Tree of Life at Disney World’s Animal Kingdom

The Tree of Life is the heart of Animal Kingdom park at Walt Disney World and the center iconic element of the park. This massive faux tree is designed to imitate a real Tree of Life, the Baobab, found in Africa. The Tree of Life stands over 145 feet tall and is highly visible across many viewpoints of the Walt Disney World skyline.

Tree of Life at Disney World

Additionally, you’ll find that the tree is home to over 300 different wood carvings. The immediate area surrounding the tree offers a variety of animal encounters, character meets, and attractions.

Tree of Life Disney wood carvings

In recent years, the Tree of Life has become an attraction itself offering calming projection shows after nightfall. This review will cover all the basis for touring this area at Animal Kingdom on your next visit.

Below are a few quick reference details for the Tree of Life.

Tree of LifeAnimal Kingdom


Discovery Island

Disney Height Requirements:


Animal Kingdom FastPass:


Ride Type:


Seats Per Vehicle:


Rider Switch at Disney World:


Extra Magic Hours:


Good For:

Family Time

Scary Factor:


Must-Do List:


Perfect For:

All Ages

Special Mention:

Make sure to get a family photo
in front of the tree to commemorate your
visit to Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Tree of Life at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

The Tree of Life is located on Discovery Island in the Animal Kingdom. When you enter the park the Tree of Life will come into immediate view. There are almost always several PhotoPass photographers in the area. It’s a great place to take a family photo at some point during your day.

Take photo in front of the Tree of Life at Disney.

With that being said, I would like to make you aware that there are several things to do at, around, and even under the Tree of Life. Those items are:

  • Tree of Life Awakenings
  • Discovery Island Trails
  • It’s Tough to be a Bug!
  • Animal Encounters

My opinion is that most people have no idea the beautiful Discovery Island Trails even exist. These trails wrap around each side of the Tree of Life bridging the area between Africa and Asia.

The trails are truly astonishing and walk under caves and different rock formations. When you get this close you can pick out the wood carvings one-by-one on the tree. If you’ve never been up close to the area before it’s almost unreal to see it for the first time.

The good thing is is this area is rarely crowded no matter what time I walk through. Sometimes I’m at the Animal Kingdom on a busy holiday and find this the perfect place to escape. You’ll go from wall to wall traffic to feeling like you have the park to yourself.

Underneath the Tree of Life is a 3D attraction called It’s Tough to be a Bug! This is a cute show and a nice place to take a break during the heat of the day.

Surrounding the Tree of Life are also a variety of animal encounters. Some of these are located on the outskirts like Otter Grotto, the flamingos, and the cotton-top Tamarins.

There are turtles, porcupines, kangaroos, and vultures that can all be seen from the trails as well. Not to mention, being this close to the tree.

You might even run into Pocahontas if you time things right. She often meets on the trails during the day.

Lastly, the tree now offers a nightly projection show. As night begins to fall the Tree of Life becomes alive in a new way. Musical notes will enhance the experience as fireflies begin to light up the area around the tree. Before long you’ll see animals of the forest in various displays projected on the tree.

The Tree of Life Awakenings happen at night approximately every 10 minutes until the park closes. You are welcome to stay for as little or long as you like to enjoy the projection show.

As you can probably tell the Tree of Life is a lot more than just the centerpiece element of the park. Make sure to enjoy some of these activities while you are touring.

And for similar experience you might also like these reviews:

Disney Tree of Life Photos:

Wood Carvings on Tree of Life Animal Kingdom
Tree of Life Photos at Disney

Planning a Walt Disney World vacation? You might enjoy browsing our list of Disney World Hotel Reviews. Or you might enjoy some of these specific reviews:

Have you ever taken the time to explore the area around the Tree of Life? Let me know in the comments below.

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