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“Second time, as good as the first!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Campsites at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort

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The Campsites at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort
3.0 of 5 Cabin/Campground   |   4510 North Fort Wilderness Trail, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32830 (Walt Disney World Resort)   |  
Hotel amenities
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Portland, Maine
Top Contributor
93 reviews 93 reviews
53 hotel reviews
Reviews in 65 cities Reviews in 65 cities
71 helpful votes 71 helpful votes
“Second time, as good as the first!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2010

We debated staying at one of the other Disney resorts, and came very close to booking Animal Kingdom, before going with our gut and reserving a cabin at Ft. Wilderness as we had done last year. We had enjoyed the experience of having a "home away from home" while staying at Disney, and had found it to be so convenient to all the parks with easy-to-use and quick transportation, that we really knew that it would be the best place for us to stay again. The only precaution we took was to call housekeeping several times in advance, to ask them to triple-dust the cabin - my husband has allergies and had been stuffed up the entire time last year due to half-hearted cleaning of the cabin.

We booked the cabin through AAA and got a great rate. I had actually found a better rate on Expedia (best on the web), and when I told AAA what it was, they came within $100 so I went with them. We also bought our parkhopper passes through AAA. I can't say enough how helpful they were through the whole process.

We ordered grocerieson-line in advance from www.wegoshop.com (which I would HIGHLY recommend!), so once we arrived at the cabin at noon after a friendly bus ride on the Magical Express from the airport and and easy check-in, we just had to wait for the groceries (which I had scheduled for 1:30 delivery) and we could hop on a bus for Epcot. Groceries arrived right on time, and off we went!

The cabins are equipped with everything you need to prepare family meals just as though you were at home. We avoided buying anything that required a lot of time to fix, though - frozen pizza, sandwich meat and cheese, cereal - we had "breakfast for dinner" one night. You can save a TON of money on food this way.

One suggestion - it takes a couple of hours if you've had Magical Express take care of your luggage for the airport, so if you plan to head right out to a park, it's best to pack what you need for the day in your carry-on.

In addition to the comfort and convenience of a cabin, the Ft. Wilderness experience itself is wonderful. The pools are heated with adjacent whirlpools. We never made it to the Meadow (large) pool area, but the smaller one is great and our 4-year-old had a blast. There are clean changing areas/bathrooms adjacent to the pool, and plenty of chaise lounges. Bring your own towel from the hotel, as they don't supply them at the pool.

There's also a $5 pony ride in the Settlement area, which we were able to do once - the first time Ava had ever been on a pony, and it was worth every penny to see her smile! I led the pony after the employee helped her into the saddle, and we followed a well-marked pathway around the barns to make a good-sized loop for the ride.

Chip n Dale do a performance every night at 7, with lots of music and dancing for the kids, and a movie if you care to stay for it. We did it last year, but never got to it this year.

A housekeeping tip - if a cleaning staffer sees you walking while she's working on someone else's cabin, and asks what cabin you are and if you need a cleaning, say YES! I made the mistake of saying, "well... we need more towels..." and when we got back that evening, there was a stack of towels on the kitchen table, and absolutely nothing else had been done!! We got kind of a kick out of that...

All the parks are accessed with buses, with the exception of Magic Kingdom which is a boat ride. We had a dilemma on Tuesday morning, when we had an 8:10 breakfast reservation at Cinderella's table, and it was raining a monsoon! The day before, we had called the front desk to tell them about the reservation, and they assured us that even if the boats weren't running, we'd be able to get a bus. So, slickered up with our rain ponchos at 7am, we made a run for the bus stop, and sure enough - a bus was there! We were the only passengers, and once we told the driver of the reservation, he called on the radio to ask if he could take us directly to Magic Kingdom (rather than switch buses up at the regular park bus stop), and he did! We were so grateful!!

After the breakfast, the boats were running and we had a lovely retired captain regale us with stories all the way back to Ft. Wilderness where Ava could change out of her princess gown and into play clothes to go back to Magic Kingdom - we just loved him.

As we expected, we loved the cabin and were glad that's where we stayed. We are planning to do the same thing next year and the year after that - until Ava's in sports and then we won't be able to have these getaways any more!

