Header photo by Jerry Zimprich
Facts at a Glance About Maharajah Jungle Trek:
|Park: Animal Kingdom Location: Asia Height Requirement: None Fastpass: No|
|Quick Notes: Walking trails with a variety of wildlife including Komodo dragons, tapirs, tigers, bird aviary and bats.|
|Disney Warnings: None.|
|Our Additional Cautions: Includes bats. Bats are not caged, but are separated from guests by structures their wings are too big to pass through. Bird aviary has free-roaming birds. See below for details and further cautions.|
|Length: The time you spend here is up to you.|
|Special Needs & other info: You can stay in your wheelchair or ECV. Due to the nature of the experience, service animals are not permitted in some areas of this attraction. See a Cast Member for additional information. Service animals can’t go in the aviary section. You can use the bypass trail to avoid this area, and you can avoid the bat area. Audio Description.|
Overview of Maharajah Jungle Trek in Animal Kingdom
This major attraction has some of the most fascinating and exotic animals you’ll see at Animal Kingdom, including tigers, Komodo dragons, tapirs, gibbons, water buffalo, a bird sanctuary and the surprisingly fascinating fruit bats and very large flying fox bats. The long trail runs through lush forested areas with the theme of the Anandapur Royal Forest of Southeast Asia. Along the trail and within the animal habitats you’ll see architecture designed to look like ancient ruins.
Details about Maharajah Jungle Trek
There is no queue here. There are various displays you’ll encounter along the trail including signs with wildlife facts, and Manipulatives which are hands-on experiences that you can touch and feel which teach you about the animals in that location.
Though the trees provide some shade, depending on the time of year it can get very hot. It’s a good idea to have some bottled water with you. You’ll be outdoors and it can get hot. It’s important to stay hydrated! Keep in mind that there are no bathrooms along this trail, so use a restroom before you begin.
Wheelchair/ECV information: Wheelchairs/ECVs can access the main path fully and will be able to see all displays, but there are some spectator areas that afford a different viewing angle, accessed only by stairs. No worries – you can usually get a good view of the same thing from your wheelchair in a nearby viewing area. Along the trail there are times when the animal viewing areas can become crowded, and you may have to wait for an opening in an observation area, especially to get a wheelchair/ECV up close.
Additional details about Maharajah Jungle Trek
You can bypass the bat viewing area if you prefer. When you enter the bat viewing area, you’ll see that there’s no glass separating them from you. Instead there’s an attractive structure that’s slatted at intervals to prevent the bats from flying through.
We’ve been told by a cast member that there’s never been an incident when a bat got through the structures and into the guest viewing area. With their large wingspans of over 5 feet, the bats are unable to pass through the slender spaces between the slats.
During our first visit, once we got over the initial “freak out” of having nothing visible that seemed to separate us from some very big bats, we spent quite a bit of time there. These are strange and fascinating creatures. By the way, the bats are fruit eaters—not people eaters. You’ll see fresh fruit hanging for the bats to eat. You can bypass the bats if you’re uncomfortable, but we feel they’re really worth seeing. We’ve been told by a Cast Member that their wings are too big to get through the slats that line the cage. So they shouldn’t be able to get at you.
For the tigers, there are several different viewing points. Depending on where the tigers are hanging out in their habitat, you may get to be inches from them separated only by glass. They have their own ruins and a water pool where you may catch them playing and even swimming. They may be quite active in the late afternoon, as it’s closer to feeding time.
The tigers are popular and the viewing areas can get congested. You may have to wait for a spot to open up, especially for those in wheelchairs/ECVs. There are multiple viewing areas, so if you can’t get in at the first one, move further down the trail and you’ll see other spots. The first tiger viewing area does have steps (which can be bypassed), but the other viewing areas don’t.
The trail also passes through a bird aviary with over 50 species of birds from Asia. There are benches to hang out on for a while to enjoy the birds and the atmosphere. There are birds flying free, kept inside by overhead netting. There are usually some larger birds roaming free on the walking paths. They’re generally pretty passive, but there’s the possibility of a bird having a bad day and behaving in a more aggressive or interactive manner.
Don’t be shy about asking questions of the cast members who are stationed with the animals. They always seem quite knowledgeable, and we’ve always gotten the feeling the cast members enjoy chatting with the guests.
The trail is approximately 1/2 mile, paved and quite bumpy, as are many of the paths at Animal Kingdom. You can see the animals from a wheelchair, but if you can stand, the views are better at times.
Keep in mind that there are no bathrooms along this trail, so use a restroom before you begin. There’s some shade along the path, but depending on the time of year it can still get very hot. There is no set length of time that you might be on this trail, but you can count on at least 20-30 minutes if you enjoy the animals. It’s also a good idea to have some bottled water with you, as it can’t be purchased on the trail. You’ll be outdoors and it can get hot. It’s important to stay hydrated!
Check out Maharajah Jungle Trek on video:
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