Animal Kingdom Touring Plans, Rope Drop, Wait Times, and FastPass+ Priority

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General Touring Philosophy: The opening of Pandora – World of Avatar complicates touring, but it’s still possible to experience most or all of Animal Kingdom’s attractions in one day. How you go about your day basically comes down to whether you can acquire FastPass+ for Avatar Flight of Passage, which are typically not available 59 or fewer days from a given date. That means little or no availability for those staying off-site or planning a trip fewer than 60 days in the future.

If you are able to acquire Flight of Passage FP+: With one day, the easiest way to do most everything is by arriving at least 45 minutes before open and heading straight to ride Na’vi River Journey in standby. After, head to priority attractions outside of Pandora where waits will be short. If you can’t arrive that early and can stay late, get in line for Na’vi River Journey about five minutes before park close. If neither is possible, ride River Journey sometime between 1pm and 5pm when waits are actually shorter than the early morning or evening. Use FastPass+ at Flight of Passage and other priority attractions in the late morning and afternoon. With two days, book FastPass+ for Flight of Passage on one day and Na’vi River Journey on the second, in addition to two other selections each day.

If you are unable to acquire Flight of Passage FP+: With one day, the easiest way to do most everything is by arriving at least 90 minutes before open and heading straight to ride Flight of Passage in standby. After, head to Na’vi River Journey or priority attractions outside of Pandora where waits will be short. If you can’t arrive early and can stay late, get in line for Flight of Passage a few minutes before park close. If neither is possible, ride sometime between 1pm and 5pm when waits are shorter than the morning or evening. Use FastPass+ in the late morning and afternoon at Na’vi River Journey and other priority attractions. Visiting over two days will allow more FastPass+ usage and an easier time seeing the nighttime entertainment.

Either way, with an early arrival and plans to stay for the nighttime entertainment, including the Tree of Life Awakenings and Rivers of Light, most guests will want to plan a lengthy afternoon break to rest. Without interest in the nighttime entertainment, a half or three-quarters day should work. For a single late morning or afternoon arrival, some compromises will need to be made as it will be difficult to experience both Pandora rides and all of the headliners with short waits, in addition to the evening entertainment. Plan to use FastPass+ upon arrival and then make as many subsequent selections as possible after using the initial three.

Characters: Mickey & Minnie in Adventurers Outpost and Russell to the left of It’s Tough To Be A Bug are the only priorities and both usually see actual waits under 20 minutes.

Rope Drop: Animal Kingdom usually begins letting guests inside the park 30-45 minutes prior to open and holds guests in three places inside the park. Those headed to Asia or DinoLand wait at the Tree of Life. Those waiting for Pandora are held just outside the land along the bridge leading into it. Those heading to Africa are held in the Pizzafari/Starbucks area. Guests are typically walked into Pandora 20-30 minutes before official open with guests headed elsewhere held until closer to official park open.

The main rope drop priority is Avatar Flight of Passage, where it’s essential to arrive at least an hour before open and hurry as fast as possible to the holding area. For Flight of Passage, stay to the right. The walk can be a congested experience. The walk to Na’vi River Journey on the left is much less stressful. Very few people will be heading anywhere other than Pandora first thing.

FastPass+ Priority:

Pandora (Choose One)

  1. Avatar Flight of Passage
  2. Na’vi River Journey

Everything Else (Choose Two):

  1. Kilimanjaro Safaris
  2. Expedition Everest
  3. Kali River Rapids (when highs are 80+ degrees)
  4. DINOSAUR
  5. Rivers of Light (Primarily first show. Last show is easier to see in standby)
  6. Adventurers Outpost Mickey and Minnie Meet (due to fewer experiences available)
  7. Kali River Rapids (when highs are under 80 degrees)
  8. Festival of the Lion King
  9. Finding Nemo the Musical
  10. Primeval Whirl
  11. It’s Tough To Be A Bug

Rivers of Light: The problem with booking FP+ in advance is that the show is late at night and because of that, you’ll be limited to just two FP+ during the day without the ability to book more. The easiest way to see the show is with the dining package, which guarantees a seat in the reserved section and allows booking FP+ elsewhere. Without the package, afternoon/evening arrivers probably want to book FP+ in advance as doing so won’t limit using FP+ elsewhere. Morning arrivers may want to see the last show in standby when applicable or refresh FP+ availability to try to score additional FP+ that someone else canceled closer to show time.

4th FastPass+ Availability: Avatar Flight of Passage and Na’vi River Journey will have no day-of availability outside of cancellations. Attractions 1-9 will have limited availability on busier days by noon, but with so much capacity at most attractions, each will become available when refreshing availability. Primeval Whirl and It’s Tough To Be A Bug have plenty of availability.

