“Adventure is out there” and Disney’s Animal Kingdom offers a lot of adventure! One of the fun adventures of Animal Kingdom is actually a lesser known activity where kids can join the Wilderness Explorers Club. This activity is free to park guests and offers kids of all ages an opportunity to explore Animal Kingdom and face challenges spread out all over the park.
We began our adventure at the Wilderness Explorers Headquarters which is located on the bridge between the Oasis and Discovery Island. Upon our arrival we learned the Wilderness Explorers call and received our field guide. Each child is given a field guide that offers challenges, games, and learning activities in various areas of the park. The guide will include a map showing you what section of the park that each activity is located in. Then, as you complete challenges, you earn sticker “badges” to add to your field guide.
There are over 30 badges to collect and these can be found in all areas of the park, including a couple of new stops in Pandora. While this activity is geared towards pre-school and school age children, it’s a great activity for your whole family to do together. If you have preschoolers, the troop leaders are great at adjusting the challenges to accommodate your child’s learning level and will give hints and tips to let them succeed on their own with just a bit more help.
You can check off all of the animals that you see around the park throughout the day and return to the troop leader for a badge at the Wilderness Explorers Headquarters. Some of the activities will share information on habitats, animal nutrition, forestry, recycling, ecology and conservation. You can visit the veterinary center to learn about how the animals are cared for and help diagnose a health issue. Learning about Asian and African culture will give you an opportunity to meet a troop leader from those continents. You can even earn a badge while traveling on Kilimanjaro Safari.
One of the great things about this activity is that your whole family can participate and learn more about what makes Animal Kingdom so special. Your field guide is a great souvenir to remind you of the adventure and did I mention this activity is FREE with park admission!
As an added bonus, we made a stop to meet Russell during our day and asked him to sign my daughter’s field guides. He even wrote a brief message while sharing his autograph which made their field guides an even more special souvenir.
It’s pretty tough to complete all of the challenges in a day and see shows and ride all of the rides! However, if you have a couple of days at Animal Kingdom or plan to come back soon, hold on to your field guide and bring it back on the next trip. Even if you can’t complete them all, do the ones you can. You’ll find many are an easy stop right along your path and rarely do you have to go out of your way to complete a challenge. Adventure is out there!
Which stop is your favorite of the Wilderness Explorers challenges? Share in the comments, or on Facebook or Twitter.
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