More Walt Disney World Resort Stories

The Animation Experience at Conservation Station begins July 11

Scott Terrell

by , DVM, DACVP, Director of Animal & Science Operations, Walt Disney Parks & Resorts

Back in March, I shared exciting news about the reopening of Rafiki’s Planet Watch, Affection Section and the Wildlife Express Train this summer including all of the offerings our guests love. Today, I am happy to announce that we’ll also be introducing a brand-new additional experience drawing on our rich heritage of wildlife animation, inspired by Walt Disney’s own passion for ensuring his animators could develop realistic characters and settings by spending time with animals.

In honor of our celebration of Disney’s “The Lion King,” we’ll be launching The Animation Experience at Conservation Station, offering our guests the opportunity to learn how live animals have inspired some of the most iconic characters from this beloved “tail.” You’ll learn more about some of the animals who call our park home and then have the chance to create a personalized piece of Disney art through an instructor-led animation class. As you’d expect, some of your favorite characters from “The Lion King” will be the stars of The Animation Experience, which will start when Rafiki’s Planet Watch reopens on July 11. Come learn how to draw Simba, Zazu, Pumbaa, Timon and more. Each session will be different so be sure to visit often to complete the collection. Disney FastPass+ Service will be offered for the experience, and you can make those selections starting later today.

For more than 60 years, animals have been a part of Disney storytelling, and these stories continue today alongside efforts to protect wildlife and habitats around the world, as well as provide immersive experiences that connect kids and families with the magic of nature. We look forward to offering guests this new way of connecting with the animals in our park in addition to the other unique opportunities that Rafiki’s Planet Watch offers. We are excited to welcome guests back to greet and hug the animals at Affection Section, catch a glimpse of medical procedures at our veterinary treatment window, learn how our animal care experts prepare meals for and care for the park’s animal residents and more.


  • I love this new addition to Planet Watch, and will definitely make time for it in the day as it sounds like a lot of fun.

    However I haven’t any news if Song of the Rainforest is returning with the reopening of Planet Watch, do y’all happen to know if the attraction is reopening along with Planet Watch. Asking because it’s one of my family’s favorite places to go and unwind in the park.

  • Oh my goodness I cannot wait I am so excited!!!

  • My girls are so excited to be able to visit on our upcoming trip! Rafiki’s Planet Watch is one of our favorites!

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