Animal Kingdom's symbolic
"Tree of Life"
From The Oasis, visitors will make their way across the rustic wooden bridge to Discovery Island, the hub of Animal Kingdom's enchantment. An African-style village marketplace encircles the 14-story tall Tree of Life: the focal point of the Island and island trails leading to lemur, kangaroo, capybara and other exotic animal viewing areas.
Discovery Island is also home to the 3-D special effects show, "It's Tough to be a Bug." Jungle paths lined with bamboo, palms and oaks lead to other lands and jungles representing Africa, Asia, Polynesia and pre-historic times.
Wood, stone and ceramic animals peek from behind every crook and cranny: Disney hired 50 artisans from the Indonesian island of Bali to create hundreds of pieces of original artwork for the Village. Surrounding the Tree is The Tree of Life Gardens, a series of maze-like paths, covered in lush greenery and wild flowers. Guests can peer into the lives of ducks, otters, flamingos, cockatoos, lemurs, kangaroo and many other species of animals while they stroll through the opulent gardens.
DISCOVERY ISLAND SHOWS:
"It's Tough to be a Bug" --Housed within the gnarled roots at the base of the Tree of Life is a 430-seat theater, showing "It's Tough to Be a Bug," a part-3-D animated movie, part animatronic show along the lines of Epcot's "Honey I Shrunk the Audience." "It's Tough to Be A Bug" follows the adventures of some creepy crawlies. Dave Foley ("Newsradio") stars as "Flik," the ant who leads you through the 3-D journey. Flick introduces guests to lots of furry friends including Chili, the Chilean tarantula; an acid-spouting termite spews its venom out onto the audience and a stinking bug (stink-bug) takes aim at the audience after eating too many burritos; and things get a bit buggy when a nasty grasshopper shows up. Listen for the voices of Cheech Marin and "Seinfeld"'s Jason Alexander.
DISCOVERY ISLAND DINING:
Pizzafari -- Offers fresh-baked pasta, hot dogs, salads and sandwiches.
Flame Tree Barbecue -- Serves freshly smoked chicken, ribs, pork and beef; freshly tossed salads and kids meals are available.
Turkey Legs -- Serves kielbasa sub sandwiches and soft drinks.
Village shops are imitations
mirroring African-type structures.
DISCOVERY ISLAND SHOPPING:
Wonders of the Wild -- A uniquely themed nature apparel and decorative gift shop. Pick up Character photo here.
Island Mercantile -- Find themed merchandise representing the various lands.
Creature Comforts -- Gifts for the little creatures. Clothing, stuffed toys and more.
Beastly Bazaar -- Find surf and island wear, hats, accessories and souvenirs.
As always, Disney's attention to detail is evident throughout Discovery Island. Everywhere you look there's a new adventure. Leaves and branches are carved into granite-type walkways, small animals are painted onto tiles into corners and painted onto stucco walls. Paths are lined with bamboo, palms, oaks, and ferns.
At the "Tree of Life" you could easily spend hours searching for animals carved into every crevice, leaf, bark and branch of the tree. This amazing spectacle is guaranteed to intrigue even the most jaded of persons.
The Discovery Island Band is definitely worth stopping for. Check your Adventurer's Guide for playing times.
Throughout Discovery Island you will find the typical amenities: phone, restrooms, information center/guest relations, film processing, pay phone with TTY equipment, mail drop, baby services, pin station, Character greeting area and smoking areas.