AKL- Club Level : Itinerary Help!!

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drj898's picture
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AKL- Club Level : Itinerary Help!!

Hey everyone...I got a basic itinerary all set, but I'd absolutely LOVE some comments, questions, complaints, and/or suggestions!! In case you haven't read any of my previous threads on here, I'm surprising my girlfriend with a vacation to DW for her birthday in July. Her birthday is July 9th, but we're both busy so we're gonna be going Thurs, July 12th and leaving on Wed. July 18th. Oh..I'm also proposing. lol Anyways, here it comes:

Thursday 12th - Our flight (not booked yet) will arrive before noon. We will relax and explore Animal Kingdom Lodge and head to Downtown Disney, with dinner at Raglan Road at 5:00PM.

Friday 13th - We will spend the day at Hollywood Studios, with a Fantasmic dinner package at Mama Melrose (6:00PM with 9:00PM show).

Sat 14th - We will spend the day at Magic Kingdom with a character breakfast in the morning at Crystal Palace at 8:20AM, and then a birthday dinner for my girlfriend at California Grill at 5:55PM.

Sun 15th - Another day in Hollywood Studios, with lunch at 50's Primetime Cafe at 1:15PM, and dinner at Ohana in the Polynesian Resort at 8:20PM.

Mon 16th - We will spend a day in Epcot, and dinner in Tutto Italia for 5:45PM.

Tues 17th - Day in Animal Kingdom (park), beginning with Tusker House character breakfast, and then dinner back at the resort in Boma for 7:05PM.

Wed. 18th - After breakfast, we will be leaving, as my girlfriend has her first Summer class at her college at 3PM.

But! I have a couple of updates I just sorta came up with this morning....what if...

I schedule the Sunrise Safari for Sunday the 15th, and make THAT our day in AK. And leave the final full day, (The 17th), totally up to her. I'm going to tell her where we're going after my full-payment, 45-day mark on Memorial Day, and I'll ask her what she'd like to do and I'll make ADR's if necessary. I think it's a real shame if we don't take advantage of everything club level gives us access to and not do the sunrise safari, sunset safari, or both.

If I do that, should I cancel Ohana that night? Or keep it?

Oh also...I forgot to mention my plan to beat the heat and crowds. Don't worry! I've covered my bases!

The plan for every full day, is to have breakfast in order to make rope drop at each park Orrrr....already be IN PARK (Tusker House breakfast, Crystal Palace breakfast) to be there when that rope drops.

Then, spend 9am to like 1pm'ish either have lunch in-park, or back at AKL. Then not return to the park or to whereever we have dinner reservations until like 5pm. I'm anticipating 95 degrees with 95% humidity and 9/10 crowd levels. I want her to be happy and smiley! Not hot, stressed out, and feeling sick from the heat.

One last thing!!... I've heard from a lot of Disney veterans that it'd be a real tough thing and not very relaxing and romantic to run over to DTD the night we get there. And we might be better off to just relax inside AKL that night and take everything in, looking at the animals...maybe a drink or two in Victoria Falls...maybe dinner at Jiko/Sanaa/Boma....etc. Any thoughts?

Thanks so incredibly much, in advance!

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Love your plan. AND love AKL...it's one of our "home" resorts. Although relaxing at the Lodge sounds wonderful for your first night, we're usually too excited to sit there....we want to GOOOOOO.. So Raglan is a great choice for dinner. You get in the Disney spirit without actually hitting the parks.
Love the fact that you're taking the Sunrise Safari. That is amazing in itself. Don't second guess yourself. You've done an amazing job planning this trip. You're getting ENGAGED!!! You can count on the fact you'll be back. In fact, just for fun, check out the Disney Vacation Club. If you both love Disney, it's the only way to go! Smile

Congratulations on your upcoming engagement. Your girlfriend is getting a wonderful partner in you!

