Most guests arrive in the morning, with a sizable number on hand before opening and a larger wave arriving before 10 a.m. Guests continue to stream in through the late morning and into the early afternoon, with crowds peaking at around 2 p.m. From about 2:30 p.m. on, departing guests outnumber arriving guests, as those who arrived early complete their tour and leave. Crowds thin appreciably by late afternoon and continue to decline into the early evening, although when Rivers of Light and the nighttime version of Kilimanjaro Safaris open in 2016, we expect crowds to pick up at those times. There should still be a midafternoon lull, however.
If you decide to visit during the late afternoon, you'll almost certainly have to return on another afternoon to finish seeing everything.
Because the number of attractions and shows is limited, most guests can complete a fairly comprehensive tour in two-thirds of a day if they arrive either at park opening or at about 3 p.m. (if the park stays open until 7 or 8 p.m.), when the early birds are heading for the exits.
How guests tour Animal Kingdom depends on their prior knowledge of the park and its attractions. Newbies make their way to Discovery Island and depend on their park map to decide what to do next. Animal Kingdom vets heads straight for Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest, with Kali River Rapids another early-morning favorite.
With so many guests heading first thing for either the Safaris or Everest, DinoLand and Discovery Island are lightly trafficked backwaters until late morning. As the day wears on, the masses who have experienced these two attractions turn their attention to other rides and shows, and the crowds become more equally distributed. Less popular attractions don't experience high traffic until 11:30 a.m.
Get Current and Future Wait Times with Lines
To get a complete view of the actual traffic patterns while you're in the park, use our mobile application, Lines. The app gives you current wait times and future estimates in half-hour increments for today and tomorrow. A quick glance shows how traffic patterns affect wait times throughout the day.