Visiting Walt Disney World during a shutdown – Part 4: Animal Kingdom - Uncle Walt's Insider

Visiting Walt Disney World during a shutdown – Part 4: Animal Kingdom

What Would Walt Do? Special Report - Inside the WDW Shutdown

Our Uncle Walt is at Walt Disney World — but no one else is! This is the fourth and final installment of Walt’s trip report from inside the (closed) gates.

DISNEY’S ANIMAL KINGDOM, FL — Hi loyal readers, thanks for asking. By now you’ve probably received a communication in the post that states that all Disney parks are shut down indefinitely. The most frequent question we continue to receive during this time is, “What are the parks like during a shutdown?”

I am still isolating myself at Walt Disney World, as it is still the best place to get away from the crowds. In my last installment, you may recall I was visiting Hollywood Studios. After a great night hanging out with my best friend, Chewbacca, I did make it back safely to my suite to get ready or the final day at Animal Kingdom!

I present you my un-edited notes from the field:

Un-edited notes from the field (edited)

I arrived just as the park should open and was the first one in! Crowds were very light, so I went ahead and talked to Devine for a bit. She wants you all to know she is doing just vine. I decided to hit up the Safari first to see the animals in the early morning hours.

As I made my way to Africa, I thought I needed more coffee. The line at Starbucks was just as crazy as usual, so I decided to just press on.

At Safari I was met by my tour guide. Nice guy, southern accent, blond mullet. Kinda odd, but friendly enough. We took off and he told me that this was unlike any Safari I’d go on. After he lit a cigarette, stuck a tiger cub in his lap, and made sure his gun was loaded, and we were off! Things I learned on this tour:

  • The roads are optional.
  • Animals will get out of your way if you honk and swear at them long enough.
  • Crocs are real.
  • Cheetahs never prosper.
  • Some lady named “FREDACTED‘ Carol Baskin” allegedly killed her husband.
  • Tiger Cubs can’t drive. If you see a truck in a mud hole, it wasn’t me!

A great tour, saw all of the animals, and I think that nice man will make a great zoo operator one day!

Festival of the Lion King is not nearly as good if you perform it. By yourself. Still, the tumble monkeys loved it, and I was able to given some pitching advice to one of them!

Like most of us, I skipped Rafiki’s Planet Watch and the Conservation Station. If I want to be lectured about things, I can go onto my community’s Facebook page.

Pandora: not just the same six songs over and over

I headed over to Pandora: the World of Avatar (dun dun dun!!!) instead and wow, if guests aren’t there, the natives come out! Met a dude named Na’huk. We went flying around on a Ikran, much better with a real Na’vi guide.

He then said he wanted to take me on a special journey. I told him I don’t do drugs, he didn’t get the joke. So we hit up Na’vi River Journey.

When we were done, I asked him what the story is, or anything other than we sat in a boat for a few minutes. He had no idea, just that Disney pays them to get people on that attraction so it’s not a total failure. Beautiful ride, but what’s the point? Even the Shaman had no idea, just something about keeping the bennies coming? I don’t know a Benny, do you?

Does this have anything to do with the Detroit baseball team?

Went on to Asia. The Jungle Trek was advertising the live action remake of Tiger King. And my Safari driver was there promoting it! What a guy!

I’d already showered for the day, so I skipped Kali River Rapids and opted to ride Expedition Everest instead.


I saw him, he was covered in dirt and grime. He was wiping down a wrench or arc welder or something, and telling an attraction CM it was good to go. I used my Fastpass, waited for the front of the train, and was soon on board. It was amazing!!! I went seven times in a row. Click here to see my video!

On to the less interesting part of the park

After that amazing experience, I went to the Finding Nemo show, but it wasn’t running today for some reason. I then hit up DinoLand, and Primeval Whirl was the only attraction running. Dinosaur was down, turns out they’d brought back the wrong one this time and they had to clean up the place.

By then it was getting close to dark, and nothing good happens at Animal Kingdom at night. Nothing. Especially in that big open water area with the seats around it.

So I made my way to the front of the park. Alone. In the dark. Only the sounds of someone yelling angrily about his truck and a mud hole in the background.

Until we can all gather in the parks once again, this is Uncle Walt saying, goodnight and I hope to see you real soon!

How did that truck get in that mud hole? Let us know in the comments below!

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