[Disney Vacation Planner]
From The Oasis, visitors take a bridge to
Safari Village, the central hub of all the action in Disney's
Animal Kingdom. Bright blues, aquas, reds, yellows and greens
are featured in the design of the buildings and shops, suggesting
a tropical village marketplace in the jungles of Africa, Asia
Wood, stone and ceramic animals peek out
from every crack and crevice of the buildings. Disney hired 50
artisans from the Indonesian island of Bali to create hundreds
of pieces of original artwork for the Village. Safari Village
also offers a guide to wait times for all the Animal Kingdom attractions.
The Safari Village area is host to The
Tree of Life, the main symbol of Disney's Animal Kingdom,
and the Discovery River
Strolling entertainment throughout Safari
Village includes storytelling (Wanyama Hekaya); live music from
the Safari Village bands and "living art" (Haijenga).
Dining in Safari Village is meant for the
expeditious diner. Quick and tasty are the words du jour. Oven-baked
goods are the order of the day at Pizzafari, and smoked BBQ platters
and sandwiches grace the menu at Flame Tree Barbecue.
Tons of Animal Kingdom merchandise can be
had from Safari Villages two main shops Island Mercantile (for
the usual assortment of key chains, T-shirts, stuffed toys and
magnets) and Disney Outfitters (for pricier apparel and gifts).
For those who haven't had enough merchandise, Beastly Bazaar and
Creature Comforts gift shops flank the right and left sides of
the Village, respectively.
Disney's attention to detail is overwhelmingly
evident in Safari Village. Everywhere you look there's something
new to experience. Small animals drawn into tiles, painted into
corners and carved into every niche. The land's vibrant colors
and playful scenery set the stage for a great day at the park.
For sheer "wow-value," the Tree of Life stands
tall against Cinderella Castle, Spaceship Earth and Earful Tower
at DAK's sister parks. It is truly something to behold. It towers
over the whole park. When you're not gazing at its impressive
size, you can easily spend hours finding animals in every crack,
crevice, leaf, piece of bark and branch.
"It's Tough to Be a Bug" takes engaging elements
from the "Honey I Shrunk the Audience" (exciting 3-D technology,
eye-popping animatronics, campy storyline) and gives them even-greater
verve. This is definitely one show you'll want to see again and
again. Leading up to "Bug" show, are some cute "Coming Attraction"
posters - "A Cockroach Line," "Web Side Story" and "Beauty and
the Bees," to name a few - that provide entertainment while waiting
in line. Parents should be cautioned, however, that part of the
ride is a bit scary. And repeat-viewers should be careful not
to spoil any of the tricks for fellow guests who haven't seen
the show before. There is no age limit on the show.
The Safari Village Band is definitely worth
stopping for. Check your Adventurer's Guide for times when they