View Full Version : Fort Wilderness Expertise needed!
05-16-2008, 06:12 AM
I will be FINALLY making a family trek to my beloved WDW after a waaay too long break! (I moved to Switzerland, had 2 babies - hey, what are you going to do ...except surf Intercot for the magic to tide you over!)
My husband is a reluctant WDW enjoyer. We have a 3 year old and a 1 1/2 yr old. Everytime I mention Disney, he reminds me that we need to give the kids a balanced activity approach - i.e., the world has more fun to offer than theme parks! So... I suggested that when we go, we do not only Disney hotels, but Disney camping (!?!)
We don't own any camping equipment - although my husband thinks he loves camping (from his youth!) - I will tolerate it b/c it will be Disney style.
Can you rent RVs at Disney? Are the cabins good? Any information will be most helpful...oh, and we will likely be going durin the hottest month in Florida - August. YUCK. All I can say is that I hope the campfire and movies are good!? :)
Any opinions are most appreciated!
05-16-2008, 10:25 AM
Disney doesn't rent RV's though you can rent RV's from companies near to Disney for use at Fort Wilderness. One such corporation is CruiseAmerica.
I've tent camped at Disney. They will rent tents (if availabe) but would not recommend tent camping at the height of the summer.
The cabins are great but any relation to camping other than location is an illusion. Cabins have a bedroom, living room, full kitchen (fully equipped) and full bathroom. They receive daily mousekeeping service. Also, all cabins are completely air conditioned.
05-16-2008, 11:21 AM
Agreed. I would check out RV rentals near Disney first, then cabins, and tent camping dead last for the summer. FW is a wonderful place, and I hope you get the chance to enjoy it as much as we do:thumbsup:
05-16-2008, 04:28 PM
First - I have trouble being brief when talking camping or DIsney, so this is going to be LOOOONG. Sorry! :blush:
Having done both the RV rental and the Wilderness Homes and since you're not familiar with camping in general, I would highly recommend the Wilderness Home if you can swing the cost - it's not cheap. Something over $300 a night. You can check the price at the Resort info tab at the top.
The Wilderness Home has plenty of benefits. There is the nice deck with picnic table which will allow for a campground feeling. There is a railing but I would not depend on it to keep either of your two little ones from falling off the deck. Still this area allows for supervised fun outdoors.
The Wilderness Home has a rustic camping sort of theming inside altho it's plenty modern. There are lists posted on the internet which will tell you what all is in the kitchen. Food and paper stuff are about all that's not. I think our WH had paper towels tho, but maybe not very many coffee filters. Or paper plates, tho there is a dishwasher.
There is more room in the WH than in a rental RV. Or than in even most Deluxe rooms.
There's a tub in the bathroom. Probably a good thing when one has 2 toddlers. Some RVs don't have tubs.
There is also a back bedroom which would allow for afternoon napping or even early bedtimes while adults can relax in the living room.
Some drawbacks: the sleeping arrangements are bunk beds and a double bed in the bedroom and a Murphy [double] bed in the living room. Kind of cramped if you're used to a queen or king sized bed.
The interior, due to the rustic theme color scheme seems a bit dark. Some RVs are this way too.
Some folks would say you will need to drive yourselves to the parks, as then you won't have to mess with first the internal (within the campground) bus system and then the external (to the parks) bus system. This is a drawback (to some) of the campground in general, rather than specifically to the Wilderness Homes.
There are some drawbacks to renting an RV. One is that you will need to get familiar with the systems - which isn't hard, as plenty of us have done so. Still, dumping tanks or leveling the RV or putting an awning away in a storm aren't many folks' ideas of vacation fun. RVs are compact and not usually, even with furniture that moves out (slides) to free up floor space, very spacious when one has two toddlers. They aren't very quiet either.
Parenthetically, we have a travel trailer that we have camped with twice at Fort Wilderness. My dream is to winter there. But we're used to the whole thing with tanks, and propane/DC/AC and all the fun RV related stuff.
We found out with the rental trailer that not all are as clean as we'd like either.
One good thing about the RV rental is that it's less expensive than the WH, depending on the size that you get. We rented a trailer from an RV dealer - can't recall the name now - that was I think about the same cost for 9 days that 2 days would have been in a WH. For an extra cost they delivered the trailer. There are also the places such as Linda mentioned that rent motorhomes - the RVs with the engine.
Another possibility is Wilderness Lodge which has a lot of that woodsy ambiance, is close to the campground if you'd like to try the campfire thing, and costs a bit less than the Wilderness Homes. The pool is more fun too.
One good thing about either Fort Wilderness or Wilderness Lodge is that they are a boat ride away from Magic Kingdom. That boat ride is one of my favorite modes of transportation at WDW.
When very young, our grandkids loved eating at Trail's End Kitchen at the campground as the food was very familiar to them. They liked trying other restaurants (love many of the World Showcase places) but the comfort foods at Trail's End Kitchen are nice, every now and then.
If you'd like to try the RV rental thing, please post here asking questions as we'd all be happy to give you all the tips you could possibly need. Folks have tried RVing first time at Fort Wilderness and lived to tell about it. :D
As for tent camping in August - yikes!
05-17-2008, 09:13 PM
Well if it's balanced activity he's looking for, why not consider a Disney cruise instead of a camping trip to the World?
Since you haven't been camping as a family before, I would suggest giving it a try before going to WDW. Rent an RV near you and go away for the week-end. