AKL or BC? Please HELP!!!

MaeganForsyth11

Earning My Ears
Joined
Jul 21, 2019
Hi All!

I am planning a trip in 2021 during summer for 8 nights, 5 days at Disney and doing 2 days at Universal. I have stayed at soo many properties over the years it is nuts, but I really wanted something central this trip. My kids are used to the Magic Kingdom area Deluxe Resorts. When I asked them they say AKL, but the transportation just seems bad from this Resort. My other option is BC mainly because of its proximity to Epcot and HS. We really want to hit all the new stuff that we have missed the last 3 years. I am just majorly unsure here on which one will better suite us. Thanks for all your help!
 

Forevermarypoppins

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 1, 2015
Hi All!

I am planning a trip in 2021 during summer for 8 nights, 5 days at Disney and doing 2 days at Universal. I have stayed at soo many properties over the years it is nuts, but I really wanted something central this trip. My kids are used to the Magic Kingdom area Deluxe Resorts. When I asked them they say AKL, but the transportation just seems bad from this Resort. My other option is BC mainly because of its proximity to Epcot and HS. We really want to hit all the new stuff that we have missed the last 3 years. I am just majorly unsure here on which one will better suite us. Thanks for all your help!

I am a #1 AKL fan. Lucky enough to have stayed twice.
I've only visited the BC.
I would base my decision on the age on your kids and what they love to do. If swimming everyday is a must then either is great. Do your kids have patience to actually wait 15 or 30 minutes overlooking the savannahs because sometimes that's what it takes to see something extraordinary. Do they handle the buses well? ( assuming you'll use them). Yes AKL is a bit farther away. Doesn't bother me at all, but I get it when someone has young kids or strollers, every minute less on a bus matters. Are they adventurous eaters because BOMA is such a great and different buffet than any of the others at WDW but if the kids aren't interested in new and different things, it won't mean much to them. How many days do you plan on entering the AK? If it's only once then maybe being farther away from all else doesn't make sense. For me, I always get to AK twice and I've gone 3 times before too, simply because I love the place.
 

BOST99

Mouseketeer
Joined
Jan 21, 2015
Might depend a bit on the ages of your kids and your plan. I would go with Epcot area over AKL if the priority is Galaxy Edge and they have early entry. Last year we stayed at BWI for Toy Story access and it was great being able to walk right over for the early entry. The ability to walk to two parks is really fantastic.

We have stayed at AKL and all the Epcot Resorts, except BC, and have loved all of our stays so really would be happy at either. AKl is one of our favorites and is just so well themed. We found it very relaxing and a real break from the parks. AKL was a bit easier when DD was a toddler too since she was very much into animals and the pool was a bit more manageable then YC/BC. We rent a car so can't comment on transportation. Now at 7 she really enjoyed the boardwalk performers on our last trip and HS became her favorite park.
 
  • izzylovesmickey

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 5, 2014
    We've stayed at both. BC (or YC) are our first choice as a general rule, but we've stayed at AKL 2x and loved it there also. BC is absolutely wonderful for the ability to walk to 2 parks. It is so very nice to come and go on your own schedule as you please. If you are interested in the newest attractions, then BC will have the advantage. The rooms are also larger at BC and the pool is fantastic. There are more food choices at BC when you add in how close YC, BW, Swan and Dolphin are to BC, not to mention all the choices at EP. We have enjoyed AKL, but for us we prefer to do a split stay with AKL at the end of the trip. We find we are more willing to relax and take the time to stay and appreciate AKL once we are there. We've enjoyed sitting on the balcony and watching the animals. By doing it at the end, we are less likely to feel like we need to rush off to the parks. We haven't had long waits to/from AKL but it does take more time. Both are wonderful choices and you really can't go wrong with either one!
     

    OurLaughingPlace

    Canadian Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Oct 19, 2014
    We have stayed at BC numerous times, but never AKL. We love stormalong bay pool, but it can be daunting if your children are young / not strong swimmers as it can get busy and the lazy river is deep in many areas. We really enjoy Epcot (probably our favourite park), so we walk in and out of Epcot throughout our stay- hoppers are a must for us if we do BC so we can go into Epcot after being at another park. Walking / shopping around the World Showcase is something that we never tire of. We also like the boat / walk to DHS and walking to the Boardwalk Bakery to grab a breakfast treat or Ample Creamery to get ice cream at night. We enjoy walking into Epcot for a quick supper of UK fish and chips or a pastry from France. My favourite is watching fireworks at night then walking 5 minutes to get back to my room. Several times we've also walked to Fantasia mini golf. While we love BC, we really love it for the location (although we do like the theme too - like the rooms and relaxed feel we get from it).
     

