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Best Disney Resorts for Kids and Families at Disney World

Best Disney Resorts for Kids and Families at Disney World

The Walt Disney World Resort hotel has over twenty properties that you can choose from. With so many choices, how do you choose the best fit for your family? We are recommending the best Disney resorts for kids and families based on interests and plans.

Best Pool: Disney’s Yacht & Beach Club Resort

Most everyone who has had the opportunity to experience Stormalong Bay at Disney’s Yacht & Beach Club Resorts will agree that it is the best pool at Disney World. Your kids will LOVE splashing, swimming, and playing at Stormalong Bay.

You can float in the lazy river, climb to the top of a life-sized pirate shipwreck replica to slide down a 230 foot waterslide, play volleyball in the water, swim in the main pool, or let the kids play in the sand. You can also grab an ice cream treat from the to-go menu at Beaches and Cream Soda Shop.

Bonus: If you order a kids meal from Hurricane Hanna’s Grill, your kids will receive a sand pail and shovel.

Best Theming: Disney’s Art of Animation Resort

In my opinion, Disney’s Art of Animation Resort has the best theming of any Walt Disney World Resort hotel. And, at a value price tag! Your kids will find larger than life statues from Disney movies that they know and love.

Disney’s Art of Animation Resort has four sections themed after Finding Nemo, Cars, The Lion King, and The Little Mermaid. All of the sections offer family suites which can sleep up to six guests except the Little Mermaid section which offer standard rooms that can sleep up to four guests.

The theming is carried so well throughout the resort, from the rooms to the pools and food court. Your kids will find larger than life statues from Disney movies that they know and love. These make for a great photo opportunity during your visit.

Most Convenient: Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

It’s hard to beat the convenience of Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort. This tropical paradise sits across the Seven Seas Lagoon from Magic Kingdom Park. You have a great view of the Happily Ever After nighttime spectacular from the pool and beach area.

You can take the monorail to both Epcot and Magic Kingdom. They also offer a complimentary water taxi to the Magic Kingdom. If you don’t want to have to fold your stroller, we recommend the monorail. The Transportation and Ticket Center is next to the Polynesian so you even can walk over to board the Epcot monorail, without having to ride around and then transfer monorails.

Bonus: You can get the fan favorite Dole Whip’s at Pineapple Lanai, located just outside of the lobby.

Best Disney World hotels for Kids

Best Resort for Animal Lovers: Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge

If your kids love animals, then you HAVE to stay at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge! This beautiful property offers savanna view rooms where you can watch animals from the comfort of your private balcony and hotel room. You’ll be able to see giraffe, zebra, cattle, antelope, kudu, wildebeest, and more on the four savannas surrounding the property.

The savanna view rooms can be booked with a king bed (for two guests) or two queen beds (for four guests). There are also less expensive categories available at the resort. Even without a savanna view room, you can still enjoy the view of the animals throughout the resort. There are various public viewing areas and even windows down the hallways for some incredible views.

Best “Bang for your Buck”: Disney’s Pop Century Resort

Disney’s Pop Century Resort offers a great value for your hard earned money. It is part of the value category which are the least expensive hotels at the Walt Disney World Resort. The rooms at Pop Century were recently refurbished to include two queen beds, one of which can fold up for more space in the room. It is also part of the new Skyliner (gondola) transportation system for quick and easy access to both EPCOT and Hollywood Studios. You can also read my top nine reasons why I think you’ll love staying at Disney’s Pop Century Resort here.

Best for Nature Lovers: Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground

If your kids love nature and the great outdoors, then Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground is the place for you! This huge campground can be a vacation destination in and of itself. They offer both cabins (that can sleep six guests) in addition to campsites for both tents and RV’s.

Fort Wilderness has a great location on Bay Lake. You can take a complimentary water taxi to the Magic Kingdom. You can also try archery, pony rides, carriage rides, and wagon rides. There are great dining options like Trails End and Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue. Plus, you can’t miss Chip ‘n’ Dale’s nightly Campfire Sing-A-long, complete with s’mores.

