Overlooked Disney, Part IV – Rafiki’s Planet Watch, by Gil Pohl

For my last trip into Overlooked Disney, we go to Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park.  Here I would recommend that you take the train from Africa to Rafiki’s Planet Watch® Land (used to be called Conservation Station).  Here you will find a small back stage look at how the Cast Members work so hard to keep the animals healthy.  There is also an area call “Affection Section” where guest will experience a petting zoo for small domestic animals.

At some times during the day (usually early in the mornings) some quests get a chance to work with Cast Members in Disney’s conservation and species-survival efforts.  There are also areas that focus on the planet’s environment, conservation, and animal well being.  Remember that if you want to see the Cast Members at work with the Animals, it is best to get there early.  Planet Watch usually opens at 9:30 AM.

I also enjoy the train ride to and from the Planet Watch.  You do get a little look at the African Savannah and some of the back stage buildings, but the highlight is just kicking back and relaxing for a few minutes.

Make sure that when you book your next trip to the Walt Disney World® Resort, you set aside some time to visit Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park and take the train ride to Rafiki’s Planet Watch® Land.

Discover the magic of Walt Disney World® Resorts and parks on a Walt Disney World® family vacation, and share the joy of Mickey Mouse and company with your kids. Let Ears of Experience plan the perfect Disney trip for you and your loved ones. Contact us today at 1-877-80MOUSE. We look forward to sending you on the magical vacation of a lifetime.

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Planning For A Walt Disney World Trip, Stage 3 -I am at Walt Disney World. What Now? By Gil Pohl

Phase III of planning a trip to Walt Disney World is what I am going to do now?  The resort is so large that I find it impossible to just get up in the morning and start going.  I do need to plan ahead on what parks I will visit and the attractions that I have to see.  How do I decide what park to go to each day?

First, if you have taken my advice and had Ears of Experience book you into one of the many resorts at Walt Disney World, you should look to see if any parks have early Extra Magic Hours.  Extra Magic Hours is when one park opens early (or remains open late) only for those staying on Walt Disney World properties.  If there is an attraction that I know I must experience, I try to go to that park first and ride that ride first.

Expedition Everest at Disney's Animal Kingdom® Theme ParkAn example of this type of planning was on my 2008 trip to Animal Kingdom.  No one in the group that I was with had ridden Expedition Everest and we knew that this ride would have long lines all day.  We showed up for the early opening of Animal Kingdom and went directly to Expedition Everest.  We each got a “Fast Pass” for the ride.  A Fast Pass is a printed ticket that allows you to ride a popular ride at a later time without waiting in a long line. And best of all, they’re free. Then we rode the ride without using our Fast Pass, twice.  Once the line starting getting longer, we rode a third time using our Fast Pass.”  By combining Extra Magic Hours and the Fast Pass system, we where able to avoid the lines and experience this attraction three times; all before non-Disney guest where allowed into the park.Soarin at EPCOT

Toy Story Midway ManiaIt should be noted that if you plan on getting a Fast Pass for any of the popular rides such as Expedition Everest, Toy Story Midway Mania, or Soarin’, get them as soon as you get to the park.  These attractions run out of Fast Passes early in the day.

I usually go to one Park in the morning and “Park Hop” to another in the evening.  I often will go to a park in the morning that does not have Extra Magic Hours and move to the park with evening Extra Magic Hours near closing time.  Again, making sure that during Extra Magic Hours I enjoy those rides that the lines would be to long to visit during the day.  When hopping between parks around noon time, I often return to my hotel room on the park to relax some before returning for an evening of fun.  This can be really important if you have small children with you.  Being able to return to your hotel room for a short rest period is just another benefit of staying on the World.

I guess the bottom line is, it does not matter if you are visiting during peak summer days or some of the slower times of the year, working with someone at Ears of Experience and doing a little advance planning just makes your Disney trip a little more Magical.

Discover the magic of Walt Disney World® Resorts and parks on a Walt Disney World® family vacation, and share the joy of Mickey Mouse and company with your kids. Let Ears of Experience plan the perfect Disney trip for you and your loved ones. Contact us today at 1-877-80MOUSE. We look forward to sending you on the magical vacation of a lifetime.

www.themouseexperts.com

Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park, by Kid Expert Nattie, Age 10

If you like animals, habitats or thrilling adventures, you need to go to Disney’s Animal Kingdom®. It has animals from Asia, Africa, and figures of dinosaurs! You get to see your favorites in natural environments that are playing, eating, sleeping, and even up-close and personal. If you love nature with the animals that roam there, go to the Kilimanjaro Safaris® Expedition, where giraffes, elephants, cheetahs, lions, and other exotic animals live. For really up-close and personal action, Rafiki’s Planet Watch is the go-to spot.! You get to see, pet, and groom some animals, and if you are 16 or older, you can go behind the scenes.

For some really thrilling rides at Animal Kingdom, head to Expedition Everest, a ride that takes you through the tallest mountain, Everest, with an angry Yeti on your trail and the soaking wet Kali River Rapids that takes you through the rough, soaked to the skin, rapids of Asia. They are both really rough so if you don’t like rough rides, DON”T GO!!!!!

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-B3cyTJDxuU]

Written by Nattie, our Kid Expert. For more on her and all of our Kid Tips, check out our 4 Kids page .

Discover the magic of Walt Disney World® Resorts and parks on a Walt Disney World® family vacation, and share the joy of Mickey Mouse and company with your kids. Let Ears of Experience plan the perfect Disney trip for you and your loved ones. Contact us today at 1-877-80MOUSE. We look forward to sending you on the magical vacation of a lifetime.