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“Never stay anywhere else in Disney World” 5 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
Thurmont, Maryland, United States
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Never stay anywhere else in Disney World”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2013

This is our second time staying at the Jambo House at the Animal Kingdom Lodge. It is enchanting and wonderful to behold. With a savanna view, the world and your view of it completely changes. Watch the beautifully elegant giraffes, the silly Red River Hogs, the strange wildebeasts, and beautiful zebras and more, so much more from the room. The world for it is enchanting -- I cannot think of a better way to describe how much I love this resort.

I've stayed at so many different places on Disney property from Saratoga Springs to Pop culture to Port Orleans to Yacht club and more -- but this - is totally what you would look for if you want a vacation to remember the moment you step through the doorway of your hotel room. Now there are differences with this resort and the others. This resorts has very limited outdoor space to walk and roam. It is really about hanging out at the hotel and watching the animals. The rooms (we are vacation club members) are beautifully appointed. I check every single room I walk into for bed bugs, stripping the bed down to the mattress. I found none. It was clean and whatever we wanted we received.

The lights in the hotel are amber and therefore lower in wattage and brilliance so it is a little getting used to. Pull out bed is uncomfortable, though.

The kids adored the view and the hotel at large. The pools fantastic and fun for the children! The restaurants both at the Jambo house and Kidani village were great. We ate at the Sanaa with a view of animals on the savanna, but ours was obstructed, so request one that isn't. Both our boys didn't like their meals (not very risky when it comes to food) so the waiter had the chef cook whatever they wanted and didn't charge us for the 2nd meals for both boys! What a place! Lovely.

We loved it and will definitely go back for a third stay. Jambo House or Kidani village is where you should stay for your Disney experience - magical!

Room Tip: Ask for a room facing the Arusha savanna.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,171 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 (1,029)
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Leominster, MA
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2013

We just returned from a week stay at Disney Animal Kingom- Kidani Villas.
It was like having 2 vacations in 1.
We spent most days having fun in the parks.
But when we cam back to our savannah view villa- it was like another world.
Very relaxing to sit on the balcony, sip a glass of wine and watch the giraffes and zebras roam around freely. The pool with 2 slides and a splash area were great, as well.
I would highly recommend staying here!

Room Tip: Ask for a room close to the lobby.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nazareth, Pennsylvania
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2013 via mobile

This was our first stay at the Animal Kingdom Lodge and it was by far the most immersive of the Disney properties we've stayed at. If it weren't for the Florida plates you'd think you were in Africa. We had a savanna view room with a fantastic view of the wildlife (definitely worth it especially if you have kids). Rooms are typical Disney; clean, nice size but in need of updating. The pool is huge and has a nice water slide for the kids. Breakfast buffet at Boma and dinner at Jiko are well worth it.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bellevue, Ohio
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
58 helpful votes 58 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2013

We had mixed feelings about this resort.We were moved to this hotel after being placed in two different dirty rooms in the Saratoga Springs Resort.
The front desk staff was less than magical, they could not properly activate our key card which kept us running back and forth to the front desk while the rest of our party was left standing in the hallway. This went on for over an hour!!! Since we were transferred in because of a problem, you would have thought they would have been more interested in trying to make everything right. Instead they made us wait around repeatedly while they helped other guests, talked about work schedules, etc. etc. knowing we had 3 young children, and 2 senior citizen waiting to get in a room.
Once we were finally in, we very pleased to find a clean. spacious room. Viewing the animals from the deck and the terrific pool area.saved the experience from being a total bust. We would stay here again, but we would lower our expectations of the front desk staff.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 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
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Worth, Texas
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2013

I will say that we have stayed at most of the Disney Resorts. AKL is one of the best resorts for the value.

The décor of the resort makes you feel like you are actually in Africa. The Cast Members are truly dedicated in making you feel you are walking into your own home. Greeted at the front door and escorting you to the registration desk to re-confirm you reservations and collect you room key.

The Savannah View is one of the most beautiful view of the property and the exotic animals running free. we stayed for 9 days and did not want to leave to go home. The late afternoon entertainment is an experience you do not want to miss.

