If you’re planning a trip to Disney World and you don’t live near the parks, chances are you’re going to be booking a hotel for your stay. There are 30 official Disney resorts to choose from and many more “Disney World Good Neighbor Hotels.” I’ve taken both routes for my trips. In fact, I had never stayed at a true Disney Resort until last year! While the good neighbor hotels can be right depending on the situation, I would definitely encourage you to stay at a Disney Hotel. The many benefits and endless magic of these hotels make it worth the higher price tag.
What benefits, you ask? Convenience. I can’t stress this enough. If you plan on going to multiple parks, Disney Springs, or want to explore the other resorts, staying at a Disney Resort is so worth it! There's free transportation to and from everything on the Disney property. Talk about staying stress-free on your vacation. These resorts also accept the Disney Dining Plan, serve your favorite park foods (Mickey Waffles anyone?), and sell official park merchandise.
To top it off, each resort has a specific theme! Whether you’re wanting a beach trip or feel like staying in N'awlins (New Orleans), you can find exactly what you’re looking for.
If you’re looking for the ultimate convenience:
Staying on the boardwalk is a must if you love Epcot! You can walk right from your hotel directly into the park in a few minutes. Check out Disney’s Beach Club Resort to get the best of both worlds – the beach and the parks! Another great option for all you SPG members are the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotels. We just stayed in the Dolphin (hello SPG points) and loved it! I can’t tell you enough how great it is to walk up to Epcot and sneak right in beside our favorite French restaurant. If you’re wanting to stay as close as you can to Magic Kingdom, book your stay at Disney’s Contemporary Resort.
If you’re looking for the top of the line:
Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. This place is serious hotel goals. Modeled after the famous Hotel Del Coronado, this lavish resort will have you never wanting to leave. Ever. Looking for more of an island vibe? Check out Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows. This place is luxurious and relaxing. Directly across from Magic Kingdom, you can watch the fireworks every night from either of these resorts.
If you’re looking for the “nature” feel:
Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge lets you stay literally in Animal Kingdom. These rooms overlook 4 savannas filled with animals from the wild. Where else can a giraffe walk feet away from your hotel balcony? This one is for sure on my bucket list. Now for those of you into the camping scene, the Cabins at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort may be the perfect fit! Your family will stay in its own personal cabin surrounded by nature. It’s a great option if you’re looking to escape to peace and quiet after those long exhausting days in the parks.
If you’re looking to experience the magic for less:
Disney’s All-Star Resorts give you all of those official perks without that sometimes heart-stopping price. You should also check out Disney’s Pop Century Resort and the Art of Animation Resort. There are a lot of options if you’re looking to have a lower budget for the lodging. They may not be across the pond from Magic Kingdom but you’ll still have free bus transportation. If your mentality is that you’ll be spending all of your time in the parks each day, then this may be the perfect fit for your trip!
Of course there are many more options to choose from when you’re deciding where to stay. You can go to Disney’s website for pricing and rates on vacation packages!
Have a favorite Disney resort? Let us know what makes it your top pick!