Avatar Flight of Passage Overview + Video Review | Disney’s Animal Kingdom Attractions

As you enter the land of Pandora in Disney’s Animal Kingdom Park you become immediately immersed in the environment. Surrounded by giant flowers, rocks, and a beautiful landscape, you will feel like you are visiting Pandora and at any minute could encounter an ikran or banshee. 

Based on the 2009 James Cameron film, Avatar Flight of Passage surpasses any and all Disney attractions in regards to immersive experiences, even starting at the queue. Flight of Passage is a 3D single-rider simulation. The ride takes you through the land of Pandora, where you will meet the people of Pandora, the Na’vi, and ride on your very own banshee. 

Avatar Flight of Passage Details

Walt Disney World Park Animal Kingdom
Location in Park Pandora – The World of Avatar
Height Restrictions 44 inches
Age Interests Children to adult
Thrill Type Adventure flight simulation
Hours Regular park hours
Wait Times 60+ minutes
FastPass+ Yes
Accessibility Information Must transfer from wheelchair, no service animals, ride vehicle and restraints may prohibit some guests from riding

Flight of Passage Background

Floating Mountains in Pandora - Animal Kingdom
Floating Mountains in Pandora – Animal Kingdom

The concept of the Flight of Passage was conceived in 2012 as a combination effort with Walt Disney Imagineering, Lightstorm Entertainment, and Weta Digital. The Walt Disney Imagineering team approached James Cameron in 2012. The original idea was for Flight of Passage to be a “Soarin’ over Pandora” style of ride. James Cameron’s teams at Lightstorm Entertainment and Weta Digital assisted in creating original film and animation specifically for the ride. 

Arriving at Flight of Passage

Science experiments being conducted on the ride queue for Avatar Flight of Passage at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Park. Image: flickr.com @ Eden, Janine and Jim.

To get to Flight of Passage you have to enter the land of Pandora in Disney’s Animal Kingdom Park. There is a cave-like structure with a sign that says Flight of Passage, this is where you will enter the ride. Upon entering the line, you will enter a cave, where you can feel the energy of the animals that inhabit the planet. There are drawings and other artifacts placed around, bringing you back to ancient Pandora times. 

Bioluminescent plants on the ride queue for Avatar Flight of Passage at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Park. Image: flickr.com @ Eden, Janine and Jim

Beyond the cave you start to see life. Giant trees, bushes, and flowers will surround you and light up in the dark. This bioluminescent plant life lights up the way as you traverse to the Avatar laboratory. You’ll then see various experiments and tests on your way to the entrance of the ride. 

Ride Overview

Flight of Passage is an immersive ride where you are linked to a banshee or an ikran. The attraction starts with an instructional video. Dr. Ogden and Dr. Stevens explain the process of linking with your avatar. This process “matches up” your genetic material to find the best match with an Avatar. 

Upon entering the ride you will be shown to your “banshee”. To replicate the feeling of riding a banshee, Disney created a mechanical motorcycle-like machine with a saddle. You are given 3D goggles and you’ll sit on your “banshee”.

In front of the riders is a large screen. As the ride starts, you can feel the banshee breathe as your legs wrap around its belly. The banshee begins to fly and you get to explore the world of Mo’ara. Without spoiling the story of the ride, you and your banshee will come into some conflict and the ride will become more turbulent and exciting. It feels as if you are flying through the trees and swerving through different landscapes. 

Avatar Flight of Passage is a great ride for riders of almost all ages. Riders must be at least 44 inches tall. While it is suggested that riders who have motion sickness avoid Flight of Passage, I found that it has much smaller of a trigger of motion sickness than similar style rides such as Mission Space or Star Tours. 

Animal Kingdom’s Avatar Flight of Passage is one of the most unique and immersive ride experiences that can be found at the Disney Parks. From the ride system to the story-line and the theming, this is a ride that should not be missed by anyone visiting Disney World and the Animal Kingdom Park. 

Have you experienced Avatar Flight of Passage at Disney’s Animal Kingdom? Tell us what you think of the ride in the comments below.

Seth Nock
and the DVC Shop Editorial Team

Header image: flickr.com @ Cory Doctorow

6 comments on “Avatar Flight of Passage Overview + Video Review | Disney’s Animal Kingdom Attractions

  1. I had not gotten a chance to ride Flight of Passage during our previous three Disney trips. This was mostly due to the fact that I have a young daughter who was too short to ride, and then when she grew tall enough, she was too scared to ride. My husband and son got to ride it while the girls went elsewhere in the park. But this past trip, we all 4 decided to give it a go. I wanted to leave this comment in case there are other families out there like us… We got in line (bought genie plus) and as we got closer to the actual ride, my daughter started to grow more and more nervous. Once we got to the room just before boarding the banshees, the cast member allowed my daughter and another younger kiddo to exit to a “waiting area” so that the rest of the family members could ride, but the younger kids could “chicken out” and still not be left alone while we were riding. She was sitting just around the corner from the room the banshees were in. In fact, she said she heard me screaming and laughing on the ride the entire time. It was the most amazing ride, and I loved every minute of it. I am sometimes prone to motion sickness, but I was completely fine on this ride. I am so glad I got a chance to ride it. AND, appreciative that cast members on this ride recognize that younger kiddos might chicken out at the last minute and need a “waiting place” to stay while their family rides.

  2. Flight of Passage is an UNBELIEVABLE ride. You are fully immersed in the world of Pandora, and you can even feel your banshee breathing. There is no ride at this or any other theme park that comes close!

  3. 100% the best ride on property. It is so immersive and exciting. I highly recommend for anyone!

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