AKL or WL


#1

So I’m making plans for the next trip. It’s basically to celebrate my mom’s 60th b-day and to say ‘thank you’ for everything she’s done. My sister may go as well depending on her work schedule.

Originally mom was all set to stay at Pop. I told her about the walking from the room buildings to the bus station, to the foodcourt, and to ME at the end of the trip. I also told her about the walking to get to the buses at the parks. She said not to worry.

The only thing is that mom has hip and knee problems and has now been diagnosed with fibromialga (sp?). Now I’m thinking that I need to make an upgrade. She loves the Poly and GF…but since we’re staying for 10 days both are really out of the price range. Plus last time we stayed at the GF mom had major problems with the ramp you have to go up when connecting monorails to Epcot.

I’m thinking about booking our stay at either AKL or WL. My first choice would be WL because of the boat option to the MK (mom’s favorite park).

Could I have what you all think are the pluses and minuses to each resort? I know the savanna rooms are a big hit at AKL but I don’t know if that room type will be out of the price range. Thanks!


#2

We love WL so that would easily be my first choice. I think the walk to even the farthest rooms isn’t bad. We have had very good luck with the transportation and you’re right, the boat ride to MK is very nice.

Which theme do you think your mother would like best?


#3

While they are both beautiful resorts, I would go with the WL simply because it’s not as big as AKL and your mom won’t be required to walk as much.


#4

My vote is AKL. We brought my Mom there (she’s 70 and many walking problems). When checking in, with discussions regarding her walking problems, they offered her a room much closer to the lobby, but the view wasn’t as good as the other room originally selected for us, which was much farther down the long hallway. Mom chose the view and the long walk down the hallway, because…they offered her a wheelchair to use at AKL anytime she needed it. It worked out great. Mom got the great view of the animals, and the kids got the fun of pushing her in the wheelchair down the hallway.


#5

They are both so beautiful, such a hard choice.
I would vote for AKL, because my MIL has a hard time getting around and she had no issues with AKL. Plus they have a zero entry pool.


#6

AK beautiful but long walks to the rooms and the bus. WL much better for transp., including the boat and the bus stops are a little closer to the main bldg. and not as much of an incline back to the lodge. With the $$$ you save by staying at the WL vs AKL, you could upgrade to a Concierge room and be really close to the lounge & lobby and save some steps for breakfast and snacks.


#7

Flip a coin. For me, most of the time, I’d prefer WL over AKL.
Some walks to rooms at WL can be as long as at AKL.
Rates for both hotels are about the same.


#8

I would say WL because it is so close to MK and because it is my favorite resort!


#9

They are both beautiful, so you can’t go wrong. I agree with Soundgod- flip a coin. You win both ways. If she likes MK best then I would lean to WL.


#10

I personally like the AKL better ,but that’s cause I am into that theme more. Both resorts are awesome. If you are looking for an upgrade over pop and want less walking, I highly reccomend POFQ. Very small in size…everything is very close to the main area…more so even over AKL and WL which are a bit more of a hike depending on your room location.


#11

Thanks to everyone who offered their opinion on their favorite resort and why you should think I should book there. Those were the exact kind of responses I was looking for. You guys were super helpful!

To those who suggest flipping a coin, I’m aware the pricing of the two resorts is the same (that’s why I narrowed it down to them). I was curious about the differences in the resorts as far as people’s impressions on the theming, their CM experiences, how far the bus stops are at the parks, etc. I was really interested in hearing people’s experiences (the stuff beyond what you can read in the resort descriptions) than being told to flip a coin.

Dana, I’ve thought about POFQ because of the rave reviews here for that resort. I even showed mom photos of the resort from Allears but she wasn’t too crazy about the theming. I think it was the clown heads in the food court that did her in. Plus we have to schedule the trip over the summer. At AKL and WL the rooms are in the same building as check-in, food court, etc so she’ll have less time in the heat and humidity.


#12

I think what people are trying to say is that both resorts are great. The theming is amazing at both. In any deluxe resort I have been in the bus stops are very convenient. It is really a matter of what you want to be close to and what parks and attractions are your favorite.


#13

I can only speak for AKL, seeing I never stayed at WL. But, at AKL, the theming is extraordinary. When you walk in, you actually feel you are in Africa with the decorations, music and smells. If you were to walk through the lobby and go outside to the savannah, there are CM’s out there to discuss with you every aspect of the surroundings. There is also a bonfire area which I’m not sure goes on in the evening (cause we are always at the parks) but it looks very inviting. The art is magnificent. You can walk around the entire resort, with art bursting everywhere. The CM’s are also absolutely wonderful. They make you feel extra special. My Mom adored everything about AKL, as I would imagine your’s would too.


#14

I just stayed at the AKL and love it! But in your case I would go with Dana and try POFQ. In any case you can always call Disney and work with them about your room location because of walking problems.


#15

I ADORE AKL and we got very lucky with a nice room overlooking the lobby…but we did take a walk around that resort and some of those rooms can be a big hike from the lobby…and the Mara isn’t exactly just around the corner either…I’d say WL because it’s a bit smaller and the boat ride to MK will be a nice treat for your Mom!


#16

The bad news: That’s a really tough decision!

The good news: Both are so great, there is not wrong choice!!!


#17

We have stayed at both. I prefer WL due to the location. I like the short boat trip to MK. Besides that they are both great resorts to stay at. I would gladly stay at WL or AKL again.


#18

Thanks again for all the comments.

A few questions. Is it true that WL shares buses with other resorts and AK does not? Also, how long are the bus rides? I know that WL is close to MK and AKL is close to AK…but are they about the same travel time to the other parks? How far away are the bus stops at the parks (for example Pop’s bus stop is the VERY last one at MK so it’d be a real hike for my mom after a long day there)

My own preference would be for WL. I like how close it is to MK and the extra boat option. Plus it seems like such a serene hotel. I’m just concerned about having to stops at other resorts when we travel to Epcot, MGM, or AK.

I love the room decor of AK. My mom liked the look of their pool. If the bus only goes to AK that’s a plus but I’m concerned at how long it’ll take to get to the parks.


#19

Depending on the route, WL shares it’s bus with Fort Wilderness for almost everything and I’d feel comfortable saying WL shares Grand Floridian’s bus to DTD.
Yes, AK does not share buses with anyone, but that is as much a result of the only other resorts in that area are the All Stars, who already share between the three as the remoteness of AK from all other resorts on property. Another factor, other than WL/FW, I’m fairly confident that resort classes don’t share, that is, only deluxes share with deluxes and values share only with values. The mods, because they feature 4 stops on each property, do not share, nor do the stand alone DVC resorts, OKW and SSR. Pop doesn’t share, but Pop has something like 3,000 rooms.


#20

I’ve never stayed at either, but this would be my main reason for choosing WL!