Get ready to race through the icy Himalayan peaks on a high-speed train, all while trying to avoid the clutches of the Yeti.
Secure your belongings and hold on tight. A trek to the summit of Everest awaits you.
Let’s explore our guide to Expedition Everest!
Expedition Everest Quick Facts
You can find Expedition Everest at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Asia. It’s the giant snowcapped mountain, so you can’t miss it. Here’s the location on the map.
How to Ride Expedition Everest
Expedition Everest has a Standby Lane, Lightning Lane, and a Single Rider Lane.
The standby lanes for Expedition Everest are typically the lowest first thing in the morning and at the end of the evening. The middle of the day will see the longest lines.
It is listed as an available attraction for Early Theme Park Entry. This means it will open 30-minutes before the official park open every day for Disney World resort guests (and select others) only.
Expedition Everest’s standby wait time jumps quickly after park open and can see sustained wait times well over 60 minutes for most of the park day.
Do I need to use Genie+ at Expedition Everest?
Expedition Everest is available with Genie+ and we highly recommend using it at this attraction.
This is the only roller coaster at Animal Kingdom. It’s a highly-popular ride that many park guests make a must-do during their park day. Unless you hop on this ride first thing, you should plan to reserve a Genie+ time for later in the day.
Make sure you check out our touring strategies for Animal Kingdom for more Genie+ advice.
Rider Switch/Child Swap
You can use Rider Switch for Expedition Everest. This is Disney World’s system that allows guests with small children to take turns riding bigger rides, while another member of your party waits with the little one.
There is also a Single Rider Line, which can greatly reduce wait times for your party especially on crowded park days. If you choose this line, be prepared to be split up from your party.
What to Expect When You Ride
Expedition Everest has one of the most impressively themed queues across Disney World. Disney imagineers really outdid themselves with immersing you in the culture of the Himalayas.
You actually feel like you’re getting ready to hike Mount Everest with all of the objects and details present in the line. Make your way through the booking office to secure your travel documents, climbing permits, and other necessary supplies for your journey.
That said, we highly encourage you to pay attention to the artifacts on display. Some of them are authentic and come straight from Nepal, including the base of Mount Everest!
The ride vehicles for Expedition Everest carry 34 passengers, two per row. The seats have tall backs with safety lap bars for each guest.
There is a test vehicle available near the Single Rider entrance to sit in and test out before you enter the line.
Guests must transfer from their ECVs or wheelchairs as these are not permitted on the coaster. Service animals cannot accompany guests on this ride.
Your photo is taken on Expedition Everest. As soon as your train goes down the big drop, your photo is snapped. So make sure you’re ready!
When you ride with a MagicBand and a linked Memory Maker entitlement, your photo will automatically be uploaded to your My Disney Experience account. The same can be said if you’re a Disney World Annual Passholder.
The photo will be available in the app for 45 days unless you choose to purchase them.
Guests purchasing Genie+ will receive digital downloads of their on-ride photos taken in the park on the day of their purchase, at no additional charge.
Not only does Expedition Everest make quick turns and have top speeds of 50 mph, the coaster goes forwards and backwards.
There are even moments in complete darkness. This is definitely one ride that can cause motion sickness. If you need it, we have a guide on motion sickness that’s filled with information and tips.
On the Ride
Here’s what you can expect when you take a ride on Expedition Everest. Beware: the Yeti and ride spoilers are ahead!
You’ll make your way through the ride queue, which depicts a Tibetan village and the Himalayan Escapes Tours and Expeditions Booking Office.
Your train arrives quickly into the boarding station. After taking your seat and pulling down the safety lap bar, hold on tight! The train will pick up speed as it departs the station and heads toward the mountain.
The train rounds a few corners and then slows down for a steep ascent up the mountain.
You’ll hear some traditional music of the Himalayas and spot a painting of the Yeti on the rocks above as a warning to turn back.
Your train suddenly picks up speed again, through a couple of quick snow capped turns and partial darkness. As light appears, the train jolts to a sudden stop.
Your eyes focus on the broken and twisted track in front of you. You fear you already know who is responsible for tearing apart the train track.
The train cannot move forward, so how will you make your way back down the mountain? Unbeknownst to you, the train track is switching beneath the ride. All of a sudden you feel yourself hurdling backwards twisting and turning into total darkness.
The train stops again this time inside a dimly lit ice cavern. You spy a huge, eery shadow on the walls and hear the growling of a mystical creature too close for comfort. The Yeti must be near!
Before you can gain your bearing, the train takes off and you are sent forward once again, this time over and down a steep drop.
Hands up! This is where the ride really showcases its speed and agility, taking you over hills and through a several more fun twists and sharp turns.
You go through several more dark sections and even race past a huge scary Yeti who reaches out to snatch you.
The train begins to slow down and enters the Tour Office boarding station once again where you will disembark.
Is Expedition Everest Kid-Friendly?
Expedition Everest isn’t for the faint of heart. Not only is there a steep 80 foot drop, but it reaches high speeds of 50 mph and goes both forwards and backwards. It’s a thrilling, intense ride.
There are also a lot of dark moments and a scary yeti that appears. You should definitely be wary about taking little ones on this, if they meet the height requirement.
We have a full guide on several other things that might scare little ones at Disney World.
Strollers are not allowed in the queue for Expedition Everest. You’ll need to park your stroller in the designated stroller parking area at the attraction entrance or leave it with a non-rider.
Expedition Everest debuted after Animal Kingdom opened on April 22, 1998 (aka Earth Day).
As for the roller coaster, it officially opened on April 7, 2006. The design was based on the northwest face of Mount Everest and geological elements found in Tibet and Nepal.
Imagineers focused on ensuring the attraction was as authentic as possible by speaking to locals and even using actual artifacts and items in the queue that were imported from Asia, including the Buddha statues, coke bottles, desk phone, and computers.
At nearly 200 feet high, this is the tallest out of the 18 Disney mountain attractions at Disney Parks around the world!
Other Fun Details
- Expedition Everest has one of the most impressive queues. Did you know a lot of the items are authentic? That’s right, some of the objects came straight from Nepal and the base of Mount Everest. There’s so much to observe, so pay attention!
- The colorful cloths seen in the queue represent Tibetan prayer flags. These flags are actually seen in and around the real Mount Everest. The colors represent the five elements – space, air, water, fire and earth.
- The Yeti is also known as the Abominable Snowman.
- Expedition Everest’s layout creates a giant Mickey head.
- Play Disney Parks, the free mobile app, is available here. It allows guests to pass the time as they play games, trivia, and earn achievements along the way.
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