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    • Wild By Design - Animal Kingdom

      • Reviews Views
        3 23714
      • Recommended By Average Rating
        100% of reviewers 10.0
      • Description: This 3 hour on-stage, walking tour will provide insights into the design and building of this new species of theme park as well as a glimpse into the complexities of caring for animals and habitats.


  • Author
    • cewait

      Registered: August 2013
      Posts: 1
      Review Date: Tue August 20, 2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 0 

       
      Positive aspects of the product (pros): A new perspective of the park
      Cons: none

       
      We took this tour Friday August 16, 2013. Brenna was our tour guide and my wife and I were the tourists. In addition, we had a member of management who was sitting in on the tour. His goal was to look for other and possibly better ways to afford guest opportunities to interact with animals via a value added pathway. Of special note, he was also involved with the construction of a part of DAK. While Brenna was the presenter and gave a great explanation of the storyboarding behind the designs in the park, our special guest was able to add context from experiences 15+ years ago.


      We have always been a little confused by the title of the tour, “Wild by Design” and the official description really did not clear up the confusion. Simply, this is a tour of the on-stage portion of the park pointing out many of the unique design features, the history of items and certain designs, how the part cares for and places animals on stage and a great explanation of the storyboarding of the park. Three hours is simply not enough time to go into much detail on any one area or subject, but the tour does offer an interested guest a set of ‘tools’ to use so that if they stay in the park the remainder of the day, they can go and explore the park further…seeing so much more than they may have in their past visits.


      We were afforded two animal expert visits. The first was with a caregiver for the White Cheeked Gibbons in Asia. We discussed their age, family structure and how grown children must be placed in other settings due to their dominant parent structure. We discussed the storyboard of the exhibit and the forced perspectives that allow observation with no netting between the Gibbons and guests. The pots, pans and other items hanging on the structure are they to challenge the Gibbons to explore. They are often packed with food, nuts, seeds and give the Gibbons something different to do. Gibbons. The other caretaker visit was in the aviary of the Africa - Pangani Forest Exploration Trail. We arrived in time for the caretaker to perform his mid-morning bird inventory. He was entertaining, even more so after learning of my wife’s uncanny luck of being a bird poop target. He discussed at length how the birds are cared for, how they count the five times a day and how they occasionally have an escapee that they have to coax back into the aviary.


      There is a midway break with a light snack of muffins and fruit. It was a great time to sit down and discuss points during the tour that we had later question about. We talked about Joe Rohde and his efforts during the initial construction of the park. We later stopped in Africa and Brenna pointed out the JORODIE Masks and Beads sign on the left as your pass the coral covered building.


      Sadly, the tour does only last three hours. We said our goodbyes and continued to explore the park. The Animal kingdom is so much more than 'itsnotazu"
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      nrymut

      Registered: July 2006
      Posts: 100
      Review Date: Sun June 16, 2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 10 

       
      Positive aspects of the product (pros): Well done tour, informative guide
      Cons: None

       
      We have done many tours and are so glad we decided to do this one. It is not behind scenes but very enjoyable. Our guide was very informative. Besides the walking tour, we were greeted by animal caretakers in the aviary and at a monkey exhibit. We stopped for a break with a snack of fresh fruit, muffins, and drinks in Pizzafari. This tour really does give a new perspective on many elements in the park.
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      longislander

      Registered: April 2009
      Location: Long Island
      Posts: 31
      Review Date: Sun January 20, 2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 10 

       
      Positive aspects of the product (pros): All the details
      Cons: Your feet hurt by the end of the tour

       
      My 14 year old and I did this tour September 2012. This was our fifth visit to WDW and Animal Kingdom is one of our favorite parks. Both of us enjoyed the tour! We both learned more about the park and the why and how of the “lands.” Meg was our guide and she was beyond wonderful! She is a scientist who worked with the animals for many years so she knew a lot about all aspects of the park. She could also switch instantly into storyteller and gave us the backstory on certain areas with lovely enthusiasm. Our group was very small – only the two of us and another woman. Both my daughter and I felt that we learned a lot, especially the Chester and Hester area, which never really made sense to us before. Meg also pointed out many details that we have missed over the years. Most of these were little details that the imagineers placed around the park. We both commented that we wished we knew these details since the information really helped us enjoy the park even more.
      We had a chance to talk to two scientists in depth. We met with a specialist on the monkeys in Asia and another was a bird specialist. I was truly a privilege to hear these two people talk about the care and behavior – we were never bored. (Yes, a 14 year old was never bored!)
      This was a FULL three- hour tour. Since you visit every part of the park, it’s a lot of walking. If you have mobility issues, I would strongly recommend a motorized wheelchair. We were tired after the tour. I believe we went back to the resort to rest.
      This is a DETAILED tour of the park. There is no backstage. I recommend this tour for anyone with experience with Animal Kingdom. Fourteen is the cut-off age and it’s appropriate. (I’m not sure if younger kids would appreciate all the detail and talk time.) We also did the tour during a low attendance time. While we used headphones to hear, I would think the crowds might be too much during peak season.


      The description of the tour was right on. Look it up before booking.
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