Our family visited the Walt Disney World Resort this fall and I think we were all most excited and anxious to visit Animal Kingdom. I was personally really excited for the extended hours – Animal Kingdom used to close in the late afternoon/early evening but in September the park was open until 9pm. We had heard great things about the new evening show, Rivers of Light. It did not disappoint, it was absolutely breath-taking. The only gripe was that we had to get our seats over an hour before the show and it was pretty hot, crowded, and a little stinky if I’m being honest. It was worth it though!
The whole family was excited to visit the newest themed area, Pandora: The World of Avatar. This space is not huge in size in comparison to the other lands in Animal Kingdom, but it packed a serious punch. Being big fans of slushy type drinks, we couldn’t wait to taste the Night Blossom (a non-alcoholic specialty beverage with a mixture of limeade, apple, and desert pear flavors topped with passionfruit boba balls) at Pongu Pongu. We ordered one to share and as soon as we tried it, we turned around and ordered another. It was unique and totally delicious!
Visually, Pandora is completely breath-taking. We made sure to watch the movie, Avatar, a couple of weeks before our trip because we had never seen it before and wanted to have a better understanding of the land before we visited. The land really transports you to another place and time and to say it’s magical is an understatement!
Both rides, Na’vi River Journey and Avatar Flight of Passage, are unlike any attractions I’ve ever experienced. They are cutting edge with new technology and imagery. I had heard Flight of Passage could be compared to Soarin’ (which I love, so I was excited), but Flight of Passage literally goes above and beyond that experience. I am not sure my kids or I have the patience to wait in three hour lines but I would do it for FoP if I had to. My one complaint as far as either attraction goes is the 3-D glasses provided for Flight of Passage. My 7 year old son could not keep them on his face because they are “one size fits all”. To be honest, they were big on my head as well but I was able to manage. He ended up taking the glasses off and I ended up stressing about him not enjoying the experience to its fullest. I would really love to see Disney offer smaller glasses for children for this ride as well as all other 3-D attractions.
Have you visited Pandora? What did you think?
Candice was raised in east Tennessee. While in college, her best friend dragged her to a Walt Disney World College Program recruiting session at the University of Tennessee and the rest is Disney history. In the Fall of 1999, Candice became a quick service food hostess for Sunset Ranch Market and Fantasmic at Disney-MGM Studios – or what is now known as Disney’s Hollywood Studios. While soaking up her time as a cast member, she met Ryan, a neighbor and a fellow college programmer who worked as a custodial host at Epcot. Four years later, Candice moved to the Midwest and married that boy from across the hall. They now live in Greenwood, Indiana with their two little boys. The Disney-loving foursome took their first family trip to The Happiest Place on Earth in 2013 and Candice is eagerly planning their return. Candice also works full-time at a community mental health center and enjoys taking photographs and blogging at Mommy in the Midwest.