Thursday, January 19, 2006

Day Seven AM - Animal Kingdom

I was up at 6:00 AM, after only 4-1/2 hours of sleep. In spite of this being the morning EMH for Animal Kingdom, we were both running out of steam so we didn’t get to the Park until around normal park opening time. We had only allocated a half day at this park as it didn’t seem as though there was as much to do as the other parks.

Animal Kingdom Park is huge. In fact, all three of the others parks would fit inside this one park. This morning, it seemed hotter and more humid than previous days. We had been walking for a time along the path when Jason realized that he was missing his Key to the World. So we had to turn around and walk all the way back to the entrance. There was Guest Relations office near the turnstiles so he went in and fortunately someone had turned in his card. Relieved that he hadn’t lost his card, we made our way back up the trail.

Our first stop was Kilimanjaro Safaris. You board open-sided safari vehicles for a ride through Africa. Animals from Africa roam freely through acres of savannah, rivers and hills. There were many opportunities to take pictures. However, the ride was so bumpy that it was difficult to take good pictures. We rarely stayed in one spot long enough for my slow digital camera to take the picture. As a result, I have quite a few blurry pictures. It was a great ride though and one I would definitely want to do again someday. We saw giraffes, hippos, elephants, rhinos, lions and more. The giraffe was so close to the vehicle that couldn’t fit all of him into the picture.

We had worked up such an appetite on our safari that we stopped for breakfast at the Tusker House. Since we had plenty of counter service credits left and not that much more time to use them, we decided not to share a meal. We both had scrambled eggs, hash browns, bacon, a biscuit and iced tea. We were also entitled to a dessert so Jason chose the cinnamon roll and I chose the blueberry muffin.

After breakfast we strolled over to the Kali River Rapids ride. This ride is similar to the Grizzly River Rapids ride at Disney’s California Adventure Park. You can get really soaked on this ride. We decided not to ride as neither of us wished to get soaked this early in the day.

The only other attraction on our list was Dinosaur which was on the opposite side of the park from where we currently were. On our way we saw Expedition Everest which is still under construction and scheduled to open next spring. This thrill ride is a high-altitude, high-speed train adventure with nail-biting hairpin turns that hurl you forward toward the peak and then backward. I’m not sure if this is something I would be able to handle riding.

Dinosaur is similar in technology to the Indiana Jones Adventure ride at Disneyland. The vehicles are the same; it just has a different story. It was fun but very loud.

By now it was 11:00 AM and we had spent three hours at this park. Since it was a little early to go back to the resort for our afternoon naps, we decided to go over to MGM Studios where we had planned to spend the evening. We sweated our way through the park back to the entrance and over to the bus stop.


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