Location: Wild Animal Park, board at Simba Station (indicated in red on above map) located between Lion Camp and Heart of Africa
Habitats/Regions featured: Africa's desert, veldt, forest, and mountain habitats
Length of route: about 2.5 miles (4 kilometers)
Conveyance: Open-sided, soft-wheeled tour vehicles
Running time: 25–30 minutes
Opening date: March 14, 2007
Nearest dining facility: Okavango Outpost in Heart of Africa.
Note: The former Wgasa Bush Line Railway has been retired. The Journey into Africa tour requires a separate admission fee ($10 per adult, $6 per child age 3–11) when not purchased with the Best Value Ticket and is not included with guest passes.
Be sure to look for…
The Journey into Africa Tour
TV spot: "Wildebeest"
Africa: A million places
Africa isn’t a place—it’s a million places. The continent of Africa is the second largest on Earth, with a dizzying mix of habitats, animals, cultures, and languages. The Journey into Africa tour is designed to give you a glimpse of the amazing diversity found there.
As you approach your tour vehicle, you start getting a sense of this place called Africa. Interactive elements line the winding path to the loading site. Lift-up flaps, maps, and cultural artifacts establish a “sense of place.” Video monitors show you the dense forests, harsh deserts, vast savannas, and other habitats found in Africa. Board the African Express and begin your Journey into Africa tour.
All your favorites are here: curious giraffes, massive rhinos, graceful gazelles, and impressively horned antelope, as well as new species. You’ll share our pride in successfully breeding endangered animals and hear the stories of wildlife and habitats threatened by competition for resources, both with humans and other animals. How will those stories end? It’s up to all of us! During the tour, you’ll learn about the many programs we have in place to help conservation efforts in Africa.
During the Journey into Africa Tour, you ’ll see eye to eye with wildlife and get a new appreciation for just how huge a rhinoceros or Cape buffalo is. In this open space, you’ll see goliath herons, ostriches, and other members of our extensive bird collection mixing and mingling with gemsbok, sable antelope, Patterson’s eland, and reticulated giraffe, just as they would in the same habitat in Africa. Including feathered friends helps reflect the kind of diversity you would see on an African safari.
Surrounding a large waterhole, we’ve planted a number of African tree species that will grow into a representation of a Central Africa forest. This habitat was created as a result of the Greening of the Park campaign. An island created in the center of the waterhole provides breeding sites for pink-backed pelicans, saddle bill storks, and western Ruppell’s vultures. The new ride path goes out over the water, bringing you closer to the birds than ever before. You’ll also be able to see bongos, red river hogs, and Vaal rheboks—a small antelope never exhibited at the Park before.
As your tour takes you through South Africa you’ll get a look at our herd of Grevy’s zebras. You’ll also roll through North Africa, where the Sahara desert is home to animals with amazing adaptations. Watch for Barbary red deer and red-fronted gazelle. Two other species in this exhibit are hard to miss—the horns on both the scimitar-horned oryx and Ankole cattle are certain to catch your eye.
From North Africa, your tour will take you back through East Africa for another, better look at the impalas, white-bearded gnus, Thomson’s and Roosevelt’s gazelles, Rothschild’s giraffes and, of course, southern white rhinos. As you disembark, don’t think your connection to Africa is ending. This tour was created especially for you and will continue to change so that your own journey into Africa can be never-ending.
- Africa makes up 20 percent of the Earth’s landmass. It is the second largest continent.
- Africa is home to more than 890 million people. Over 1,000 languages are spoken across the continent.
- Africa is the only continent to stretch from northern to southern temperate zones.
- Africa has one of the highest densities and most diverse wildlife
populations on the planet.