While we have long been fans of Disney’s Animal Kingdom – it’s probably my favorite of the 4 Walt Disney World parks – we had never gone on the Wild Africa Trek until our recent visit over Spring Break, and it’s absolutely spectacular! Spectacular enough it deserves its own post from the other experiences and dining we did this visit. 🙂
We arrived at 1130 at the Kilimanjaro Safaris for our 1145 visit – it was Mr. CT, myself and our 8 year old son. You have to be at least 8 years old and 48″ to participate in this excursion, so our daughter stayed with her grandparents and did other fun activities around the park. Check in was easy with providing a photo ID and verifying our names and spellings. We used the potties before we went in (you don’t get access for another 2 hours, and they aren’t kidding, so heed warnings!) to get fitted for our harness, mic/earpiece, weight check, and store our belongings in our locker. I was able to take my phone on a lanyard and we also had complimentary water bottles we hooked up with carabiner. It was great! Our guides were Mandy and Amanda (so if we said Amanda, we were right 😉 ) and they were absolutely fantastic – Jason and the other helpers were great as well!
Our guides were amazing! Note the harnesses and outdoor gear provided great protection 🙂
One of the great perks about this tour – all photos on the good camera are included separate from Photo Pass, so if you want to leave your phone behind, you can! The photos were fantastic! We started off with one of our group of 12, then hit the trails both public and private throughout the Africa exhibit. We learned new information about monkeys, birds, and finally came to the hippo exhibit, where we were connected to a safety railing and walked out to learn all about them from one of their keepers! We got to watch a feeding, learn about their behaviors and training, and see these guys in an up close light like never before! We absolutely loved it – our son has been playing “trainer” in our backyard ever since we got home! It was super educational and super fun!
Exploring monkeys, aviaries, and getting up close with hippos!
Next up, we linked to safety ropes and crossed two rickety bridges – that go over the hippo pools and Crocodile Country! Going over those guys was definitely something to remember! After we all made it across safely, we again connected to a safety rail and got to hear all about the crocodiles, how they are fed, and their unique behaviors and breeding. They were actually active – which was pretty cool albeit spooky to see! This was our son’s favorite part of the journey.
Climbing over crocodiles was an epic adventure!
After that, we ditched our harnesses and jumped in a private safari vehicle – which went “off roading” across the savannah with up-close encounters with giraffes, painted dogs, rhinos, and ended with lunch on a private deck with amazing authentic African cuisine and even more amazing views of the savannah! We got to see the ostriches and rhinos up close from here, and learned a lot about them and the flamingos as well. On our way back, we passed by the lions and learned more about their behavior and some behind the scenes secrets of how they care for the animals and keep all the species (not to mention the visitors 🙂 ) safe! As we left the tour, we got to vote for which conservation efforts part of our fee went to – our family is full of rhino fans, but it was super hard to choose! All in all, this is a great tour with amazing Cast who obviously love and care for the animals they keep a great deal. We felt it was extremely educational, motivated all of us to care more for the animals and our own behaviors, and absolutely a lot of fun! The photos, food, and intimate experiences made this well worth the price tag!
The safari portion of our tour was incredible!