Fort Wilderness was one of Disney’s first accommodation options that opened a few weeks after the Magic Kingdom in November 1971. It offers one of the most unique ways to stay with an assortment of campsites and cabins.
While I am not personally a big fan of camping or even the outdoors there is something about Fort Wilderness that just draws you in. I have yet to stay there but I enjoy visiting for the dining and activity options. There is so much to do at Fort Wilderness that you could have a jam-packed family vacation without even setting foot in a theme park.
The tent campsites are one of the most affordable ways to stay on Disney property and Fort Wilderness enjoys all of the same onsite benefits as staying at other Disney owned resorts.
Tent or Pop-Up Campsite
The smallest site accommodates equipment on a concrete pad up to 10 feet by 25 feet. There is room for a pop-up camper or a camper van-type vehicle, and up to 2 tents with water and electricity. There is camping gear available to rent for those in need.
Full Hook-Up and Preferred Campsites
Perfect for smaller RVs the Full Hook-up sites are 10ft to 50ft leaving room for an RV and a tent. They also add the additional benefit of a sewer hookup. The preferred campsites are 5ft shorter but are located closer to the marina.
A Premium Site is billed as “big-rig” friendly. They accommodate RVs larger than 45 feet in length and those that have multiple slide-outs. The sites are wider (up to 24 ft.), and deeper (up to 60 ft.) meaning they have a larger, level-paved pad. They also feature all of the amenities – water, power, sewer, cable, and access to the high-speed Internet, plus upgraded picnic tables and grills, as well as prime locations.
The Cabins at Fort Wilderness are considered a moderate level resort but I believe they are a category all their own. They have an “enhanced wilderness theming,” which includes furniture that appears to be rough-hewn from branches and a log cabin-like veneer exterior. There is a full kitchen, private bathroom, a common area with a pull-out couch, and a separate bedroom with a full-size bed and bunk bed. They are a great option for larger families as they accommodate 6 people and the room configuration may make more sense for a family traveling with grandparents than the family suites at the value resorts.
Air-conditioned comfort stations are found throughout the resort. They have restrooms, private showers, laundry facilities, an ice maker, and phones. Guests can use their MagicBands to access laundry facilities that are open 24-hours a day. Pets are allowed in designated areas or can be boarded in a kennel near the entrance to the resort.
Meadow Snack Bar
This snack bar is located poolside and boasts a menu that includes fresh salads, tasty sandwiches, and light snacks. Of course, no pool bar would be complete without some frozen treats. Beer and sodas are also available.
The Chuck Wagon
This RV style food truck has all of the greasy favorites you could want while camping. Jalapeno poppers, corn dog nuggets, chicken fingers, mozzarella sticks, and french fries are all great snacks for your movie under the stars. Need something more substantial the menu also offers sandwiches, burgers, and salads. Try some moonshine cocktails or grab a build-your-own s’mores kit for the nightly campfire!
One of the most underrated restaurants on the property, here you can enjoy a down-home buffet for breakfast, dinner, or a weekend brunch at this tasty Frontier mainstay. In the morning, help yourself to a bountiful breakfast buffet featuring Mickey waffles, biscuits and sausage gravy, fresh fruit, scrambled eggs, and more vittles than you can shake a stick at.
Then, at suppertime, mosey on in for all-you-care-to-enjoy smoked pork ribs, hand-carved roasted meats, peel-and-eat shrimp, the catch of the day, and more. And before you bid us happy trails, be sure to try our home-style fruit cobbler.
P&Js Southern Takeout
If you have too many adventures planned to sit down and enjoy a meal you can take a picnic to go. This menu features the famous Hoop De Doo fried chicken with your choice of two sides. For an extra-special picnic, rent a pontoon from the nearby marina and enjoy your picnic on Bay lake.
Hoop De Doo Review
One of my favorite dining experiences at Walt Disney World, Hoop De Doo Review is the longest-running dinner show in the United States. Let the Pioneer Hall Players entertain you with traditional music and corny jokes while you enjoy an all you care to enjoy feast of fried chicken, ribs, mac and cheese, and cornbread. Wash it down with unlimited sangria or beer and top it all off with strawberry shortcake.