Room Tip: Ask for Standard Room Savannah View
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fleetwood, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2013

Rooms and Views fantastic but if there is 6 or more in your Family and have the Disney Dinning Plan with Virgin Holidays, what VIRGIN ARE NOT TELLING YOU IS; when you have a meal in your resort restaurant you will receive a BILL at every meal for around $40 plus for gratuities/service charge as this is Disney Policy. Therefore,on top of what ever you have paid for your Package Holiday, make sure you budget £500.00 plus which you will have to pay out on a 14 night stay, if you wish to eat together as a FAMILY.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edinburgh
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
41 helpful votes 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2013

This is a beautiful hotel - nothing spectacular from the outside, but inside...Wow. The lobby is beautiful with a really high ceiling, intricate carvings etc. It's almost church like inside.

They even have a fire pit in the lobby so there is a very faint smell of the fire through the lobby.

It is a big hotel and our room was as far as you could possibly get from reception - right at the corner of the savannah (we didn't pay extra for this). We didn't think we would see many animals but were delighted to waken up on the first morning and see giraffes, zebra, roan antelopes etc from the balcony.

The pool area was good and clean. There were life guards on from about 10 in the morning. We didn't go at night. There were also games and a Pool Party every afternoon. It was quite noisy but a good atmosphere and it kept the kids entertained. The staff were great with the kids. If you wanted away from it all there were beds round the other side of the pool. The lifeguards were also really good at getting everyone out of the pool as soon as an electric storm struck (which unfortunately was quick a lot).

We ate at the Mara - the quick service restaurant - for breakfast and lunch a few times and the food was really nice. We were on the Disney Dining Plan otherwise it would probably have worked out quite expensive. I can recommend the hand carved sandwich - the turkey was lovely. There is good choice of things to have for lunch.

Also ate twice at Boma and really enjoyed the food especially the salmon and the mashed sweet potatoes. My 7 year old son liked the mac and cheese, and the chocolate chip cookies (pretty much his staple diet for the whole two weeks).

We went to Sanaa which is at Kidani Village - it's only a five minute walk along the pathway. It was REALLY nice. We had Bison Curry - bit of a shame as there were Bison on the Savannah but it was really delicious ;-) and the trio of desserts was fab too!

The transportation to the parks was really good and we rarely had to wait more than 5 minutes for any buses. One annoying thing is that there is no queuing system at the bus stops so if you're there first you may as well stand at the front of the stop rather than sitting on the benches otherwise some rude people will just walk right up and on the bus in front of you!!
People say that AKL is far away from the parks but it only took 15 mins to get to Magic Kingdom. The longest bus journey was to Downtown Disney.

The rooms themselves were cleaned daily and the beds were comfortable. Apparently there has been a problem with some of the fridges in the Disney hotels so for a few weeks they are removing all the fridges from the rooms. We were ok as we were already in the hotel but this is happening right now (July 2013).

We ordered in some beers, wine and snacks from Garden Grocer - they were REALLY reliable and much cheaper than buying the beers and wine from the Mara or the shop. If you decide to do this remember to take a bottle opener!

As for the parks (yes I know this is a hotel review but I always like to read a bit about how busy it is etc).....I was worried that it would be SO busy in July but actually if you went in first thing in the morning it was possible to do most of the rides at Disney without queuing for too long. We found Universal and Seaworld quite busy so bought the Quick Q passes. A word of warning though - Seaworld was reasonable at $30 per person (I wanted to do Antarctica and it meant missing a 90 minute queue although I didnt think it was worth it and was disappointed with the ride)...but the Universal Quick Q passes are nearly $100 per person per park!!! It's a lot of money but as we were only at each park for one day we decided to do it and it meant we got on everything more than once.

To sum up our trip I would say that once again we had a fantastic time. This is our 3rd Disney Hotel as we have previously stayed at the Yacht Club, and Port Orleans Riverside. I like them all in their own way but probably the Yacht Club is and always will be my favourite as I just love the Boardwalk area and the easy access to Epcot. I would definitely stay at AKL again if the price was right. Originally we were going to go back to POR but we would have had to pay extra to upgrade from the Quick Service Dining Plan. AKL gave the full Dining Plan so it didn't actually work out that much more expensive and we wanted to try AKL out.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 10
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
#64 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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