The Rides at Disney World’s Animal Kingdom – Ranked

Wondering how to prioritize those attractions while the fast pass system is suspended? Making that must do list may be harder than you think, because there’s definitely no shortage of amazing attractions here. Plan ahead for your fun-filled day of shows, rides, exhibits, and of course, fantastic food! To help you get started, we’ve put together a list of those rides at Disney World’s Animal Kingdom, ranked.

Waterfall in the Flight of Passage queue at Animal Kingdom

1. Flight of Passage

This one gets our vote for best ride not just in Animal Kingdom, but in all of Disney World, hands down. It’s at the top of our list, every visit, and we have not tired of it yet! Current crowd levels, while the park is at limited capacity, and has just recently reopened to the public, has the wait time here at crazy low levels. While we cannot tell the future, I can only expect the crowd levels to slowly creep back up, so to take full advantage of the limited capacity situation, make a beeline for Flight of Passage as soon as the park opens, or save it for just prior to park close.

If you’ve seen the movie, Avatar (if you haven’t, you need to), then picture yourself flying through Pandora on a Banshee.

The queue here is mostly outdoors. You’ll wind your way down a path surrounded by beautiful views of the Valley of Mo’ara, and through a network of caves filled with ancient Navi drawings. Next, you’ll step into a military installation where you will wait for your pre-show.

After the pre-show, you will be directed to another room where you will climb onto the ride vehicle and experience the Flight of Passage!

Kilimanjaro Safari Rhino

2. Kilimanjaro Safaris

Number two on our list goes to Kilimanjaro Safaris located in Africa. We love this one because it’s an exciting attraction that you can experience multiple times, and each ride is never quite the same. Quick tip, if you ride this one early in the morning or late in the evening, you will be likely to catch more animals out and about. The queue is open air, but covered, and you’ll find monitors overhead showing short pieces about the Harambe Wildlife Reserve.

Be forewarned, this ride does get a little bumpy, and if you want some amazing photos, you’ll want to be seated on the outside edge of the ride vehicle bench. There’s 110 acres in the Reserve, and your safaris guide will point out as much as possible and share some facts with you as well. Your Safari Experience will last about 18 minutes total. While the park is still running at a limited capacity, with low wait times all around, it makes logistical sense to head to Africa for this experience after you have finished in Pandora. 

Expedition Everest Sign at Animal Kingdom

3. Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain

Located in Animal Kingdom’s Asia, this one is sure to please the thrill seekers in your group! The adventure begins when you board a train within a village in Nepal that is headed for a base camp on Mount Everest. This high speed coaster will have you riding forwards and backwards as you escape the fabled Yeti.

Shadow of the Yeti on Expedition Everest ride

You’ll have a nice photopass photo taken to remind you of your Expedition as well. Very smooth coaster with lots of drops and sharp curves, but no loops or inversions. If you began your day in Pandora and are working your way around Discovery Island in a clockwise fashion, then you will come into Asia after leaving Africa. While wait times are really low and there is still no fast pass system available, waiting until evening or riding mid day probably won’t make a significant difference. If you opt to skip Flight of Passage, then I suggest starting here at Everest and touring counter clockwise around Discovery Island.

Navi River Journey

4. Na’vi River Journey

Ranking number four on our list, is the Na’vi River Journey. We’ve place this one higher on our list than you may find on other lists because, if you are not a thrill seeker, then this one is a very enjoyable experience. It is a four and a half minute, slow moving, boat ride through a bioluminescent forest in Pandora. Glowing plants and exotic creatures of Pandora will surround you as you make your way to the Shaman of Songs. Truly beautiful sights to behold, and don’t forget to look over your head. The queue is filled with interesting items of the Navi. It is open air, but mostly covered.

Kali River Rapids ride in animal kingdom

5. Kali River Rapids

Classic white water rafting ride with that amazing Disney theming, located in Animal Kingdom’s Asia. You’ll venture through the jungle, past temple ruins and waterfalls. The entire ride is about ten minutes long and you WILL get wet. It’s a smart idea to prepare for the possibility that you might get totally soaked. Items that need to be kept dry, may be stowed away in a locker prior to entering the queue. If you’d prefer to avoid the possibility of getting drenched, you may want to don that poncho before getting into the raft.

