Friday, April 25, 2014

A Magical Check In At Animal Kingdom Lodge

   With our Spring trip to Walt Disney World upon us, I thought I would share one of my favorite memories from recent trips.  This past October we did something for the first time…checked into Animal Kingdom Lodge at night.  Up until this point we normally would fly out of NJ in the morning, but being constricted by work obligations we had to fly out at 7PM.
   I was initially upset by the plan.  I am a creature of habit, especially when it comes to Disney World.  However, I quickly realized that I could make a challenge out of the new schedule.  Since our plane left after 7, we would be at MCO around 10:00…and The Mara (Animal Kingdom Lodge's counter service restaurant) closes at 11:00.  You might be familiar with my obsession with The Mara, and the delicious veggie flatbread that is served there.
   So there was our challenge…get off the plane, get our rental car, and get to AKL before The Mara closes...

   Yay! Somehow we managed to be at Animal Kingdom Lodge by 10:50.  The check in process can take a while, so I abandoned Adam to do the dirty work, as I ran downstairs to The Mara.  

   It had been a really long day of vacay prep, a full eight hours of work, AND travel. So needless to say, I was super happy to see that the restaurant was still taking orders.  I think I freaked out the CM a little when I told her how elated I was.

   Our bounty included beer, veggie flatbread, new refillable mugs, and ZEBRA DOMES.  Literally the best payoff of all time.  What a ridiculous way to start our vacation.

   After eating our food I had to go for a swim and relax in the jacuzzi.  The wonderful thing about AKL is how quiet it gets after the nighttime movie is over and most guests go to sleep.  Some of the most perfect moments of my life happen at this resort...

   I know this isn't the typical thing I tend to write about on Disney Hipster Blog, but it is absolutely one of my favorite memories of all time, and thought I would share it with you.  I hope that as we check in (tonight!!!!) we encounter some of the same feeling.   On that note, if you see us in the parks over the next week feel free to say hi…we don't bite. :)


  1. I love AKL. Even though we are locals we still stay there several times a year =) Have a wonderful & magical stay! Also if you guys haven't been to Jiko recently - they've added some amazing new seitan-based options (house-made seitan, not any ready-made stuff) to their vegetarian menu.