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Old 04-25-2009, 01:46 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Smiling Cheshire Cat View Post
Consider your DD's tolerance of scary things when deciding to ride Dinosaur. My DS was 5 when he first rode it and it terrified him.

I'm 24 and Dinosaur scares me!

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Old 04-25-2009, 02:07 PM   #32
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Things to skip?

Everyone's list would be different I'm sure, but we have always skipped Primeval Whirl, because spinning makes us sick -- and it appears that this one definitely fits in the spinning category. So we don't want to risk it.

I don't find Dinosaur scary (cause I believe it's only make-believe ), but the loudness of it and the very, very rough ride are not make-believe. Anyone who hates being jostled around or hates loud noises might want to skip this ride.

We did the Nemo show once, and that was enough for us. But I'm glad we experienced it once. Otherwise, we would always wonder what we had missed.
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Old 04-25-2009, 02:23 PM   #33
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My favorite is an order of eggrolls from the Yak and Yeti counter service location. My wife usually avoids eggrolls but she devoured one of these and asked if we could go back for more.
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Old 04-25-2009, 02:46 PM   #34
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I am surpirsed some have said to skip the parade. We were there in December for the first time and LOVED the parade. Our girls (5 and 7) also loved the face painting there - it was beautiful - much better than your average face painting. We only saw about half the park but it was one of our favorite days there and we cannot wait to go back in September!!!! We ate at Tusker House and LOVED it (and I am super picky). It was one of our favorite meals. The monkeys were a lot of fun to watch - i think they were on the way to EE. It is a fabulous park!
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Old 04-25-2009, 02:50 PM   #35
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welcome to the thread

I have some of your posts too and they were very helpful, so if something sounds familiar, then it probably is.

Things to Skip started because I have heard really bad stuff about attractions at HS - like Drew Carey and Prince Caspian. But I will post negative things about an attraction under the tips for rides or shows. It's still info (or opinion) that someone can take into consideration. Does that help?

I think Conservation Station may be more for the younger crowd, where as adults and teens may want to focus other areas. But I've never been so I won't post that unless other DISers say that.

I'm trying to wait for two or more like opinions, including the ones I've read elsewhere befoe I add it to my main post

Your suggestions are always welcome

Keep the info coming

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Old 04-26-2009, 01:51 AM   #36
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Has any one had good experiences with the Discovery Clubs?

Is it like epcot where they are always set-up?
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Old 04-26-2009, 07:48 AM   #37
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Originally Posted by whogirl'smom View Post
We did what tomu suggested for two trips but tried a different way this past time. I was always grumpy trying to get around to things in AK in the heat and so this time we tried a different approach (and I felt like we did less walk/running for FP, etc.)

We started out in Dinoland! Dd was 7 so we got on Triceratop Spin first and stayed on three times in a row without getting off. She loved it! Then onto Dinosaur with no wait. Leisurely walk to TH where we had 10:30 ressies--when are yours? We really enjoyed the food and characters here and got to sample breakfast and lunch because they were late seating us even though we were 30 min. early.

While dd and I were waiting to be called at TH, I sent dh for FP for the safari. The time was up just as we finished eating and I felt like we saw just as many animals at noon as we had previously in the morning. Then we got EE FP, went on the Tiger trail, rode EE, saw Lion King and called it a day. Finally it was a relaxing day at AK!! You may want to work Nemo into your plan since your little ones haven't seen it yet. It's worth seeing once.

Now I realize we didn't see everything that day, but some we already had, and others we'll save for the next trip. Just take your time here and enjoy the beauty and the fun shows like the African drummers/dancers outside Tusker House.

Have a great time!
I like this plan. I too get aggervatied at this park. It get so hot. I think I am going to do your plan the same way for us. Thanks.

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Old 04-26-2009, 07:52 AM   #38
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When I am in AK I like to spend time walking through the smaller paths, especially if it is crowded (and hot). Some of the smaller paths around the park have more vegetation on either side of them which is great in the hot summer months (or on a very hot day in December as we found out on our last visit there!) Plus this way you get to see way more of the animals. Also if the keepers are out they are very willing to chat to you about the animals.
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Old 04-26-2009, 10:36 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by IMwink View Post
Thanks for the info

I do plan on doing a modified commando style. We take breaks often and get into some air conditioned attractions or restaurants to rejuvinate the girls. And I am not the guy that forces the park, I go with the flow and enjoy. I don't have a detailed list by times that I want to do things, but I have a prioritzed list with downtime at the top of it.

