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Disney Animal Kingdom Villas are unlike anywhere else in the world. Not just Walt Disney World. It is a very unique place which draws visitors looking for very high quality hotel accommodation in the middle of Walt Disney World. And perhaps a very different experience. Where else in the Americas can you look out of your window and see a giraffe? Learn about the wildlife from an experienced guide and then go for dinner at one of the very best restaurants in whole of Walt Disney World?
Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas are a unique place to stay. Offering spacious luxury accommodation with easy access to all of the Walt Disney World theme parks. What more could you ask?
The Villas are part of the Disney Vacation Club but anyone can book the accommodation – you do not have to be a DVC member.
Photo by Darren Wittko
Disney Animal Kingdom Villa Accommodation
You have a choice of luxury accommodation at Walt Disney Animal Kingdom Villas. From a studio sleeping 4 to a Grand Villa for 12 you have a lot of choice. Since the opening of Kidani Village the accommodation is now split between the Jambo House (the original Animal Kingdom Lodge building) and the Kidani Village which opened in 2009.
Animal Kingdom Resort guests now have the benefit of recreational and dining facilities at both Kidani Village and the original Jambo House too.
Disney Animal Kingdom Lodge Resort also has 1,293 guest hotel rooms in the Jambo House.
Disney Animal Kingdom Resort Studios
The studios sleep up to 4 guests plus a child aged 3 and under in a crib. There are studios in Kidani Village and the Jambo House. The studios in Kidani Village are slightly larger at 366 square feet against the 316 to 366 square feet of the Jambo House studios.
The studios have a Queen size bed and a sleeper sofa. You really can’t do that much cooking as you only have a refrigerator and microwave. But with all the Disney dining options perhaps that isn’t what you are looking for!
The Animal Kingdom Studios have either a parking area or pool view. If you want a Savannah view then choose the Deluxe Studios in Jambo House or Deluxe Studio Savannah view in Kidani Village. Of course you do pay a premium for the view but really this is one of the most amazing views so you really do want to think seriously about upgrading.
Disney Animal Kingdom One Bedroom Villas
The one bedroom villas offer a lot more space and can accommodate up to 5 guests (although the value one bedrooms have a limit of 4 plus an infant). These have a very generous 807 square feet of space in Kidani Village. The one bedrooms in Jambo House have 629 to 710 square feet of space.
Each has a master bedroom with a King bed and whirlpool bath. Kidani Village villas have 2 bathrooms whilst the Jambo House has one. This may be an important factor in deciding which one to book. Each has a Queen sleeper sofa in the living room. Also there is an additional sleeper chair in all except the value room.
Each one bedroom villa has a full kitchen and a washer dryer. Many guests will be taking the Disney Dining Plan but having the advantage of a kitchen is a great asset when you are on vacation. A huge plus is the stacked washer and dryer. It saves on all that packing you need to do!
Each one bedroom villa has a balcony.
You can choose from a Standard (parking lot or pool) or Savannah View for the One Bedroom villas in either Jambo House or Kidani Village.
There is also an option of a Deluxe Studio on the Club Level of Jambo House. This brings the opportunity to book certain optional experiences such as the Wildlife Discovery Excursion, the Sunrise Safari Breakfast Adventure and the Wanyama Safari and Dinner. Guests also have access to the Club Level Lounge in Jambo House.
Two Bedroom Villas
In Kidani Village there are 2 types of 2 Bedroom Villa. At 1173 square feet you have a choice of Dedicated 2 Bedroom and Lock Off 2 Bedroom. The dedicated villa is a ‘true’ 2 bedroom and the ‘lock off’ is a studio and a one bedroom connected.
The Kidani Village Dedicated 2 Bedroom Villa can sleep up to 9 people plus an infant in a crib. The villa has a master bedroom with a King size bed. There are 3 bathrooms with the master having a whirlpool tub. The second bedroom has 2 Queens and there is a Queen size sleeper sofa and an additional sleeper chair in the living room. There is a full kitchen.
