I was so excited to hear that I would be going to Disney’s Animal Kingdom as part of the Monkey Kingdom press event. Spending the day at Disney’s Animal Kingdom is a fantastic experience for anyone who wants to learn more about animals while being able to ride fun attractions such as Kilimanjaro Safaris. But if you want to kick up your vacation up a notch then I highly suggest booking the Wild Africa Trek.
I am NOT a nature person, in general I run from spiders and other creepy crawly things. When I heard that we would be going on the Wild Africa Trek at Disney’s Animal Kingdom as part of the Monkey Kingdom Event needless to say, I was a little nervous.
However, I knew that I needed to put my big girl panties on and just go for it.
The good news is that I LOVED the Wild Africa Trek and I highly recommend it because it takes you off the beaten path of the Kilimanjaro Safaris and the guides that take you on the tour are very knowledgable.
The Wild Africa Trek is a privately guided unique VIP expedition offering close encounters with exotic African wildlife in their native habitat. In my opinion it is the Kilimanjaro Safaris on steroids; the tour takes place on along the Pangani Forest and Safi River Valley which is on the same African savanna as the Kilimanjaro Safaris. The tour is a combination between a walking tour and exploring the savanna in a private open air vehicle.
Here are my top 10 reasons you need to experience the Wild African Trek
1. It’s Unique!
The Wild Africa Trek is a unique experience you can only get at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. It’s a safari with that perfect amount of Pixie Dust. I loved that I was SAFE the whole time while on the trek and that Disney was going to make sure that I was in good hands.
2. Professional Photography
The professional photos that are taken during the trek are amazing. The guides take turns being the photographer and they know all the right spots to take the pictures. They make you look like a rock star in your photos. They take images of everything, from animals to things found along the trek trail.
All of the images you see are from your trek, they aren’t stock photos from other treks. The images are available within hours of your trek and you can download them right away. The online trek photos also includes a gallery of what the trek guides consider to be their top 50 photos from other treks.
3. The Food
Half way through the trek you get to take a break. Thank GOD because this is the only place to use the restroom along the trek. It takes about 1 1/2 hours before you reach the spot to take a break. Here you will enjoy a 30 minute rest and eat lunch or breakfast depending upon the time of day of your tour.
For lunch we ate:
- Chicken curry salad
- Sun-dried tomato hummus and mini pita
- Marinated tandoori shrimp
- Smoked salmon roulade with dill
- Air-dried beef and prosciutto
- Fresh fruit marinated in mint and ginger
I loved everything we ate for lunch, it was served chilled in an adult style bento box.
4. The Animals
I can’t say enough about how awesome is was to see so many animals up close. Of course I’ve been to a zoo before BUT this was different, just take a look at all of these awesome animals I saw on the trek.
5. The Rope Bridge
Where else can you say that you (safely) crossed a rope bridge that hovered over a pit of crocodiles.
Just know that safety is the number one goal when you cross the bridge, and having fun is the second goal. Before you cross the bridge your harness is attached to the do-hickey above you so that you won’t fall into a pit of crocodiles.
I really thought this was such a neat part of the trek. You even have time to stop and take a few pictures. If you have a go-pro camera (and it has a strap) you can attach it to yourself and film yourself crossing the bridge.
If you are nervous about crossing the bridge one of the guides can walk along with you as well.
6. Private Safari Van
I have been on the Kilimanjaro Safaris before and the attraction seems to be over very quickly, I always feel like I don’t get enough time to see the animals. Having a private tour of the savanna and taking the time to stop along the way to observe the animals and take photos is a great way to spend the afternoon.
Along the way our guides pointed out everything from the birds flying around to the animals we saw on the safari. We learned a lot about the conservation efforts of Disney as well as some other programs that are helping animals such a Cheetah Conservation program called Dogs Save Cats and the Elephant and Bees Project.
8. Get Out of Your Comfort Zone
I am also not the most fit person and so this did also cause me to be a little bit concerned as well because I wasn’t sure how much physical activity I would be doing for the duration of the trek. Spending time out in the great outdoors isn’t something that I love to do, but after this experience I am learning that I need to step out of my comfort zone and try new things.
9. Behind the Scenes
Going behind the scenes at any Disney park is always a magical experience but with the Wild Africa Trek it is a whole different experience. While you are on the trek you get to see guest riding on the Kilimanjaro Safaris and it was fun to wave to them as we hovered over the crocodile pit.
10. Meet New People or Bond With Your Group
Great way to come closer to the people in your family or group you are traveling with. Traveling over a rope bridge hovering over a crocodile pit is a great to bond with your friends.
Tips for a Successful Safari Experience
There is no need to bring a camera on the safari, but of course you are allowed to as long as it has a neck strap. There are two wonderful tour guides and they will take professional photos along the way. The photos are available within just a few hours online for you to download or print out at your local photo place.
Yes, you can bring your phone but it will need to be able to have a special strap attached to it. When you check in the tour guides will help you figure out if your phone and phone case can be used with the strap. Not all phones or phone cases will work. I have an iPhone 6 with a Speck case and it worked fine.
There is NO restroom break until you are halfway through the three-hour tour. Be sure to use the restroom just before the tour starts. When it is time to take the lunch break there are restroom facilities available.
What to Wear
Closed toe shoes are a must and I also recommend light weight clothes. You will be walking for a bit and the terrain does have some small hills as well.
I highly recommend this tour, it was in-depth, fun and a great way to learn more about animals and their habitats. You will also learn more about Disney’s Conservation efforts.
For more information about the Wild Africa Trek visit Disneyworld.com.
Like all families, Maya’s has more than its share of colorful personalities—and she’s determined to give her son a leg up in the world.
When their longtime home at Castle Rock is taken over by powerful neighboring monkeys, Maya’s whole family retreats, and she uses her street smarts and ingenuity to uncover untapped resources amidst strange new creatures and unsettling surroundings. Ultimately, they will all have to work together to reclaim Castle Rock, where Maya can hopefully realize her dreams for her son’s future.
Read my review of Monkey Kingdom here.
Disclaimer: Disney has invited 5 Minutes for Mom (and me) to Orlando to attend these wonderful events. All expenses have been paid by Disney, but all opinions are always 100% my own.