Update on Pandora – The World of AVATAR at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Pandora – The World of AVATAR

Pandora – The World of AVATAR

Pandora – The World of AVATAR

Even though the opening of Avatarland at DAK isn’t until mid-2017, construction on the new land really picked up this summer!

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Construction view from DAK entrance.

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One of the Floating Mountains of Pandora under construction

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Pandora from the entrance in Africa.

The Floating Mountains of Pandora.

The Floating Mountains of Pandora.

Disney announced last month that the new land will be called ‘Pandora – The World of AVATAR.’  [I prefer Avatarland.]

Right now, most of the activity is hidden behind construction walls at the former Camp Minnie-Mickey area. Avatarland has taken over the entire area at the front of DAK once occupied by the Disney character meet-and-greet area and the “Festival of the Lion King” show, which relocated to a new, much bigger theater in mid-2014.

Towering construction cranes – at least 2 or 3 at a time – can be seen from DAK’s entrance area, working away all day long.

The bridge to the former Camp Minnie-Mickey area will be the main entrance, with another entrance from Africa near the new land’s cliffs.

Several new buildings are being built onsite: “buildings that were used by previous human travelers to the planet, which have been retrofitted into food and supply source,” i.e., restaurants and merchandise locations.

The futuristic Avatarland will be populated by lush jungle foliage, floating mountains and the ruins of a military base camp sprinkled with audio-animatronics, 3-D projections and hologram effects. An area themed as the Pandora Landing Station Mess Hall will serve as a quick-service restaurant.

Soarin on a banshee.

Soarin on a banshee.  This will be one crazy simulator ride!!!

The main attraction will be a banshee flight simulator similar ride to Soarin’ at Epcot. Disney Imagineer Joe Rohde, who is spearheading the project, says the new ride system will be “considerably more thrilling” than the current Soarin’ attraction. Guests will “climb up the mountains of Pandora” in the queue for the ride before entering the show building where they will take off, literally launching off the cliffs on a Banshee. [No thank you!]

Pandora boat ride

Pandora boat ride

Disney is also building an indoor boat ride similar to Pirates of the Caribbean which will take riders on a river journey through the beautiful LED-illuminated forests of Pandora.

Pandora during the day.

Pandora during the day with the floating mountains, waterfalls and cliffs.

After dark, special lighting effects will play a prominent role in Avatarland, with LED-lighted sidewalks and illuminated plants that respond to the touch.

Pandora at night.

Pandora glowing at night.

Read our update on Rivers of Light:  New Rivers of Light Coming in 2016

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January 10, 2014: Groundbreaking ceremony

January 10, 2014: Groundbreaking ceremony for Avatarland.

Video of the groundbreaking ceremony on Jan 10, 2014: Breaking Ground on Avatarland

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Adventure Mickey was there too, which is good since he lost his meet & greet area!

Adventure Mickey was there too, which is good since he lost his meet & greet area!  😉

Preview of Avatarland: Highlights of Coming Attraction

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At our book launch in Boulder, Colorado.

At our book launch in Boulder, Colorado.

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program (Fall 2013/Spring 2014) and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney.

http://www.amazon.com/Girls-Mouse-Tale-Elly-Collins/dp/1941500110/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1430687055&sr=1-1&keywords=two+girls+and+a+mouse+tale

Available now at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

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One thought on “Update on Pandora – The World of AVATAR at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

  1. doyledeb says:

    I can only say…O.M.G. im so excited about this, hoping to visit once its completed although it’ll be a few years…gives me time to save up! thanks for the information!!! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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