You have a choice of Standard or Savannah view.
The Kidani Village Lock Off 2 Bedroom Villas are also 1173 square feet. The value villas sleep up to 8 and the standard sleep up to 9 guests plus an infant in a crib. The villa has a master bedroom with a King size bed and a master bathroom with a whirlpool tub. Jambo House villas have one additional bathroom whilst Kidani Village have 2. There is a Queen size bed and single sleeper sofa in the second bedroom. The living area has a Queen size sleeper sofa and a sleeper chair (except in the value rooms which do not have the sleeper chair so accommodate one less guest).
All the villas have a full kitchen. Again you have a choice of Savannah or a Standard View.
You get extra space in Kidani Village as the Jambo House 2 bedroom villas are 945 to 1074 square feet.
Grand 3 Bedroom Villas
The 3 bedroom villas sleep up to 12 in both Jambo House and Kidani Village. These villas will give you a lot of space to spread out, and of course all have a view of the Savannah. The Kidani Village villas are 2201 square feet and the Jambo House 2349. The Kidani Village 3 bedroom villas are on 2 levels, whilst the Jambo House are single level.
Each villas has a King size bed in the master, and 2 Queen sized beds in the 2 additional bedrooms. There is also a Queen size sleeper in the living room. The villas have 4 bathrooms including a master bathroom with a whirlpool tub.
The villa has a full size well equipped kitchen, and a washer and dryer.
The 3 bedroom villas are priced from $1550 a night in Value Season.
Should I Choose a Disney Animal Kingdom Savanna View?
Photo by lorenjavier
Of course the savannah view rooms are charged at a higher room rate than the standard rooms but in my opinion if you can fit this into your budget then it is well worth booking a room with a view of the animals. It really is a unique experience which the whole family is sure to enjoy. If you only book a standard room then of course there is plenty of chance to see the animals from one of the many lookout areas in the resort – but waking up to a view of a giraffe from your very own balcony is an experience you will likely never forget.
Disney Animal Kingdom Villa Restaurants
Photo by lorenjavier
Disney Animal Kingdom Resort has an excellent choice of restaurants.
You will find Jiko at The Jambo House. This is one of the best fine dining experiences in Walt Disney World. The first thing that you will notice is the beautiful decor. The theme for the restaurant was inspired by the colors and landscape of the opening scenes of The Lion King movie. The cuisine has a very definite African influence and there is plenty on the menu to tempt you. The flatbreads are a specialty and definitely worth trying. Entrees range from around $30 and upwards. Great options include Swahili Curry Shrimp, Maize Crusted Halibut and Oak-Grilled Filet Mignon. The restaurant is also well known for it’s extensive, South African only, wine list. Jiko is definitely worth a visit wherever you are staying on Walt Disney World.
Boma is another favorite in Jambo House. This buffet restaurant is open for breakfast and dinner each day. The breakfast buffet at Boma is $18.99 for adults and $10.99 for children (aged 3-9). Dinner is $32.99 for adults and $15.99 for children. Tax and Gratuity are not included.
Breakfast at Boma has all the usual favorites plus a few which you may never have heard of before. Try the quinoa porridge, Bobotie (corn beef, eggs, cream, potato and onion) and don’t forget the Brioche.
The dinner buffet at Boma has delicious food with an African influence. I know that description may deter some guests but it really shouldn’t! The menu changes daily but usually includes favorites such as prime rib and salmon. There is a great selection of soup and salads. And don’t forget the amazing selection of deserts. Try the Zebra Domes and Simba Paw Prints.
For quick service dining Mara at the Jambo House is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. This counter service restaurant offers the usual favorites – waffles, pizza and burgers. It is located just next to the pool and there is plenty of indoor and outdoor seating.
