Touring resorts/dining as an off site guest?

We are staying off site and have a short day at Universal mid week. Can we visit the AK Lodge and dine that evening? I’m pre planning for our next trip and I’d like to look around. It won’t count as admission to the parks? Any recommendations for a family browsing?

Thank you for your patience with a newbie! I think I know the answer but I want to be sure:)


This one can be hit or miss. If you have an ADR booked at the resort they will definitely let you in and you can tour the resort while you are there. AKL is an excellent choice as there is a lot of fun to be had while you are there and the dining is top notch.

If you just want to look around it’s really up to the guard at the entrance. Normally as long as it isn’t peak season where there might be parking concerns they won’t have an issue with it, but there is the possibility you’d be turned away.

Another fun choice might be to book a dinner at either the Hoop De Doo Revue (pricey but fun) or Trail’s End (one of the best budge Table service on property) where you can have dinner and then stay for the Chip & Dale sing along and campfire movie which is free!


Also of note is that if you expect to encounter any issues you can take Disney Transportation to any of the resorts without issue. You can catch buses to any Disney resort from any of the parks or Downtown Disney. It isn’t that they don’t want people to visit but parking can be a real concern during busier times of the year.

I should add, I’m thinking of a casual dinner. Not too pricey. We can do QS. I don’t mind.

The Mara is the Quick Service restaurant at Animal Kingdom Lodge’s Jambo House. We took the bus there one afternoon on a break from Epcot to check out the resort and have a bite to eat. We really enjoyed both the food and checking out the resort. It’s a great option if you don’t have a reservation. I agree with @Outer1 - if it is a busy time you are visiting, you could park at Downtown Disney and take the bus over to AKL. And no, it doesn’t count as a park admission. The grounds are beautiful and there are places set up for viewing the animals. Hope you have a great time! :smile:

Thank you! Resort crowds are at a 4 the day I’m looking at. That doesn’t sound too bad. Thanks again - I’m going to look further into this.

Ah yes @LoveBug53 is right, The Mara at AKL is really good and right by the pool. It’s the same prices you’d expect to find at any other similar place. I stopped at Grand Floridian for a liner meetup on our trip and the guard had no problem letting me in. If it’s a 4 level day I doubt you’d have any issues, though you will have to provide your ID at the guard shack. Just tell them you are meeting friends at The Mara.

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