Tag Archives: Fort Wilderness Campground
This is the last article in my Christmas in July series, so better get to planning your trips! If you would like to see my past articles click the link here. With all the things to see at the parks during the holiday season, many people forget at the resorts the atmosphere is just as magical. Many have special displays like gingerbread houses or giant Christmas trees. Here is a rundown of where to go when taking some time away from the parks.
SPECIAL DISPLAYS-The deluxe resorts have the most elaborate displays and are worth a trip on the monorail or bus to check out. Below are what the resorts have offered in the past but who knows if they may surprise us this year so check with your hotel concierge before you head out.
- The Grand Floridian boasts a life-sized gingerbread house which they actually use as a Bake Shop. Visitors can purchase Christmas Delights and watch Gingerbread House Demonstrations. The Victorian charm of their decorations brings one back to a more elegant time.
- The Contemporary Resort offers a 17 foot tall Gingerbread Christmas Tree and a huge lighted wreath (Mickey shaped of course), visible as you take the monorail through the resort. We did Chef Mickey’s for dinner here on Christmas Day.
- Beach Club has a working gingerbread carousel with white chocolate horses and Yacht Club features a miniature train set running through a candy and sugar-coated landscape. The decor here is light, airy and most decidedly nautical.
- The Boardwalk has a gingerbread and chocolate gazebo display and a gingerbread bake shop. Don’t miss the chocolate seaside amusement park display in the Lobby!
- The Polynesian is decorated throughout and has small gingerbread displays in the Ceremonial House. They do a great job working with their tropical atmosphere so it doesn’t seem tacky.
- Wilderness Lodge boasts homey decor and a cozy, rustic feel the Christmas traditionalist will love. There is a huge tree in the center lobby with plenty of pine cones. Fireplaces grace the main areas and make you want to curl up in front with a hot cocoa and a copy of The Night Before Christmas.
With the weather beginning to turn cold, many people are beginning to turn their attention to the approaching holidays, particularly Christmas! Christmas is my favorite time of the year; and when it comes to decking the halls, no one does it better than Walt Disney World!
By the time Thanksgiving rolls around each year, Walt Disney World is decorated for the holidays and even hosts their own Christmas festivities. For example, at the Magic Kingdom you can enjoy Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, or check out Animal Kingdom’s Jingle Jungle Parade. Epcot also offers a Candlelight Processional, and Hollywood Studios glows as bright as the stars with the Osbourne Spectacle of Dancing Lights! Even Disney resorts get into the Christmas spirit with their own holiday touches, which only adds to the holiday fun and atmosphere! In fact, one of my favorite things to do at Disney World around the holidays is to check out resort Christmas decor. If you’re trying to decide which Disney resort to stay at during this magical time of the year, check out my Top 5 Disney Resorts for the holidays!
5. Animal Kingdom Lodge-For a warm holiday stay, check out Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. While live African animals roaming about outside isn’t quite a traditional way to celebrate the Christmas season, this cozy, majestic lodge is an ideal place to make memories with your family. You’re also sure to enjoy the gigantic Christmas tree in the lobby, which is especially beautiful at night!
4. Yacht and Beach Club-At this resort, you can enjoy both a beach vacation and a magical, holiday stay! This elegant, seaside inspired resort offers lots to see and do; and at the holidays, it has something extra special in the lobby, a working carousel made out of gingerbread! You get the best of both worlds at the Yacht and Beach Club, a retreat to those lazy, summer days and some Christmas magic!
3. Fort Wilderness-Don’t want to spend the holidays in a hotel room? How about staying at Disney’s Fort Wilderness? If you are staying in a camper, you will feel right at home in your own space; and if you stay in one of the cabins, you have plenty of room and a homey, traditional atmosphere for your Christmas vacation! You can also celebrate a traditional Christmas with sleigh rides through the woods; and even enjoy a Fort Wilderness tradition where guests decorate their campsites for Christmas!
2. Grand Floridian-Disney’s flagship resort goes all out for the holiday season as its gorgeous lobby is transformed into a winter wonderland! Not only can you find a towering, Victorian, Christmas tree, but also a life-size, edible gingerbread house that actually sells gingerbread goodies! At this resort, you can enjoy a classic, picture-perfect holiday in absolute luxury and Disney magic.
1. Wilderness Lodge-When guests visit this cozy lodge, they will feel as if they stepped right into a Christmas card! At Wilderness Lodge, guests will enjoy a taste of the Pacific Northwest and a warm, cozy atmosphere. After a day filled with Disney magic, sip some hot chocolate by Wilderness Lodge’s Grand Canyon fireplace, enjoy the resort’s massive Christmas tree, and then dream about Christmas morning in your warm, rustic resort room. This resort will fill a guest with Christmas cheer and is the best setting for a magical, classic holiday!
Have you ever visited Walt Disney World during the holidays? Which resort do you think is the best for the Christmas season? Let us know!
- Quizzes: Which Walt Disney World Deluxe Resort is Right for You? (aglassslippervacation.com)
- 5 Things to do at Disney World without Tickets (couponingtodisney.com)
- Disney World Planning 101: Top 5 Things to do in the Morning (chipandco.com)
Where is it? Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Review – Fort Wilderness Campground, Walt Disney World
What is it? Delectably rich Strawberry Shortcake, loaded with strawberries and topped with creamy whipped topping.
