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Why Nighttime Is the Best Time to Visit Animal Kingdom

January 22, 2024

It’s not unusual for Animal Kingdom to close for the day by 7pm, but it can actually be one of the best Disney World theme parks to visit at night.  Here’s why nighttime is the best time to visit Animal Kingdom!

Lower Crowds

Expedition Everest can be a shorter wait at night. (Photo Credit: WDW News Today)

With Animal Kingdom closing so early in the evening, many guests head over to the other theme parks for nighttime fireworks shows.  This often means that Animal Kingdom empties out in the evening.  In the last few hours of park operation, wait times drop significantly, and you can get quite a few rides in.  Just know that some attractions like Kilimanjaro Safaris close earlier than park closing time.

Delicious Options for Dinner

Cardamom Spiced Veal from Tiffins (Photo Credit: WDW News Today)

Whether you are looking for a quick service dinner, table service dinner, buffet, or a light bite at a lounge, Animal Kingdom has it all!  Sautuli Canteen and Flame Tree Barbecue are great options for quick service dining while Yak and Yeti or Tiffins are good for a sit down dinner.  At Tusker House, you’ll find a character dinner buffet with Donald Duck and his friends.  For lighter fare, head to Nomad Lounge for small plates and cocktails.

A Glowing Pandora

Bioluminescent pathway in Pandora – The World of Avatar (Photo Credit: WDW News Today)

Pandora – The World of Avatar, is pretty spectacular during the day and home to one of the park’s most popular attractions (Flight of Passage).  By nightfall, the land comes to life with its beautiful glowing bioluminescent landscape that makes you really feel like you have been transported to another world.  

Tree of Life Awakenings

Tree of Life Awakenings

Animal Kingdom’s iconic Tree of Life has over 300 animal carvings celebrating Earth’s biodiversity.  At nighttime, it is truly a sight to see as a the projection show, Tree of Life Awakenings, lights up the tree and brings the animal carvings to life.  Tree of Life Awakenings takes place about every 10 minutes after dark until the park closes.

Book your next trip to Disney World, and experience Animal Kingdom at night!  Want to stay as close as possible to Animal Kingdom?  Rent a DVC villa at Kidani Village or Jambo House at Animal Kingdom Lodge!

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