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“Jambo Rules” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge

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Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   2901 Osceola Parkway, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32830   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #29 of 326 Hotels in Orlando
Weehawken, New Jersey
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Jambo Rules”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 22, 2013

My husband and I jsut came back from a stay here and while his family stayed at a lesser priced place off property I wanted his first time to Disney come with all that Disney offers. This place did not disappoint, even though we drove incorrectly to Kidani they were able to register us with no problem. I agree with a previous poster mentioning that Kidani is more modest and Jambo is on the grander scale. I loved the little things like the nightly bonfire, the movies by the pool, even the ducks in the pool every morning. I personally suggest a pool view because the animals were on display from all of the main windows and paths Animal Kingdom offers and at least at night I still had a good view.

Room Tip: Pool view - 4th floor is good as it is high enough to not have blockage from the trees
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,180 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (1,032)
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Darlington, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 21, 2013 via mobile

We arrived yesterday and some things need to be pointed out. The meal deal needs to be per-booked prior to arrival (no one told us this) and considering the hotel is allegedly 4/5star we had to drag our suit cases approximately 200 yards to our rooms. Not what I expect from this standard of hotel. Yes you do get a 5star experience with the amazing animals but it is most definitely not a five star hotel.

To back my argument up I phoned room service for some te bags !! and was told that if I wanted breakfast tea bags I would have to buy them,not really five star service.

What I plan to do is do a day by day review of the resort and give you a heads up of the experience. It has to be said though that the a
Animal kingdom park is superb, especially the safari. Stay tuned folks.

Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orlando, Florida
Top Contributor
165 reviews 165 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 51 cities Reviews in 51 cities
105 helpful votes 105 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 20, 2013

I can't say enough about how much I was surprised at my recent stay at the Animal Kingdown Lodge. We stayed in a 1BR at Kidani Village. It was absolutely awesome. Very spacious place and clean! The 1BR had two bathrooms? That was neat with having 3 children (2 showers was a great thing to have). I don't think the room was lacking anything. The decor was great, the beds were comfortable, and the room was clean! It had a full kitchen available and in room laundry. We did not have a savanah room, but it really didn't matter beacause our floor had the savanah overlook about 25 steps away! There were zebras, giraffes, and many other animals the kids got to see. They really enjoyed doing that! Also, the resort had many activities, so many you didn't have to go to the parks if you wanted to just stay there. We went to the pool area at Kidani Village and it was awesome for families with children. The pool area was decent size with a great big slide. It also had a side slide available for smaller children. Behind the pool was a children's water play area, complete with water guns, slides, and many other activities. I think my kids could have stayed here all day. Above the pool area was a complete fitness center with a changing area. Also at the bottom was a pool bar area.

The Kidani Village only has one place to eat and its a table service. Most of the places to eat are at the Jambo house, which we've eaten at Boma many times (one of our favorite Disney breakfasts). I will be bringing our family back to Animal Kingdom Lodge again and would definately go back to Kidani Village--Much quieter, larger rooms, and better pool area!

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ponte Vedra Beach
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2013

This is, by no means, a bad place to stay. However, we were routinely disappointed during our 3-day stay. The resort is divided into two adjacent properties. The distance between the two is a reasonable walk for two adults, but not for children. We were traveling with another couple and we found ourselves in different buildings. The shuttle between the two buildings is convenient, but it ends at 11pm and it's a reasonably long, dark walk after that time. Additionally, it's a long ride to Magic Kingdom. It took a little over 40 minutes to wait for the bus to arrive and then ride it to the park. We weren't prepared for that kind of commute. Last but not least, the dining options are disappointing. The food is actually really good. However, the options were minimal. Staying at the Jambo house, we had just one option for breakfast. At dinner, the fine dining option was booked solid during all normal dining hours. So, if we wanted a nice dinner without the kids, we were forced to go off property. The resort is fine. I just had much higher expectations given that we were paying Ritz-Carlton or Four Season prices. This is really just a 3-star hotel with a great view. So, the ability to look out on the savannah better mean an awful lot to you. Otherwise, it's just not worth the price.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Victoria, Canada
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2013

A bit of background first. The lodge is split into two sections, Jambo House, and Kidani Village, with the latter being built for the Disney Vacation Club timeshare and the former being the normal 'hotel'. You can access the amenities in either section, but the Kidani lobby is more modest and it has less restaurants. It's about a 10 minute ride on shuttle or bus between the two locations and a 15 minute walk.

The rooms you stay in are standard luxury hotel fare, though the mini-suite we stayed at in Kidani Village did not have a King Bed option. It is clean, comfortable, and even the smallest room is sized to comfortably sleep about 3 to 4 (using the queen pullout sleeper and the queen bed).

The AKL's killer difference is the 'Savannah' located between the two sections, a big open area where wild animals such as giraffes, wildebeest, and zebras freely roam. You are not allowed to walk onto the Savannah, the closest you will get is by walking onto an overlook area that is lightly fenced. Even so, the experience is unmatched anywhere else.

