrified. Which is why I was confused when she wanted to go on it again with Joe. She said she didn’t want him to do it alone. Cuteness.
Our faces say it all. Um, unexpected scare! Hannah did say that the second time around it wasn’t bad. Ha.
Taking advantage of PhotoPass ops, we took another family picture in front of the iconic Tree of Life before leaving the park. This time we didn’t have the glaring sun in our eyes and it turned out much better.
Goodbye Animal Kingdom!
Back at Port Orleans Riverside, the sun was setting and we walked to dinner at the food court. Joseph was intrigued with the huge (35-foot) waterwheel, so Joe picked a table right beside it.
It was a beautiful night and the ending to another excellent day in Disney.