Animal Kingdom at Dark Debuts & More News Around the Mouse

Disney News

Like Olaf, kids are rejoicing with the arrival of summer as parents question where did the school year go? Here we are in Summer 2016 and its time to #AwakenSummer at Disney World. This week’s Disney’s Cheapskate Princess News Around the Mouse includes the debut of Animal Kingdom at dark, the return of digitally enhanced film and addition of a new theater at Epcot’s Soarin’, extended  hours and fireworks along with a preferred parking test at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, the return of Sounds of Summer concerts at Epcot, Lilly Pulitzer brightening up things at Disney Springs, and Gone Mad Parties are on the Grand Floridian Resort. With so many new experiences, focusing this week on Animal Kingdom in a new light – at night!  Click here to download the whole edition to view on your computer, tablet or smart phone OR click here to watch the Around the Mouse by video.

Photo Source Disney Parks Blog, David Roark, Photographer

Photo Source Disney Parks Blog, David Roark, Photographer

Animal Kingdom has become one of my family’s favorite parks because of the shows (Flight of Wonder, Finding Nemo, Festival of the Lion King), the best quick service offerings of any of the parks in my opinion (did someone say Flame Tree BarBQue or Yak and Yeti – yum), the shady pathways, Wilderness Explorer activity and of course the animals. Animal Kingdom’s night time makeover opened this past weekend and to quote Aladdin its a whole new world. Guests will enjoy the new attractions with extended park hours and can experience favorites Expedition Everest, Kali River Rapids and Primeval Whirl as never before in the dark.

New Animal Kingdom Park experiences for Summer 2016: 

  • The Tree of Life awakening as the sun goes down -The iconic park image comes to life in a spectacular show.
  • Harambe Dance Parti – Join the party animals taking over the streets of Harambe in this street festival featuring music and acrobats.
  • Discovery Island Carnivale – Join a cavalcade of dancers, stilt walkers and musicians for a nighttime dance party in the streets of Discovery Island.
  • Kilmanjaro Sunset Safari – Explore the wilds of the Harambe Wildlife Reserve at night.
  • The Jungle Book Alive with Magic Water Show – Baloo and Mowgli’s tale comes to Discovery River each night in a water and light show, complete with Cast Members celebrating the Indian culture through choreography and music. 
  • New signature table service restaurant Tiffins  – Cuisine inspired by places that created Disney’s Animal Kingdom open for lunch and dinner. The full Menu can be viewed in the whole edition link of what’s new.
  • Nomad Lounge opens – Waterfront views offering hand crafted beers and cocktails with Asian, African and South American flavors. Small bites are also available, see the full list of what’s new for a menu.
  • Dining Packages with The Jungle Book Alive with Magic Show – Reservations can now be made for Dining Packages at both Tiffins and Tusker House which give preferred seating at The Jungle Book Alive with Magic Show. You can make Dining Package reservations online through your MyDisneyExperience account or by calling 407-WDW-Dine, Disney’s Dining Reservations number.
  • Pangani Forrest Exploration Trail name change to Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail – Only the name has changed the attraction remains the same and you can expect to see zebras, hippos and other animals along your trail trek.

Looking for news on Pandora: The World of Avatar attraction? It is set to open summer of 2017 and from what I have seen, looks, hold on to your mouse ears folks, looks to be an experience like no other! Stay tuned here for the latest news as it develops.

Disney’s Animal Kingdom, one of the largest animal theme parks in the world, is a park for all ages. Night time attractions offer new ways to experience exotic animals and exciting adventures. Whether your Disney Parks vacation is a family trip, couples trip, adults only trip, or multigenerational reunion – make Animal Kingdom a must do park on your next visit. There is truly no other park like it!

What is on your MUST DO list for Disney’s Animal Kingdom at night?   

Written by Julie Franklin  

Julie FranklinJulie Franklin is a travel agent creating family memories at Destinations In FloridaAn Authorized Disney Vacation Planner. She can plan and book your customized magical vacation anywhere at no extra cost to you. As a blogger, mom and wife of a budget traveler, Julie knows how to get the most magic for you vacation. Whether thinking of heading to the parks in Orlando, cruising, an all-inclusive resort or traveling anywhere, let Julie take the stress out of your vacation planning.

You can reach Julie at or call her at 404 312 8099 for your free no obligation vacation quote. Tell her Cheapskate Princess sent you!


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