5 Interesting Facts About Disney’s New Land “Pandora: The World of Avatar”

Pandoraavatar (Image: Twitter/JeevesOrlando)


Walt Disney World has been bringing fairytales to life and making fantasy feel real since its opening in 1971. The magic of Disney captivates both small children and grown adults by turning dreams and imagination into reality. Disney’s newest land, Pandora: The World of Avatar, doesn’t miss the mark. In fact, Disney seems to have outdone itself.

Pandora: The World of Avatar opened to the public on May 27 inside of Disney’s Animal Kingdom at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida. The land, which is based on James Cameron’s 2009 blockbuster film Avatar, seems to transport visitors into the movie.  (Click here to learn more about the attractions, cuisine, and landscape of Pandora.) Here are five interesting facts about Pandora: The World of Avatar.


1. It Took 6 Years And a Half a Billion Dollars to Build


Cameron says Disney first approached him with the idea to transform his record-breaking sci-fi flick into a reality back in 2011.

“Disney came to me and said that we want to take your movie and turn it into a land. Not a ride, a land—a place to go,” Cameron told CNN in a video interview during a press preview of the land. “And I thought ‘OK, that’s a bit of a challenge. You guys are biting off a big one this time.’ [But] you know what, they delivered on every promise and beyond.”

Although the project seemed ambitious, Cameron signed on. It took six years and $500 million to build the land, but the detail and precision in creating Pandora have paid off.



2. You Won’t See Any Avatar or Na’vi Walking Around the Land


Although you may run into Disney “cast members” in character as Alpha Centauri Expeditions’ field guides or humans who migrated to Pandora, you won’t see an avatar or Na’vi walking around. As Avatar fans can recall, Na’vi are the humanoid species indigenous to Pandora and avatars are Na’vi’s operated by humans. These fascinating blue creatures were the stars of the Oscar-winning film. One of the biggest disappointments about Pandora, however, is the missed opportunity for visitors to interact with Na’vi. The only time visitors can get a glimpse of a few is on the Pandoran River ride.

(Image: Twitter/WDWToday)



3. Don’t Expect to Meet Mickey Mouse on Pandora


Despite being in Walt Disney World, there are no traces of Mickey, Minnie, or any traditional Disney characters on Pandora—which is a good thing. This helps give the alien land an authentic feel. In addition, although Disney music plays in the background in the other Disney World theme parks, the only sounds you’ll hear on Pandora are noises from its wildlife.


4. You Can Create an Avatar in Your Own Image


On Pandora, you’ll have the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to create a customized avatar doll in your own image inside of Pandora’s Windtraders gift shop. The miniature avatar doll cost $74.99.


5. Pandora Glows After Dark


Pandora (Image: The Pandoran River | Source: VisitPandora.com)


At night, Pandora literally glows in the dark. Everything from the tropical plant life to the signature floating mountains to the ground is illuminated with neon lights after dusk. This gives visitors a feeling that they are actually experiencing life on another planet.

Pandora – The World of Avatar Is a Journey Beyond Belief


Eight years ago, Avatar took millions of people on a 3-D adventure that redefined the scope of science, fiction, and imagination. The Oscar-winning film introduced audiences to a distant world called Pandora filled with bioluminescent rainforests and inhabited by a nature-loving humanoid species called the Na’vi. In the movie, which takes place in the year 2154, humans try to colonize Pandora—a habitable moon of a gas giant in the Alpha Centauri star system—in order to extract its resources. The Na’vi, however, fight back to protect their land and save their colony.

Since its 2009 release, Avatar has earned over $ 2.7 billion, making it the highest-grossing film of all time. And, if that wasn’t impressive enough, Avatar director James Cameron and Disney have managed to bring the magic and wonder of the film to life. As a result, Avatar fans don’t have to wait for the sequel in 2020 to experience a new adventure on Pandora. Instead, they can taste, see, and explore the mystical land for themselves.


The Landscape


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Located inside of Disney’s Animal Kingdom at the Walt Disney World Resort, Pandora visitors are taken on a surreal journey to the foreign land 40 years after the conflict between humans and the Na’vi ends. The adventure is set in Pandora’s Valley of Mo’ara, which includes the signature floating mountains as seen in the movie.


One of several filtration plants, the Puffball Tree serves a vital purpose for the Pandoran ecosystem: collecting and storing toxic gases. #VisitPandora

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The sacred woodsprite. On Pandora, the natural and spiritual worlds come together in these Tree of Souls seeds. #VisitPandora

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The landscape of Pandora is populated by an array of real and fictional plants that serve a unique role in helping to balance the ecosystem. For example, the puffball tree purifies the air by absorbing chlorine and sodium through its roots. It also creates salt that animals can get from the leaves. Meanwhile, the Flaska Reclinata is a tree that helps cleanse the air of toxins and provides food for animals. Although it looks pretty and touchable, the tree will spray a mist of “spores” when it is repeatedly petted.



At night, Pandora literally glows in the dark. Everything from the plant life to the floating mountains to the ground is illuminated with neon lights after dusk, making it feel even more like another planet.


The People


Scattered throughout the land are actors or “cast members,” who would share an impressive knowledge about the history of Pandora. Whereas many were fluent in the native Na’vi language as well. Some cast members were in character as Alpha Centauri Expeditions’ field guides and others appeared to be humans who migrated to Pandora from Earth.


The Attractions


Pandora (Image: VisitPandora.com)


One of the main attractions on Pandora is the Flight of Passage ride, which gives visitors the opportunity to soar over the land while riding on the back of a banshee, a huge dragon-like creature. The jaw-dropping virtual ride transports riders into the movie, giving them a chance to smell the rainforest, feel the ocean mist, and feel the banshee breathing.


Pandora (Image: The Pandoran River | Source: VisitPandora.com)


Another highlight is the Pandoran River, which takes visitors on a journey down the sacred Kaspavan River. This breathtaking expedition allows you to travel deep inside of the rainforest and get a closer look at Na’vi culture, botany, and exotic animals.


The Cuisine


(Image: Lunch on Pandora)


Just like the land, the cuisine on Pandora is creative, colorful, and out of this world. Many of the food selections are relatively healthy, while the drinks are made for Instagram. Some favorites include the bright-blue cheesecake and the “night blossom,” which is a multi-layered frozen drink topped with passion fruit boba balls.


(Image: Instagram/ShotByCKP)



The Merchandise


In true Disney fashion, the end of the Flight of Passage ride leads you directly into a gift shop where you can purchase a souvenir while you’re still high off emotion from the ride. Here is where visitors can buy or “adopt” their very own mini pet Banshee for $49.95, which moves through the use of an operated hand control. You’ll also have the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take home a customized avatar created in your own image for $74.99.

Disney’s Pandora: The World of Avatar is now open to the public. Learn more at www.visitpandora.com.