Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail

Now, this is a zoo. The Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail is a walk-through exhibit of several animals, just like a normal zoo. There are all kinds of animals along the trail. Yes, this is a walking exhibit. Some of the animals are the same as you see in local zoos, but there are a couple of unique species that you won’t see anywhere else.

Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail

Disney’s Animal Kingdom is all about conservation. While it is zoo-like, it is so much more!

Queue and Preshow

Since this is a walking trail, there is not a queue of preshow to be seen. Simply walk to the entrance to the trail . . . and walk some more.


Hippos, Zebras, and Gorillas. Oh my! I don’t think that’s how that song goes–but those are some of the animals you will see on Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail. While the animals occasionally change, you can also see meerkats, exotic birds, and other creatures in surrounding that make them feel at home.

Even though Walt Disney World feels like home to us, it’s nice that these animals are surrounded by plants and landscapes native to Africa. Kilimanjaro Safari is back to back with this attraction so some of the animals can wander back and forth.

While walking on the path, I noticed several Disney cast members who were actually research students. They are around to answer any questions you may have. Take advantage of the chance to learn about all the animals you’ll meet.

The final area is home to the Gorilla Research Camp. A family of gorillas lives here. The Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail is a quiet area. There’s a reason for that. Some of the animals (the Gorillas especially) feel threatened by loud noises. They get agitated and will move away from the noise. They move to places where they can’t be seen. If you want to see the animals, you need to BE QUIET!!!

Thankfully, most of Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail is in the shade. It does get hot, and there’s not a lot of air moving around, but the shade is welcome.

Post Show

There is no post-show. Simply exit the trail and walk directly to your favorite Animal Kingdom attraction — no zoo gives you perks like that!


Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail is near the exit to Kilimanjaro Safaris. Sometimes the path can get crowded–but it shouldn’t overwhelm you. Earlier in your day is a great time to visit as the crowds are pretty thin.

Fun Facts

Here are some interesting tidbits –

  • There is a hidden, not Mickey, but, Jafar in a rock formation.
  • If you look real hard, you might see an outline of Scar from The Lion King.
  • The trail is less than half a mile long.
  • Hippos live up to 45 years in the wild and even longer in captivity.

Dad’s Bottom Line

While there are many reasons to go to Animal Kingdom, this is a great reason.  The animals of Animal Kingdom add an element that is Simple, Fun, and Magic, and really helps you have the perfect vacation!