As Disney Vacation Club (DVC) Members, we are privileged to have the ability to often bring friends and family along on our Walt Disney World vacations. Last year we invited my sister-in-law and her family to join us, and we had a great vacation! With DVC reservations you can make your reservations at your home resort, or the one you actually own, 11 months in advance, and all other DVC resorts 7 months in advance. Often times it can be difficult to get the desired view or resort, especially at 7 months when your goal is peak season, but if you are relatively flexible, you can always get a nice villa.
The first objective was to choosing a resort. We had already decided that we wanted to stay in Disney Boardwalk Villas, however, with three young boys, 8, 8, and 6 years old, one of whom has an overwhelming love of animals, the group decided that the Villas at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge would be a better fit for this trip. DVC has two sets of villas at Animal Kingdom Lodge.
Kidani Village is a dedicated DVC resort, that does rent rooms at rack rate to the public, and the upper floors at Jambo House. We knew we needed a two bedroom, but did we want a dedicated two bedroom, or a lock-off? In a dedicated two bedroom you get two separate bedrooms, the master bedroom with a king sized bed, and the other bedroom, typically with two queen beds. In a Lock-off you get a one bedroom villa with master bedroom, living room, kitchen, laundry, and bathroom, attached to a deluxe studio villa with mini kitchen, bathroom, and the equivalent of two queen beds (in some, like Jambo House, its a bed and a folding sofa). We weighted the pros and cons of both, location, dining options, and pools of Jambo vs Kadini. In the end, a two bedroom lock-off in Jambo House with a savanna view was the best fit for our group of 7. We had plenty of room and a view we loved!
The amenities at Jambo house are awesome. The store, Zawadi Marketplace, is fully stocked with just about everything you could need. The pool has a water-slide that is fun for kids of all ages. The dining options are great; Boma, a African inspired buffet, Jiko, a beautiful signature dining table service restaurant, and The Mara, a counter service and home of my favorite dish, The Mara Salad with Chicken, are the dining option at Jambo, with Sanaa (table service) and Maji Pool Bar (counter service) over at Kidani Village. However, what most people like staying at Animal Kingdom Lodge are the savanna views. Even if you decide that a savanna view room isn’t in your budget, you are welcome to visit the Arusha Rock Savanna Overlook at Jambo House any time of day or night.
We truly enjoyed this vacation, in which we did many new things. Some of which I will write about in future articles. It was a full trip, and we can’t wait to return. Well, we’ve already been back once since then, and are planning our next trip at the new DVC Villas at Disney’s Polynesian Village in September of this year. I look forward to telling you all about that later in the year!
A little about me. Hello I am Disney Mom Samantha McKie. I come to you from Central New York, and have been doing Disney most of my life. With approximately 14 trips under my belt, 8 of them since becoming DVC members in 2009, many friends and family come to us for planning help. That’s why I jumped when given the opportunity to plan trip professionally. Now working with Mouse Counselors, I love what I do! You can also find me on FaceBook, and Instagram.