Lunch at Animal Kingdom Lodge

Before our Disney trip I blogged about our decision to spend our nonpark day at Animal Kingdom Lodge. We were hoping to see some animals and after some waiting, we did! At the time we were there they were renovating the pool, so quite a few of their scheduled outdoor activities didn’t seem to be taking place, so we wandered a bit, played on the playground, and had lunch at The Mara. Here is a bit more about our visit and our lunch!

We started by checking out the savannah and caught sight of some sunning birds…

We searched for giraffes, but they weren’t out, so we headed to The Mara for lunch. The boys had standard kids’ menu food (chicken nuggets, salad, French fries). B had a turkey sandwich on ciabatta:

As you’ve read before, B has quite a few food allergies, so this isn’t specifically a sandwich they have on the menu (they have something similar). The kitchen staff was awesome and made the sandwich to order. I had the flatbread pizza, which was fresh, straightforward, and enough to split with a friend (or your kids who like tomatoes)….

Overall, our lunch was simple, but delicious, and I love quick service that has a variety of choices, and The Mara definitely does. After having lunch we played some games at the arcade:

Good to note that if you get an arcade card at one resort it works at others (at least ours worked at both Animal Kingdom Lodge and The Beach Club). After we got done at the arcade we headed back out to see if any other animals had showed up and they had!

 

 

While Animal Kingdom Lodge is farther out than a lot of the resorts the animals and amazing theming of the hotel makes it worth it to visit. One of my favorite parts was the boys sitting with a cast member creating imprint shadings:

 

And the boys’ favorite part was playing on the playground:

And relaxing:

It was a great start to our vacation and the boys definitely have caught the resort hopping bug, they were already asking which resort we are visiting next time!

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Trying something new at Disney

For our past two Disney trips, we’ve always started with Disney Springs. ALWAYS. Part of it was because we were staying at the French Quarter and it was a quick boat ride away. Part of it was because I wanted to do some shopping before the boys got Disneyed out at the end of the week. And both times, we found that the boys wanted to buy all the souvenirs before we had even hit a park. And then at the parks they’d see more souvenirs that they’d want to buy, leading to whining, pouting, and complaining. Also, occasionally tears. Some may have been mine. Ha!

As we were planning our Disney trip this year, I told B, you know, I don’t know if I want to go to Disney Springs. At all. I’ll pause while you get over your shock. Now, if you’ve never been to Disney World or if it’s been awhile, I highly recommend Disney Springs. They have awesome restaurants, fabulous shopping, etc. However, for us I felt like we needed a change. So our plan to deal with the souvenir issue has been two-fold. First, I’m getting the boys each a Disney Gift Card for their souvenirs. It’s something tangible that once it’s gone, it’s gone.

Second, instead of heading straight to Disney Springs when we get there, we are going to the Animal Kingdom Lodge. B and I stayed there on our honeymoon about thirteen years ago and every time we go to Disney we talk about going back to Animal Kingdom Lodge to visit. And if you’re thinking, what can you do at a hotel all day…check out Disney Food Blog’s post on Animal Kingdom Lodge. There are great restaurants, play areas, plenty of kid activities, and lots of animal viewing spots. It’s something that the kids will be excited about without having the urge to buy, buy, buy right away. It’ll also be cooler, as Disney Springs has large areas with no shade if you aren’t in a store.

We’re looking forward to trying this out! I’ll be sure to share our experience when we return!

 

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