Disney Springs or Boardwalk?

As I’ve mentioned elsewhere, we are going to be at Disney World for a conference my wife is attending. On Wednesday, she has to be in meetings from 8am-3pm, but we have a whole afternoon/evening to ourselves. We are already going to the parks for the next 4 days, so we thought we might just relax that evening.

I had thought of going over to Disney Springs, but that’s at least a half an hour bus ride. But we are staying at the Dolphin, so we are really close to the Boardwalk.

We spend a fair amount of time at Downtown Disney in Disneyland last year, mostly because you HAD to walk through it to get to the parks from our hotel. Are we missing much by not going? This will probably be the only day we will have time to do it. To be honest, we aren’t big souvenir shoppers, although we do enjoy looking around.

The Dolphin is basically on the Boardwalk - to me that whole area is the Boardwalk. Most likely if you are going to Epcot any day/night you will be walking on the "Boardwalk " and seeing everything there is to see. Make sure you stop into the bar at BlueZoo at some point! If you have the time I would jump to DS.


DS has MUCH more to offer, but you could make a nice evening of the BW. To me, the highlight of the BW is Jellyrolls, on over-21 dueling piano bar. There is a cover to get in, but it’s lots of fun. For fine dining, you have Flying Fish (BW), Yachtsman (YC), and Shula’s, and Blue Zoo at the Swan/Dolphin (I can never keep them straight). There are also a number of more “casual” locations to eat. And it’s all within easy walking distance of your hotel.

DS, on the other hand, has over a dozen TS restaurants, for almost any taste or budget, and I don’t even know how many QS choices. Dozens of stores ranging from high-end designer boutiques to World of Disney, live street performers, a huge movie theater complex, bowling, etc. And don’t forget Cirque du Soleil’s “La Nouba”. Since the last expansion, DS is easily twice (probably closer to three times) the size of DLR’s DTD.

Either way I think you could have a very enjoyable evening together :slight_smile:


If you just wanna chill, I think there’s PLENTY to do between the Dolphin’s awesome pools, restaurants, hanging on the Boardwalk (Ample Hills for ice cream is a must for us.) Jelly Rolls for a little while, there are a few little street show type things on the Boardwalk as well. The Boardwalk is a pretty small strip of stuff, DS has got to be much bigger. Boardwalk is pretty chill. I’ve heard that DS is quite the spectacle, however. The last hardcore Disney person I talked to said DS deserves WAY more credit than ppl give it for entertainment. She said the last time she was there, there was a guy playing a piano, and the piano was motorized. He was playing while it was driving down the street, and ppl were all gathered around and walking alongside. She described it as a moving party parade. She said there’s things like that happening pretty frequently at DS, and it’s just an absolute blast.

For just a relaxing afternoon/night, however, The pool system at the hotel is freekin awesome, and the Boardwalk is essentially at the hotel’s back door. I’d have no issue spending some quality time at the pools, then picking a spot for a chill dinner, (if you like sushi, Kimonos is really decent, and not Disney overpriced,) then I’d head to the Boardwalk and lounge around - probably Jelly Rolls for a while, then definitely Ample Hills.

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I have thoroughly enjoyed following your posts because I’ve gained so much information for our upcoming trip! My husband has a work conference, and we are staying at the Dolphin before it starts with our family. I know we’re planning on walking over to the Boardwalk one evening as it is so incredibly close and has a really relaxing atmosphere. On our last trip, though…we were completely taken back at the changes to Disney Springs. Usually we just go for Earl of Sandwich and World of Disney and the Christmas store…but the new development has completely changed the feel of it! We spent hours just walking and browsing and picking out restaurants we wished we were hungry enough to try!

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If you’re looking for a relaxing night Boardwalk, otherwise venture to Disney Springs.

Been meaning to head over to Jellyrolls. Heard that you need to get there earliesh in evening, b/c tables already taken? Wondering what that timeframe would be. Sounds like a lot of fun tho. What about it makes it so fun?

Also, second vote for BlueZoo lounge, Ds & Ddil really like to stop in there in the evening, after the littles & grandmother (babska, that’s me) are on their way to sleepytime.

I have to say thumbs down for Kimonos tho, maybe b/c I’m picky about my Japanese food (we have so many great Japanese restaurants on Cape Cod & in Boston). Worst vegetarian sushi I’ve had ever, maybe just an off night there tho.

Hello everyone! Our trip was a success in no small part to everyone’s help! I’m going to go through my old threads and report my findings on some of the questions I asked in case anyone else is searching for similar answers. Hopefully you can learn from us!

We did not end up going to Disney Springs. Although I’m sure it would have been fun, we eventually decided that we would be doing enough walking as it was. Instead we went swimming, did a Monorail run, had dinner at the Dolphin (The Fountain) and then hung around the Boardwalk and had a nice time. :slight_smile:

We did not hit the bars though, the wife had a “work party” the night before at Bluezoo, and let’s just say she got her fill of the adult beverages. :dizzy_face:


I love, love BlueZoo but the combo of really strong and really sweet usually keeps me away from another drink for days.

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Do you recommend the Boardwalk for families with young kids on a budget? If so, what specifically is worth it?

Are you just visiting the area at night?

Not necessarily but I read that it’s nicer at night.

It is beautiful at night! Lower cost: if you want dinner mobile order (get a time very early in the day) for a pizza at the Pizza Window. If you eat somewhere else the ice cream at the Boardwalk Ice cream shop is cheaper than Beaches and Cream window (or it was last month).

Entertainment has returned to the Boardwalk at night. Generally there will be one act at a time.

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