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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South Bend, Indiana
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
63 helpful votes 63 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2010

As a kid my family stayed at Fort Wilderness frequently. As an adult I appreciate the campground even more. The grounds are immaculate. The public areas are very clean. It is conveniently located to the parks. Pioneer Hall and Crockett's Tavern are top notch. I spent 11 days. Next year I will stay for two weeks. The cleanest camping I have found in the US.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orlando, Florida
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
64 helpful votes 64 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2010

I have never written a review of any of the Disney resorts or hotels that we have stayed in the past. That is because our experience has always been what I expect when staying in a Disney resort. AWESOME! But our Fort Wilderness Campground experience was above and beyond my expectations.

One word to describe Fort Wilderness Campgrounds is FUN! There is plenty for adults and children to do. There are several playgrounds around the property. The pool is heated to 84 degrees and has it's own little waterpark. On the main pool area is a big slide for bigger kids and there is a small kiddie pool and a two small slides for smaller kids. The campground has free daily scheduled activities...i.e. pool party, wiffle ball, crafts time. There is a meet-n-greet with Chip-n-Dale along with a sing-a-long with fantastic Mark and followed by 2 back-2-back movies. They build a nightly campfire for you so you can roast marshmallows. You can buy their pre-packaged smores kits. A kit that makes 4 smores sandwiches with extra marshmallows will cost you $8 + tax. Or you can go around the corner to the nearest Publix, our local grocery store and spend the same and feed your entire family and all of your friends that is there to celebrate your child's birthday with you until you get sick from all the sugar :-D. These are just a few of many the campground has to offer that make your visit here spectacular.

Then only way to get around the property is to ride your bikes or rent their golf car for $62/day. You can drive in your car around it but there is no absolute place for you to park it. We rode our bikes for our daily exercise but we rented their golfcart to simply get around. It was so well worth the $$$ and I strongly recommend it. There are places for you to park and plug-in to recharge.

If you are going to any of the Disney parks, there is easy boat transportation that will take you from the campground to Magic Kingdom (MK). From there, you can take the monorail to EPCOT. We are annual pass holders. The campground had enough things for us to do that we didn't feel the need to leave it. Afterall, we can go to the parks any other day. One night, we headed over to the "beach" to watch the MK fireworks there. The same music is played at the "beach" during the fireworks that is played in MK.

We didn't dine in the campground. We chose to go to our most favorite of all the Disney restaurants, California Grill. California Grill is located on top of the Contemporary Resort. Great wine, great food (and very accommodating-my hubby is Vegan) and great view of the the Magic Kingdom. You can watch the fireworks while in the restaurant or go out and watch it in one of two balconies. Prior to checking in at the campground, we had breakfast at Cinderella's Table in MK to dine with the Disney Princesses. Our experience was not so good. I have spoken to guest services about it and the issue has now been resolve. Now, that is what I call customer service!!!

I have to mention that we didn't really rough it too much. We stayed in a trailer, which is the closest to roughing it for my family and I. The restrooms and showers are super duper Disney clean.

Awesome! A must do if you want to venture out of Disney's typical resort or hotels.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bloomington, IN
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2010

This was an absolute BLAST! (Two couples with 2 children ages 4 and 6) We borrowed an RV from a friend (!) and drove from Indiana to Orlando without killing eachother. My husband, son, and I stayed in the RV 4 nights (CHEAP!!!) and the other couple and their son stayed in a cabin. It was perfect. Every night we would take our rented golf cart over to their cabin for dinner and then back again in the morning for breakfast before hitting the parks. We asked for a RV site near the cabin and they made it happen. This is KEY if your group is getting both a camp site and a cabin b/c that place is like a maze, it's huge! I only used the bath house once, it was nice, but it was FREEZING in there! We had artic weather during our trip so I'm sure it's fine most other times. Our friends let us use their shower in the cabin for the rest of the trip. It was a great experience and I would recommend this to everyone!

