View Full Version : First time at AKL - reassurance???
09-11-2004, 07:59 AM
My daughter (age 12) and I will be at AKL in October for 8 nights. We were planning to stay at WL but got a great code for AKL Pool view.
I've read a lot from you all about how great it will be, but I'm still unsure. This is the first trip for just the two of us and I'm just trying to get a handle on what to expect. We've stayed at other Deluxes (BC, Poly and CR) before - but they were closer to the parks. Will we not like the location?
The pool looks great so I'm not too worried there.
Any reassuring words for me?
What should be a "not miss" for us?
Thanks so much.
09-11-2004, 08:07 AM
Don't miss ALL of the animal look out points! Walk to the end of the trails and go out on the stairwells for an even closer look. Enjoy a fantastic and more unique dinner at Boma or Jiko. Don't miss the flamingo feedings which take place at their pond behind the pool area. Be sure to read the board by bell services to see all of the activities that take place daily. Relax, regroup, and totally unwind in the serenity of the lodge and its surroundings. ENJOY the <i><b>wildest</i></b> place at Disney!
09-11-2004, 08:27 AM
Last year I tried AKL and had similar feelings (that it was too remote, unsure of the transportation options) but I absolutely loved the place and am headed back in November.
I thought the bus service was great, never waited more than 10 minutes, then once you're on the bus, you don't share it with another resort. Bus rides to the parks couldn't have been more than 10-15 minutes tops.
There is a lot to do at AKL - animal lookout points are everywhere so even though you have a pool view, there are plenty of places to pull up a chair and watch. They also seem to have a lot of activities at the resort (tours, lectures, etc. ) I've personally never done these, but might try it on my next visit.
Deb & Bill
09-11-2004, 10:30 AM
AKL is a wonderful place to stay. You will be able to see animals on the AKL savannahs from the pool area, by the fire pit area and from the corridors. I prefer the savannah view since I love to sit out on the balcony in my pajamas watching the animals. But the pool view will be great. Eat at Boma if you can (even picky eaters can find lots to eat there). The store is like visiting Africa. Talk with the CMs there, some are from Africa.
09-11-2004, 10:31 AM
And from what I've read, don't forget your binoculars!! I can't wait!! I'm soo excited!!
09-11-2004, 11:13 AM
We stayed at AKL in 2002 and LOVED it!! The location, for us , just added to the whole Africa theme, but it's just not that far out. It's just a little ways past Blizzard Beach. The bus system was great, food places all great and so many places to view the animals from the comfort of a rocking chair. Just explore and have a great time. You're daughter will love it!! ::yes::
09-11-2004, 11:40 AM
No doubt about it!! AKL is awesome. Having stayed at most WDW properties (and working our way through the rest..) AKL is by far our families favorite! Everything there is outstanding. We recommend it to family and friends and have never had anyone return disappointed. Enjoy. PS make sure you have at least one dinner at Boma!
09-11-2004, 12:49 PM
being my 14th resort over the course of 32 years of visits...AKL is my home at WDW! It is wonderful by all accounts!
I, too, was afraid of the bus transportation everywhere, having been a fan of CR, POLY, BWI, BC/YC and all the walking and immediate park gratification, but I was totally blown out of the water by the AKL! Our longest bus wait was 20 minutes and that was the only one over our other 2 and 3 minute waits! Now, that's impressive!
There is absolutely nothing I don't like about this resort! Go and enjoy yourselves!:teeth:
09-11-2004, 01:00 PM
Think of it as an opportunity to gain first hand knowledge and experience of a different WDW hotel. When you return and see a similar post here, you will be able to speak with authority on the subject.
I think you'll love the AKL!
Have a great trip!
09-11-2004, 01:14 PM
I hope you love AKL! Not everyone does...but SO many fall in love with it. It's just a matter of personal taste. I absolutely love GF and BWI and loved WL when we were there in April. But my heart belongs to AKL :teeth: I love the decor, the aromas, the firepits, the ANIMALS, the music, the Lobby, the pool, the restaurants...I just LOVE this place - be it regular room or Concierge level.