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djadrych wrote:
Love your plan. AND love AKL...it's one of our "home" resorts. Although relaxing at the Lodge sounds wonderful for your first night, we're usually too excited to sit there....we want to GOOOOOO.. So Raglan is a great choice for dinner. You get in the Disney spirit without actually hitting the parks.
Love the fact that you're taking the Sunrise Safari. That is amazing in itself. Don't second guess yourself. You've done an amazing job planning this trip. You're getting ENGAGED!!! You can count on the fact you'll be back. In fact, just for fun, check out the Disney Vacation Club. If you both love Disney, it's the only way to go! Smile

Congratulations on your upcoming engagement. Your girlfriend is getting a wonderful partner in you!

thanks! funny thing....in our local mall, there's a DVC booth. Each time we pass it, she turns to me and mentions how great it'd be to have that down the road with a family awesome

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drj898 wrote:
djadrych wrote:
Love your plan. AND love AKL...it's one of our "home" resorts. Although relaxing at the Lodge sounds wonderful for your first night, we're usually too excited to sit there....we want to GOOOOOO.. So Raglan is a great choice for dinner. You get in the Disney spirit without actually hitting the parks.
Love the fact that you're taking the Sunrise Safari. That is amazing in itself. Don't second guess yourself. You've done an amazing job planning this trip. You're getting ENGAGED!!! You can count on the fact you'll be back. In fact, just for fun, check out the Disney Vacation Club. If you both love Disney, it's the only way to go! Smile

Congratulations on your upcoming engagement. Your girlfriend is getting a wonderful partner in you!

thanks! funny thing....in our local mall, there's a DVC booth. Each time we pass it, she turns to me and mentions how great it'd be to have that down the road with a family awesome

great plans for the week. if you are planning on getting to disney early enough the first day it is a great idea to spend your first night downtown, i love just walking around at night there when it is cooler, grab a margarita at the outside margarita bar near the water and just sit there and relax. it is a great first night after the flight to just relax downtown.

we got dvc on our honeymoon in 2005 before we had a kid just for the fact that we new once we had that no matter what was going on we could always take a family vacation every year. it is awesome and the best decision we ever made. my only suggestion is look and see what dvc locations are available if you have any options, sometimes there are openings at older dvc resorts. we are in ssr and love the resort just wish it was located closer to a park like epcot or mk and not dtd

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I think that you plan sound fantastic, and I don't think it would be too much trouble to head to DTD on your first night at all. Besides, you can always change your mind at the last minute and hang out at the hotel if you want. It's a beautiful hotel to hang out at, and the concierge lobby serves cordials and desserts in the late evening.

My only question is that I'm not sure Hollywood Stuidos is a 2 day park. At least I know it's not for my family. I would spend the extra Park day at Epcot, but that might just be me. I get a little bored at Hollywood Studios.

I'm a DVC Member and we own at Animal Kingdom Lodge, it's the best purchase that we've ever made.

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Kristen K. wrote:
I think that you plan sound fantastic, and I don't think it would be too much trouble to head to DTD on your first night at all. Besides, you can always change your mind at the last minute and hang out at the hotel if you want. It's a beautiful hotel to hang out at, and the concierge lobby serves cordials and desserts in the late evening.

My only question is that I'm not sure Hollywood Stuidos is a 2 day park. At least I know it's not for my family. I would spend the extra Park day at Epcot, but that might just be me. I get a little bored at Hollywood Studios.

I'm a DVC Member and we own at Animal Kingdom Lodge, it's the best purchase that we've ever made.

awesome

Cant agree more!

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Kristen K. wrote:
I think that you plan sound fantastic, and I don't think it would be too much trouble to head to DTD on your first night at all. Besides, you can always change your mind at the last minute and hang out at the hotel if you want. It's a beautiful hotel to hang out at, and the concierge lobby serves cordials and desserts in the late evening.

My only question is that I'm not sure Hollywood Stuidos is a 2 day park. At least I know it's not for my family. I would spend the extra Park day at Epcot, but that might just be me. I get a little bored at Hollywood Studios.