Best Disney Resorts for Kids

Best Water Play Area for Littles: Disney’s Port Orleans Resort- French Quarter

If you are traveling with little ones, they will LOVE the Doubloon Lagoon water play area at Disney’s Port Orleans Resort- French Quarter. This Mardi Gras themed water play area is located next to the main pool and fully gated so guests 48 inches and under can safely explore on their own. The small size of this resort also makes it very appealing to families with small children.

Bonus: Be sure to try a Mickey beignet from Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory. We especially love the seasonal pumpkin spice beignets which are available in the fall.

Best for Princesses: Disney’s Port Orleans Resort- Riverside

Disney’s Port Orleans Resort- Riverside is home to Royal Guest Rooms. Royal Guest Rooms are found in the Magnolia Bend section of the resort. Royal Guest Rooms can sleep up to four guests in two queen beds, have a letter from Princess Tiana on the table, fiber optics headboards, Disney Princess artwork on the walls, and more royal touches throughout the resort. Every Disney Princess will feel like royalty in these elegant rooms.

Bonus: Disney’s Port Orleans Resort- French Quarter and Disney’s Port Orleans Resort- Riverside are sister resorts so they do share amenities as far as pools and dining options. You can take a complimentary water taxi between the two properties.

Best for Pirates: Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort

Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort is home to Pirate Rooms. These pirate themed guest rooms are located in the Trinidad South section. The pirate rooms can sleep four guests in two double beds that resemble pirate ships. You’ll also find a barrel, pile of crates, “Pirates of the Caribbean” divider curtain, and more theming throughout the room. Caribbean Beach is also part of the new Skyliner (gondola) transportation system which allows you to quickly and easily access both EPCOT and Hollywood Studios.

I truly believe that each Walt Disney World Resort hotel has its own unique perks and benefits. I have personally stayed at every Walt Disney World Resort hotel and would be happy to share my experiences with you regarding any property.

What do you think are the best Disney resorts for kids?

Planning a Disney World vacation? Don’t miss our guide to character meals or ten things that you should bring when traveling with a toddler.

9 Reasons You Will Love Staying at Disney’s Pop Century Resort

Disney’s Pop Century Resort is one of the official Walt Disney World Resort hotels, owned and operated by Disney. As a resort guest, you’re eligible for Disney’s Magical Express (complimentary airport transfers), complimentary transportation to and from the theme parks, complimentary parking at the theme parks, and so much more. We are discussing our 9 favorite reasons to stay at Disney’s Pop Century Resort in further detail below and think you’ll love staying here, too!

Price

First and foremost, we have to acknowledge what a great value it is to stay at this value resort. With prices starting at just $154 per night (in 2020 before any special offers), this is an amazing way to stay at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel on a budget. Outside of Disney’s All Star Resorts, this is the most economical option at Disney World.

Refurbished Rooms

The hotel rooms at Pop Century were recently refurbished and are beautiful! Disney replaced the double beds with two queen beds and removed the carpeting with a modern laminate flooring. The second queen bed even folds into the wall with a table and chairs underneath for additional space and seating in the room. They have a very updated and modern feel with Disney touches scattered throughout.

Disney Skyliner

The Disney Skyliner is Disney’s newest method of transportation, opening fall 2019. These gondolas offer quick and convenient access to both EPCOT and Hollywood Studios. The Skyliner station sits between Disney’s Pop Century Resort and Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, making it a short walk from the 60’s section. It takes just 7 minutes of travel time to arrive at Hollywood Studios while only 12 minutes to arrive at EPCOT. Please note, there is a transfer station at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort when traveling to either park from Pop Century.

Everything Pop Shopping and Dining

Disney’s Pop Century Resort has a spacious food court and gift shop called Everything Pop Shopping and Dining. They serve breakfast, lunch and dinner. Depending on the time of year, it may open as early as 6 am and remain open until as late as midnight. They have meals, snacks, and treats in addition to the resort refillable drink stations. You can even purchase a pizza meal deal with salad and breadsticks to feed a family of four for just $29.99!