Sanaa is an excellent full service restaurant located in Kidani Village. The restaurant decor is stunning. The word Sanaa translates as “work of art” in Swahili. A huge feature of the restaurant is the large windows overlooking the savanna – so you may even see a giraffe passing by as you relax and enjoy the excellent African/Indian influenced cuisine. The menu offers a wide variety of items. Sample such Appetizers as Pea and Potato Samosa, Seared Panner Cheese and Pulled Duck with Red Curry Sauce. Entrees include a selection of curries and favorites such as Tandoori Chicken. There is a good selection for vegetarians including a $14.99 vegetarian sampler. For dessert try the Mango Pudding, Chai Cream or Chocolate Cake.
Both the Jambo House and Kidani Village villas offer room service dining.
Disney Animal Kingdom Villas Recreation
Photo by lorenjavier
I have to confess that for me that Animal Kingdom Resort has less to do with recreation than with quite relaxation, but I know that many of you are interested in the recreation facilities! There are so many places just to sit and escape at the Disney Animal Kingdom Resort. It is such a haven from the noise of modern life that perhaps we should all just take a moment to sit and do absolutely nothing but take in the surrounding beauty.
The Jambo House and Kidani Village each have their own recreation facilities but if you are a guest of one then you have a choice of either facility. Whilst it is fine to walk over to use restaurants and other facilities I would say that really you will only want to use the pool at your home resort – as the hassle of walking to the other part of the resort may prove too much, particularly if you have children anxiously wanting to get into the pool!
The jambo House has Uzima Springs pool which at 11,000 square feet is the largest swimming pool at a Walt Disney World hotel. Uzima Springs has a 67 foot water slide, zero depth entry and a children’s wading pool. There are two hot tubs located away from the pool in secluded,shaded and usually quieter areas. The main pool does get very crowded at busy times and sometimes the seating area just doesn’t offer quite enough space. Unfortunately there is no ‘quiet’ pool for those preferring a bit of relaxation.
Kidani Village has Samawati Springs. This is a 4,700-square-foot, zero-depth entry pool with a 128-foot long slide. This pool also has 2 hot tubs.
The Jambo House and Kidani Village have a playground. The at Kidani Village is of course newer and much larger but both will keep young children happy for hours. This is an interactive water park which the kids will really love. If you are staying in Jambo House this is worth a visit if you have younger children.
The Jambo House has Simba’s Clubhouse a child care center for children aged 4 to 12 years old.. Reservations can be made in advance by calling 407 WDW DINE.
Both also have a fitness center and a jogging trail. The fitness centers are free to use for resort guests.
The Disney Animal Kingdom resort offers 2 of the most interesting gift shops you will find in all of the Walt Disney World hotels. Of course you will still find the usual favorites in the stores. If you need a Mickey Mouse mug or a Goofy plush you will find one. But the African themed goods are the most interesting and even if you are not a guest of the hotel but are visiting one of the restaurants be sure to stop by in the store to browse around.
Disney Animal Kingdom Transportation
Disney Animal Kingdom resort is part of the bus transportation system. This is perhaps the one negative aspect of the resort – the bus service does tend to be a little slow as the Disney Animal Kingdom Resort is right on the edge of the property. Even though it is next to Animal Kingdom Park the only way to get there is by bus or car – there is no path to walk there. You may find that you want to rent a car if you are staying at the resort.
Are Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas the Right Choice?
The resort is certainly one of the most unique in the whole of Walt Disney World. The villas are spacious and beautifully decorated. If a villa is not what you are looking for then explore the possibilities of the Disney Animal Kingdom Lodge hotel rooms.
The dining choices are excellent and there is plenty to keep you occupied at the resort. Animal Kingdom Lodge is a wonderful choice if you are looking for the experience of a lifetime. The relaxing, laid back atmosphere, combined with the amply opportunities to see the animals make Disney’s Animal Kingdom Resort one of the very best choices in the whole of Walt Disney World.