All aboard! Embark on a journey from the Animal Kingdom’s bustling Africa section to the park’s secluded Rafiki’s Planet Watch area, home to the Conservation Station and the Affection Section, via the Wildlife Express Train.
Opening Day: April 22, 1998
Type of Ride: Train
Age Recommendation: All ages
Duration of Ride: 7 minutes from Africa to Rafiki’s Planet Watch; 5 minutes on return
Typical Queue Time: None
Single Rider Line: No
Chicken Exit Available: Yes
Baby Swap Available: No
Type of Vehicle: Train benches
Type of Restraint: None
Attraction Open During Early Theme Park Entry: No. See our Early Theme Park Entry page for more information.
Ride Photo Available For Purchase: No
Height Requirements: None
Flash Photography or Video Allowed: Yes
- Guests may remain in wheelchairs
- Handheld Captioning available
- Assistive Listening available
Guest Policies: Children under age 7 years must be accompanied by a person age 14 years or older.
Shopping: In Africa, guests can purchase clothing, plush dolls, and collectible ostrich eggs at “Ziwani Traders.” On the other end of the railroad guests can purchase apparel, bags, books, and animal plush dolls at “Out of the Wild.”
Dining/Refreshment: Although no dining options are available at Rafiki’s Planet Watch, a plethora of offerings can be had in Africa. Guests craving a quick service lunch or dinner should consider eating at Harambe Market, where offerings such as skewers, flatbreads, and grilled vegetables are served. Those preferring a sit down meal can make Advance Dining Reservations for breakfast, lunch, or dinner at the Tusker House buffet. Tusker House serves a mixture of American and African dishes at all three meals with regular appearances from Donald Duck and friends.
Restroom: Find restrooms situated in both Africa and Rafiki’s Planet Watch.
Smoking Location: Smoking is permitted in designated smoking areas only. Disney parks are smoke free.
Did you know?
- Guests board the Wildlife Express Train at the train station in Harambe, Africa. The station exudes a late-nineteenth century colonial vibe.
- The Wildlife Express Train appears as an early-twentieth century English steam locomotive.
- The train ride in either direction lasts about six minutes, and the train accommodates 250 passengers.
- Details abound in the Harambe station. For example, a sign near the faux ticket windows indicate that the railroad, operated by Eastern Star Railways, used to offer more extensive itineraries, which have been curtailed because of track erosion.
- Luggage and goods such as chairs, trunks, bicycles, and safari equipment decorate both the Harambe station and atop the train.
- Aboard the Wildlife Express Train, guests traveling to Rafiki’s Planet Watch can view the nighttime sleeping areas for the animals at Kilimanjaro Safaris, and guests returning to Harambe can glimpse the backstage areas of the park’s Asia section.
- The seats of the Wildlife Express Train face outwards rather than forwards.
- Aside from the Wildlife Express Train, Walt Disney World guests can enjoy a steam train ride on the Magic Kingdom’s Walt Disney World Railroad. This train circles the Magic Kingdom. The Magic Kingdom’s Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is also themed after trains.
Top 5 Tips for Wildlife Express Train
- Guests might not encounter many animals on the journey, but more can be found once you reach Rafiki’s Planet Watch.
- Check out the details in the Harambe train station.
- Guests especially interested in trains may want to consider signing up for the “Magic Behind Our Steam Trains Tour” at the Magic Kingdom.
- Keep in mind that the Wildlife Express Train opens 30 minutes after the rest of the Animal Kingdom.
- Guests of all ages can enjoy the Wildlife Express Train.