    MaeganForsyth11

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jul 21, 2019
    My children will be 13 and 10 yes they can wait to see things, and wait for the bus. We are foodies hence why we are usually out of the country on vacation these last few years. I don't see us spending more than 5-6 hours at AK, it just isn't their favorite park. But they love the idea of the animals on the Savannah. I have reminded them that being able to walk in and out of Epcot will be a huge pull because they do love the WS.
     

    gottalovepluto

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 14, 2014
    BC. Super convenient to 2 parks. I hated the buses to/from AKL. It’s not convenient to anything but AK. I will never forget the packed bus I saw at 4pm one afternoon leaving for MK with people packed in like sardines *shudder* that’s a 20 minute ride!
     
  • MaeganForsyth11

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jul 21, 2019
    BC. Super convenient to 2 parks. I hated the buses to/from AKL. It’s not convenient to anything but AK. I will never forget the packed bus I saw at 4pm one afternoon leaving for MK with people packed in like sardines *shudder* that’s a 20 minute ride!

    This is exactly what I DO NOT WANT!
     

    maryj11

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 13, 2002
    We just went to AKL at the end of June. We have also stayed at BC a few years ago.
    My favorite of the two is the AKL. I just loved it there. We had no trouble with buses at all, never waited over 10 minutes for a bus. The bus rides never seemed any different then any of the other resorts we have stayed at. We never had the bus so full that we had to stand.
    Both are nice resorts.
     

    ChristinaNOates

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jan 19, 2017
    I didn't think transportation at AKL was that bad. We stayed at Jambo so it was the second stop and that made for longer trips back to the resort at the end of a long day. If ease of access is your top priority though, I would stay at BC. AKL is a good if you want to feel more secluded and separate yourself from the parks.
     

    DisneyWishes14

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 21, 2011
    My children will be 13 and 10 yes they can wait to see things, and wait for the bus. We are foodies hence why we are usually out of the country on vacation these last few years. I don't see us spending more than 5-6 hours at AK, it just isn't their favorite park. But they love the idea of the animals on the Savannah. I have reminded them that being able to walk in and out of Epcot will be a huge pull because they do love the WS.
    If you are only spending 5-6 hours at AK, I would not stay at AKL. AKL is gorgeous and they have some great restaurants, but the rooms are quite small, IMHO, and the pool may be boring to children that age (my DS is 11 and he is bored at the AKL pools). I would consider staying at BC and planning an evening at AKL - see the animals on the savannah from the public viewing area and eat at Jiko - or go during daylight hours and eat at Sanaa (where you can usually see the animals walk by during the day). Perhaps, if it's in your budget, book BC and consider doing the Wild Africa Trek - you get an in-depth look at the safari in AK and have an amazing "snack" (which is more like a full meal) during the tour. When we stayed at AKL, we really didn't see a ton of animals from our room. We called it the "guinea fowl" view room because that's what we saw consistently. It's kind of cool one morning and then, not so much anymore.
     
  • mdelano4

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 10, 2007
    Have stayed at AKL twice. Never BC, but have been at BW, so close enough for my point. I had no complaints with buses at AKL. Will say the view was more interesting the first time. A little less the second time. Love the proximity between BC, Epcot and DHS. Really prefer that location. If your kids like WS, then I would go to BC every time.
     

    DISNEY1975

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 5, 2008
    Not sure if you have a budget, but if so, consider AKL and renting a car with some of the savings. AKL is beautiful, but yes out of the way. I rent a car every trip so transportation is never an issue. In Orlando, you can get a car / Mid size SUV around $200 for a week. Its super cheap with all the competition. But also be mindful of the resorts parking fees. Still with about a $200 difference per night AKL vs BC, AKL with the car could be a better option if $$ is part of your consideration.

    Even at BC (and MK area resorts) you would have to use Disney (bus) transportation for 2 parks (4 including water parks)

    We get a car every trip so we are not waiting for buses and can explore dining an various resorts. Well worth the $200.

    Good luck! Luckily, you have at least a year to decide!
     

