YC v AKL in Sept

My Mom, sister and I are taking my daughter (will be 3) to Walt Disney World 9/19-9/23. We are currently booked at YC, but I see that AKL will be open for our trip. My daughter LOVES animals and the idea of a savanna view room is so appealing. They also show club level available. We had originally selected YC so that we would be close to the parks, especially Epcot for Food and Wine Festival during nap time. I have never stayed at either and have heard great things about both. Any opinions?

My main concerns:
–AKL distance to other parks. The TP resort shows 50 min bus to MK? That might be a deal breaker
–AKL doesn’t appear to have the daybed option and as much as I love my kid, having that octopus in a separate bed may be better for sleeping
–Do I hold out hope that YC has club level back by Sept?
–If we do Club Level at AKL, do you think the extra FP purchase option will be in play?
–Her favorite show is “Magic of Disney’s Animal Kingdom” on Disney+ so am I being selfish by not just switching to AKL because I want to be by Epcot…

There are so many unknowns and my brain is exploding. Everyone on this site seems so friendly and smart so hoping for some guidance please and thank you!

The bus from AKL to MK is less than 30 minutes. AKL does not have a daybed. Is a pack and play an option? I don’t think Disney has announce the official opening for CL at AKL. Jiko and Boma will need to open first.


I think we could get her tired enough to sleep anywhere, so if we opt for AKL the pack and play may work! Do you think that the ride to/from other parks is manageable as well?

I’d start with being realistic about the amount of time you’ll be spending on your balcony looking at the animals. I’d also consider the benefit of being able to walk your sleeping toddler in their stroller back to the YC from 2 parks (and not take them out to go on the bus). Then the bed situation- with 3 adults the most sleeping surfaces & largest room would be preferable for me.


Since they do not share buses I have timed HS and EP as shorter rides than Poly. AK is 5 minutes. What you lose is the ease to one or two parks you get from other resorts .

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I haven’t stayed at YC but I think it sounds like a better option for you. You can visit AKL and get a similar experience with the animals.

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I will say there is nothing as magical as a toddler waking up and seeing giraffes out the window- but you can’t go wrong with either. I think BW and their pools might be a great choice too.

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Thank you all! These are super good points. I knew you could help ease my brain. I think we may stay put then! Come September I hope to share some photos of this trip–she went on a Disney Cruise in January 2020 and LOVED it. I am just crossing my fingers that a Princess dining experience is available by our trip.

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As an adult, I vote for 1900 Park Fare dinner if it’s open. It’s extremely amusing with the step-sisters. It’s only Cindy princess-wise though. So if she wants all the princesses it’ll have to be CRT or Akershus. Good luck!

We loved BC for the pool. I have never stayed in AKL but the rooms do look smaller than BC and I too like the extra daybed (my kids hate sharing a bed). We did visit AKL for dinner this trip and that was fun so that’s another option if you’re willing to take an Uber. My other plan was on my AK day to take the bus at the end of the day from AK to AKL, eat dinner at Sanaa and then take the bus from AKL to EPC and walk thru EPC to get back to BWV this last trip as we had park hoppers and EPC was open till 11pm. Then we might could ride something on the way back to the room too if we felt like it. But we ended up just Ubering.

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She LOVES Cinderella so that is a great rec! She talks about “Lucifer the bad guy cat” all the time so that could be a really fun option for us!

I didn’t even think of a meal at AKL, another great rec! Super appreciate your insight, then she could have the best of it all. I also really enjoyed your recent trip report, thank you for sharing your experience!

I would stay at YC but maybe eat a meal at AKL so she can still get a chance to see the animals and lodge.

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Stay at yacht club for the best pool at Disney and proximity to parks. Visit animal kingdom for the animals . Sooo much more steps away at yacht club

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Can we talk about that pool with a 3 year old?

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The beach area is shallow and will be fun. and I think a 3 year old would enjoy the lazy river accompanied by a parent of course. But the beach will be fabulous fun. Toddlers love digging in sand


I know a lot of parents have reported that it can be very stressful with a young child.

Of course I am also thinking about last week’s chat posts from liners that did not have very positive experiences with the crowds.


Well honestly any pool should be with a 3yo so you just play with them…but that’s how I parented in my 20s with toddlers. I climbed in the nets and went down the slides too LOL

Does AKL have a water playground like GF?

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Kidani does but BW also has enclosed areas.

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I just returned from YC with my 4 year old. We stayed at AKL when he was 2. The animals at AKL were fun and we adored the feel of the resort. DS4 loved loved loved the pool a YC. We loved the proximity to HS and EP since our trip was more focused on these parks.

My vote would be YC.

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I’m thinking it would be mostly stressful for the “you can play independently but within my sight” ages, especially with multiple kids potentially going different directions. There is just SO much area they’re going to want to explore. At 3, I was still keeping my kids within arm’s reach, so wouldn’t be too bad, especially with 3 adults to swap out one kiddo.


I am going to wholeheartedly second 1900 Park Fare. My dd will be 20yo next month and it is STILL her must do every trip. We took a 5 day mom and daughter trip for her 7th birthday and did CRT, Akershus, and 1900 Park Fare. The only one we return to every trip, is 1900 Park Fare.

The dinner characters are Cindy, the Prince, and the evil Steps (mom & daughters). The story at some point was that they were celebrating the anniversary of Cindy & the Prince. This consistently is our best character interaction every trip.

Over the years we had the Prince leave space in an autograph book so his signature could be next to his “love,” the stepmother asked my BIL is he was single and a man of means, and one of the stepsisters complemented dd (wearing a Cindy dress) telling here that she always thought Cindy would look better as a brunette. One of the other things is that the “steps” are completely in character. One of the CMs dropped plates and without skipping a beat all three from various parts of the very large room they scream out…“Cinder-elA!” Just like they say it in the film. :heartbeat:

Breakfast also fun, but not CIndy. Basically it is all “UK” characters, Mary Poppins, Mad Hatter, Pooh, etc. Good character interaction but not quite as fun as dinner.

Both meals have decent food and our family favorite is Strawberry Soup…which is available at breakfast and dinner.

All of that to say, I highly recommend the 1900 Park Fare experience and I would keep an eye out if they open in time for your trip.