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Kali River Rapids


Kali River Rapids is a whitewater raft ride through the Indian forest on the Chakranadi River, complete with the requisite turns, bounces, and drops.

The backstory for Kali River Rapids is that guests are embarking on tours provided by Kali Rapids Expeditions. They board rafts with names like Sherpa Surfer, Kali Bumper Car, and Manaslu Slammer after being warned of possible illegal loggers in the area. The queue area retains the theme of the surrounding village of Anandapur, as guests walk through decaying temple areas and past prayer flags before boarding the rafts.

Kali River Rapids is a FASTPASS attraction. The ride often does not open until 10:00 AM, and is seldom available during evening Extra Magic Hours, especially during the off-season.


Kali River Rapids debuted on March 1, 1999 as the original Asia land was finally opened.

In Sanskrit, the words Chakra and Nadi mean, loosely, "circle" and "tube." Thus you can imagine that your raft is a circular tube, or that you will be going in circles while being washed down a tube. It is doubtful that Imagineering was referring to yoga, where chakra refers to an energy center of the body, while nadi is a conduit through which the energy flows.

While it was on the drawing board, even after the bulk of the park opened in April 1998, Kali River Rapids was to have been called Tiger River Run. The name change probably was done to couple the turbulent nature of the ride with the destruction of the forest. Kali is the Hindu goddess traditionally associated with destruction (the work kali is the feminine form of "black"), but more modernly she is considered the goddess of time and change. Interestingly, when Disney created their second raft ride at Disney's California Adventure® park, they kept the form of the original name and called it Grizzly River Run.


Kali River Rapids is an enjoyable ride, but is too short. There are really only two opportunities to get very wet, and the intervening turns are tame when compared to similar rides in non-Disney parks. In fact, Kali River Rapids does not stand up well even when compared to Disney's Grizzly River Run in California.

Nonetheless, it is a superbly themed ride, and given the right circumstances you can look forward to getting soaked - just hang out by the exit and see the state of some of the guests as the leave. We recommend trying it on the hot days, skipping it when the weather is chilly or overcast.


Touring Tips

  • Kali River Rapids is best done near the end of the day. Since the Animal Kingdom usually closes early, experiencing this attraction last gives you some daylight to dry off a little on your walk out of the park. There's nothing worse than spending an entire day walking around in wet shoes.
  • Some guests wear ponchos or garbage bags with holes in order to stay dry, or at least dryer. They often are the subject of gentle ridicule by frequent riders, who don't see the point of riding if not to get wet. Plus, you're going to be sitting in water if you happen to be on the wrong side of the raft, and ponchos do nothing for your shoes. Consider plastic bags around your ankles instead.

Hidden Treasures

  • Look carefully around the office while waiting in the queue - the gecko cabinet holds real geckos. Why can't Disney get an auto insurer to sponsor this ride?
  • The bridge just after the ride exit is also the last bridge that you pass under while experiencing the attraction. If you were hit by an elephant's water blast, why not pass it on to the next raft in line?


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