Six Things to Try at the Disney Animal Kingdom Lodge

You’ll enjoy your Disney Vacation Club membership for decades.

Over this time, you’ll eventually stay at all the resorts. However you may not know what’s fun to do at each DVC property.

Here are six things to try at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge Resort.

Exploring the Hotel Grounds

The name of this resort tells you everything you need to know about the campus.

You’re visiting a hotel that doubles as an animal kingdom. And you can take that literally.

The two campuses here, Jambo House and Kidani Village, provide homes to many living beings…but not humans.

Yes, you’ll find animal habitats at The Animal Kingdom Lodge. Please remember that they’re the residents here, and you’re the guests.

Still, you’ll savor the opportunity to visit them. After all, you’re enjoying the same experience that lures guests to Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park.

However, you’re avoiding the crowds by studying the creatures at the hotel rather than inside the park.

Approximately 25,000 people visit Animal Kingdom daily. Obviously, the hotel accounts for only a fraction of that.

Of course, that’s not the only reason to explore. You’ll also want to compare the two hotel lobbies.

One is smaller and more intimate, while the other is majestic and oddly soothing.

Once you’ve compared your options, you’ll more easily decide where you should during future Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge visits.

The Savannah View

Can’t beat the occasional drive by from a giraffe.

Do you know what’s even better than avoiding the crowds and watching the animals from ground level?

How would you like to be able to see the animals from your hotel room throughout your visit!

Remarkably, that option is available to guests who book Savannah View at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge.

Your room will overlook the animal habitats I just mentioned.

You’ll have either a patio or balcony that offers an unprecedented bird’s eye view of animals living their lives.

I’m telling you from experience that there’s nothing better than eating breakfast while you watch animals awaken and start their days.

Friends, I almost always book Savannah View when I stay here because there’s just nothing else like it anywhere.

You can’t book a hotel room above a zoo or a safari, you know? Disney has created something unique here. You’ll want to try it!

Go to the Other Hotel

Here’s something I can really only say about Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge and, I guess, (arguably) Disney’s Wilderness Lodge Resort (Copper Creek & Boulder Ridge)

When you stay at these two locations, you’re really visiting two different properties.

At Wilderness Lodge, that’s almost a technicality, as the two DVC properties here share the same amenities.

Conversely, at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, each hotel offers different restaurants, animal habitats, and hotel lobbies.

So, whether you’re staying at Jambo House or Kidani Village, you should take the opportunity to visit the other campus for a while.

In particular, I’d strongly recommend that you try the other pool and book at least one of the restaurants at the place where you’re not staying.

Reserve Rooms on the Club Level

Yes, I typically choose Savannah View these days. However, I’ve stayed in all three unique room types at this property.

Value Accommodations are standard hotel rooms and quite nice for what they are. They’re a good idea when you want to save a few DVC Points.

On the other hand, sometimes you may want to book a vacation with a bit more oomph to it.

On those occasions, you should definitely book Kilimanjaro Club Concierge.

At this time, this room type represents the only club floor option for DVC members, which is reason enough to try it.

More importantly, you’ll gain access to the club lounge, which is a shockingly great way to save money on food during your visit.

I say this because the snacks and beverages available here will keep your stomach full.

Plus, the exclusive lounge provides a relaxing setting whenever you want a break.

Finally, I don’t mean to sound shallow, but it’s a lot of fun getting to access an elevator floor that regular guests cannot.

Play at the Playgrounds

Obviously, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge skews younger than any other DVC resort, and that’s by design.

Disney wants families with small children to stay here and enjoy the animals. That’s the whole point!

Since kids get bored easily, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge also hosts playground areas near the pools. Here’s a video of one:

As you can see, that’s probably better than the playground at your local park.

Oddly, these places are rarely busy, though. That’s because Disney offers so many activities that some parents overlook the obvious.

They’re too busy thinking about the stuff that receives all the headlines at Walt Disney World to remember a playground.

You should be smarter than that! You’ll find that this playground is tranquil and perfectly sized for your child.

Try the Zebra Domes at Boma

Okay, you can actually buy Zebra Domes at some other places at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge.

The Quick Service restaurants and grab-and-go sections at the stores sometimes stock them.

So, I’m not just saying this because of the Zebra Domes. That fabulous white chocolate dessert will put a song in your heart.

That’s only a small part of the story, though. Boma is a Table Service restaurant that’s arguably the nicest buffet at Walt Disney World.

This place isn’t like, say, Chef Mickey’s or Hollywood & Vine. The flavors at Boma embrace the rich cultural diversity of the continent of Africa.

Dishes like Bobotie, Harira, and Tabbouleh aren’t anything you’ll ever find at your local buffet. You’ll definitely want to try them here, though!

The explosion of flavors will expand your palate in a matter of two or three bites. These entrees are memorable and potent.

Still, you should always save room for dessert. That’s because Zebra Domes are legitimately in the conversation for best sweet treat at Walt Disney World.

Please let us know if you have any questions or if you’d like any additional information. If you’d like to rent a DVC Villa for your next Vacation or purchase a Disney Vacation Club property at a reduced price, our agents will be happy to assist you with any questions or information.

 You can reach our office at 800-550-6493 or email 

Written by David Mumpower

David Mumpower is the author of Behind the Ride and the Disney Demystified series. He’s written more than 25 million words and been quoted as a subject matter expert by CNN, the Washington Post, USA Today, CNBC, and countless others. A DVC member for more than a decade now, his favorite resort is the Polynesian, his favorite park is EPCOT, and his favorite ride is Spaceship Earth.