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Buffalo, NY
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2010

Just returned from a 4-night stay at the Cabins at Fort Wilderness which we chose given we have 6 people (2 adults, 4 children) and were trying to keep this trip on a budget. Overall the stay was very nice and pretty much met expectations given reviews and research prior to the trip. We have not stayed at other Disney Resorts (usually off site) to compare but my guess is this a different experience. We were in the 2800 loop and the cabin was clean and in relatively good shape. We put four kids in the bedroom including using a pack n' play for the little one and they had plenty of room to sleep.

Our biggest question we researched was getting around to the parks so this is what we found. Our cabin was the last stop before the bus outpost which made for quick trips and the buses come every 4-5 minutes. Took us 20 minutes a total to EPCOT and 25 to Hollywood Studios including the bus to the outpost and switching to the park bus. Magic Kingdom took closer to 45 minutes due to the bus out to the settlement at the other end of the camp ground followed by a boat ride (a boat was there when we got there and only waited 5 minutes for one for the return). We left EPCOT at closing after the fireworks and there was a long line for the buses, with one pulling out when we got there. We took a cab for $15 including tip to avoid the waiting for at least 2 buses to get back. With young kids it was worth the cost for the cab in needed. We only went 3 days to the parks so we did not return to the cabin during the day but that would probably require at least an hour for travel, longer from the Magic Kingdom,

Storage space is limited but we moved the coffee table/bench over to the hallway so we could pull out the Murphy bed and put suitcases on it which worked nicely. Room was clean each day when we returned with plenty of towels, etc. We ate breakfast in the room daily and one dinner which saved on the meal costs (we did not chose a dining plan).

Overall, for a large family especially if driving since you can park right outside the cabin, this is a nice place to stay. If you are looking for a high end resort experience this probably is not the option.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Virginia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2010

Each time we plan our vacation the number of friends joining us increases every year. There are so many things to do at the camp ground that we all enjoy, and taking a break from the parks to just relax, swim, play vollyball or simply ride bikes gives everyone a chance to gear back up for another fun filled day at a park. The outdoor movies are a great way to get the family to sing, laugh and have fun roasting marshmellows. Our oldest daughter was just 4 when we started coming, she is now 13, and she refuses to try any other Disney resort. Renting a golf cart is also a must to get around the camp ground unless you enjoy walking, have bikes to ride or don't mind waiting for a bus.The camp ground is very large and if it rains you will be very glad you have that cart.
Being able to cook for your family or friends (if you so choose) is also a money saver, and having everything you need is also a plus.
So if it's "quality" family time you seek, Fort Wilderness is the place for you!
K.C. Virginia

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ohio
Top Contributor
111 reviews 111 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
106 helpful votes 106 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2010

We spent 7 nights in a cabin on the 2600 loop and loved the peace and quiet after spending our days at the busy parks. We had groceries delivered on our arrival and had breakfast every morning and dinner 3 nights at the cabin which was a big money saver! This allowed us to have some nicer meals in the parks. The take out chicken at Trail's End is a great deal and delicious.
The bus rides were endless however. It took us 1 hour and 18 minutes to get home from one of the parks our first night because of a shared bus with Wilderness Lodge and the number of fellow travelers. We had several other similar experiences with the bus transportation. We tried to use the boat to the Magic Kingdom and make connections from there whenever possible. Our park hopper came in handy there.
Next time we stay here we will definitely rent a car. You can park right at your door. Laundry facilities are clean and well kept. All Cast Members were friendly and helpful.
We can't wait to go back!! Our favorite resort (out of the 4 we have tried!)

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Campsites at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort

Address: 4510 North Fort Wilderness Trail, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32830
Location: United States > Florida > Central Florida > Orlando > Walt Disney World Resort
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 16 Specialty Lodging in Orlando
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — The Campsites at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 408
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Camp amid the magic of the great outdoors. Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground evokes the timeless beauty of the American frontier, with deer, rabbits, ducks and armadillos roaming the Resort's 750 acres of pine and cypress forest. Discover charming woodland trails, a pristine beach, spectacular pool areas and rip-roarin' entertainment at this picturesque backcountry retreat. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Disney Camping
Fort Wilderness Disney
Campground Orlando
Fort Wilderness Florida
Disneys Fort Wilderness Resort Campground
Ft Wilderness Disney
Disney Fort Wilderness Resort
Disneys Ft Wilderness Campground

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