8 Gems Most People Don’t Know About Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge

Animal Kingdom Lodge is an absolutely stunning and breathtaking resort. The level of detail and perfection put into the resort to really make you feel like you have been transported directly to Africa, is amazing. There is so much to this resort, but here are 8 secrets that most people don’t know about Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge:

8. Over 30 different wildlife species

Crazy, huh? There are actually over 30 different wildlife species that call the savanna at the resort their home. Animals that you might see while you are there are zebras, giraffes, gazelles, flamingos and many others. If you aren’t an animal expert, that is OK! You can pick up a Wildlife Field Guide from various locations around the resort so that you can identify the different animals that you see!

7. Boma Flavors of Africa

This is an amazing dining location. The restaurant has breakfast and dinner services and both are served buffet style so that you can get a good taste of all of the amazing authentic African flavors. Also at certain times/days you can decorate cookies at this location, which is great fun for the little ones, especially on days where you just want to hang around the resort.

6. Wine tastings at Jiko

Every Wednesday, Jiko – The Cooking Place, hosts a wine tasting session where you can sample robust African wines with cheese accompaniments. There is an extra cost for this experience, and you will definitely want to make a reservation in advance to make sure you get your spot, but it is well worth it if you are a wine person.

5. Same architect did Wilderness Lodge

You might notice that there are similarities between the architecture and awe of the lobbies at Wilderness Lodge and Animal Kingdom Lodge. That is because the same architect, Peter Dominick, designed and built both resorts. The lobbies in both are awe-worthy and impressive from the moment that you step foot in them, and at Animal Kingdom Lodge, you will find the lobby and every detail in the resort to have a strong African influence.

4. Animal and Wildlife Encounters

There are many different animal and wildlife encounters and events that happen daily at the resort. When you check in you will be given an activities guide that will give you the times and what adventures may be available for you. Some examples that you may encounter are a discussion with one of the savanna guides, flamingo education and feeding, learning about animal tracking, learn about the enrichment activities for the animals, play African themed games, trivia about the savanna, learn how the African ecosystem, night viewing of the animals and more!

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3. Wanyama Safari and Dinner

This experience is available only to guests that are staying at Animal Kingdom Lodge. The safari is a 90-minute excursion where you will get to learn more about the animals that live in the savanna. The tours are limited to only 12 guests, so it is a very intimate experience and unlike what you can get from the safari at Animal Kingdom park. Before you take off, you will get to enjoy amazing treats. Then after the safari, you will have a fabulous dinner at Jiko where you get to sample various culinary delights. You definitely want to make reservations in advance since this experience is popular, and also pricey.

2. Play African instruments and hear amazing folk tales

At various times in the lobby you will have the opportunity to learn about and play various African instruments and see how the sounds come together to play songs. You could also get to meet a special friend from Africa who will sit with you and tell you popular folk tales that are passed down from family to family in African culture.

1. Rapid Refill Mugs work at all resorts

Animal Kingdom Lodge is made up of 2 resorts, Jambo House and Kidani Village. No matter what resort you happen to be staying at, your Rapid Refill mug will work at either location. This is actually true for any resort on property, so you can use it no matter which resort you may be hanging out in!

About Christy Caby

I am a diehard Disney fanatic! I fell in love with all things Disney from an early age and that only increased once I first visited Walt Disney World! It led me to complete a yearlong Disney College Program working at merchandise locations within Disney’s Hollywood Studios (Disney-MGM Studios at that time) and I worked for Disney Parks & Resorts Technology in Project/Program Management. Now I get to write about Disney and help others plan their magical vacations! Disney holds a special place in the hearts of my entire family as my husband proposed there, we honeymooned there, took trips while pregnant with each of my boys and have visited with them many, many times from 8 weeks old through now. One of my favorite memories from each trip is always the look on my kids’ faces the first time they see the castle. I’d love to help you plan your magical vacation! Request a free quote at or look for me on Facebook at Have a magical day!