I planned on a 10-day ticket, but I decided to save some $$$ and I went with the FREE 5-day that they give to Service members and the discounted tickets for their families.

I had to modify for that. I was planning on going back to the Resort everyday, and hitting each park twice, but not now. Only MK twice.

But I am taking that $$$ and putting it towards the top of the line BBB experience for my two DD'sand the Chef's Table for me and DW.
You will not regret doing BBB my girls were over the moon, we brought our gowns to save $$$ this was in their to favorite 3 things at Disney.

On our 2nd day at Kali, made my DD's wear bathingsuits and had them strip before Kali

On our first day my middle DD was miserable when she was wet afterwards, we went to lunch at RFC and they were freezing becuase they were damp.

Here is another tip, you can find clearance stuff in RFC souvie shop and give gifts when you get back. I bought 4 dry shirts for us and it cost $24.00 not too bad, condsidering it is hard to find a bargain in Disney
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Old 04-26-2009, 11:39 AM   #40
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If you want to make your 'tea' recommendation more specific, the place is the Anandapur Tea Company and they have the BEST frozen chai ever!!!

KCLYN: I'm 31 and it scares me too!!! Every photo of me from the ride camera is always of me hovering over to hide my eyes. I've only ridden twice, so I still forget when the dinosaur pops out and it gets me every time

For restaurants I would say definitely do Donald's Safari Breakfast - yummy FRUNCH juice (they call it something else, but it's the same stuff.)
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Old 04-26-2009, 11:44 AM   #41
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You have alot of info already compiled....great job!

Here are my thoughts not sure what is repeat or if anything is new....

* I've visited AK each time I've been to the World and I consider it a must do!

My DH and I were there the first year it opened in '98 and it's always better every new trip

* IMHO it always seems HOT! Now I have visited in March, May, June, Aug/sept and it seems to be in memory the hottest day of our trip....now I don't know if it's because many areas are unshaded and the lush greenery just adds to the moisture and heat in the air...but plan to stop and rest and have plenty of water!

* do arrive at ROPE DROP.....or as close to park opening as you can. This trip we opted to arrive late after a late night out the previous day...and it was a mistake...whoops!

* FotLK is probably one of the best shows at WDW definetly see it, and arrive early to get closer to the front rows. Bring a snack or line distractions to entertain little ones before entering the theatre.

* things that don't need to be done each trip:
Nemo show
Train to Conservation Station (and yes you can bring and should your stroller on the train just fold it up)

* things I'd advise skipping w/ the under 5 crowd:
Bugs life show...pretty intense
Kali river raft ride
Primeval Whirl

* great things to do w/ the under 5 crowd:
Nemo show
Character greet lines in Camp Mickey and Minnie FYI do early in the day low lines and don't visit the area when a FotLK show is just exiting huge crowds
Drum playing area in Africa
Flights of Wonder
Boneyard...great play area!
the dino-dumbo...same condept and lesser of a line
Conservation Station KIM if lightening is in the area they will shelter the animals, even if it's not raining

* Good eats:
I have not eaten at any TS in AK...but look on the restaurant threads. We are thinking of checking out the Donald Breakfast though on our next trip.

QS: I've eaten at Pizzafari before having kids
Restaurantsaurus....nice it's inside and air conditioned, has good choices for finiky eaters (McD's) and has a fixings bar...
FTBBQ my DS last year declared the chicken leg kid meal was the best he had...the seating area is beautiful so many great details and plants!
Yak & Yeti ate there just this past trip and I give it I thought the food was great, very fresh and HOT. anytime a MOM of 4 can get to the end of her meal and it's still HOT is a good thing. There was plenty to choose from and we all enjoyed it. I'd eat there again for sure!

Last I'll leave you w/ some of my favorite pic's from our last trip:

PS a great pic op outside the park is byt the green welcome sign...we've taken a picture of our kids on each trip...it's fun to see them grow! and a great pic op inside the park is the "back" of the tree it's on a parth way bewtween Africa and Asia...it's a great shot!

In the Boneyard:

on the Safari:

a food shot:

during the FoW show:

at the Conservation Station:

Here's my family and a special friend:

My DD having some fun:

ENJOY the Animal Kingdom!
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Old 04-26-2009, 01:19 PM   #42
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Great thread - thanks
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Old 04-26-2009, 01:32 PM   #43
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I PM'd you with links to highly detailed info on the kids discovery clubs, safari journal and planet watch

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Old 04-26-2009, 01:41 PM   #44
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Love your pictures, Mousescrapper!

