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Disney’s Fort Wilderness – Lake Buena Vista, FL

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (7 votes, average: 4.57 out of 5)
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What can you say… this is Disney! It’s the campground from which all others are compared. It’s easy to see why Fort Wilderness is consistently voted the best campground in America. Everything is first class here. Right down to the trash cans (each site has one and they’re recessed underground so only the tops can be seen!). The park is clean, the staff is friendly and the amenities are second to none.

We’ve spent several camping vacations at Fort Wilderness. The first time we tented, the next with a 29′ travel trailer and the last two times in our motor home. The Disney novelty never wears off. Each time was better than the last.

There’s plenty of room to park your rig while you check in and the staff were friendly and accommodating. All interior roads are paved and in great condition. Our sites have always been comfortably large and private. You really don’t feel the least bit crowded here. Even though Fort Wilderness is huge (well over 1000!) it is unusually quiet and peaceful. We usually get a full hook-up site (S/W/E/CATV) and there are plenty of ’em. The comfort stations throughout the park are “squeeky clean” and never seem crowded.

So much to see and do… where do I start? OK, how about food? Fort Wilderness has a bunch of food options: The Chuck Wagon is a coll little snack bar. Head up to Crockett’s Tavern and get yourself a slice of pizza, hamburgers, fries and drinks. Micky’s Backyard Bar-B-Q is an all-you-can-eat picnic complete with country western entertainment Disney style. Trail’s End Restaurant in Pioneer Hall is a buffet style casual restaurant with a great selection of meals. Last but not least is the Hoop-De-Doo Musical Review a feast complete with an extravagant stage show.

Fort Wilderness has two huge pools (Meadows and Wilderness), A white sand beach on Bay Lake, a health club, two video arcades for the kids (and husbands), playgrounds, a petting farm, tennis and more! If you head up to Bay Lake you can rent a pontoon boat or “Water Mouse” and cruise around for an hour or two. There’s “catch and release” fishing available too.

If you didn’t take your bikes with you (we always travel with ours) you can rent them here. With plenty of trails and roads throughout the park you can spend hours exploring the campground. Horseback riding for the grown-up and pony rides for the younger kids are available here.

When the sun goes down there’s still plenty to do. Every night we were there we would pack up the kids and head for the outdoor movie theatre. A campfire, some popcorn and a Disney flick… we’ll remember these camping trips for years to come.

You really don’t have to visit one of Disney’s theme parks to appreciate the conveniences of Fort Wilderness. But if you do it’s the ultimate. Transportation to all of Disney’s attractions are available from Fort Wilderness, either by bus or boat.

If there is a downside to all of this it’s that camping at Fort Wilderness is fairly expensive. We’ve paid well over $50 a night here… Oh well, it’s Disney and there’s nothing discount about this place. Nevertheless, we’ll keep coming back because the memories far out number the dollars we’ve spent here.

8 Comments

  1. Today is June 30, 2009. We are staying in the 600 section and have a fantastic site. Large paved area with bbq and table. Big space between sites. Check-in took 1 minute. Disney is expensive but it is Disney. Only complaint I have is with their wi-fi system. THERE IS NONE AT THE CAMPSITES. You must first get a hard wire router kit from the main office ($125.00 refundable deposit), then it goes into the cable outlet at the site with a splitter for your tv. You also still get charged $10 per 24 hours. They never tell ya this. The cabins are already hard wired. Very crowded in Magic Kingdom and you need reservations for dinner at most sit down places. Lines are mostly an hour long so use the speedpass ride system. Oh yea…GET A GOLF CART! The place is too big and spread out to walk. Disney is Disney!

  2. Although it’s inside the Disney World area, it’s still very difficult to get from theme park to theme park. It took us over 20 minutes just to get to Epcot by bus. You get on a bus inside the campground that takes you to the front gate, then a Disney bus picks you up and takes you to Epcot after a few stops. The only park easy to get to and quickly was Magic Kingdom. The campground is very neat, clean, well manicured, but some sites are very difficult to back into especially if your camper is over 34 feet in length. Golf cart rental is as much as one night stay in the campground in the fall…crazy! There are some great campgrounds right outside the “park” area for about the same money. Enjoy.