    CynBeth

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 17, 2011
    A lot of people love AKL but for us it was just ok. We visit WDW every few years around holiday time and are at the parks from open to close don’t take a day off so we never got to see the animals from our room we were out too early and came back too late. One day we left AK for dinner at Boma and visited the savannas then which is what we do when we stay at other resorts anyway. Plus, where our room was we had a long walk. The buses were ok but we prefer not having them as the only way to get to the parks. We never stayed at BC but enjoyed YC. It was great being able to walk to Epcot and DHS or take the boat. I know the theming is a little different than BC but I am sure you would have the same wonderful experience.
     

    rosiebean

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 17, 2005
    My family and I personally love the theming of resorts NOT in the Epcot/Boardwalk area (my sister loves Poly, nieces love AKL, I love Poly and GF lol). However, our favorite place to stay are on the boardwalk because we love the location (and the resorts are beautiful too). We spend equal time at each of the four parks, so being close to two of them is great. Plus, when we’re in that area, we get hoppers for night time access to world showcase for dinners.

    And if you want something central, BC is much more central than AKL. Much more so unless you plan on spending most days at AK.
     

    LNMom

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Feb 23, 2018
    BC!!! My entire family looooves it. The pool is amazing. It’s great to walk or water taxi over to the Boardwalk for activities, entertainment, and dining. It’s just so fun!

    I wouldn’t hesitate for a second to book BC.
     

    cwestpvb

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jun 27, 2019
    AKL is great, and during my stay I didn't have any issues with transportation, but I'd take an Epcot resort over it any day. Haven't stayed at BC (but absolutely love the YC), but its location is easily one of the best and there is so much to do in the area. It's great being able to pop into epcot for meals, like breakfast in the France pavilion, and the pool area is truly the best on property. The summer time will be hot and rain storms will probably take place during your visit, so having quick access to 2 parks and being in a central location would be nice to get some rest during the inclement weather too. Maybe consider a split stay of two nights at AKL (like for your UO days) and then move over to BC.
     

    Lou'sMommy

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Feb 4, 2003
    We have stayed many times at BC. It is our very favorite. We did stay at AKL once and thought it was a beautiful resort. We loved viewing the giraffes from our balcony and especially enjoyed interacting with the cast members at various events at the lodge. That being said we thought the transportation was awful, especially since we were used to walking to two parks from the BC. I do insist on visiting the AKL for a few hours every time we are at Disney, but we much prefer staying in the Epcot area.

    Epcot is my kids' favorite park too. They both can't get enough of the WS. I would advise getting park hoppers if you decide to stay at the BC. Nothing beats hopping over to Epcot in the evening no matter where you have spent the day. The IG entrance is so close to the French bakery too! There have been a few times we wandered over to the Studios in the evening too - especially a couple of summers ago when they had the great Star Wars fireworks which we could also see from the pool. It's also great to be able to stroll over to the Boardwalk. The street entertainment is fun, there are several restaurant choices, and the ice cream at Ample Hills can't be beat. Oh, if you like sushi, Kimono's at the Swan is great. There are just so many things that are easy to access from BC. If location is paramount this trip, I don't think you can do better than staying at the BC.

    One final note, the rooms at the BC are bigger and brighter than at AKL. And, we also love Stormalong Bay. Your kids are a great age for really enjoying it.

    Hope you have a wonderful trip!
     

    Lacoccinelle

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jun 29, 2014
    I love AKL even though it is far out.
    We have stayed at AKL 3x and BC once and never will again. We asked to be moved Midtrip. We are more relaxed vacationers and like the ambiance of the lodges. BC was a bit too hoighty for me.

    Pools: it your kids are teenagers, the pool at BC is perfect for you. If your kids are little, you will never relax. I was not comfortable sending my then 6 and 8 year olds out of the resort pool area to get to the slide. The lazy river is super deep. They were a bit too old for the sandy bottom for a long time. If you are at AKL, you can access both resort pools and the Kidani pool was awesome. Stay at the main lodge though.

    Eating: you will have better options at AKL. They have Boma and The Mara. BC has a small selection, it stinks like burned pizza. We went into the back or Epcot or to Boardwalk every time we needed a treat or easy dinner. If WL is a favorite, AKL is most like it. The lobby is amazing and the feel is so wonderful.

    Now, there is something to be said for walking to Epcot and HS. For this reason, we are doing a BWI and WL split stay this August.
    It is sooooo not in August so like the pool. You can’t go wrong with either, but remember BC is expansive.

    You will have a great trip regardless of where you pick! Have fun!
     

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