The experience that seals the deal is watching the animals at night, something you will rarely be able to see at a zoo. Giraffes, Zebras and other animals remain on the Savannah even after the sun is down, and you will find that they can get a lot livelier when things are quiet and the temperature is lower. When the artificial campfire goes out and the Savannah is dark, you truly get a 'safari' experience standing in the overlook area, and this alone may be a reason to stay here over any of the other Disney resorts.

As a Disney resort, you also gain the benefits of extra magic park hours and easy access to Walt Disney World shuttle buses, and of course, the Disney service is almost uniformly excellent.

The only question left is the price. Nightly rates for a Savannah view room can be $500 a night or more during mid-high season, which is definitely on the high side for the room you get. If you have the money to burn I strongly recommend this resort. Otherwise, I'd look for cheaper ways of staying here, such as through the purchase of DVC points through brokers or through trading with DVC owners (this could end up saving you significant amounts of money).

Either way, I am sure it will be an unforgettable experience.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St. John's, Canada
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 15, 2013

Just got back from a stay at this breathtaking and beautifully themed resort. Stayed on the fifth floor in a dvc room on the Arusha savannah, zebra trail. Every detail of the resort makes you feel as though you are transported to another country. Lots of animals out on the savannah...nothing quite like waking up to a giraffe standing a few feet from your balcony. Rooms very clean with enough room for a family of four. Our room had a small kitchenette with a coffee maker, toaster and microwave which came in handy for breakfast in the room to allow us to get to the parks for opening. Pool is zero entry and a nice waterslide for the kids, movies by the pool in the evenings. Lots of African themed merchandise in the gift shop and lots of opportunities to interact with African guides in the hotel and on the savannah. Boma has a fantastic breakfast and supper buffet and had the tastiest meals of our trip! Bus rides to and from the parks were great considering the distance you are from the parks.

Room Tip: For best view of the animals, get a savannah view room on the Arusha savannah.
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Castle Rock, Colorado
1 review
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 15, 2013

First off I'd like to say this is my first review ever of a hotel. As our family's third trip to Disney, we were wanting to "up the ante" by going deluxe. I read that the service was impressive, rooms were more spacious and overall more "Disney magic." Previously we had stayed at Coronado Springs and Port Orleans-Riverside. Both were very nice and we received great service which immediately had us planning our next vacation at Disney World. Well, for the additional $700 over my preferred room reservations I already had secured at the Caribbean Beach Resort, I figured there had to be a reason people paid for the Deluxe resorts. Well, some of this might be petty but we really enjoyed coming back from a day in the parks and finding the towel animals. We decorated some tip envelopes (first time we did that) and left twice as much as we did previously. Not one towel animal the entire stay. Yes, we were "upgraded" from a standard view to a savannah view. I would have been really upset if I had actually spent the extra $1200 for that view. There was some sort of animal pen under our room that they were never in and it pushed the animals further out. We were close to the lobby but it was loud at times since our room was next to the stairway. The door to the cabinet the refrigerator was in wouldn't close (weird.) And if I didn't know better, I would say it was the smallest room I've had yet at Disney. The footage says differently but the older style TV armoire took up a lot of space and had only 2 drawers for clothes. We were immediately struggling to find space. The Mara was definitely smaller and had less options that the quick service food courts at the moderates we've stayed at.
In the past we hadn't been able to afford any type of vacation and perhaps we are making up for lost time since our daughter is almost 14. It was my husbands birthday while we were there (which I told them at booking) and we got a pre-recorded phone call from someone claiming to be the manager at the hotel-and that's it. We had planned on participating in the bounce back offer to come back in October for my birthday and our anniversary but now we are exploring other options. I did the Disney college program many years ago and this visit had me wondering about their service standards. I wish we had stayed with our original choice and saved the money with a moderate.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge

Address: 2901 Osceola Parkway, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32830
Location: United States > Florida > Central Florida > Orlando
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Orlando
#10 Luxury Hotel in Orlando
#13 Romantic Hotel in Orlando
#30 Family Hotel in Orlando
#65 Business Hotel in Orlando
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 972
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge is an African lodge-style resort amidst a 43-acre wildlife preserve. The Resort offers authentic African-inspired architecture and the kraal African-village landscape design—a semi-circle design popular in Africa which offers expansive views of the surrounding savanna and its many animal inhabitants. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Disney Animal Kingdom Lodge
Animal Kingdom Florida
Disneys Animal Kingdom Lodge
Disney Animal Kingdom Resort
Disney Animal Kingdom Hotel
Animal Kingdom Lodge Disney
Animal Kingdom Lodge Orlando
Animal Kingdom Hotel Disney
Disneys Animal Kingdom Hotel
Animal Kingdom Hotel Florida

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