Resort-Hopping Questions


#1

We have scheduled three non-park days on our next trip to WDW so that we can sleep in a bit and go check out some of the other resorts, which we’ve been wanting to do. We want these “buffer” days to be fairly relaxing – get breakfast, get lunch or dinner, and just wander around a bit in between. I don’t want to be rushing around, but at the same time I don’t want anyone in our group to feel bored.

We’re staying at POR. I’m trying to narrow the resort-hopping down to four or so. The ones we’re thinking of going to are GF, Poly, AKL, and CR. So here are my questions:

  1. Is there really enough to do at these four resorts – aside from eating – that would merit our being there for at least a couple hours each?
  2. Is there a particular resort that we might need more/less time to visit than the others?
  3. Is there a different resort that is a must-do for you when you visit?

#2

I can't think of what CR is?

So I would group POLY, GF and Contemporary all together. To be perfectly honest - nothing really merits several hours - after you have seen a few things and walked the grounds - its time to move on. You can't enjoy the pool.

I would however suggest time at Yach / Beach / Boardwalk as there are more shops and lots to do - especially at night. So I may do that when you are at Epcot - grab dinner at one of the resorts and then just tool around. Perhaps get a surrey.

AKL - you used to be able to get night time goggles and see the animals. Once again I would possibly tie that into when you are at AK for the day and grab dinner there in the evening.

I also like the Wilderness Lodge - very similar to AKL though in its general feel and grandeur (same Architect)

We normally don't set aside days to see resorts - we kind of just let it happen on slower days - perhaps our arrival or departure day. Always tie it in with a meal or snack.


#3

One day of several hours will probably let you see all that there is to see at CR, Poly, and GF; GF probably has the most to see. WL is also quite beautiful, and it's easy to catch a boat from the CR (which is a pleasant diversion in and of itself). Two Christmases ago I did all 4 resorts in about 5 hours to check out the decorations. Between QS, TS, and Signature, there are about 15 or 16 choices for lunch/dinner.

AKL is definitely worth a few hours. I highly recommend a lunch at Sanaa at Kidani; one of my favorite TSs in WDW, and you can look out on the savannah while you are eating. Either before or after take the shuttle or walk to Jambo House; the lobby is probably the most beautifully done enclosed spaces in WDW. If you're looking for an "adult" refresher, the Victoria Falls Lounge is one of WDW's "hidden gems".

I agree that the Boardwalk is another good place to do a bit of touring. Like the mono loop. there is a wide selection of dining opportunities. Personally I think it "comes alive" after dark; the lights and street performers just make it a bit more magical. The resorts are all very "nice", but they don't have the impact of AKL, WL, CR, or GF. If it's an adults only group, Jellyrolls is an excellent place for some nighttime fun (21 and over).


#4

Thank you for the great suggestions. I wasn't sure about YC, GC, and Boardwalk. Maybe we'll have to check those out on one of the days we're there.

When we have park days we have a hard time tearing ourselves away from the parks because we want to get our money's worth, so we're usually there open-to-close. This is why we purposely didn't get enough park tickets to cover every day of our visit this time. That way we're forced to get a little rest and have no excuse not to go check out some of the resorts. We've got DS planned for our arrival and departure days.

I like the idea of the night-time goggles at AKL. I'm hoping that they still do that.


#5

This is great advice. Thank you.

I understand that CR, Poly, and GF are all along the monorail line, so that would probably work out really well. I didn’t know that you could catch a boat from CR to WL.

We’re torn between Boma and Sanaa. We definitely want to try some dishes that we don’t/can’t normally get at home.

Thanks for the tip on the Victoria Falls Lounge too. When it comes to alcoholic drinks, I can take them or leave them, but I think my DW and our friend would absolutely love the lounge – especially if we’re going to do a few hours at AKL.

So I am now thinking…

Buffer Day 1 – GF, CR, Poly
* Breakfast at 1900 Park Fare
* Dinner at ‘Ohana

Buffer Day 2 – AKL
* Lunch at Sanaa (or Boma)
* Snacks and Drinks at Victoria Falls Lounge

Buffer Day 3 – YC, BC, Boardwalk and possibly WL
* Lunch at Beaches & Cream
* Jellyrolls at night


#6

I would add the "possibly WL" to your Poly/CR/GF day; it's so easy to get to from the CR and is not convenient to get to from the BW.


#7

You could also think about visiting Fort Wilderness.

There are lots of activities you can book, from horse riding to archery. Even going to see the ponies that are used to pull cinderella's coach. Either there, or at the Contemporary you could also hire a boat of various kinds (I think there are kayaks at FW, sea Racers at CR, plus others.
One of the boats run from CR to WL to FW, the other runs CR to FW to WL. You can also go from WL straight to MK over the aqueduct.

Certainly on the monorail loop I would do at least one leg by the launches that run from MK to gf to Poly. Try and catch the pianist and band at the GF. When we went, the pianist played immediately after finishing playing with the band. And he was taking requests from kids (young and old) - tho he did only play Let it Go once despite repeated requests, mercifully!

You can also hire water craft from the marina at BC/YC

Also as you're staying at POR I assume you'll take the boat to DS. You could also then take it up to OKW. That's on my list for next time.


#8

We ate at Jiku - phenominial


#9

You could do a monorail resort evening. Starting at Poly, have a drink at Traders Sams or a Dole Whip, walk or monorail over for a cocktail and cheese board at Mizner's Lounge in GF and then monorail over to CR for dinner.

We usually try and take at least one evening each trip to go to AKL for dinner at Jiko or Boma and to see the animals out on the Savannah.


#10

Wonderful ideas! Thank you, everyone. The options are overwhelming! I think I'll need to book yet another trip after this one. :slight_smile:


#11

Another trip? :thinking:

I'm not sure we really helped much, did we? Sorry to muddy the waters, especially since you did say you'd narrowed your choice and I went off on a tangent!