Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground arguably offers the most recreational facilities and activities of any Disney resort. Among them are two video arcades; nightly campfire programs; Disney movies; a dinner theater; two swimming pools; a beach; walking paths; bike, boat, canoe, golf-cart, and water-ski rentals; a petting zoo; horseback riding; hay rides; fishing; and tennis, basketball, and volleyball courts. There are two convenience stores, a restaurant, and a tavern.
Access to the Magic Kingdom is by boat from Fort Wilderness Landing and to Epcot by bus, with a transfer at the Transportation and Ticket Center (TTC) to the Epcot monorail. Boat service may be suspended during thunderstorms, so if it's raining or looks like it's about to, Disney will provide buses. An alternate route to the Magic Kingdom is by internal bus to the TTC, then by monorail or ferry to the park. Transportation to all other Disney destinations is by bus. Motor traffic within the campground is permitted only when entering or exiting. Get around within the campground by bus, golf cart, or bike, the latter two available for rent. Rental cabins offer a double bed and two bunk beds in the only bedroom, augmented by a Murphy bed (pulls down from the wall) in the living room. There's one rather small bathroom with shower and tub.
The prefab log cabins (classified as Moderate resorts in the Disney hierarchy) are warm and homey, but the stem-to-stern interior wood paneling and smallish windows make for pretty dark accommodations at night. Neither the lighting fixtures provided nor the wattage of their bulbs are up to the job of lighting the cabins once the sun goes down.
All cabins offer air-conditioning, color televisions with DVD players and/or VCRs, fully equipped kitchens, and dining tables. Housekeeping is provided daily. Most readers are crazy about the cabins. Some representative comments follow.
A Wappingers Falls, New York, family writes:
We stayed at Fort Wilderness in a cabin because
- We wanted a separate bedroom area.
- We wanted a kitchen.
- Our kids are very lively and the cabins were apart from each other so we wouldn't disturb other guests.
- We thought the kids might meet other children to play with.
The cabins worked out just right for us. Although the kids didn't meet any other children to play with, they had a ball chasing the little lizards and frogs, kicking around pinecones, sitting on the deck to eat ice pops, and sleeping in bunk beds. We went to the campfire twice (we brought our own marshmallows and sticks). Our cabin was a short walk to our bus stop and two blocks away from the pool and laundry.
I loved the dishwasher, the generous storage space, the extra towels, the air-conditioning, and the daily cleaning service. There was no canned music or fake bird calls in the trees, just peace and quiet.
This Massachusetts mother of two preschoolers needed more storage space:
We liked Fort Wilderness a lot, but the cabins need a full-sized dresser. It was a pain having to live out of two suitcases all week.
From a Downers Grove, Illinois, family of five:
While we all enjoyed the cabins and resort, we spent a LOT of time waiting for buses and ferries, more than we remember waiting a few years ago. They've recently made some changes to the bus routes, and while we liked having a stop at the Meadow area, there was always a long wait for a purple bus to take us back to the cabin when returning from the parks (from both depots). They need a separate bus route just for the cabins, since many of the campers have cars and/or golf carts, an expense we didn't want after spending so much for the cabin. This factor may make us consider a different resort/villa for our next trip unless the bus system for the cabins is improved.
A Rochester, New York, dad agrees:
If you're staying at Fort Wilderness Cabins, we would highly recommend getting a golf cart. There's a lot going on at the campground itself, and the bus system can be cumbersome. Also, our 3-year-old wasn't always up for the walk - just getting from our cabin to the main loop was a lot for her.
A mother of two from Albuquerque, New Mexico, offers this:
Regarding Fort Wilderness: We stayed in a cabin and liked having all the space and the full kitchen. I was very disappointed in the pools, restaurant, and service, however. I had expected a Disney resort pool, and instead there were only two relatively small concrete holes in the ground. The pool nearest our cabin (still a quarter mile away!) never even had a lifeguard. I had hoped to be able to send the kids to the pool without us when we needed some adult time to ourselves, but with the distance and lack of lifeguards, there was no way to do that.
The restaurant (1 mile away) was good, but it was an all-you-can-eat buffet with adult prices for ages 10 and over at about $25. I'm unwilling to pay $25 for my 10-year-old daughter to eat one chicken wing and Jell-O very often. We only ate there once. I guess they figured that if you had a kitchen or were camping, you were committed to cooking every meal. It would've been nice after a tiring day to get a light meal or salad.
Bus service at Fort Wilderness leaves a lot to be desired, so much in fact that we wouldn't stay there unless we had our own car. To go anywhere you first have to catch an internal bus that makes many, many stops. If your destination is outside Fort Wilderness, you then have to transfer to a second bus. To complicate things, buses serving destinations outside the campground depart from two locations, the Reception Outpost and Pioneer Hall. This means that you have to keep track of which destinations each transfer center serves.
Blog Posts About Fort Wilderness:
|Hotel||Definitely (+/- since last year)|
|Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort Cabins||91% (+44%)|
|Average for WDW hotels||76% (+0%)|
|Average for off-site hotels||57% (+0%)|
|Hotel||Definitely (+/- since last year)|
|Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort Cabins||96% (+14%)|
|Average for WDW hotels||92% (+2%)|
|Average for off-site hotels||79% (-7%)|
|Children's play areas||Complicated bus service|
|Best recreational options at WDW||Confusing campground layout|
|Special day and evening programs||Lack of privacy|
|Campsite amenities||Very limited on-site dining|
|Shower and toilet facilities||Limited automobile traffic|
|Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue show||Crowding at beaches and pools|
|Convenient self-parking||Small baths in cabins|
|Off-site dining via boat at Magic Kingdom||Extreme distance to store and restaurant facilities from many campsites|
Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort Cabins Dining
- Chuck Wagon (Counter Service)
- Crockett's Tavern (Bar or Lounge)
- Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue (Table Service)
- Meadow Snack Bar (Counter Service)
- Mickey's Backyard Barbeque Dinner Show (Table Service)
- Trail's End Restaurant (Table Service)
- Trail's End Restaurant - To Go Counter (Counter Service)
|Magic Kingdom||17 minutes|
|Disney's Hollywood Studios||39 minutes|
|Disney's Animal Kingdom||41 minutes|
|Quietness of Room||A|
|Shuttle to Parks||Yes|