I'm a DVC Member and we own at Animal Kingdom Lodge, it's the best purchase that we've ever made.

Well there ya go! There's my answer...looks like It won't be a 2 day park. It'll be Animal Kingdom instead with a Sunrise Safari.

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She knows lol. I guess I'm not as good at keeping secrets as I thought. At least she seems into it, and doesn't know anyyy other details (resort, parks, etc.). I hadda laugh when she asked me, "Is it a lot? I mean like..is it worth it?". I literally lol'ed on the phone with her just before. I was like..you have no idea.

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LOL!! She'll be blown away!

drj898's picture
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BIG CHANGES:

1) Sunrise Safari on Sunday, instead of a 2nd day at DHS. With that, I've cancelled the final full day (Tuesday) at Animal Kingdom, and moved it to that Sunday after the Sunrise Safari.

2) Boma is cancelled on Tuesday which would've been after our day in Animal Kingdom.

3) Lunch at 50's Primetime on Sunday is cancelled.

Right now, our last full day in DW is free and open. I'm going to leave it to my girlfriend. I'm going to show her maps and menus and let her make the call.

Big decision: Think I should do Jiko or Boma instead of California Grill or Ohana?

PS: I also moved my ADR for Ohana back to 5pm instead of 8:20pm.

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Any thoughts?

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drj898 wrote:

Big decision: Think I should do Jiko or Boma instead of California Grill or Ohana?

I love all of these, and I'm fond of how relaxing it can be just eating at the hotel.
However, I would not miss California Grill for anything and I love Ohana, so I would keep them.

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Kristen K. wrote:
drj898 wrote:

Big decision: Think I should do Jiko or Boma instead of California Grill or Ohana?

I love all of these, and I'm fond of how relaxing it can be just eating at the hotel.
However, I would not miss California Grill for anything and I love Ohana, so I would keep them.

Agreed. California Grill has given me the best 2 meals I've ever eaten in my life. I mean, I am only 23, but they were AMAZING! and I've never eaten at Ohana, but its planned for my next trip, just based on the reviews people around here and DFB give it!

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I just wanna know when you're doing the proposal and if you've decided how you're going to do it yet!

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I too was going to ask when/where you planned on popping the question?

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Yes! inquiring minds want to know.

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Wow!! You're girlfriend is a lucky girl!! She really has met Prince Charming!!

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lol thanks everyone so so much.

All the girls (and vettelover lol) wanna know when I'm going to propose huh? I know I wanna do it early. And I don't really think I want to carry it with the box in my cargo shorts through any of the parks in July heat. But anyways...I have some ideas...

1) In the room on our first full day, with in-room breakfast in front of the animals.

2) Up in the balloon in Downtown Disney, the night we get there.

3) After our dinner at Ohana, on the beach @ Poly.

4) In front of Cinderella's Castle after our breakfast at Crystal Palace. (Will there be CM photographers there like 8:30-9am'ish before RD?)

Any other ideas, i'm definitely welcoming. Thanks!!

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Should I throw away Ohana, and make an ADR at Boma or Jiko? Or something else?

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Before I do away with Ohana, I would do Jiko on the first night instead of Raglan Road (like you considered in the first place.) I just think on your first trip, you should definitely do Ohana and California Grill if you can. Having said that, they are ALL wonderful places (I love Raglan Road.) And if you are going to DTD, doing it on a weeknight is definitely a good thing.

So, here is my thought: Pens down. Smile You are very excited - with awesome reason! - but there is NO way that you can do everything on this trip. It sounds like there will definitely be others! You have planned an awesome trip with lots of varied experiences. Go with what you've got and book that flight!

I can't wait to hear about it. Your strategies for beating the heat are sound, too. I hope you do a trip report!

