Review: Animal Kingdom's new Wild Animal Trek

Posted Monday, February 28, 2011 12:07 PM | Contributed by Jeff

Disney's Animal Kingdom in Orlando, Fla., has been offering the three-hour Wild Africa Trek for about a month now, taking about a dozen visitors at a time on VIP guided tours through the theme park's Pangani Forest. The $189 experience essentially triples the price of admission to the park (which is not included in the cost of the tour).

Read more from The LA Times.

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Monday, February 28, 2011 2:42 PM
LostKause's avatar

I saw a preview of this somewhere online, and it looks like a lot of fun. Some people will spend that much money on an experience like this. I will, if I can afford it at the time.

Monday, February 28, 2011 5:01 PM

Some people will love this, some won't spend the money. We have 2 local zoo that offer simular experiences but don't cost anywhere near the price of this. One zoo Binder Park Zoo has a wild africa that is really nice and at points you can feed the Giraffes, it only cost $1 per wafer. This zoo doesnt have Lions, Alligators, hippos, but you get farely close to the animals. The other zoo John Ball Park zoo offers a zip line and ropes course, not over the animals, but over decent valley and waterfall and only cost $11 to do both. Yea they probally don't compare, but I'd rather save my cash to waste on souviners.

Monday, February 28, 2011 5:31 PM
Jeff's avatar

Animal Kingdom is already probably the best zoo in the world. I don't think anything compares to it. What they feed you should give you a clue about their target audience.

Jeff - Editor - - My Blog - Silly Nonsense

Monday, February 28, 2011 8:24 PM
LostKause's avatar

I'd rather have a cheeseburger or pizza. I know this is going to sound strange, but I'm not all about fancy food, especially when on vacation.

I wonder if they offer something else to eat if you ask?

Monday, February 28, 2011 8:59 PM

Even at Disney? To me amazing food is part of the Disney experience. If it isn't then you are really missing out.

-Brent Kneebush

Monday, February 28, 2011 10:14 PM
LostKause's avatar

Everyone likes different foods. I'm a very picky eater. I do try to find some fresh fruit when I go to a park, like apples and grapes, but I also like to splurge with the junk food.

Monday, February 28, 2011 10:53 PM
kpjb's avatar

Well, if you can find some amazing pizza or burgers then I'd say you're not missing out on anything.


Monday, February 28, 2011 11:31 PM

That is where Disney has a great disparity. You can get absolutely amazing "exotic" stuff. But the burgers, Pizza, etc leaves a lot to be desired.

A single at Wendy's is better then any counter service burger I have had at Disney.

-Brent Kneebush

Monday, February 28, 2011 11:39 PM
LostKause's avatar

I've had decent personal pizza at Magic Kingdom. I don't find their food to be bad at all, and it's priced reasonably, in my opinion.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011 8:40 AM
Jerry's avatar

Jeff said:
Animal Kingdom is already probably the best zoo in the world. I don't think anything compares to it. What they feed you should give you a clue about their target audience.

While it is a good zoo - pales when compared to the zoo's in Europe and Singapore.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011 5:45 PM

To me amazing food is part of the Disney experience.

Well, "pretty decent" food is part of the experience. Amazing? Not really. In general, a good quality place in "the real world" is usually better than its Disney counterpart. Everything at WDW is just a little dumbed down for the "tourist" audience (as opposed to, say, the foodies), and sometimes they play it too safe.

For example, I had dinner at Via Napoli last night---*very* good oven-fired pizza. Compared to a "real" Italian pizza, there was just a little too much cheese, and it was just a little underdone, but those are both probably in response to the complaints I've read online from folks expecting Dominos. That said, it was pretty good; better than I expected, actually. The house salad was *very* good, and included some grilled red pepper, olive, and some very flavorful greens.

I'm headed to Le Cellier tonight; today is the first day for their Signature dinner menu---presumably, more fresh sourcing, more inventive preparations. I snagged a last-minute ADR for 7:30 (and by last-minute, I mean I booked it at 5PM today.) Have some work to finish here at Boardwalk, and then will get dressed and walk over.

Last edited by Brian Noble, Tuesday, March 1, 2011 5:47 PM
Tuesday, March 1, 2011 5:50 PM

As for AK's zooness and the Trek. I actually think San Diego has a better "zoo". AK is an animal-themed park, which isn't quite the same thing. But, AK is one of my favorite parks. I was just there yesterday morning. If you are familiar with the Safari, you will notice some of the Trek elements as your truck ambles through, but they were added tastefully in a way that I don't think will detract from the safari itself.

As for the Trek---my breaking point on that seems to be $200, and most of the Disneyphiles I know have a number pretty close to that as well. For $800, I can see the four of us doing it. But, if it got too much more, I think I'd rather spend the day at Discovery Cove. And yes, the food offering does give you a sense for the target market. Me! yum...

Wednesday, March 2, 2011 2:39 AM

Not sure if you've been there or not, but Discovery Cove is amazing. I was just there 2 weeks ago and did the non-dolphin package. $104 per person with a 14 day Sea World or Busch Gardens ticket included was a steal.

And then one day you find ten years have got behind you
No one told you when to run, you missed the starting gun

Wednesday, March 2, 2011 7:00 PM
Raven-Phile's avatar

Brian Noble said:

Well, "pretty decent" food is part of the experience. Amazing? Not really.

Obviously spoken by someone who hasn't eaten at Citricos. At least I'm assuming.

That, to me, is an amazing meal.

R.I.P LeRoi Moore 9/7/61 - 8/19/2008
Monday, March 7, 2011 6:36 AM

Not yet. But from the reviews I've read, sounds pretty similar to most of the Signature places. Good. Not amazing. But, I eat pretty well in "real life".


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