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    Kali River Rapids

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Description And Comments

Kali River Rapids is an unguided trip in a circular rubber raft down an artificial river; each raft has a topmounted platform that seats 12 people. The raft essentially floats free in the current and is washed downstream through rapids and waves. Because the “river” is fairly wide, with various currents, eddies, and obstacles, each trip is different and exciting.

What distinguishes Kali River Rapids from other theme park raft rides is Disney’s trademark attention to visual detail. Whereas some raft rides are just an unadorned plunge down a concrete ditch, Kali River Rapids flows through a dense rainforest and past waterfalls, temple ruins, and bamboo thickets, emerging into a cleared area where greedy loggers have ravaged the forest, and finally drifting back under the tropical canopy as the river cycles back to Anandapur. Along the way, your raft runs a gauntlet of raging cataracts, logjams, and other dangers.

The queuing area, which winds through an ancient Southeast Asian temple, is one of the most striking and visually interesting settings of any Disney attraction; the sights on the raft trip itself are also first-class.

That said, Kali River Rapids is marginal in two important respects: First, you get only about 3½ minutes on the water, and second . . . well, it’s a weenie ride. Sure, you get wet, but the drops and rapids aren’t all that exciting, as this Kansas family points out:

It was boiling hot, so we were happy about the prospect of being drenched. At the end, we all looked at each other and said, “Is that IT?” We couldn’t believe we’d stood in line, sweating half to death, for 75 minutes just for that.

Touring Tips

Kali River Rapids is hugely popular on hot summer days. Ride before 11 a.m. or during the last hour the park is open.

Disney has toned down the amount of water splashed at you during the ride. We’ve still gotten wet but not soaked through. Because you’ll probably get wet, we recommend wearing shorts and sport sandals (such as Tevas) to the park, as well as bringing along a jumbo trash bag plus a smaller plastic bag. Before you board, punch a hole in the big bag for your head. Note: You’ll stay drier if you don’t cut holes for your arms; the downside is that it’ll make fastening your seat belt awkward, so it’s your call. If you’re wearing closed shoes and socks, take them off, put your shoes back on minus the socks, and then wrap the smaller bag around your shoes. If you’re worried about mussing your coiffure, bring a third bag for your head.

A Shaker Heights, Ohio, family who donned our couture de garbage discovered that staying dry on Kali River Rapids is not without its social costs:

Cast members and the other people in our raft looked at us like we’d just beamed down from Mars. (One cast member asked if we needed wet suits and snorkels.) Plus, we didn’t cut arm holes in our trash bags because we thought we’d stay drier that way—once we sat down, though, we couldn’t fasten our seat belts. After a lot of wiggling and adjusting and helping each other, we finally got belted in, and off we went, looking like sacks of fertilizer with heads poking out. Very embarrassing, but we stayed nice and dry.

A family from Humble, Texas, who rode early in the morning on a cool day, shares this:

We didn’t read your precautions for Kali River Rapids until after we rode. The 6-year-old and Mom were COMPLETELY drenched—so much so that we had to leave the park and go back to our room at Port Orleans to change clothes. Since the temperature was around 60 degrees that morning, we were pretty miserable by the time we got back to our room. Needless to say, our schedule was shot by then.

Riding later in the day would have been a better option in this case. Kali River Rapids offers free 2-hour locker rentals to the left of the attraction entrance, near the restrooms. Store a change of dry clothes here or, alternatively, wear as little as the law and Disney will allow. If you’re wearing closed shoes, prop up your feet above the bottom of the raft—slogging around in wet shoes is a surefire ticket to Blisterville.

Kali River Rapids Wait Times

This chart shows you roughly how long you'll wait for Kali River Rapids when you visit on a day with a given Disney's Animal Kingdom Crowd Level. The blue bars represent the average "peak" wait time (that is, how long the line will be at its busiest). The bottom and top black lines represent the range of peak wait times to expect (for you fellow nerds out there: it's the 5th percentile and 95th percentile of peak wait times). Please note that these are estimates, and for a better forecast for your travel dates, see Kali River Rapids Wait Times.

Special Comments

You are guaranteed to get wet. May open 30 minutes after the rest of the park on off-peak or cold days. 38" minimum height requirement. Switching-off option provided.

Special Needs

Other Attractions in Asia

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