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Lizzy_B wrote:
Before I do away with Ohana, I would do Jiko on the first night instead of Raglan Road (like you considered in the first place.) I just think on your first trip, you should definitely do Ohana and California Grill if you can. Having said that, they are ALL wonderful places (I love Raglan Road.) And if you are going to DTD, doing it on a weeknight is definitely a good thing.

So, here is my thought: Pens down. Smile You are very excited - with awesome reason! - but there is NO way that you can do everything on this trip. It sounds like there will definitely be others! You have planned an awesome trip with lots of varied experiences. Go with what you've got and book that flight!

I can't wait to hear about it. Your strategies for beating the heat are sound, too. I hope you do a trip report!

lol, you're so sweet, thank you so much!

I'm not looking to do everything...I'm just looking to hit the best of the best while still trying to have a relaxing, romantic trip!

So far, it seems like Cali Grill & Ohana are must-do's. Any others I'm missing?

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dont throw away O'Hana.. just stick with what you have and it will be perfect!!!

My vote for the proposal is either the Hot Air Balloon ride the first night!!! =) If you dont do it at the beginning and wait a day or two, you will probably be a nervous wreck and she will catch on that something isn't right.. just do it! =)

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I was going to say the same thing Emmanne said. On a vacation you should be relaxed and trust me you will be nervous. you will catch on. I knew my now husband was going to propose because of these very reasons. He brought flowers to my mom when he picked me up for dinner, he took the wrong way to our favorite restaurant, he got up to go to the bathroom like 3x during dinner (i now know it was because he kept checking on the ring), he didn't finish his meal, and he barely spoke. All those combined in a 2.5 hour dinner (with our wait and drinks at the bar) made me guess about half way through dinner what was going on. You should do it on the plane! or in the airport in Orlando. So that when you get to disney you can spend the whole trip as newly engaged!

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So she knows, huh? But she doesn't know the BIG part! muchlove

Okay, quick personal story. For a million reasons that would make this a long story if I explained them, my then-boyfriend and I had been apart for a year (with the exception of one week). I was living in England at the time. He came to visit. We ended up in Paris together. He had a ring with him. I had no clue. When we each tell others the story of our engagement at THE Eiffel Tower, his version is completely woven around the fact that he wanted to get that ring on my finger as fast as possible so he did not have to worry about losing it or me accidentally finding it. He de-railed our Paris Day 1 plans to get us to the Eiffel Tower as soon as possible so he could find a way to focus on ANYTHING except, "Where's the ring? Where's the ring? Where's the ring?"

I think you might end up being the same way. And you don't want to have to be worrying about that. Plus, he wanted us to spend as much of our short time together as --- engaged --- and not boyfriend/girlfriend. Same might be true with you, not sure. So... why not do it the first night during the "relax and explore Animal Kingdom Lodge" part of your arrival plan above? There is a great spot at AKL, outside, where you can view the animals. You could be there, viewing animals, asking someone to take a picture of the two of you, hand them your camera, and - boom - (if you're planning of getting on one knee) - down on your knee, and yay .

That's my thought. Do with it what you wish. wink

Here's a side thought on the photo part for you to consider. The ONE thing we do not have from our engagement is a photo of THE moment. He just couldn't figure out how to swing that part in the midst of busy Paris. It is the one thing I wish we had. He, however, LOVES that there is not a photo of the actual moment. He says that moment was just for us and will always be only ours, which is sort of sweet when you thing about it. The photo from about one minute AFTER sits on our mantel. Almost 14 years later, do I wish we had that picture? Yeah, probably. Is he happy we don't? Yeah, he holds tight to the fact that no one else gets to share that moment except us. And in the end... it's one of the few times that HE gets to actually make all the decisions, so, there's no photo, just about 20 of the next five minutes. laugh

Hope that helps,
Dreams

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I f you do it on the Characters in Flight balloon the Capt. would be happy to take photos just ask.

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Wow. That idea for the night of, sounds great. Either at DTD or AKL. Thank you so much!