Resort Activities

Even at this value resort, Pop Century has a team of entertainment staff that offers activities by the pool, Movies Under the Stars, and more. Most of this is included with your stay at no additional cost. So, if you’re spending time at the resort, don’t forget to check the activities calendar to find all that will be available during your visit.

Dedicated Buses

Unlike some Walt Disney World Resort hotels, Disney’s Pop Century Resort does not ever share buses with any other property. You will always enjoy a ride to and from the parks without having to make any additional stops on your way. You won’t even have to wait for multiple stops throughout the resort (as with many moderate and deluxe villa resorts) as Pop Century has one main bus stop at the front of the resort.

Photo Opportunities

There are larger than life statues throughout the resort that make for some amazing photo opportunities! Snap a picture with Goofy, just outside of Everything Pop Shopping and Dining. You’ll also find Mowgli and Baloo together in addition to Duncan Yo-yo’s and a Play-Doh container in the 60’s section. Other areas of the resort offer a tricycle, Roger Rabbit, Lady and the Tramp, a Rubix cube, foosball, and so much more!

Theming

The retro theming of Disney’s Pop Century Resort is fun for guests of all ages. Many parents (and grandparents) can relive their childhood with photos and relics from decades of the past. There are sections from the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, 80’s and 90’s.

Discounts

Disney’s Pop Century Resort has historically participated in most every discount that Disney offers. From free dining to room discounts, you have a great chance of being able to take advantage of additional savings on your stay here!

Have you ever stayed at Disney’s Pop Century Resort during your Disney World vacation? What was your favorite part? Be sure to let us know!

5 Reasons to Book Your 2021 Disney World Vacation NOW

2021 Disney World vacation packages

Who needs a vacation? Unsure what 2020 will hold? No problem! You can now book your 2021 Disney World vacation package.

2020 hasn’t quite turned out how many of us had planned, but 2021 should be a pretty magical year at the Walt Disney World Resort. From the 50th anniversary of Magic Kingdom in October to experiences being able to return to normal, it will be a great time to enjoy the magic in the parks. Here are five additional reasons you may want to book your 2021 Disney World vacation as soon as possible.

Park Pass Reservations

Disney’s new park pass system is currently in place through September 26, 2021. If there are any restrictions on theme park capacity, this system will be used for crowd control. You will need a theme park reservation to be allowed entry into the parks. Valid theme park admission is required in order to make these new park pass reservations.

You do not have to have your vacation package paid in full to make these park pass reservations. As long as you have applied your $200 deposit, you can make your park pass reservations equivalent to the number of days of park tickets in your vacation package.

Availability

As soon as you book your 2021 Disney World vacation, your availability (and price) and guaranteed. You don’t have to worry about your preferred resort and/or room category selling out.

We are already seeing limited availability for 2021. Between all of the guests who were affected by the park closure this year and those who were already planning for 2021, rooms are limited. Since select Walt Disney World Resort hotels (All Star Resorts, Port Orleans Resorts, etc.) have not announced their re-opening dates yet, Disney currently has more limited availability than normally would otherwise, as well.

2021 Disney World vacation

Pricing

You also guarantee your pricing as soon as you have paid your $200 deposit to book your 2021 Disney World vacation. If Disney raises ticket prices or hotel rates, you won’t be affected! It doesn’t matter if your vacation is paid in full or just has the minimum $200 deposit applied.

Worried about discounts? You won’t miss out on any future special offers either. Discounts can be applied to your reservation, as long as there is availability, anytime after you are booked. If you book with an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner, we automatically take care of this for you! It’s just one of the many FREE services included when you book your vacation through us.

Payment Plan

You can book a Disney World vacation package with just a $200 deposit. The remaining balance isn’t due until 30 days prior to arrival so you have plenty of time to pay off your balance.