FastPass+ Kiosks:

  • Island Mercantile – On the left just after crossing the bridge into Discovery Island
  • Kali River Rapids – To the left of the entrance across from the lockers
  • Kilimanjaro Safaris – To the left of the entrance

Two Day Plan – 8am Open – Early Arrival Day

Use FastPass+ at the following attractions:

  • Avatar Flight of Passage or Na’vi River Journey: 12:30pm – 1:30pm
  • Kilimanjaro Safaris: 1:30pm – 2:30pm
  • Kali River Rapids: 3pm – 4pm

The Plan:

  1. Ride the Pandora ride for which you were unable to acquire FastPass+: 7:45am – 8:25am
  2. Ride Expedition Everest, twice if time allows: 8:40am – 9am
  3. Ride Primeval Whirl: 9:05am – 9:20am
  4. Ride DINOSAUR: 9:23am – 9:40am
  5. Ride TriceraTop Spin: 9:42am – 9:55am
  6. See It’s Tough To Be A Bug and/or meet a character: 9:57am – 10:40am
  7. See Finding Nemo the Musical: 11am – 11:40am
  8. Have lunch – Your choice: 11:45am – 12:45pm
  9. Ride Flight of Passage or Na’vi River Journey with FP+. Explore Pandora: 1pm – 2pm.
  10. Ride Kilimanjaro Safaris with FastPass+: 2pm – 2:40pm
  11. See Festival of the Lion King: 2:40pm – 3:30pm
  12. Ride Kali River Rapids with FastPass+: 3:40pm – 4pm
  13. Visit any additional attractions you’d like to experience and then depart

Two Day Plan – 9am Open – Early Arrival Day

Use FastPass+ at the following attractions:

  • Avatar Flight of Passage or Na’vi River Journey: 12:30pm – 1:30pm
  • Kilimanjaro Safaris: 1:30pm – 2:30pm
  • Kali River Rapids: 3pm – 4pm

The Plan:

  1. Ride the Pandora ride for which you were unable to acquire FastPass+: 8:45am – 9:25am
  2. Ride Expedition Everest: 9:40am – 10am
  3. Ride DINOSAUR: 10:05am – 10:30am
  4. Ride TriceraTop Spin: 10:32am – 10:45am
  5. See Finding Nemo the Musical: 11am – 11:40am
  6. Have lunch – Your choice: 11:45am – 12:45pm
  7. Ride Flight of Passage or Na’vi River Journey with FP+. Explore Pandora: 1pm – 2pm.
  8. Ride Kilimanjaro Safaris with FastPass+: 2pm – 2:40pm
  9. See Festival of the Lion King: 2:40pm – 3:30pm
  10. Ride Kali River Rapids with FastPass+: 3:40pm – 4pm
  11. Book Primeval Whirl as a 4th FastPass+ and ride as soon as return window opens
  12. Visit any additional attractions you’d like to experience and then depart

Two Day Plan – Late Arrival Day – Rivers of Light

With variable closing times, the plan below goes by hour after arrival rather than time of day. With a 9:30pm close and 8:45pm Rivers of Light, the plan starts around 5:30pm.

Use FastPass+ at the following attractions:

  • Attraction of your choice
  • Flight of Passage or Na’vi River Journey
  • Rivers of Light

The Plan:

  1. Use FastPass+ at desired attraction and eat dinner: 00:00 – 01:30
  2. Ride a Pandora ride with FastPass+ and look around: 01:30 – 02:30
  3. See Rivers of Light with FastPass+: Arrive at least 30 minutes before show time
  4. Ride Expedition Everest or Kilimanjaro Safaris or visit Pandora after dark: 03:35 – 04:15
  5. See Tree of Life Awakenings: 04:20 – 04:45

With Animal Kingdom closing anywhere between 7pm and 11pm moving forward and the potential for zero, one, or two Rivers of Light shows per night, how you go about your evening depends on how late the park is open. Modify the loose plan above to work with the operating hours and whether or not you’d like to see Rivers of Light. If you don’t, it opens your evening up to experience other attractions at night and spend more time in Pandora after dark.

One Day Plan – 8am Open – Ride Focused with Optional Evening Return

Use FastPass+ at the following attractions:

  • Avatar Flight of Passage or Na’vi River Journey: 10am – 11am
  • Kali River Rapids: 12:30pm – 1:30pm
  • Expedition Everest: 1:30pm – 2:30pm

The Plan:

  1. Ride the Pandora ride for which you were unable to acquire FastPass+: 7:45am – 8:25am
  2. Ride Kilimanjaro Safaris: 8:30am – 9:10am
  3. Ride Expedition Everest: 9:20am – 9:40am
  4. Ride Primeval Whirl: 9:45am – 10am
  5. Ride DINOSAUR: 10:02am – 10:25am
  6. Ride Flight of Passage or River Journey with FP+. Explore Pandora: 10:40am – 11:40am
  7. Have lunch. Satu’li Canteen is close: 11:45am – 12:45pm
  8. Ride Kali River Rapids with FastPass+: 1pm – 1:20pm
  9. Ride Expedition Everest with FastPass+: 1:30pm – 1:45pm
  10. Experience anything else you’d like and return to resort.

