eGuides International

Rafiki's Planet Watch


Rafiki's Planet Watch is the true "zoo" part of Animal Kingdom. While you can see incredible views of animals on Kilimanjaro Safaris, and view wildlife on the numerous trails throughout the park, Rafiki's Planet Watch is the only place you can directly interact with animals or learn about their natural habitats and surroundings. You can pet rare breeds at Affection Section, walk through the jungle at Habitat Habit!, enjoy the wonderful exhibits at Conservation Station, and ride an old-style train through the African savannah. Rafiki's Planet Watch may be the most relaxing areas in all of Walt Disney World. It is a nice place to go at your own pace, learn about animals, and maybe even see some characters.

Characters are pretty easy to find in Rafiki's Planet Watch. Simply walk into Conservation Station and look around! There is almost always a character or two, or more, inside Conservation Station. The most common characters there are Chip, Dale, Jiminy Cricket, Pocahontas, and Rafiki. Other characters will occasionally wander into this area.

There is only one entrance to Rafiki's Planet Watch. It is the Wildlife Express Train. You board the Wildlife Express Train at the train station just outside the entrance to the Kilimanjaro Safaris in Africa. To get there from either the promenade from Asia or the promenade and bridge from Discovery Island, enter Africa and walk past the main row of buildings. Once past them turn to the right and you should see the entrance to the train station.


Affection Section in Rafiki's Planet Watch at Animal Kingdom is the a small petting zoo filled with rare animals from around the globe. The animals are domesticated and handle very well with young children. This is a highlight for young children. There are a handful of Disney workers at Affection Section, making sure that the number of guests inside is limited and that the animals, and children, are well cared for.


Conservation Station in Rafiki's Planet Watch at Animal Kingdom is a wonderful walk-through exhibit. Inside the large, open room, you have the option to visit 11 animal healthcare stations, see exhibits on animal habitats, watch videos on animal behavior, watch video backstage tours of Animal Kingdom, and even see characters like Jiminy Cricket, Pocahontas, and Rafiki. This is the largest and most significant part of Rafiki's Planet Watch. It is very easy to spend a couple of hours here if you like to take your time and enjoy the various exhibits.


Habitat Habit! at Rafaki’s Planet Watch begins almost immediately after arriving on the Wildlife Express Train. These are nature trails that lead you through some heavy plant and tree life and teach you about certain elements of the jungle habitat, including some very rare and unique animals. Most people simply walk through them to the attractions area. But this is a nice place to slow down and enjoy the natural beauty.


The Wildlife Express Train in Rafiki's Planet Watch at Animal Kingdom is the way to get to and from the rest of Rafiki's Planet Watch. You enter the train station in Africa, near the entrance to Kilimanjaro Safaris. From there, the train takes you on a four minute ride through the African savannah and past the night animal buildings. The seats on the Wildlife Express Train face to the side, making it very easy to see the sights. The ride is a bit more jerky than the Walt Disney World Railroad at the Magic Kingdom, but is still a nice and relaxing trip.


Out of the Wild in Rafiki's Planet Watch at Animal Kingdom is the only shop in this area of the park. It is a little open air shop next to the Theater and across the walkway from Affection Section. It is around the corner from Conservation Station. At Out of the Wild you can find towels, animals, books, figurines, shirts, some toys, and perhaps most importantly, drinks. This is the only place at Rafiki's Planet Watch to get food or drinks.