The Oasis. The only major change here is the removal of the Rainforest Cafe: The area is needed for Beastlie Kingdomme backstage areas and these themed restaurants have become fairly commonplace around the U.S. I think the experience here should be one-of-a-kind.
Discovery Island. At the base of the Tree of Life, winding paths through the roots lead you to the subterranean theater – and its multi-media “Wonders of Nature” show – in the same vein as the American Adventure. The show gives an overarching sense of the animal world and the mission of the park. The post-show is Conservation Station and contains exhibits to educate about the state of wildlife on Earth. As much as I agree with its message, the actual execution of Conservation Station (aka PlanetWatch) never made it a compelling reason to take a boring (IMO) train ride to the top of the park.
Discovery Riverboats are back, but with an increased number of special effects and events along the journey (like the submerged kraken).
Beastlie Kingdomme is an area that I believe should have been there from Day 1. Here, I have approximated its original design from the concept art.
You can read the fascinating and wonderful details of this land, including its signature attractions, on MousePlanet, which has four articles by the creators of Beastlie Kingdomme. If you have not read these, you will want to do so:
I’ve padded Beastlie Kingdomme with three additional attractions: a dark ride of fantastic forest creatures, a spinner and effects-heavy theatrical experience hosted by Merlin:
Africa. The changes in Africa include a Harambe Village Theatre – similar to that in Hong Kong Disneyland – which hosts the Lion King or any other show.
At the northern end of the Safari, the flood-control canal has been re-shaped to resemble the Masai River. Beyond the river is a huge paddock that will give the widest, most wildlife filled vista outside of the real thing – imagine scores of wildebeest, giraffe, zebra, elephant, etc. moving about in the far distance.
|photo by wild4photographicsafaris.blogspot.com|
I don’t believe in ‘breaking the third wall’ with respect to backstage views as is currently the case with the Wildlife Express. Instead there would be heavy landscaping, distant savanna/tropical forest views and theme-appropriate narration.
And Wildlife Express has a worthwhile destination: Amazonia, a new land featuring a chilling dark ride adventure that will touch on the general fear of snakes and large, furry South American spiders. While my ideal WDW already has one Soarin’ simulator (Impressions de France), here there is a second: Soarin’ over the Amazon. While the former shows us human endeavors like skiing the French Alps, ballooning over Loire Valley chateaux, or circling the Eiffel Tower, the latter focuses on natural wonders such as the Amazon Rainforest, Iguaçu Falls and the Tepuis.
In Asia, as originally planned, Tiger River Run is a 20+minute boat ride that feature live Asian animals including Asian elephants, Indian rhinos, orangutans, leopards, peacocks, sambar and gaur. I’ve utilized the exiting Kali River Rapids queue, which is long and beautifully designed. For the final thrill element, the bifurcated rafts detach and descend through clearcut-caused rapids.
The mythos of Dinoland is that it is 1950s America – a golden age for paleontology. The institute is not some generic structure but built to resemble the famed, gothic Yale-Peabody Museum – the eastern academic headquarters for paleontological activity. It houses Countdown to Extinction, with a completely different storyline and cast of characters. It still involves a time machine (more thoughtfully explained) and travelling back to the K-T Divide (in a larger indoor/outdoor thrill ride with some slower elements).
Cretaceous Trail is more fleshed out, like its fantastic sister trails in Africa & Asia, with living prehistoric animal exhibits including crocodiles and turtles.
Out ‘West’, in the Badlands, things are going awry at the dig site, where The Excavator (a family coaster) has mine carts speeding past excavation equipment that seems to have been possessed with the animal spirits of the long-dead dinosaur fossils.
The exterior of Mammoth Falls is a boulder-strewn, soggy pine forest landscape representing North America 10,000 years ago. In the pre-show, Lescaux-like cave paintings come to life to illustrate the types of megafauna we may experience. The flume ride features encounters with giant sloths, glyptodonts, sabre tooth cats, mastodons, mammoths and their primitive human hunters.
In my ideal vision of the Disney parks, California Adventure was never built (Disneyland’s second gate is Disneysea) – anything worthwhile in that park exists elsewhere in my vision (e.g., EPCOT Canada’s Yukon Rapids or Paris DisneySea’s Coney Island Mania). In order to represent invertebrates, which make up the vast majority of the animal kingdom, I have imported the Bug’s Land from DCA.
A Bug’s Land is part of a larger Disney character section which fills the role of Camp Minnie-Mickey and allows families with very small children have some more to do. Pagoo’s Adventure is something that was in the early plans for DAK… I believe it involved an original, cartoon panda (could have stolen the thunder from Kung-fu Panda, Disney!) in a dark ride setting. Here Pagoo exists, perhaps gaining the popularity of other theme park original characters like Figment and Duffy the Bear.
Finally, I’ve added the subsurface fountains to the lagoon for a night-time show in what is now a multi-day park.
Here's is a relative size comparison with my built-out Magic Kingdom
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