Day 7 – the day of banshee flights

Will gets up for a run nice and early but is as quiet as a mouse (yes, really…either that or we are so tired that we could sleep through anything!), so we sleep in.

We plan to stay late in Animal Kingdom so plan for a later start in the park. Our first fastpass is for the Kilimanjaro Safari, so on arrival (and after the obligatory photo)

we head across the park to Africa. It’s a great safari with loads of animals…as always our favourite are the giraffes but a new baby elephant does his best to steal the show! (More photos coming soon!)

Next up is the much anticipated new land of Pandora (of Avatar fame). As we approach, the landscape and sounds change subtly and before long we get the full impact of the imagineers amazing new land! Wow! I must admit that we do walk around with jaws dropped. In the store Natty resists adopting a banshee but gives in at the sight of a beautiful limited edition magic band.

It’s now our time to ride Flight of Passage…which is reported to be pretty darned great! We are introduced and measured up for our banshee then ‘bonded’…

This thrill ride gives you a banshee’s-eye view of the beauty and grandeur of Pandora on a rite of passage you can’t forget! It’s found deep in the heart of the Valley of Mo’ara, and is an expedition that lets interstellar explorers climb atop a mountain banshee for a breathtaking, first-person flight over the moon’s incredible landscape. Bonding with a mountain banshee is a crucial step in the life of a Na’vi hunter—and flying on the back of one of these powerful winged creatures represents an important rite of passage. That’s how Disney describe it but this does not do it justice! Seriously it’s truly fabulous!

As I ride on the banshee, I can feel it breathe…and I soar across such amazing landscapes complete with smell and spray as we fly across the ocean! Wow! Wow! Wow! I have goosebumps and tears in my eyes…I don’t think I’ve ever reacted this way to a new Disney ride! Take a bow Disney imagineers!

When we’ve finally gotten over this, it’s time for lunch. We’ve decided it’ll be at Satu’li canteen in Pandora. It’s has a clever mobile ordering system where you order on an app, hit ‘we’ve arrived’ when you get there and they start cooking your food! We get our notification that our food is ready…Will has Steamed Vegetable Curry Pod with Eggplant, Cauliflower, Sweet Potato, Carrots, and Shallot Cilantro Cream served with Crunchy Vegetable Slaw and Vegetable Chips.

Natty has the Sustainable Fish Bowl – Panko Breaded Sustainable Fish topped with Crunchy Vegetable Slaw and Boba Balls served with red and sweet potatoes. I have the same but with whole  grain rice.

Dessert is delicious! We share a Blueberry Cream Cheese Mousse with Passion Fruit Curd and a Chocolate Cake with a Crunchy Cookie Layer and Banana Cream Topping…

We have photos taken in Pandora…

…Take in a bit if shopping as the afternoon rain has come…

…and then visit Its Tough to be a Bug (which always makes us scream before singing along to ‘Shoulder high waste’ with the dung beetle! We then score great seats for Festival of the Lion King and enjoy another sing along and love the tumble monkeys!

After a pause for a Mickey Ice Cream, we head into Asia for a trip up Everest, only to be chased back by the Yeti!

Dinosaur is next…it’s been refurbished so it’s so much smoother and hence enjoyable!

Despite my best intentions, I agree to ride the bone shaking, head spinning Primeval Whirl…when will I ever learn. Note to self – this is one ride you don’t like – ever!

After another safari – and great lion and cheetah photos…(which will be added shortly)

we eat dinner at Pizzafari, where the new offerings of flatbreads are far superior to the previous pizzas!

The new show, Rivers of Light, begins at 2100 and thanks to our fast pass booking, we get great seats. The show is another lovely addition to his park now that it’s open after dark. The show features water fountains, mist screens, floating lanterns, fire effects, lasers, lights, fog, projection mapping and live performers and incorporates the park’s Tree of Life into the show. It’s beautiful and we love the music.

(More photos to be added soon…when the app stops crashing!)

We keep a track on the wait times for the other new Pandora ride which have been no lower than 70 minutes all day. Natty sees that at the end of the show, the wait is down to 20 minutes so we hot foot it across the park (all this criss crossing has helped us in reaching 15.5km walking today!)

The Navi River Journey does not disappoint! However the photos are rubbish!

We end our day still in utter amazement both at the beauty of Pandora but also the beauty of Animal Kingdom after dark!

Good night!

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