One of my “must do” attractions when I go, Animal Kingdom is an AMAZING 500+ acres of intricate detail and home of more than 2000 animals (over 300 species). There will several posts about this, and the 3000 species of plants, in the days to come. However, today I want to focus on the Safari only.
Located at the back of Africa (I will cover this section soon, WOW is it amazing!!) is the Kilimanjaro Safari. As you come up the winding trail to the boarding area, pay attention to the sounds you hear. You will hear a guide telling how bad poaching is to the already endangered species. You will hear drums. You will see birds, living wild.
As you load into the jeep, you will be reminded that the safari can take an unknown amount of time, and to keep everything inside. The reason for this is rather simple. The animals you will see on the Safari are not captive. They are free-roaming, although segmented to prevent something catastrophic. Be warned, it’s a bumpy drive, as there are no rails and the animals tend to create divots.
I won’t walk you through each part, but the Savannah is the best. I have had times where giraffes or rhinos will stand in front of the jeep. They are not allowed to be honked at, yelled at, or in any fashion startled. One of my journeys a man yelled “Move already” to one of the rhinos. Although the baby did move, we waited and park security also removed the yeller.
Now, having said that, consider the reactions of your kids. You must keep them in the center seat, so at least you won’t need to worry about them reaching out to pet the animals. But, what do you do if your child starts yelling at them? Well, while some reactions are unexpected, you should certainly talk to your child about being kind. If your child misbehaves in a zoo, then the safari should not be for them.
You also should NOT try to sneak food and drinks on the safari. First, it’s rude as he!! to the other guests. Second, the animals have a very carefully and nutritionally balanced diet and no matter how hard you try to not, there is ALWAYS a chance you will spill and they will have access to it. Third, would you be willing to take emotional and financial responsibility for an animal you injure with your bad choice? (check out my careless guest post for information on the legit damage that can happen)
Now, back to the safari. The non predatory animals are all right there. No screens, fences, barricades. Rhinos, giraffes, Ancoli, and more. They are free roaming, and tend to play with the jeeps. The elephants, Cheetahs, Paint Dogs, Lions, and other less docile are still there, but there are protections in place. While they are much closer to you than you realize, they have mostly been trained. Just in case of the one in a million, there are other fail safes in place.
As you drive through, you begin to learn a lot of ways you can help in your every day life. Starting with recycling electronics (at a fully vetted recycler though) which will save the elephants!
We hope you enjoy the ride! Remember to check out all our instagram highlights, or the full collection at our patreon! (links will be added as soon as they are ready!)