Rafiki’s Planet Watch: The Ultimate Disney Attraction For Animal Lovers

Disney’s Animal Kingdom: A Disney Park created in 1998 for all to embrace “the magic of nature.” It is a realm for animal lovers and activists, as the park is dedicated to animal conservation. However, there is an area of the park that is an outstanding site dedicated to preserving wildlife called: Rafiki’s Planet Watch.

How can you get there? What does this land offer? What conservation efforts are made? How will animal lovers benefit from visiting? These questions and more will be answered in this article so hop on for a wild adventure. Let’s get started!


Located in the back of Animal Kingdom Park, you need to take the Wildlife Express train to reach this semi-isolated location. The train can be reached in Africa, at the Harambe Station (close to Kilimanjaro Safaris ride). On the train ride, you will catch a behind the scenes glimpse of some animals, such as rhinos, ostriches, even elephants!

Rafiki’s Planet Watch is isolated from the rest of Animal Kingdom. Photo: Disney.

Experiences and Activities for Animal Lovers

Inside The Conservation Station

  • The Animation Experience: Sketch iconic Disney animal characters for free! Each class is 25 minutes and provides you with a drawing tool and a clipboard with paper. However, on this paper you will see pre-sketched outlines to help you with the step-by-step instructions.  This is a must for animal lovers who adore Disney animal characters. Some examples of characters are Judy Hopps, Bambi, Dumbo, Piglet, Timon, and much more!
  • Veterinary room: This is a neat room to see for those interested in a future in animal medicine. Look inside the room where veterinarians and animal handlers care for all creatures. If you’re lucky, you may even see them operating on an animal!
  • Nutrition center: You can observe how park residents prepare the meals and snacks for the Animal Kingdom creatures. It is great to see how they prepare the food in a way that facilitates the eating patterns of the specific animal.
  • Amphibian, reptile, and invertebrate viewing: Look at the creepy crawlies of Animal Kingdom. Though they are tiny, they are very important to our ecosystem.
  • Science center: You can see how the resident scientists work on various treatments or prepare the vaccinations to keep the animals safe.
Disney Animation Experience
The Animation Experience is a must for animal lovers! Photo: Disney.

Outside The Conservation Station

  • Affection section: Get the chance to pet and brush these furry, domesticated animals. Some of the animals you will see are goats, piggies, donkeys, even cows! However, remember to wash your hands before and after the experience, to keep yourself and the animals safe!
  • Aesthetic walking route: After departing the Wildlife Express train, you will have to walk through a scenic pathway, full of indigenous trees and exotic plants. You may catch a glimpse of some unique creatures flying about or standing on a leaf. The walkway is very calm and quiet, and it makes for a great getaway from the bustling park.
Conservation Station
So wholesome! Come and pet these friendly animals on your next visit! Photo: Disney.

Animal Conservation Efforts

Disney is part of an organization called The Disney Conservation fund. With this organization, they have been able to raise about $125 million to support wildlife across different countries.  Animal Kingdom is the main park that houses animals that have been close to extinction. For example, there are more than 200 bird species in the park and one species, the purple martins, has benefited from the environment of the park. Also, the 13th white rhino was born at Walt Disney World resort which is great for this near-threatened animal.  They provide care for sea-life, such as endangered sea turtles, by caring for them until they are released back into the ocean. Disney is home to many bees, and they contribute heavily to these pollinators with the abundance of native plants on property. There are efforts being made for African elephants, as well, by learning their behavior and finding ways to communicate with them. These are ways that Disney contributes to animal health and conservation.

Disney Conservation Fund
By contributing a small donation to the Disney Conservation fund, you help protect Sea turtles. Photo: Disney.

Benefits Of Visiting

How can you benefit from paying Rafiki’s Planet Watch a visit? Well, there are many things you will gain. First, an appreciation for wildlife and saving it, especially those endangered species that are vital to our ecosystem. You may experience a newfound respect for the Walt Disney company and the efforts they continuously make on their part to protect nature. Finally, you will develop a love for our earth, its creatures, and our planet.

Disney Conservation Fund
This wonderful organization is protecting wildlife all over the world. Photo: Disney

Animal lovers, this is the perfect location for you. I highly recommend you pay a visit the next time you’re at Animal Kingdom. You will not regret it and you will experience new things that will change your outlook on Disney. Therefore, dear reader, I hope this article influences you, not only to visit this attraction but prompts you to make our earth a cleaner, happier place.

Featured Photo: Emily Murray.

Written by

Maria Mora

For as long as Maria can remember, there was always a Disney movie playing in her house. Whether it was The Little Mermaid, Dumbo, or Tarzan, she became enthralled with all things Disney. She has visited the Disney Parks over 100 times and on different continents! Her love of Disney goes hand in hand with her love of reading, which has motivated her through the years to become a zealous writer. She hopes that whatever she does helps her community. After all, with a little faith, trust, and pixie dust, anything is possible!

3 comments on “Rafiki’s Planet Watch: The Ultimate Disney Attraction For Animal Lovers

  1. I always go to Animal Kingdom and don’t take the time to check this out, it is now definitely on my disney to-do list!

    1. Hi Xiomy!

      Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a sweet comment. You have to visit sometime! It is truly a special place. 🙂

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