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Old 02-11-2013, 09:34 PM   #1
tfiga1
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AKL questions

Currently my family has a Fantasy cruise scheduled, but after doing the math, I am struggling to justify the expense. After talking to the kids they agreed they would be willing to go to WDW instead of DCL if we could stay at AKL. So before I can make the final decision, I was wondering about the following?

1. The WDW website states we can use the pool at the AKL DVC resort, is this accurate? I have two boys 13 and 11 and the slide at the DVC resort seems much larger.
2. Is there any resort activities that tweens would enjoy?
3. Outside of the obvious is there anything that makes this resort special? (We have never stayed Deluxe before, so I am in brand new territory).

Any additional information on this resort would be great.

TIA
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Old 02-12-2013, 06:46 AM   #2
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1. Yes, you can use the pool at either resort. They are considered sister resorts which allows you to use both pools.

2. In my opinion, the resort activities are geared for younger aged children than your boys. That being said, my 10 year old daughter loved them still. She's obsessed with animals so she really enjoyed the various activities related to animals. My girls loved all of the activities. We saw mainly younger children participating (10 and under) but they are open to any age. Here are the activities to give you an idea if your boys would like them or not: animal bingo, animal trekking (hide a stuffed Mickey in an area and the other team uses a tracking devise to find Mickey), make an animal bird feeder (actual leaves, honey, etc. to feed to the animals there; the kids just make them, they don't get to feed them), flamingo feeding (you don't actually get to feed the flamingos as the activity name suggests; you play with a scooper in water to filter sequins and sand to demonstrate the mouth of a flamingo and how it feeds/eats), African drumming (as it sounds, you get instruments and play along with others), cookie decorating (we did see some older kids here; decorate a giraffe shaped cookie with icing & toppings; in the Boma restaurant).

3. The resort is beautiful! The inside of the lobby is a sight to see. The obvious, the animals, was the draw for us. It was amazing to see them up so close. The added touch we really enjoyed were the cast members from South Africa. They were so wonderful to talk to. They told stories, shared information about the animals and the country, etc. We, the whole family, really enjoyed visiting with them.

Staying at AKL is wonderful for any age. While some of the activities are geared more for younger children, it's still a great resort to stay at. It's like having a WDW and a mini vacation to Africa at the same time.

Good luck with your decision!
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Old 02-12-2013, 07:12 AM   #3
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Hi @tfiga1,

My 12 year old daughter enjoyed the presentations - "Cultural Safaris" by the cultural representatives held each evening in the Sunset Lounge in Jambo House.

She also loved the animal viewing with night vision held at 9pm each night on the Uzima Overlook, along with the marshmallow roasting earlier in the evening on Arusha Rock.

There are pool games each afternoon geared toward tweens as well.

There is a new nighttime safari you may want to look into, as well as the popular Wanyama Safari at sunset.

These are just a few of the things that make AKL special. Love that resort!
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Old 02-12-2013, 10:33 AM   #4
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The OP has already gotten good responses to their questions. I'd just like to add that when comparing the cost of a DCL cruise to a WDW stay please be sure you are considering everything. The cruise includes all meals. For a WDW stay don't forget the cost of meals and park admission.
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Old 02-12-2013, 10:44 AM   #5
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I didn't realize you can use the Kidani pool if staying at AKL, I thought it was only vice versa. Great to know! Those that have used both, do you walk or bus over?
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Old 02-12-2013, 11:25 AM   #6
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We didn't use pool, but did walk over to Kidani to check out their savana viewing area, it was maybe 10 min walk.

OP, my daughter is now 27, and we both enjoyed the Cultural Safaris. Very interesting, and well presented. Also there are always CMs at Arusha Rock ready to talk to you and give information. The night viewing is interesting. And there are movies by the pool at night.
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Old 02-12-2013, 12:44 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buzz1fan View Post
I didn't realize you can use the Kidani pool if staying at AKL, I thought it was only vice versa.
+1. Did it used to be restricted to Kidani guests? I'm certain that I read that somewhere. This is good news as the Kidani pool looks like a lot of fun for the kids.

Editing to add: Sounds like a confirmation from the official Disney World mom's board:
http://disneyworldforum.disney.go.co...pid=45&cid=109

Last edited by M1Thumb; 02-12-2013 at 01:00 PM.
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Old 02-12-2013, 01:57 PM   #8
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I thought it was but I could be wrong. That is good to know!
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Old 02-12-2013, 01:59 PM   #9
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staying at akl in a month..my 11 yr old daughter wants to do the night vision googles and the marshmallow roast,,I know the night vision goggles are around 8 what about the marshmallow roast are they close in proximity and time? thanks
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Old 02-12-2013, 03:14 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M1Thumb View Post
+1. Did it used to be restricted to Kidani guests? I'm certain that I read that somewhere. This is good news as the Kidani pool looks like a lot of fun for the kids.

Editing to add: Sounds like a confirmation from the official Disney World mom's board:
http://disneyworldforum.disney.go.co...pid=45&cid=109
The pools at AKL/AKV are restricted to AKL/AKV guests. So they can use either pool. DVC members who are pool hopping when permitted by DVC cannot pool hop to AKV/AKL pools.

Kidani Village and Jambo House are two buildings at one resort.
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Old 02-12-2013, 06:59 PM   #11
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Thanks so much for all the responses. I am going to go over the activities with the boys and see their responses. I do appreciate the response regarding the price of the cruise vs the parks, we did do the math and the difference is only about $1500, but every penny counts when the kids are this close to college.
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:09 PM   #12
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Ooh, totally forgot the marshmallow roast and the night vision goggles. So glad others posted those activities. My girls really enjoyed these activities as well.

My girls loved the pool and slide. They do offer nightly movies that people hung out in the pool to watch. They didn't start until 8:45-9:00 this summer so it was too late for my girls to stay up and watch. Your boys may enjoy the pool/movie time.
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:14 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brucerob62 View Post
staying at akl in a month..my 11 yr old daughter wants to do the night vision googles and the marshmallow roast,,I know the night vision goggles are around 8 what about the marshmallow roast are they close in proximity and time? thanks
When we went this past June, the marshmallow roast was around 6:45-7:00, and the night vision goggles were when it was just getting dark (around 9:00). I'm sure they vary the times according to the season and when the sun sets.

They did offer them at different times so that you could do both. The marshmallow roast was out by the main animal looking area (Arusha rock I think it was called???). The night vision goggles were just off the pool area.

Have fun!!!
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Old 02-14-2013, 12:59 PM   #14
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I have another question to add to this thread, hopefully to clear up some conflicting information I've read on different web sites.

Does the AKL Jambo House offer outdoor movies at night? Or are these held solely at the Kidani complex?
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Old 02-14-2013, 01:20 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M1Thumb View Post
I have another question to add to this thread, hopefully to clear up some conflicting information I've read on different web sites.

Does the AKL Jambo House offer outdoor movies at night? Or are these held solely at the Kidani complex?
When we went last May they had the big screen out by the pool at Jambo.
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