How I Spent One Hour in Disney World

by | Sep 18, 2023 | Animal Kingdom, Walt Disney World

I had exactly one hour in Disney World to try and fit as much in as possible. Here’s exactly what I did in my day.

I’ve given a lot of thought to what my dream day in Walt Disney World would be. As someone who could spend an infinite amount of time at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, it would likely involve spending much of the day there, starting the day with a Joffrey’s coffee before heading for an exciting ride to visit the Yeti on Expedition Everest. It would definitely involve a trip to the Nomad Lounge, followed by the Festival of the Lion King and a ride on Kilimanjaro Safaris. Then, after the park closes, I would obviously need to head to Magic Kingdom to watch Happily Ever After.

So, my dream day in Disney World is all figured out. But, what if I just had one hour to spend in Disney World? That was the (happy) conundrum I found myself in recently when I had approximately an hour to do whatever I could in the Most Magical Place on Earth before I had to return to reality. As you may have guessed, I chose to spend that hour in Animal Kingdom, curious to see just how much I could get done in 60 minutes at my favorite park.

How I Spent One Hour in Disney World

I started the stopwatch the moment I entered the gates to Animal Kingdom, curious to see exactly how much I could accomplish over the course of an hour. Immediately upon entering, I was greeted with a fun little surprise — DiVine was out and about!

one hour disney world

Photo by Morgan Flaherty

I headed into the park knowing exactly what I wanted to accomplish first. Since I was traveling solo for an hour, I knew where my first stop would be — Expedition Everest. However, in true Animal Kingdom fashion, I was distracted by some cute animals along the way.

one hour disney world

Photo by Morgan Flaherty

A Cast Member was out feeding what I believe were the cotton-top tamarin monkies born earlier this summer. They were adorable and drew and understandable crowd as everyone watched them get some breakfast.

Single Rider at Expedition Everest

Once I was able to pull myself away from animal cuteness, I headed over to Asia, where I knew I could hop into the single-rider line for the ride. While your timing and experience may vary, I’ve always found the single-rider entrance to move fairly quickly in my time at Expedition Everest (fun fact: I once rode it nine times in a row using single rider). At this point of the morning, the standby line for Everest was 30 minutes, and I walked on within about two minutes total.

Photo by Morgan Flaherty

A Relaxing Coffee at Upcountry Landing

With plenty of time left in my hour, my next stop was to replenish with some caffeine. I grabbed my favorite Joffrey’s cold brew from the Royal Anandapur Tea Cart located in Asia near Kali River Rapids.

joffrey's animal kingdom one hour disney world

Photo by Morgan Flaherty

Because I was in no real rush, I enjoyed my coffee in one of my very favorite areas of the park — Upcountry Landing. If you have a moment to relax at the park, this is one of the most underrated places to do it. The quiet little area is tucked away in the Asia area of the park, near the theater for Feathered Friends in Flight! Here you’ll find some seating by the water, where you can get a great view of the characters going by on boats. It also has one of my very favorite views of the Tree of Life…

Photo by Morgan Flaherty

…just look at that view! It’s a stunning little photo spot, and the perfect shaded area to take a moment of relaxation away from the hustle and bustle of the park. Whether you’re grabbing fries at the nearby Mr. Kamal’s, or a Joffrey’s drink like I was, bring it over to this spot to enjoy it in some peace.

Photo by Morgan Flaherty

While I enjoyed my coffee, I also placed two mobile orders for treats to enjoy on my way out of the park. I ordered a few desserts from Zuri’s Sweet Shop, as well as my lunch to-go — cheeseburger pods from Sat’uli Canteen.

Zuri’s Sweet Shop and Sat’uli Canteen

For my treats to bring home, I was in and out of Zuri’s Sweet Shop in no time. This is an incredibly underrated little treat shop in the Africa section of the park, You’ll find delicious Werther’s caramel concoctions, candy apples, fudge, cookies, and other ways to satisfy your sweet tooth. To cool off, you can also grab a variety of frozen glaciers that are incredibly refreshing.

Photo by Morgan Flaherty

With 25 minutes still to spare, I made my way over to Pandora to pick up my cheeseburger pods to go. In what felt like a rookie mistake, this ended up being the longest part of my hour-long journey into the park. However, there’s simply nothing I could’ve picked up on the road trip home that would’ve beat some Pandora cheeseburger pods in the car, so it was well worth the time. Once my mobile order was ready, I was able to go to the beverage station where a kind Cast Member gave me a to-go container to bring my food home.

Photo by Morgan Flaherty

Obviously, you’re not going to accomplish everything you could possibly want to do in Disney World in an hour. However, as I hit my stopwatch on the way out, I clocked in my time at about an hour and eight minutes.

Screenshot by Morgan Flaherty

In that time I was able to see DiVine and some animals, ride Everest, relax with a Joffrey’s coffee, pick up from Zuri’s, and grab some cheeseburger pods to go. Not too shabby for one hour in Disney World!

Posts by Morgan Flaherty

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Morgan is the Staff Editor for WDW Magazine. A lifelong Disney fan, her dream day involves just about anything to do with Animal Kingdom. Along with several years of experience writing about Disney, Morgan has also written as a contributing writer for Well + Good, Scary Mommy, Brit + Co, and Baby Chick.
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Authored by
Morgan Flaherty

Morgan is the Staff Editor for WDW Magazine. A lifelong Disney fan, her dream day involves just about anything to do with Animal Kingdom. Along with several years of experience writing about Disney, Morgan has also written as a contributing writer for Well + Good, Scary Mommy, Brit + Co, and Baby Chick.
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