Go wild amid a rustic American Frontier theme at one of Fort Wilderness’s two pools. The Meadow Swimmin’ Pool is the feature pool with a 67-foot-long corkscrew waterslide. Adults are invited to enjoy the serenity of whirlpool spa, while little ones will surely want to splash it up in the adjacent fort-themed water play area—where young buckaroos can breeze down on their own tot-friendly slides. The Wilderness Swimmin’ Pool is an all-ages leisure pool with a whirlpool spa and is ideal for a more tranquil swim.
Train like an archer as you learn to hold a bow, take aim, and launch an arrow (hopefully) into a target. This 75-minute experience is open to guests 7 years of age and up. With class sizes limited to 10 Guests, each marksman receives personalized advice from the Archery Guides to best help you hone your archery skills.
Tri-Circle D Ranch
Stroll through the stables to see Cinderella’s Ponies and the majestic horses of Main Street, U.S.A. You can watch the blacksmith make horseshoes and affix them to horses’ hooves, and discover the Dragon Calliope—the horse-drawn musical instrument that Walt Disney purchased for the Mickey Mouse Club Circus Parade at Disneyland Park in the 1950s.
Animal lovers of all ages will delight in the variety of breeds that live at Tri-Circle-D Ranch, including Appaloosas, Arabians, Belgians, Clydesdales, paint horses, Percherons, and quarter horses, plus Shetland ponies
Horse Drawn Carriage Rides
Travel through the lush pine and cypress forest where deer, rabbits, ducks, and armadillos like to roam. You’ll board your horse-drawn carriage for a 25-minute ride that costs $55 for 4 adults or 2 adults and 3 small children.
Visiting in December? Take in the magic of the holidays with a cozy “sleigh” ride through secluded woodland beauty.
Pony rides are offered daily at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground. Riders must be at least 2 years of age, under 80 pounds, no taller than 48 inches and able to hang on by themselves. A parent or guardian must lead the pony at all times. A fee is associated with this activity. Tri-Circle accepts cash payments only. No reservations are necessary.
Go horseback riding on the scenic, wooded trails at The Cabins and Campsites of Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort. Guests 9 years of age and up can ride through an idyllic woodland teeming with deer, ducks, armadillos, and rabbits. Perfect for beginner and intermediate riders, trail rides are a relaxing way to explore the natural beauty surrounding the resort.
Relax, unwind and take in the evening sights as you travel along scenic trails in a 30 person wagon. Departing from Pioneer Hall at 6:00 pm and 8:30 pm nightly.
Chip n Dales Campfire Singalong
While all of Disney’s moderate and deluxe resort host a nightly campfire, Fort Wilderness is the only location joined by some furry friends. Chip n Dale join the fun and you’re invited to join in singing some campfire favorites.
What goes with camping better than canoeing? At Fort Wilderness you can rent a canoe or kayak to explore the waters of Bay Lake.
Wilderness Back Trail Adventure
Take in Florida’s natural beauty while gliding along scenic back roads.
If you’ve never ridden a Segway before, you’re in for a treat! Maneuverable, fast, quiet, and fun to ride, the X2 is an all-terrain vehicle that can be mastered in minutes. And what better way to do it than with a beautiful backdrop of Florida countryside!
Navigate a variety of surfaces from paved paths to woodland trails as you complete a 2-hour circuit that includes stops at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, the stables of Tri-Circle-D Ranch, and glassy Bay Lake, where photo ops abound.
Your informative, entertaining Cast Member acts as a guide, sharing trivia, anecdotes, and instructions along the way and keeping you in the loop through your electronic headset.
Even if you are not planning on staying at Fort Wilderness, it is worth stopping by to visit. You plan a wonderful relaxing non-park day with some horseback riding, a dinner experience at Hoop De Doo Revue, and campfire singalong.
There is something extra special about this place during the Holidays. For both Halloween and Christmas the campsites are the most magical place on the property. The guest go all out decorating their campsites and golf carts for all sorts of contests and parades. For Halloween, the headless horseman even makes an appearance.
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