AKL or WL?

Discussion in 'Disney Resorts' started by lamblisa, Jun 16, 2012.


AKL or WL?

  1. AKL

  2. WL

Multiple votes are allowed.
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  1. lamblisa

    lamblisa Earning My Ears

    Jul 18, 2009
    Hi all, I posted this in the WL thread, but I am hoping a WL or AKL guru can give me some advice. :goodvibes:

    I have a trip planned for me, DH, DS (5) and DS (2) 10/8 - 10/13 at AKL. I am seriously considering changing to WL solely based on location. I stayed at AKL in May of last year and LOVED it. Part of our decision to stay there was based on the fact that we knew we weren't going to visit Animal Kingdom park, and that was a way the kids could see the animals, but we probably will go to Animal Kingdom this time, so it's not an issue. We got a room near the lobby with a partial savanna view and the walk to the bus stop was not bad at all. The bus ride did take a while, as was expected given AKL's distance to the parks. This will be our last trip to Disney for a while, so I'm weighing staying at some place I know I love vs. trying some place new.

    Have any of you stayed at both? I would love to hear the pros and cons of both (if there are any) beyond just location and preference for theming. Is there any advice as to which would be better for a family with a 5 and 2-year old? I loved the theming of AKL so much I'm afraid I'd be let down by WL. I am more than willing to be proven wrong though ;)

    Any help is greatly appreciated!
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  3. owl0306

    owl0306 Mouseketeer

    May 12, 2012
    stayed at and loved both
    akl pros
    zero entry pool
    boma is delicious!

    akl cons
    those awful wood straws
    darker than other resorts (they are more "green")
    location (only way to get around is car or bus)
    mara is not a good cs imo
    wl pros:
    roaring forks has pretty good cs
    artist point is delicious
    boat to MK
    beautiful lobby

    wl cons
    the pool is nice but I prefer zero entry
  4. partypa

    partypa Mouseketeer

    Feb 1, 2009
    We really Like the AKL, have stayed many times but we LOVE the WL. It is so relaxing and Beautiful. Pros - 2 Pools, 3 Hot Tubs, boat transport to the MK ( quick and fun ) Beach ( never crowded and quite peaceful ) very good Table Service Restaurants ( Artist Point is wonderful, Whispering Canyon yummy ) Roaring Forks is small but has some good quick options ) cast members friendly and cheerful, beautiful grounds and views ( getting a MK view to watch the Fireworks is great ) Electric Water Pageant ( every night :) walking trail over to Fort Wilderness ( always enjoyable to spend a little time at the Campground ) bike and boat rentals, kids club and kids activities are great
    I could go on and on
    112 days til we go "Home" again :)
  5. mickeynut1

    mickeynut1 DIS Veteran

    Apr 16, 2007
    We've stayed at both and while AKL is a beautiful resort and we enjoyed our stays, we prefer the WL. We love the close proximity to MK via boat and it's convenient to the CR where we can hop on the monorail to visit the Poly and GF. We didn't mind the buses at AKL, but it is nice to have an alternate mode of transportation at the WL. If you like AKL, I think you would like the WL. I say give it a try to see what you think. Good luck :wizard:.
  6. AshleeH

    AshleeH DIS Veteran

    Sep 10, 2011
    I was less than impressed with WL, but we live in an area known for it's wilderness, so it didn't feel like a vacation. We loved staying in Kidani Village!
  7. bnk1120

    bnk1120 Forget filet and champagne. Give me chicken wings

    Jan 29, 2006
    WL is a smaller resort which makes it very convenient with young children. Less walking to food, transportation etc. The boat to MK is part of the fun for us. We like to take the boat to MK and then monorail to Epcot. They have the electrical water pageant on the lake at night. WL is very peaceful and relaxed. Request a woods view, not a pool view. The pool noise makes it more difficult to take naps or go to bed early.

    We are DVC owners at WLV, so we might be a little biased.;)
  8. OllieDannyandMe

    OllieDannyandMe DIS Veteran

    Apr 20, 2003
    I voted WL, but I LOVE both resorts.

    I happen to give AKL the vote for having the better pool. But WL has the geyser and the boat dock. I love the WL beach and always find myself wishing that AKL had a beach, too. Watching the Electric Water Pageant from the beach at WL is one of my favorite Disney activities. I love the movies on the beach in the evening at WL. I love the pool bar and hot tub at WL. It is just an awesome resort.

    As for food, I like both Roaring Fork and Mara. The food at Roaring Fork appeals to me more. The dining room is small, so we often take our food outside to eat by the pool, and it is so nice. Mara used to have delicious fried shrimp, but it was not on the menu last time we were there. The hamburgers and salads are really good, though. I just happen to give Roaring Fork the edge.

    I like the food at Boma a little better than Whispering Canyon, but I love Whispering Canyon's omelet for breakfast. I also enjoy the humor and atmosphere at Whispering Canyon.

    Both Artist Point and Jiko are nice. In the past, I have liked Jiko better, but recently, I enjoyed Artist Point more than Jiko. So it's a toss up for me.

    I believe Wilderness Lodge is currently being refurbished. If so, that is huge in my book. I love staying in a resort after a recent refurbishment. Everything is so fresh and pretty.

    WL is a great location for getting to the parks. AKL has good bus service in my experience, but it is so nice being able to take a boat to the Contemporary when we stay at WL.

    I love the room decor and lobbies of both resorts. I do miss the animals when I am at WL, but I think everyone should give it a try. It is such a special place!
  9. Alabama Minnie

    Alabama Minnie DIS Veteran

    Mar 18, 2010
    WL here: Not a AKL fan. Same room size/layout but furniture is smaller at WL so the room seemed bigger to us. LOVE the boat option at WL. We just preferred the atmosphere at WL also.
    We had a woods view and loved it. The courtyard seemed kinda exposed on the balconies.
  10. raven69david

    raven69david I am a Superuser. Got a problem with that?!

    Sep 19, 2005
    AKL hands down. We've stayed at both and AKL is a much better experience for us. This is our home resort and will always stay here during our trips, even during split stays. WL has the water taxi, but that's about the only plus I can think of. AKL has a very unique experience you cannot find at any other hotel in the US and or almost in the entire world.

    We always have a rental car and prefer to use it instead of Disney transportation which is very slow. So distance to the parks is never an issue for us as an extra 5 to 7 minute drive to any park more than makes up for the sheer awesomeness of this resort. Either way, you can't go wrong with either resort. They were both designed by the same person and are nearly identical in design sans themeing.

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