Disney and sports are a winning combination that go all the way back to some of the earliest Mickey and friends shorts and continue through some of the greatest sports movies of all time, from The Mighty Ducks to Remember the Titans, and many more! Want to get in the sporting spirit and add a little friendly competition to your next Disney vacation? There are tons of ways to participate in athletics throughout the Walt Disney World Resort. Some of these are even available now during the COVID-restricted offerings, and others are expected to return soon.
Some are pretty well known, like Disney’s 3 golf courses and 2 mini-golf courses. You also may have heard about the state-of-the-art facilities at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports complex. But, if you are looking for other ways to get in on the action, here are some more unique opportunities that you might not have known about!
Please note: not all activities are currently operating due to COVID-19 restrictions and/or seasonal closures. Prices and availability are subject to change. Check Disney’s website for updates.
A combination of soccer and golf, Disney’s Oak Trail Golf Course features a 9-hole FootGolf course. There, instead of trying to hit a golf ball into a 4.25-inch hole, the goal is to kick a soccer ball into a 21-inch hole. This is a really fun twist on traditional golf that the whole family can enjoy together. Reservations can be made 90 days in advance online or by calling (407) WDW-GOLF. One round costs $20 – $29 per person, and takes about 90 minutes to play. Appropriate golf attire is required. May the course be with you!
Channel your inner Merida by learning (or perfecting) some archery skills at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort. In a 75-minute session, you’ll learn how to hold a compound bow and shoot an arrow. Then most of your time will be spent on target practice. With small class sizes and personal help from your Archery Guide, you will be getting a bullseye in no time! Guests ages 7 and up are welcome to participate at $45 per person. Advanced reservations are highly recommended by calling (407) WDW-PLAY, and then you’ll be well on your way to ready, aim, fire!
Catching a wave in central Florida? Seems impossible with no ocean in sight. But at Typhoon Lagoon, home to North America’s largest outdoor wave pool, the perfect wave is guaranteed. When operating, the water park offers 2.5-hour surfing lessons for beginner and intermediate surfers prior to opening. Lessons are taught in small groups by pros and include all the equipment you’ll need, plus breakfast and digital photos of your experience! Surfing lessons are open to ages 8 and up, for $199 per person. Reservations are required by calling (407) WDW-PLAY. More experienced surfers can instead book a private surf session here. Are you excited to have the time of your life on a Hawaiian roller coaster ride? After all, if Stitch can do it, why not you?
- Horseback Riding
Saddle up, and get ready to ride like the wind Bullseye! At the Tri-Circle-D Ranch, located at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort, guests 9 years and up can take a 45-minute horseback ride through the woods for $55 per person. Geared toward beginner and intermediate riders, taking in the scenic trails atop your trusty steed may leave you a little sore, but definitely wanting more! Reservations are recommended by calling (407) WDW-PLAY. Youngsters can enjoy a pony ride at the ranch for just $8 per person. Height and weight restrictions apply for all riders. You’re sure to have a rootin’ tootin’ good time!
Although currently unavailable due to the 2020 COVID closures, the NBA Experience at Disney Springs is a must-do for basketball fans that we hope comes back. This immersive experience puts you inside the game, where you can participate in skills challenges including dunking, shooting, ball-handling, and more. There are also arcade games, trivia, amazing photo opportunities, a restaurant, and massive gift shop. This is a slam dunk for basketball fans! In the meantime, basketball courts can be found at 7 different WDW resort hotels, free (including equipment) to guests staying at select at Disney properties, and available first-come, first-served.
With these, and many more athletic activities you can take part in, Walt Disney World truly is a sports fan’s playground. Whether you love sports or are just looking to try something new on your next vacation, consider taking a day (or partial day!) away from the theme parks to unleash your inner champion!
What sports do you love doing at Disney? Let us know in the comments.