A huge thank you to our friends at Walt Disney World® Resort for inviting us to a recent Media Familiarization Trip and for sponsoring this content. As always, all thoughts and opinions are our own. From the magical Floating Mountains to a mystical journey down the Na’vi River, we’re sharing 10 Reasons to Visit Pandora – The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom! #VisitPandora
And I was right! They hit it out of the park (no pun intended) with this one! Now if you’re a huge Disney fan like I am, you’ve probably seen some of the sneak peeks and you may have even seen the #DisneyParksLIVE preview of the park, so I’m not here to just show you pictures (even though they’re AMAZING). Rather, I wanted to share 10 Reasons to Visit Pandora so that you know it’s 100% worth a vacation to Walt Disney World right away! I’m already plotting at how we can get back there to see it again. So here we go!
1. The Floating Mountains. Without a doubt the first thing that will take your breath away in Pandora is the floating mountains. I remember them vividly from the film and cannot believe that they were able to create something so amazing and similar! I’m surprised we didn’t run into more things in the park because we spent most of the time with our heads looking up in the air! You won’t believe your eyes!
When guests come across the bridge, they are transferred light-years away, to the Alpha-Centauri solar system and Pandora,” says Jon Landau, AVATAR producer, Lightstorm Entertainment. “It’s an otherworldly, fully-themed experience.”
The thriving Pandoran landscape reinforces messages intrinsic to Disney’s Animal Kingdom such as transformation through adventure and conservation and stewardship. A similar value system underlies the AVATAR film, Landau says, and he’s hopeful guests are inspired to find meaning in their expedition through Pandora.
The landscape will be alive with creatures,” Rohde says. “We’re bringing to life everything from the largest creature you might encounter to the most microscopic. Animals will appear out of the underbrush – big Pandoran animals will appear at the edge of the forest, and you’ll hear the very complicated calls they issue back and forth.”
Avatar Flight of Passage launches each guest on an exhilarating, wind-in-your-face experience on a winged mountain banshee over the awe-inspiring world of Pandora. Guests will actually feel the banshee breathe beneath them as they soar through the forest and past floating mountains. What was a rite of passage for Na’vi in Cameron’s film becomes a multisensory experience for guests seeking the ultimate adventure – an encounter with the most feared predator of Pandora, the Great Leonopteryx.
On the family-friendly Na’vi River Journey, guests travel down a sacred river deep into a bioluminescent rainforest. Aboard reed boats, they float past exotic glowing plants and Pandoran creatures into the midst of a musical Na’vi ceremony. The mystical journey culminates in an encounter with the breathtakingly realistic Na’vi Shaman of Songs who is deeply connected with Pandora’s life force and sends positive energy into the forest through her music.
“This is an attraction that the entire family can enjoy,” Rohde says. “We put you into a magical experience that comes to life through the bioluminescence, the plant and animal activity and the shaman’s music. There’s a wonderful harmony in the entire glowing scene during this lyrical, uplifting journey that builds to a really beautiful crescendo.”
The artful storytelling on Pandora continues as guests stop for sustenance at the land’sSatu’li Canteen (pronounced “Sa-too-lee”), a Quonset-hut-style building with a spacious dining area that pays tribute to the Na’vi and their culture with special décor. The menu at this fast-casual restaurant is inspired by the healthful bounty of Pandora – wholesome grains, fresh vegetables, and hearty proteins.
Guests can also grab a drink at nearby Pongu Pongu, where a friendly expat serves out-of-this-world beverages including a bioluminescent frozen cocktail and indigenous beers. There’s even a sweet snack that guests won’t find elsewhere.
The attractions have very deliberate emotional moments crafted into them, the way a good story does, the way a good film does.” Rohde says. “It’s not as simple as just coming to a place that looks realistic. It’s a place that’s been deliberately imbued with the emotions of awe, of wonder, of respect, of harmony.”
Now I’ll leave you with some MORE amazing pictures we took while we were there. I really hope you do make the journey to this amazing attraction. From the magical Floating Mountains to a mystical journey down the Na’vi River, discover these 10 Reasons to Visit Pandora – The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom! #VisitPandora