Why you want it? It’s yummy deliciousness in a cold metal bowl. It’s been one of my favorite desserts since I was a child. What’s the best thing about it? They sing the “Strawberry Shortcake” song to let you know it’s comin’, and they’ll keep bringin’ ya more until you’re done!
Yield: Approx. ½ Sheet Pan (17″ x 12″)
Yellow Pound Cake
1 ¼ pound Cake Flour
1 ¼ pound Granulated Sugar
¼ ounce Baking Powder
½ ounce Salt
½ pound Shortening
¼ pound Butter
8 ounces Milk
4 ounces Milk
½ ounce Vanilla
(Almond Extract can be substituted for vanilla)
1) Sift and blend all dry ingredients from Step 1 together. Add shortening, butter, milk, and mix 5-7 minutes at low speed.
2) Combine all ingredients from Step 2 together and blend lightly.
3) Add liquid mix from Step 2 to Step 1 in three parts, scraping down bowl between. Bake at 350 degrees until tester inserted into cake comes out clean.
Topping: Add whipped cream and Smucker’s Frozen Strawberries (thawed) to taste.
- Snack Series: Strawberry Shortcake Cupcake at Boardwalk Bakery (disneyfoodblog.com)
- The Magic Behind the ‘Company’ getting to know Lisa Battista (chipandco.com)
- The Magic Behind The ‘Company’ – Getting To Know Ken (chipandco.com)
First of all I have to admit this is a very biased article but for good reason. It is the only place I stay at in WALT DISNEY WORLD. Being that we have a 37’ Pace Arrow motor home, it is of course our preferred choice of lodgings anywhere the road takes us, but in Florida it’s the ONLY place to stay. First of all, this place is the epitome of the RVer’s dream campground. There are sites dedicated for tents, pop-ups, travel trailers, and cabins for rent, as well as premium (enlarged) sites for regular RV’s and of course those MILLION DOLLAR PREVOST(ugh ugh ugh) buses we all love to gawk at.
Among the many amenities of Fort Wilderness Campground are things like laundry facilities, outdoor movies, plentiful bathroom/shower facilities, gorgeous pools and spas, on-site restaurants, horse ranch, fishing and the like but all with a touch of Disney flair. Another aspect of Fort Wilderness is its close proximity to Magic Kingdom. Bay Lake is the only thing separating you from the Mecca of all Disney parks which is just a short ferry ride away. In fact the nightly Magic Kingdom fireworks (WISHES) are perfectly visible from the white sand beach at the Fort Wilderness side of Bay Lake, not to mention the nightly electric light parade of boats on the water just after the show.
As you walk around the campground you will notice touches of Disney everywhere. From the beautiful landscaping to the immaculate facilities, the Disney model of perfection is fully enforced here. The foot paths and jogging trails are impeccable. The sports and recreation facilities - state of the art. And the arcades are stocked with all the latest and greatest. In fact, on our third trip to WDW, we had unanimously voted to omit the beach and off site trips we had planned at the mere site of the WHOA! sign which signifies the entrance of the campground. Instead, we all agreed to spend our two weeks staying put and getting the most out of Fort Wilderness.
Another aspect of the campground is its encouraged use of Golf Carts. The carts can be rented at a slightly above modest cost per day and must be reserved well in advance as the 300 carts on hand get gobbled up quickly. The golf cart adds a whole other aspect of camping due to the fun in just riding around and visiting with new friends, or just gawking at the gorgeous RV’s and custom carts of the other guests. Some of the carts can cost more than my first two cars combined (see the Custom Carts section of disney4dads.com for examples) fact there are certain paths and parking lots dedicated to carts alone. Also, at over 700 acres, without a cart you would be forced to take the bus system or just foot it in general to get around (as if).
FYI – this is how I convinced my wife to let us buy one of our own.
The last aspect of the campground I have to point out is that is never closes. When you leave one of the theme parks and head back to your hotel room typically the day is over. Not at Fort Wilderness. After you have washed all the ooey gooey Disneyness off of the kids you can tuck them in their sleeping vessel (tent, camper, RV or rented cabin), so you and the misses can fire up the provided charcoal grill (no fires allowed) and sit under the stars to relax the night away with the libation of your choice. What Dad do you know that doesn’t like barbeque? If you’re the adventurous types you can all head to the 80° pool for a midnight swim or just hop on the cart and enjoy a nice ride. If you’re back in time I would recommend catching a movie under the stars with Chip and Dale.
Finally you can save a boatload of cash and time in line by bringing in your own groceries for meals and doing the cooking at your site. Would you rather stand in line at the steak restaurant with the grumpy kids or smell your own dry rubbed sirloin sizzling on the charcoal and drinking an ice cold beer while the kids are off at the playground getting out the remaining yet never ending energy they always seem to be missing when it’s time to clean up. Well having said that I feel a tremendous urge to check the calendar to see how many days are left until our next Fort Wilderness stay.
See ya real soon! Jerry
Jerry is the Founder of Disney 4 Dads, when he isn’t busy grilling out and doing other manly things he is sharing the Disney Magic from a Disney Dad’s perspective.