  3. We absolutely love Ft. Wilderness and go there every chance we get. The grandkids don’t even ask to go the parks any more when they get there. They have so much fun with the kids they meet in the loops, at the pools, playing kickball or other organized sports they have for the kids/adults.

    They love the campfire/signalongs/movies at night along with the smores. We love riding the golf carts and visiting all the loops and watching for deer at night. We have never had a problem with power or water. Sometimes TV reception/satellite is a little sketchy or, but Disney has been busy thinning out the foliage making it improved. They have just recently added a ‘dog park’ next to the meadow and it seems like all the “kids” there were having a blast. We didn’t take our pup cause he is still a puppy (8 months) and 60 lbs and we didn’t know how he would respond yet to the other dogs.

    Love Trails End, the Hoop de Doo Review was loved by all of us. The grandsons just howled and hooted and can’t wait to go back. Have not done Mickey’s Backyard Bar-b-que yet but hear it is great. Am hoping to do “Thanksgiving at the Fort” this year.

    The transportation is excellent, love the boat rides to the parks. It is my “down time” from the busy days. My only recommendation is that if you intend to do any dining at any of the parks or resorts, you must make reservations in advance. With the popular Dining Plan, people are now finding it hard to get into the locations they want without reservations. Can usually get by without reservations at Trails End and they also have excellent take out which you can take back to the RV (fried chicken, pizza etc.)

    Staff is excellent, check-in efficient. Gotta love the mouse. We will be back again, and again, and again.

  4. We enjoyed our stay at this park… we never moved our truck once while we were camping here. Just catch a public lift to the park. No hassle of parking or waiting in line. Great!
    There is a nightly movie and we were able to roast marshmallows there. We could ride our bikes in the evening and felt very safe.
    By the time you go somewhere else and have to hassle driving to the park and parking and getting in line even if you have to pay a little more it is worth it. Mainly if you have kids. The place is clean and the check in is a snap. Make your vacation to Disney world easier when camping.

  5. I totally disagree with the vancouple’s statement. This campground is absolutely the best around. Whereas it can be expensive at times, there are times when it is very reasonable for a Disney resort.

    We had been to Disney many times and always enjoyed ourselves but when we got our RV and went camping for the first time at Disney, we had a blast. The kids enjoyed themselves tremendously. We had a ball. Everyone was very polite and the staff members were very helpful. The checkin process took less that 10 minutes. We had a Pet Loop site and we had no problems at all. You could eat off the floor in the bath house if you wanted, it is that clean.

    I was truly delighted. We are going back in August and I can’t hardly wait. $46 a night is really not that bad considering it is Disney.

  6. We’d like to respectfully disagree with the original posting here for Disney’s Campground, Fort Wilderness. We certainly were not there when they visited, but we were recently, and it was incredibly disappointing! As a matter of fact, we would stay anywhere else but at Disney. Overpriced sites and everything you want or need while there is EXPENSIVE!!!! Dirty and overflowing trashcans, and rude staff. We thought that the lines were bad inside Disney–and they were (sometime an hour and a half for one ride!!!!), but getting checked in was a disaster. Then our hook-ups were not working right–lousy water pressure and electricity that fluctuated and surged, and even blew out our neighbors’ flatscreen television. We have a powersurge protector, and I would use it if you ever have the unfortunate luck to stay at Fort Wilderness. Plus, don’t drink the water–it’s foul and smelly! Avoid this place at all costs. Honestly, Disney is really disappointing with its price-gouging and with its crowds, and Fort Wilderness was the worst part of a disappointing and expensive trip. Stay somewhere else and visit MGM and Universal and Sea World.

    • We are tent campers and really enjoy Disney camping. I have just booked another week over spring break. We found the campground clean and love the pools and endless places to bike. We do wish the tent area had more trees in between sites. You seem to get more seclusion if you book a deluxe site. The only problem is then your tent is next to someones generator and that can get noisey. The children really love the evening movies and fire circle. I you wish to have a fire in the campground other than coals in the grill, you must have a completely closed in fireplace. They sell them at camp/sporting goods stores or on the internet. Disney doesn\’t allow open fires. FYI. Dispite having to work around some of the things I have mentioned we love the place and think the magic is still alive.

  7. The BEST campground in the USA by far. $$$ price is high but it is Disney! Going in Feb 07.

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