Saturday, March 19, 2011

Spring Break - Orlando - Day Two

By 9:15am on Sunday morning we were headed into the first of our four Disney parks for the week - Animal Kingdom. None of us had ever been to this one before and we were anxious to see what it was all about. Wesley was excited from the moment we pulled onto the Walt Disney World property under the giant Mickey and Minnie gate and was thrilled to find out that the fun started with a tram ride in from the parking lot.

Animal Kingdom is divided into seven areas - Oasis, Discovery Island, Camp Minnie-Mickey, Africa, Raffiki's Planet Watch, Asia and Dino-Land. Oasis is basically the entrance area and leads into Discovery Island with the giant Tree of Life. Carved into the face of the tree are all kinds of different animals. This was the first area we explored before heading inside/underneath the tree for the 3D show called "It's Tough to Be a Bug."

Next we headed into Dino-Land. The first thing that captured the boys' attention here was The Boneyard - a play area built around fossil remains. There was even an area where you could dig up a "wooly mammoth."

When you stepped on the dinosaur tracks, there was all kinds of growls and roaring coming from behind the rocks.
Then it was time for a ride - the Triceratop Spin.

We got our picture taken with Goofy and then moved on to a scary ride called "Dinosaur." Wesley wasn't too thrilled by it but he just closed his eyes and buried his head in Daddy's shoulder.

Of course the ride exit was through a gift shop so we got silly and tried on a bunch of crazy different hats before taking the boys' picture with the fake dinosaur outside.

We headed back to Discovery Island to grab lunch at Pizzafari and then tried to make it over into Camp Minnie-Mickey for the Lion King show. Unfortunately the show was already full but we got the chance to see several characters along the trails including Mickey Mouse himself!

As we were headed out of the Camp area we ran across one of these stations for the Kids Discovery Club. They were six stations spread out across the park where the boys could participate in little educational exhibits and get a stamp in their passport. At this station they had to put their hand inside the fake tree and try to identify the objects hidden inside by touch alone.

As we were cutting through the Africa section on our way to snag some Fast-passes for the Kilimanjaro Safaris, we decided to pick up some sunglasses for the boys. They each got different versions of CARS.

Then we made the boys' day by boarding the Wildlife Express Train back to Raffiki's Planet Watch. We met characters and looked at bugs through a microscope inside the Conservation Station, participated in another one of the Discovery Club exhibits finding animals in their habitats, and went through Affection Station where the kids got to pet animals.

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