To put it simply, of all the places in The World, AKL is where I want to be:teeth:
09-11-2004, 02:37 PM
AKL gets my vote as the best, too.
09-11-2004, 02:43 PM
Love, love, love it! Make sure you spend time talking to the CM's. They can make a quick trip around the lobby seem like a visit to a museum. They know so much about the animals and the artwork. Plus they have really great personal insight since most of them are from Africa. We met so many fascinating people that way! The pool is one of the best I have ever had the pleasure of relaxing in! Have a great time!
09-11-2004, 03:00 PM
Originally posted by chrisann
And from what I've read, don't forget your binoculars!! I can't wait!! I'm soo excited!! You don't really NEED binoculars. The animals are soooooooo close.
MUST NOT MISS THE NIGHT VISION GOGGLES!!!!!
Eat at Boma or Jiko. I won't be missing either in less than 30 days. :)
09-15-2004, 06:54 PM
Thanks for the info - I'm excited by the night vision goggles! We do have a dinner reservation at Boma so we'll try that.
I love this Board and all the information that the users provide.
09-15-2004, 06:58 PM
AKL is hands down the most unique Disney Resort and IMO the best! Two of the best restaurants are on property, a unique and rather large pool, great African CM's and Animals, Animals, Animals!!! WL is nice but AKL is better!
09-15-2004, 07:42 PM
Where else can you sit in the hot tub and watch the several giraffee feed on "greens" in the tree right beside you. It is a very nice resort. If you get a chance don't be afraid to talk with the guides standing at the different outlooks around the hotel. We learned so much about their countries and the animals by talking to them. They were great with our 5 year old ...very patient, kind and informative.
The night vision viewing is wonderful...not to be missed. And, my hubby loves Bomas for dinner ... very unique and worth a try.
09-16-2004, 01:58 AM
We fell in love with AKL like it seems so many others. We've been to many other Disney resorts and not to downplay those because they were incredible, but AKL is the only one so far that as we were leaving it, I was planning in my mind when we can return again. If no one ever mentioned the "remoteness" aspect I read on some reviews prior to going, I would have never thought anything about it when I was there. We felt in the middle of the magic just as we did all others. Had a pool view in Zebra Trail - can't rave enough about our location and room! Have a great time!!!
09-16-2004, 10:08 AM
My DW and I loved the AKL. The atmoshpere takes you to a totally different world. We spent many afternoons at the pool and hot tub. Very relaxing. Bus service was great. Never waited very long and went straight to the parks and resorts. AKL does not share with the other resorts. We were upgrade to the Savannah view. Giraffes right outside our balcony. The only complaint was the long walk we had to our room, after a long day and night. With the pool view that should not be an issue.
Be sure to check the other happenings at the resort. We enjoyed the different tours and events at the lodge. I recommend the culinary tour (if you like food or cooking). We toured the two restaurants and learned about African food (and enjoyed samples). The chocolate desert was to die for....... The cultural tour was performed by staff at AKL. She talked about her home country and shared stories of South Africa. Most of the staff are on student visas from Africa. Also, the storytelling by the fire is not just for kids......
Can't wait to go back. AKL has spoiled us.
09-16-2004, 01:16 PM
Thanks to everyone who has taken the time to post their replies. Even though I am not the original poster, we are staying at AKL in December, and now I am more excited than ever! It sounds heavenly!! The rates were so great, and our upgrade from Coronado Springs was just a little over $100.00 for 5 nights!
09-16-2004, 01:25 PM
If you like animals you will really enjoy this resort. We are there the week after Thanksgiving and I am looking forward to it, also. Last year we had a great room on the third floor (lobby level) with a view of Arusha Rock. It was absolutely wonderful!
If you have kids be sure to participate in some of the resort activities. They are fun and those leading them are typically from different countries. You can really learn a lot.
It will be quite different from Coronado and only paying that little extra is a good deal.
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