After years of Walt Disney World vacations, I have learned that there’s plenty of fun to be had at Disney World Resorts in Florida. Even though you can save money staying off-site, I think that Disney World Resorts offer plenty of value for the money (especially Disney’s value and moderate resorts). In fact, there is so much to do at Disney World Resorts that my family tries to always plan a “resort day.” Here’s a list of 15 Things to at Disney World Resorts:
15 Things to do at Walt Disney World Resorts
1. Satisfy a sweet tooth
Grab a Dole Whip (a delicious blend of vanilla and pineapple) at Disney’s Polynesian Resort or visit Beaches and Cream Soda Shop at the Beach Club Resort. Beaches and Cream offers numerous types of desserts, but the “kitchen sink” is their famous offering- a huge sundae with numerous toppings that is enough for 4-6 people easily.
2. Shop or eat at Disney Springs
Disney Springs has so much to offer. Numerous restaurants and shops. You and your family can easily spend half a day there. My family loves going to the Rainforest cafe. Reservations are recommended. Walk-ups are welcome, but be prepared for sometimes a 2-hour wait. However, they will text you, so you can shop while you wait.
3. Explore the Seven Seas Lagoon by boat
This is my mom’s favorite thing to do at Disney. Many of the resorts offer marinas where you can rent boats that hold 2-10 people. We usually rent the pontoon for 1.5 hours ($45 for a half an hour) and explore the lagoon. Reservations are not required-boats are rented on a first-come, first-served basis; but we have never had to wait for a boat. If you’re looking to save money, you can also ride on one of the ferries that travels from the resorts to Magic Kingdom or Hollywood Studios.
4. Catch the fireworks show
You don’t have to be in the park to enjoy the fireworks at Magic Kingdom. Have dinner at the California Grill, and you get a ticket to come back and watch the fireworks display from the roof of the Contemporary Resort. You can also watch the fireworks from the beaches of the Contemporary or Grand Floridian.
5. Explore the Savannah at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge
The Animal Kingdom Lodge is one of my favorite resorts to stay at. It is so unique. I love going out on the hotel balconies and seeing a giraffe eating from a tree. Even if you don’t stay at the Animal Kingdom Lodge, take a ride over and explore the observation areas of the hotel .
6. Catch a Dinner Show
Disney World’s Fort Wilderness Lodge and the Polynesian Resort each offer a dinner show. Fort Wilderness’ Hoop-dee-doo Musical Review is a laugh-out-loud wild west comedy show with an all-you-can-eat menu of ribs, fried chicken, baked beans, tossed greens, cornbread, and strawberry shortcake. At the Polynesian Resort, experience a Hawaiian luau with the Spirit of Aloha dinner show with hula dancing and fire dancing. This experience also is all you can eat with pork, Polynesian ribs, vegetable medley, mixed greens, and pineapple-coconut guava cake.
7. Breakfast with Mickey
Personally, I think taking the time for character dining on a park day is a waste of time. Character dining combines Disney World’s excellent cuisine with also meeting some of your favorite Disney characters like Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy, etc. You spend a lot of time in the restaurant when you could be riding Tower of Terror. Many of the resorts offer character dining, so make a reservation on a day that you plan to spend at the resorts.
8. Take a walk
There are numerous picturesque walking paths around the Disney World Resorts where you can stroll after a big meal or maintain your marathon training. Even during a resort day, make sure to take care of your feet as your explore. Check out my post on Disney foot care!
9. Rent a Surrey bike
Your family can rent a 2, 4, or 6 person Surrey bike at the Boardwalk, Port Orleans-Riverside, Caribbean Beach, or Old Key West.
10. Catch a movie under the stars
Many of the resorts play a movie under the stars- either on the beach of poolside. Check with your resort to see what’s playing.
11. Carriage Ride
At Fort Wilderness and Port Orleans, you can experience a horse drawn carriage ride around the resort.
12. Campfire Sing-a-long with Chip and Dale
Also at Fort Wilderness Lodge, Chipmunks Chip and Dale host a Campfire sing-a-long with the option of buying s’mores kit. Every night-weather permitting. Right after the campfire, the nightly movie at Fort Wilderness starts, so plan on staying awhile.
13. Mini golf at Fantasia Gardens and Winter Summerland
The Fantasia Gardens at the Swan Hotel and Winter Summerland at Blizzard Beach Water Park offer two courses for families to enjoy (Currently, $14 for an adult-10 and over, and $12 for children under 9).
14. Have a pool day (even in the winter)
Florida can offer summer temperatures all year long. Although there are some cold days in Florida, don’t forget to pack your swim trunks. The Disney pools are heated, so I’ve enjoyed a pool day in December. I love all the Disney pools that showcase the theme of the hotel. Unlike many of the other features of the resorts, Disney World Resort pools are only for guests of that particular hotel. The picture below was taken on Christmas Eve 2014. It was 81 degrees.
15. Spa Day or Health Day
Many of the Disney Resorts offer Spa and Health Clubs to either pamper yourself or work off some of those Dole Whips.
Do you have any Walt Disney World Resort activities that your family likes to do? Share them in the comments and don’t forget to Pin!