Good morning from Disney’s Animal Kingdom! While everyone else was up at the crack of dawn for the Grand Opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge in Hollywood Studios, I decided to go somewhere quieter. Let’s see what the park had in store for us.
Extra Magic Hours started at 7:00 AM this morning. It’s a bit earlier than normal, but there’s still a small crowd waiting for the park to open.
Once they spread out in the park, you realize just how small of a crowd it actually was.
Everyone went towards Pandora, so I went towards Dinosaur!
There were a few limited-time experiences that started today in an effort to pull Annual Passholders away from Disney’s Hollywood Studios. There’s a special Simba magnet available until September 5th.
The line did pick up a bit later in the day, but it was moving quickly.
They had a special PhotoPass opportunity for Passholders as well, with unique props.
Just for today, Baloo was meeting near Creature Comforts.
He did a little dance for me.
Tarzan and Jane were meeting also, just for today.
They proved to be pretty popular.
Generally, though, the park was dead all morning.
This was a sample of the wait times just before 9 AM.
Expedition Everest was at a 5 minute wait all morning.
Primeval Whirl is still closed until further notice. Not that they needed the capacity today.
It looks like they’re sold out of the cute Dinosaur Chip and Dale plush that came out recently.
Still plenty of Dino-Bash Donalds left!
The “Olden Gate Bridge” is getting a little bit of refurbishment love.
Even though Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge opened at Hollywood Studios, they don’t want you to forget about it. I found this stuff in the Riverside Depot.
Also there was this month’s “Magic of Honor” pin, which appropriately to the park I was in, is Kilimanjaro Safaris themed.
I found this big art book for sale. I was really excited, because it looked cool from the outside.
Unfortunately it’s for the new Lion King, and not the old one.
They also have the soundtrack for the new film available.
Even though we’re well into the park’s 21st year, they’re still selling this Animal Kingdom 20th anniversary tumbler.
Pandora was the only part of the park that had many people in it. Even then it wasn’t bad at all.
They’ve started doing the adoption procedure again for Banshees in Wind Traders.
On the pathway from Pandora to Africa, construction is continuing on Club 33.
These bricks at the top are new. I’m curious what the final building will look like.
Maybe it will mirror this building across the path a little bit? Who knows!
Last but not least: the bats have still not returned to the Maharajah Jungle Trek. I was told the old bats were getting up there in years (like, 16 to 18 years old) and had to be retired. The new young bats are still learning how to live in a theme park environment. No word one when they’ll be on exhibit.
That’s it from Animal Kingdom for today. If we learned anything today, it’s to take advantage of the Extra, Extra Magic Hours this fall. Everywhere except Hollywood Studios is going to be relatively slow first thing in the morning.