LAKE BUENA VISTA, FL - MAY 24: In this handout photo provided by Disney Resorts, a view of the new Pandora: World of Avatar attraction inside Disneys Animal Kingdom during the dedication ceremony on May 24, 2017 at Disneys Animal Kingdom inside the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. The World of Avatar opens on May 27, 2017. (Photo by Steven Diaz/Disney Resorts via Getty Images)
Handout Getty Images

The theme park is based on James Cameron's smash hit.

By Aric Jenkins
May 27, 2017

Eight years after James Cameron‘s Avatar premiered and became the highest-grossing film of all time, a theme park replicating the film’s locale has opened at Walt Disney World.

“Pandora — The World of Avatar” is an expansion of Disney’s Animal Kingdom that urges attendees to “discover an all-new land that celebrates the magic of nature,” according Disney World’s website. The park recreates elements from the fictional Na’vi world and seeks to immerse visitors in the planet’s unique culture, food, and fauna, with the help of interactive scenery and attractions.

The crown jewel of the park may very well be the “Avatar Flight of Passage,” a simulation in which participants fly on the back of a mountain banshee in 3-D. Cameron utilized similar technology in his 2009 box office smash, and Disney CEO Bob Iger says the ride is Disney’s most advanced yet.

“We found at Disney that technology can be a real friend in keeping the company relevant and reaching more people in ways that feel contemporary to them,” Iger told CNNMoney.

Other attractions include the Na’vi River Journey, a boat ride in which visitors “journey deep into a bioluminescent rainforest in search of the Na’vi Shaman of Songs,” and the Valley of Mo’ara, a hiking expedition among the exotic plants and animals of Pandora.

First announced in 2012, the Avatar theme park was intended to open alongside Cameron’s sequel of the film, but the director has since delayed the movie until 2020.

Single-day tickets for Disney World’s Pandora start at $99.

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