5 Best Rides at Animal Kingdom: Our Picks

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park is one of my favorite parks at Disney World. With beautiful landscape and amazing animals, you might think the park is just a zoo at first glance. But, it’s so much more than that! There’s plenty of amazing attractions to enjoy and chances to get your ride on while you’re at the park. Here are my picks for the 5 best rides at Animal Kingdom. They range from family friendly to perfect for thrill seeker, and there’s something for everyone to enjoy. So let’s get to exploring these best rides at Animal Kingdom.

Kilimanjaro Safari

Prepare to have a wild time on the most popular attraction at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Whenever I recommend attractions at this park, Kilimanjaro Safari is always at the top of the list. Perfect for all ages, this ride gives you the chance to tour the African savanna and see animals, like rhinos, cheetahs, lions, and giraffes up close. How cool is that?

You’ll hop aboard an open air safari vehicle and along with your tour guide, you’ll embark on an 18-minute journey into the African outback. Not only will you see some amazing animals, but you’ll also learn more about them and animal conservation.

Want a unique safari experience? Why not ride it during the day and at night? Kilimanjaro Safari now offers a nighttime version. It gives you the chance to see some rare nocturnal animals and the savanna at sunset, making it very unique and a must-do.

Pro Tip: Fastpass+ is a must for this attraction. Be sure to book early! 

Kilimanjaro Safari Ride at Disney's Animal Kingdom

Photo Copyright Michael Lowin / Wikimedia Commons

Dinosaur

It’s a blast! It’s in the past! Thrill seekers will love Dinosaur, a time traveling dark ride that takes you back to the age of the dinosaurs. You’ll start off at the Dino Institute where you’ll check out exhibits. You’ll also learn about different kinds of dinosaurs, including the fearsome Carnotaurus. From there, you’ll meet Dr. Grant Seeker. Be prepared. He’ll give you a mission to go back in time and bring back an Iguanadon – all before a meteorite strikes!

Traveling in your Time Rover, you’ll race through the past to find the Iguanadon and get back safely. But can you do it? Will you find the Iguanadon and avoid the dreaded Carnotaurus? Well, you’ll just have to ride Dinosaur to find out!

Pro Tip: Looking for a fun photo op? Dinosaur includes a PhotoPass photo opportunity. Where you might ask? It’s a secret, but you’re bound to be delighted by your photo when you see it!

Dinosaur at Animal Kingdom

Photo Copyright Jeremy Thompson / Flickr

Expedition Everest

Do you have what it takes to conquer the Forbidden Mountain? If you love roller-coasters, Expedition Everest, is a must-do for you. It’s the Animal Kingdom’s most thrilling ride, and it’s also one of the most popular attractions in the park.

If you’re ready to take the challenge, you’ll begin your journey at a museum dedicated to the Yeti. The Yeti is a mysterious snow monster that calls the Himalayas and Mt. Everest his home. That’s what the legend says, at least. From there, you’ll board a train journeying to the top of Everest. Your ride will be full of twists and turns. And, maybe, just maybe, you’ll discover whether the legend of the Yeti is real or not.

Pro Tip: Expedition Everest can be a bit scary and intense, and it’s not for everyone. If you don’t want to go on the ride, but want to go through the ride queue, ask a cast, and they can help you out. 

Expedition Everest at Animal Kingdom

Photo Copyright Benjamin D. Esham / Wikimedia Commons

Festival of the Lion King

Hakuna Matata! It means “no worries,” and that’s exactly what you’ll experience when you see the Festival of the Lion King. This broadway-style show may not seem like your typical ride, and it’s true; it’s anything but! Just because it’s not a traditional “ride,” doesn’t mean you won’t enjoy the Festival of the Lion King. It’s another popular attraction at the Animal Kingdom, and it’s perfect for all ages, and especially for families and kids.

You’ll join the inhabitants of Pride Land. Simba and his friends will tell you the story of the Lion King himself – all told through the viewpoint of the other animals. Plus, you’ll get your own chance to channel your inner giraffe, warthog, lion, or elephant. You’ll enjoy music, dancing, and even gymnastics in this fast moving show.

Pro Tip: Want to show off your own wild side? If you sit near the front of the theater, you or your family members might get picked to be a part of the show.

Festival of the Lion King at Animal Kingdom

Photo Copyright David R. Tribble / Wikimedia Commons

It’s Tough to Be a Bug

If I had to pick one attraction at Disney’s Animal Kingdom that has a special place in my heart, it would be It’s Tough to Be a Bug. Located inside the Tree of Life on Discovery Island, this 3D show offers a look at the world of bugs. Inspired by the Disney-Pixar Film, It’s Tough to Be a Bug gives you the chance to be an “honorary bug.” Flik and his friends will help you along the way. Plus, you’ll learn even more about insects. And, be prepared for the unexpected. It’s Tough to Be a Bug has a few 4D surprises too! At the end, you just may have a special place in your heart for It’s Tough to Be a Bug too…and the millions of insects who help make our world a better place.

Pro Tip: This can be a scary attraction for children. The theater is dark, and there are intense special effects. If you have a fear of creepy-crawlies, this may not be the attraction for you either.

It's Tough to Be a Bug at Animal Kingdom

Photo Copyright Michael Gray / Wikimedia Commons

Have a Wild Time!

So there you have it. The 5 best rides at Animal Kingdom. These are my favorite attractions to enjoy at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. But, there’s so much more to explore while you’re at the park, including other attractions, restaurants, shows, and more. So go ahead, explore, and have a wild time!