One Day Plan – 9am Open – Ride Focused with Optional Evening Return

Use FastPass+ at the following attractions:

  • Avatar Flight of Passage or Na’vi River Journey: 10:30am – 11:30am
  • Kilimanjaro Safaris: 12:30pm – 1:30pm
  • Kali River Rapids or Expedition Everest: 1:30pm – 2:30pm

The Plan:

  1. Ride the Pandora ride for which you were unable to acquire FastPass+: 8:45am – 9:25am
  2. Ride Expedition Everest: 9:35am – 9:50am
  3. Ride Primeval Whirl: 9:55am – 10:15am
  4. Ride DINOSAUR: 10:17am – 10:45am
  5. Ride Flight of Passage or River Journey with FP+. Explore Pandora: 11am – 12pm
  6. Have lunch. Satu’li Canteen is close: 12pm – 12:55pm
  7. Ride Kilimanjaro Safaris with FastPass+: 1pm – 1:40pm
  8. Ride Kali River Rapids or Expedition Everest with FastPass+: 1:30pm – 1:50pm
  9. Experience anything else you’d like and return to resort.

For the evening return, make a 4th FP+ selection and time your return based on what you’d like to accomplish. Pandora, Expedition Everest, and Kilimanjaro Safaris are completely different, recommended experiences after dark. To do all three, arrive at least three hours before close.

Two Day, Two Late Arrival Plan – Day One

With variable closing times, the plan below goes by hour after arrival rather than time of day. With a 9:30pm close and 8:45pm Rivers of Light, the plan starts around 3pm.

Use FastPass+ at the following attractions:

  • Expedition Everest: 00:00 – 01:00 (The first hour after arrival)
  • Kilimanjaro Safaris: 01:00 to 02:00
  • Avatar Flight of Passage or Na’vi River Journey: 03:00 – 04:00

The Plan:

  1. Ride Expedition Everest with FastPass+: 00:00 – 00:15
  2. See Flights of Wonder or walk Maharajah Jungle Trek: 00:15 – 01:00
  3. See It’s Tough To Be A Bug or Flights of Wonder: 01:05 – 01:30
  4. Ride Kilimanjaro Safaris with FastPass+: 01:40 – 02:20
  5. See Festival of the Lion King: 02:25 – 03:10
  6. Ride Flight of Passage or River Journey with FP+. Explore Pandora: 03:15 – 04:15
  7. Have dinner. Satu’li Canteen is convenient: 04:15 – 05:00
  8. Ride Kilimanjaro Safaris: 05:00 – 05:40
  9. Ride Expedition Everest: 05:50 – 06:10
  10. See Tree of Life Awakenings: 06:15 – 06:30

Two Day, Two Late Arrival Plan – Day Two

With variable closing times, the plan below goes by hour after arrival rather than time of day. With a 9:30pm close and 8:45pm Rivers of Light, the plan starts around 4:30pm.

Use FastPass+ at the following attractions:

  • DINOSAUR – 01:00 to 02:00 (The second hour after arrival)
  • Kali River Rapids or Expedition Everest: 02:30 – 03:30
  • Rivers of Light – Arrive at least 30 minutes before show time.

The Plan:

  1. See Finding Nemo the Musical (last show is typically 5pm): 00:00 – 01:00
  2. Ride DINOAUR with FastPass+: 01:10 – 01:35
  3. Ride TriceraTop Spin: 01:37 – 01:50
  4. Ride Primeval Whirl: 01:52 – 02:30
  5. Have dinner. Restaurantosaurus, Flame Tree, Yak & Yeti are convenient: 02:30 – 03:30
  6. Ride Kali River Rapids with FastPass+: 03:30 – 03:50
  7. See Rivers of Light with FastPass+: Arrive at least 30 minutes before show time
  8. Ride Expedition Everest or another ride if time allows
  9. See Tree of Life Awakenings

 

Wait Times By Crowd Level












Comments

  1. Megan says

    Planning a trip for October and Just wondering if you will have new tips and touring plans with Pandora open…

  2. Danielle says

    All these maps are great!! You know, they could be money makers if you wanted but definitely appreciate them on your blog!!

  3. Kate M. says

    If I arrive 30 min. before park open, how long would you think I’d be waiting for Flight of Passage? I’ll probably get a Fastpass for it as well because I’m sure I’m going to love it. Just curious how long I might have to wait upon park open. We’re going in mid-December (before Christmas crowds), if that makes a difference.

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