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Old 01-21-2013, 08:48 AM   #1
Earning My Ears
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Which Resort Animal Kingdom v. Contemporary/Bay Lake Towers

We are going to Disney for the first time in December (my first time as well) with our girls who will be 5, 3 and 1. We are looking to stay for 3-4 nights and are only doing Magic Kingdom and maybe Animal Kingdom. Where would you stay and Why? Thank you!!
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Old 01-21-2013, 09:03 AM   #2
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If most of your time will be in MK then I would say Contemporary. You will spend less time traveling. We like to stay at AKL because my kids love the animals at the resort. No matter what you choose they are both great. Just pick what will be most relaxing and fun for your family.

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Old 01-21-2013, 09:16 AM   #3
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I would say you are in a good pickle They are both fantastic resorts and you can't really go wrong choosing either. I agree with the previous post about staying close to MK at BLT, but there are a few other factors to consider. The travel time to MK from AKL will be between 45 and 60 mins both ways, so if your children do not tolerate long bus rides your may find this to be a glaring negative. From BLT you can easily walk to the park or hop onto the monorail if you would rather save your feet which would only take 15 mins.

Another thing to factor into your decision is what amenities you will be using at the resort. The pools at AKV and AKL Jumbo is fantastic and lushly landscaped, so if you plan to spend a lot of your time poolside I would take that into account. Another awesome feature of the AKL is the proximity to the animals! There is nothing like waking up to see a giraffe having breakfast right outside your window.

BLT can also be spectacular when you wake up and see the MK right outside your window. Your children will be so excited every morning and ready to get to the park! BLT also has a few amenities AKV does not have: access to water sports and a direct boat to Fort Wilderness and WL. BLT is also on the monorail line with connects you to Poly and GF both of which have fantastic dining options.

Dining at the AKV is also a bit of an adventure in itself. Boma, Jiko, and Sanaa serve up some of the best African cuisine, but if your clan is full of picky eaters you will find yourselves eating in the parks or at other resorts most of the time.

Each resort is wonderful, choosing between the two is just a matter of what you are trying to accomplish on your trip!
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Old 01-21-2013, 09:35 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by mmurph8 View Post
We are going to Disney for the first time in December (my first time as well) with our girls who will be 5, 3 and 1. We are looking to stay for 3-4 nights and are only doing Magic Kingdom and maybe Animal Kingdom. Where would you stay and Why? Thank you!!
If most of your time will be spent at MK, the CR would be the best choice. AKL is a great resort and is beautiful during the holidays, but the CR would be the most convenient with 3 little ones. We thought the bus transportation was fine at AKL, but you can't beat being within walking distance to MK, especially if that is where you will be for most of your trip. Good luck deciding, but you really can't go wrong with either resort and I'm sure you'll have a great trip no matter which one you choose .

Country Inn & Suites LBV June 2001 - CBR July 2002 - BC December 2003 - WL CL Oct/Nov 2004 - WL September 2006 - All Star Vacation Homes March 2007 -Poly September 2007 - All Star Vacation Homes March 2008 - AKL/GF SL/WL January 2010 - AKL/GF December 2010 - GF RPC May 2011
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Old 01-21-2013, 11:32 AM   #5
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CR and BLT are walking distance to MK. You can walk when legs are fresh in the morning and then they are the first stop on the monorail coming back from MK. That right there is worth some extra if you are spending most of your time at MK. Advantage to BLT is the kitchen. If you are spending most of your budget on room, then you can get some back by eating in the room. We go to MK almost daily when staying here simply because we come back for naps no matter what park we do. We typically just run over to MK after naps each day.
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Old 01-21-2013, 11:39 AM   #6
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DD went when she was 4 and found AK rather boring - we spent half a day there and she didn't want to go back. MK on the other hand was all she wanted and all she talked about.

So IMO being walking distance (and possibly having a room with a Castle view if you choose) will be priceless for them.
6/95 @ All Stars; DD's 1st trip 5/11 @ POFQ; DH's Birthday Celebration 2/13 @ Contemporary TPV; My Birthday Celebration 9/14 @ Contemporary TPV
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Old 01-21-2013, 04:05 PM   #7
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We are DVC members and have stayed at both, our daughter just turned 7 and she was 5 when we went to AKL and 4 when we went to Bay Lake. She liked Bay Lake more, as did I. AKL is just far away from everything and we had a Savannah room and was really not worth the few animals we saw. Where as at BayLake you can walk to MK in less than 10 minutes. The pool at AKL is nicer but in December I would not worry to much about the pools as you never know with FL temps in Dec. so if it was us going again and we had to choose between the 2 I would pick BayLake everytime.
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Old 01-21-2013, 04:10 PM   #8
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For location/monorail service to MK and EPCOT I would go with BLT.
If this does not matter to you much then either would be great.

Besides location -

-both have great pools
-both have great food options
-AKL has amazing views of animals ... while BLT has incredible views of MK and Bay Lake.

"It's kind of fun to do the impossible" - Walt Disney

AKV Kidani August 2012 TR: http://disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2975354

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