I love Animal Kingdom. Aside from Magic Kingdom, it's my favorite park (which is not the norm among adults, I believe, but there's nothing adult about me when it comes to Disney ). I think it's incredibly beautiful, and my husband and I kept commenting to each other on how stunned we were by the beauty of the park. If I gave anyone advice, I'd say to make sure you walk around and really admire the greenery and animals. It is indeed hot, but it just adds to the jungle atmosphere.
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Old 04-26-2009, 01:54 PM   #45
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Here are a few for things that have not been covered:

1. Pizzafari is a good CS place to eat when you have finicky eaters (pizza) and those who want something different than burgers/fries (Hot Italian Style Sandwhich or Chicken Parm SW). Just avoid the place like the plague between 11:30 and 1:30 - very loud and busy. Flame Tree is a great place for non-picky eaters as the 1/2 chicken is huge as are the ribs (dry rub - thus, a little on the tough side). Friends love the sandwiches but I think they are a tad on the small side. Restaurantasaurus is not my cup of tea but they do serve standard park fare that appeals to kids. Having said that, McDonald's is no longer served in the park and the chicken nuggets and fries are now Disney style.

2. The Kid's Discovery Clubs are good for kids that get into them. You can easily figure it out by experiencing one and gauging interest. They are learning activities (as opposed to arts and craft experiences like the Kidcots at Epcot). There are six activities and they can be time consuming so be prepared for some time investment if your kids insist on doing them all. Also, dont leave a land without finding the Kids Club if your kids are trying to find them all.

P.S. The cast members that work these (red shirts and khaki vests) are all interns from colleges around the nation and usually are extremely knowledgeable. They have an extensive training process and are often great sources of information (not only about animals but also about the park in general). Usually if I have a question about DAK, I seek one of them out. If they dont have the answer, they all carry radios and can easily find out.

3. My favorite snack is at Dino-Bites next to restaurantasaurus. It is a home made ice cream sandwich where you can choose the type of cookie and ice cream. It is huge.

4. Dont rush through the queues. DAK has some of the best out there. My favorites - Everest, Kali River, and Its Tough to be a Bug.

5. Regarding the parade, I am personally a fan and have seen it countless times. What I really like about it - it is VERY close and personal (as the pathways in DAK are quite small). Because of that, characters and parade CMs often interact a lot with the crowd. Also, it spotlights the VIP characters more than any other parade as Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Goofy all get their own personalized vehicle. My favorite place to watch it is by Creature Comforts on Discovery Island right before the Africa gate. It gets to this location fairly quickly and once the parade starts, you wont have a large crowd of other guests pushing in front of you because they simply cant get there. It is usually quite shady and there are several places to sit right along the parade route. Often overlooked.

6. Explore the Tree of Life. My favorite path in the entire park goes alongside the front side of the Tree and allows for some awesome up close views. It is also a great shortcut as hardly anyone is on it. I often run across cast members traveling down it as they can get across the park quickly due to the lack of traffic. To find it, look for a path on Discovery Island by the temporary Tattoo stand.

7. Cretaceous Trail is pointless. You can find some large dinosaur sculptures hiding amongst the trees and it is shady but thats about it.

8. Dino-Sue is cool to look at as you travel to Dinosaur! and KDC CMs will sometimes do presentations on it in the afternoon if you are interested.

9. The best time to ride the safari is whenever it is lightly raining. So - if it starts to rain midway through the day or looks like it is going to - try to get to the safari and be prepared for awesomeness. Activity levels skyrocket.

10. Conservation Station is cool but only do it if you are really interested or have a surplus of time. Easy place to meet Rafiki, Pocahontas, and Jiminy Cricket. Also, Pipa (Push's Recycling Cousin) makes appearances throughout the day. If you want to see a veterinary procedure, head there in the morning as that is when most in-hospital procedures are completed.

11. The Acrobats in Harambe are no longer performing so ixnay on that idea. You can still find DeVine roaming among the trees on the pathway between Africa and Asia. She creates crazy congestion though.

12. Skip the long lines at Tamu Tamu in Harambe. The food is not worth it.

13. A new program has started called Picnic in the Park. When you enter the park, you can place an order at a stand by Guest Relations for a full meal to be prepared and packaged in a take home reusable bag that can be picked up by Tusker House Rest at the Kusafiri Bakery. Then you can travel where ever to have a nice meal. The food options all sound great and are priced reasonably at about 8 bucks a person.

My Dad and I on Expedition Everest!
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