Discovery Island Trails at Animal Kingdom

Welcome to Discovery Island Trails at Animal Kingdom!

Originally called the Tree of Life Gardens, then the Discovery Island Gardens, the Discovery Island Trails are a hidden gem of sorts at Animal Kingdom -- a virtual feast for the eyes. Winding around the base of the Tree of Life, one could enter and exit any number of ways and see different animals each visit.

One of the extra special treats at the end of the Discovery Island Trails is the close-up look at the incredible animal carvings in the Tree of Live, the central icon of Disney's Animal Kingdom!

On your next visit to Animal Kingdom, plan some time to explore these trails -- which are often empty as other guests zoom up the main paths to the more popular attractions.

Here are just a few of the animals you might see:

Abdim's Stork
African Comb Duck
Asian Small-clawed Otter
Axis Deer
Blue & Yellow Macaw
Cape Teal
Demoiselle Crane
East African Crowned Crane
European Polecat
Eyton's Whistling Duck
Galapagos Tortoise
Greater Flamingo
Green-winged Macaw
Hadada Ibis
Red Kangaroo
Ring-tailed Lemur
Saddle-billed Stork
Salmon-crested Cockatoo
Silver Teal
White Stork
White-faced Whistling Duck
Woolynecked Stork
Wood Stork

A big draw to Discovery Island Trails is the Galapagos Tortoise. describes having a tortoise to themselves for a visit, snapping more than 100 photos and saying, "This is one of the big reasons why Animal Kingdom is so special to me!"

Have you visited the Discovery Island Trails? Have an experience to share? Leave a comment below!

katrina1122 wrote on Mon, 06/20/2011 - 13:15:

katrina1122's picture

We had a cm tour us through the whole area for over an hour. She talked about each animal and all of the carvings. It was amazing. I still remember her name. Thanks Sue!

The Boxing Guru wrote on Fri, 06/24/2011 - 01:05:

The Boxing Guru's picture

I LOVE these trails. When I slip off to them, it feels like I leave the crowds behind, and go off into my own little world of discovery. A slower pace, and some great animals. Possibly my favorite part of the Animal Kingdom park!

Rodolfo wrote on Thu, 07/01/2021 - 19:42:

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