PHOTO REPORT: Disney’s Animal Kingdom 2/1/17 (AVATAR, Rivers of Light, Lots of Animals, New Merchandise, Etc.)

PHOTO REPORT: Disney's Animal Kingdom 2/1/17 (AVATAR, Rivers of Light, Lots of Animals, New Merchandise, Etc.)
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Our latest photo report brings us to Disney’s Animal Kingdom to see the latest progress on Pandora: The World of AVATAR, Rivers of Light, and more around the park. Let’s take a look…

Wild Places and Parking Spaces

The large dirt barrier behind Pandora: The World of AVATAR is still quite visible from outside of the park. Trees should be planted here fairly soon.

I didn’t realize that they had installed electric vehicle parking at Animal Kingdom, but it is there, located just behind the handicap section.

Pandora looms in the distance…

Pandora: The World of AVATAR

The AVATAR area continues to speed towards an expected May 2017 opening, although Disney is just saying Summer 2017 at this point.

Pandora, as seen from the top of Expedition Everest.

If you want more photos of Pandora: The World of AVATAR, be sure to check out our latest post on it here. Also, the video update below:

Wings and Things

The former Terra Treats allergy friendly menu is gone, replaced by beer and wings (for the most part)…

The clearly labeled display wings… I’m not sure of there real order is that small, but if it is, it is $2 a wing.

Meanwhile, the Harambe Popcorn cart is now selling merchandise: music CDs and binoculars.

Rivers of Plight

On most days, the Discovery River Theater is open for guest seating. It’s starting to sound like we won’t see Rivers of Light until AVATAR opens though.

All of the FastPass+ signage is up and ready to go when the time comes.

If you haven’t seen our video of the show being tested earlier this month, take a look below:

This Park Has Animals at Least

Overtime I visit Animal Kingdom, I make sure to take in the beautiful and recently reopened Tree of Life Gardens areas. It’s something to do here…

I’ve never seen the Lemurs just sitting on the ground before.

The vultures are back and sharing an enclosure with the kangaroos.

Also back are the otters.

Because I know you want it, here’s 4 minutes of cute otters playing around at Animal Kingdom:

The catfish is back as well.

Kangaroos and vultures living in harmony.

We encountered two of the “roaming animal” tests while in the park. One was with this cute bearded dragon!

Another was this bird encounter along the Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail.

Some cast members out with the bird, holding a nest with seeds to lure them back.

I don’t know why, but this turtle living with his face under a rock amused me. “Call me when Rivers of Light is done.”

Me when I find out that my margarita came from a jug…

“I’m going to Nomad Lounge…”

The new lion-tailed macaque exhibit is a nice addition to Maharajah Jungle Trek. I could watch them for hours.

He’s eating peanut butter out of a pine cone.

This reminds me of trying to eat at Planet Hollywood Observatory.

And now some photos from a few rides on Kilimanjaro Safaris.

Kali River Rapids

Kali River Rapids is currently closed for refurbishment during the colder weeks. That being said, it hasn’t been very cold in Orlando this winter.

One of my favorite park interactions as of late had to be this. This large crowd had gathered at this fence to view the monkeys. However, there is about 15-20 feet of space ahead of them where they could stand to get a better view or pictures of them if you walk around the fence.

As I walked in front of them to get this picture, you could see it on their faces that they felt pretty dumb. They all then came around to take pictures as I laughed and walked away.

New Merchandise

Some Disney-food themed magnetic sticky note pads were released.

Also, this new Mickey through the years tumbler for $17.99.

I love this new Winnie the Pooh picture holder, but I’m angry he doesn’t have the mossed disguise on his behind. I would have bought it if he did.

You can still buy the sweet and spicy Flame Tree Barbecue sauce if you need your fix at home.

I found this sweatshirt for sale recently at the park.

It’s a little out of date…

A 2017 Each Vinylmation was released.

Return to Civilization

And now to journey home…

I see you hiding…

Disney is getting really good at placing signage.

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About the author

Tom Corless

Tom has been regularly visiting the Walt Disney World® Resort from the time he was 4 months old. While he has made countless visits in the last 28 years, he did not become a truly active member in the Disney fan community until the summer of 2007, when he decided to launch the WDW News Today website and podcast. Tom has since become an Orlando-local and is a published author on Walt Disney World.
Contact Tom at [email protected]

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  • You really need to think outside the box!! Surely you could attach moss to Pooh’s butt for the effect you desire???

  • I think that ROL and AVATAR will open around Memorial day weekend. But if their thinning about Volcano Bay Opening May 25, 2017 then Maybe April 2017 (Earth day 1 year later for opening ROL yea a full 1 year after it was due to open but i agree Disney needs to arouse both opening dates as vacation planers like myself are trying to plan for both of these opening.

  • At what store did you find the sweatshirt? Did they have many left? I really want one, but cant find it on the Park Shop app :/

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