Rivers of Light at Disney's Animal Kingdom

Rivers of Light at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Location: Disney’s Animal Kingdom in the Asia section of the park
Running Time: 16 minutes (Pre-show entertainment begins 15 minutes prior to the scheduled showtime)
Capacity: 5,000
FastPass+: Yes

Rivers of Light will make its official debut at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Walt Disney World on Friday, February 17th, 2017. Along with the opening of Pandora – The World of Avatar (scheduled for May 2017), Rivers of Light will help turn Disney’s Animal Kingdom into a full day park and extend the park’s operating hours. Below is a full guide to the new show:



The show is described as celebrating the majesty of nature and the connection between animals and humans in the world, the performance combines live performers, beautiful floating lanterns, glistening fountains, special effects and authentic animal imagery projected on giant water screens.

“Disney’s Animal Kingdom is built around the lives of animals, built around the rules of nature, and those rules dictate that as you move between day and night everything changes…and you’re going to want to see that,” said Joe Rohde, Creative Executive, Walt Disney Imagineering. “It all really is summed up by Rivers of Light. In the show, we take this combination of light and water which create life, and out of that comes this fantastically rich explosion of animal life that ultimately rises up and joins the stars.”


Following its debut, the show will typically be performed on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays (Basically the days that begin with “T” or “S”. This schedule may be adjusted particularly during peak days. Showtimes will vary depending on time of year. The Tree of Life Awakening will not occur during performances of Rivers of Light.

Concept art for Rivers of Light

Concept art for Rivers of Light

Seating Areas

Seating for guests with FastPass+ seating will be located at the Asia side of the theater. Guests looking for Standby or Dining Package seating should go to the DinoLand U.S.A. side of the theater.

Dining Packages

The Rivers of Light Dining Package includes reserved seating at the new show. At all-you-care-to-eat Tusker House, you can choose the breakfast, lunch or dinner buffet on the day of the show. Guests must dine at least 2 ½ hours before the show. Breakfast is $39 for adults and $24 for guests aged 3 to 9, plus tax and gratuity. Lunch and dinner is $52 for adults and $32 for guests aged 3 to 9, plus tax and gratuity. The dining plan for the Rivers of Light Dining Package at the Tusker House Restaurant counts as one table-service meal.

At Tiffins, the Rivers of Light Dining Packages are available at both lunch and dinner. Guests may choose an appetizer, entrée, dessert, and a non-alcoholic beverage. Dining must take place at least three hours prior to showtime. The cost is $67 for adult guests and $26 for guests aged 3 to 9 plus tax and gratuity. The dining plan for the Rivers of Light Dining Package at Tiffins counts as two table-service meal entitlements.

Reservations are now open and can be made by visiting DisneyWorld.com/dining or calling 407-WDW-DINE.


Merchandise for Rivers of Light is available. Many items are available via the Shop Disney Parks Apps. Some highlights include

  • Rivers of Light Made with Magic Totem Glow Wand ($28.07)
  • Rivers of Light Animated LED Fan ($15.02)
  • Rivers of Light Fleece ($42.00)
  • Rivers of Light Glow Lanyard ($15.02)
  • Rivers of Light Pin ($9.99)
  • Rivers of Light CD ($15.98)

Frequently Asked Questions

Does it run in inclement weather?
While the show is designed to run in the rain, it will not be performed if there is lightning in the area.

What if it’s canceled and I have a dining package?
In the event the show is canceled, Dining Package Guests may attend a performance of Rivers of Light up to five (5) days after their original scheduled date.

What if it’s canceled and I have a FastPass+?
Any Guest with a FastPass+ reservation will receive a recovery FastPass valid for any attraction at any park (with the exception of Rivers of Light) to use the following day.

Do I have to have a FastPass+ or Dining Package to view?
No — standby seating will be available for each performance. Standby seating is located on the Dinoland U.S.A. side of the theatre.

Is Rivers of Light a temporary attraction?
No closing date for Rivers of Light has been announced, it is a permanent attraction. The technology used for the show does make it possible to update the show often if desired.

Is there a soundtrack for the show available?
A soundtrack has been announced and should be ready around the time of Rivers of Light’s debut.

Fun Facts

  • The 11 show floats are independent of each other and programmed to follow a choreographed “dance” across the lagoon.
  • More than 50,000 programmable, color-changing LED lights are found in the four Animal Spirit Guide floats alone.
  • Costumes for the storytellers and their acolytes include fabrics using 5,000-year-old dye and weaving techniques.
  • The signature song “We Are One” was written by Mark Mancina, who created the score and was a key collaborator on the music for Disney’s “Moana.”
  • Much of the animal footage is never-before-seen moments from Disneynature films.


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