You can create a payment plan to make weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly payments that best fit your financial situation. If you receive a bonus at work or have a tax refund, you can always make a larger payment towards your balance, as well.

You’ll also have more time to save for your vacation. You can pick up Disney gift cards or earn extra money to maximize your savings. We have some great ideas on ways you can earn money for your Disney World vacation.

2021 Disney World vacation

Change and Cancellation Policy

Disney has an amazingly flexible change and cancellation policy. You can make any changes that you’d like to your package, without any type of penalty or change fee, up to 30 days prior to arrival. Would you like to change your travel dates as we get closer? Waiting for the All Star’s or Port Orleans Resorts to open? Hoping to add a Disney dining plan? Need to change your park tickets? No problem! You can do any of that and more quickly and easily while keeping your deposit in tact.

If for any reason, you aren’t able to travel, you can also cancel up to 30 days prior to arrival for a full refund. Just remember, refunds are given back to the original method of payment. So, if you’re paying with Disney gift cards, just be sure to hang onto them!

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Are you ready to book your 2021 Disney World vacation now? We’d love to help you plan a magical and memorable vacation at no additional cost to you. Take advantage of our free services by calling (734) 771-1290 or emailing siera@destinationsinflorida.com today!

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Top 5 Best Disney World Pools at Walt Disney World Resort Hotels

Many families plan a day off from the parks during a Disney World vacation to let the kids rest and relax. There are lots of great activities that you can enjoy like shopping at Disney Springs, horseback riding at Fort Wilderness, carriage rides through Port Orleans, and swimming at your hotel’s pool. With so many resorts to choose from, you may be wondering which Walt Disney World Resorts offer the best pools. Here is our list of our five favorite Disney World pools.

  1. Stormalong Bay at Disney’s Beach & Yacht Club Resorts: Disney’s Beach Club Resort and Disney’s Yacht Club Resort have the best pool at the Walt Disney World Resort. They share Stormalong Bay, a three acre “water wonderland.” Stormalong Bay features a lazy river, a pirate ship water slide (one of the tallest water slides at Disney, by the way), a sand-bottomed pool, beach area for the kids to build sand castles, and so much more. The whole family will love splashing and playing at Stormalong Bay.
  2. The Lava Pool at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort: The Lava Pool will let you feel like you’ve traveled to Hawaii for the day. Relax under the waterfall while the kids slide down the volcano themed water slide or play on the new tiki-themed water playscape that was built just for them. Plus, the Lava Pool offers a great view of Magic Kingdom’s nighttime fireworks spectacular, Happily Ever After!
  3. The Big Blue Pool at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort: Disney’s Art of Animation Resort features the largest non-waterpark pool at Disney World, the Big Blue Pool! Your kids will love the Finding Nemo theme of the Big Blue Pool, complete with its own underwater soundtrack with voices of their favorite characters from the movie. There’s also a splash pad and zero depth entry in the main pool, making it a great choice for families with little ones on a budget.
  4. Fuentes del Morro Pool at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort: The Fuentes del Morro pool at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort is a pirate’s paradise centered around an old Spanish fortress. Swashbucklers of all ages will love the two water slides, water cannons, and zero depth entry pool while the littlest pirates can splash and play at the shipwreck themed water play area full of mini water slides, crow’s nest, and tipping bucket.
  5. The Dig Site at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort: The Dig Site at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort is home to The Lost City of Cibola Pool and waterslide. The complex is centered around a 50 foot pyramid, resembling ancient Mayan ruins, with water rushing down the steps. You’ll also find the largest outdoor hot tub at Disney World here, with room for up to 22 guests!
The Lava Pool at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

What are your favorite Disney World pools? Be sure to let us know in the comments!

Thinking about a Disney World vacation? Call Siera at 734-771-1290 or email her at siera@destinationsinflorida.com today for help planning your Disney World vacation at no cost to you!