Dinosaur Ride in Animal Kingdom

6. Dinosaur

Dinosaur ends up pretty low on my list because the ride is extremely bumpy, and rather uncomfortable. The experience is unique, as you are transported back in time in search of a harmless herbivore. Your group ends up being chased by a Velocaraptor, escaping in the nick of time. Photopass photos are snapped up as you are surprised by the Velocaraptor, making for some great memories. The entire experience completes in about three and a half minutes with your safe return to the present day. 

Triceratop spin at animal kingdom

7. Triceratop Spin 

Classic carnival ride here, where themed cars spin around a central hub. Similar the Dumbo ride in Fantasyland and Aladdin’s Magic Carpets in Adventureland. In the Animal Kingdom version located in Dinoland USA, the ride vehicles are none other than a group of Triceratop dinosaurs. The ride lasts about a minute and a half, and is very popular with the younger kiddos.

8. Wildlife Express Train

You can catch this train in Harambe Africa for a ride out to Rafiki’s Planet Watch. Not a lot of sights to see during your ride, mostly trees and a few backstage areas. Rafiki’s Planet Watch is also the location of the Conservation Station where the Animation Experience will take place. Your ride from Harambe to Rafiki’s will be about seven minutes. Nothing truly noteworthy to see along the way, but it is a nice chance to be off your feet an out of the direct sun for a few moments.

Rivers of Light laser light water display

We’ve ranked the rides at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, but they only make up a fraction of your experiences at the park. There are loads of exhibits and amazing shows that will fill your day with excitement. You’ll also find some fantastic dining spots here as well. Be sure to look around our site here at Make Time For Magic for loads of planning information.

6 thoughts on “The Rides at Disney World’s Animal Kingdom – Ranked

  • September 1, 2020 at 6:31 am

    I have never been to anyone of these parks, but I can see what I am missing. The one on the Kali river seems to be the most attractive for me, but then I am not a kid anymore. In my time my grandparents use to take me to the circus and the zoo to watch animals up close.

    It is just so amazing to see the development of these attractions and even where I live now (in Thailand) we have a number of these parks. A lot of them related to water attractions as it is very warm here all year around. Flight of passage looks to be another very good one.

    • September 1, 2020 at 10:12 am

      Flight of Passage is the best! An experience  that you won’t soon forget!  Disney has something for everyone!  There are loads of people who visit Disney without children.  Adult only trips are very popular.  Be sure to check out all the tips available on the Make Time For Magic website when you are planning YOUR trip to Disney.

  • September 4, 2020 at 2:45 am

    Thank you so much for sharing with us a wonderful and informative article. The main theme of this article is The Rides at Disney World’s Animal Kingdom. It is truly incredible that you have illustrated this topic so well in your article. I have learned a lot by reading your article and gained a lot of knowledge about it. Of the points mentioned in your article, I like Wildlife Express Train. All the riders of the Animal Kingdom in Disney World are really awesome. These give people a kind of thrilling experience.
    Finally, I enjoyed reading your article and so I’d like to share your article in my Facebook group if you are happy with me.

    • September 4, 2020 at 7:32 pm

      I am so happy to hear that you enjoyed reading about the rides at Disney World’s Animal Kingdom!  The Wildlife Express Train will take you to the Conservation Station which is a great place to explore.  It’s also the location of one of the newer attractions, the Animation experience.  Super fun!  My favorite is Avatar Flight of Passage.  Please feel free to share this!  We hope to provide information about planning those Disney trips to as many people as possible.

  • September 4, 2020 at 1:17 pm

    Hello there! this is an amazing review you have got here. I am sure this information here will be of great help to any one who come across it as it is to me. For me, Expedition Everest is the scariest in Disney’s Animal Kingdom as its both a roller coaster and a themed dark ride.

    Thanks for sharing this with me.

    • September 4, 2020 at 2:12 pm

      Expedition Everest is a fantastic ride, isn’t it?!  Avatar Flight of Passage still gets my vote, though.  Thank you for your kind words, and I hope you will enjoy checking out all that Make Time for Magic has to offer when you plan your next amazing trip to Disney!

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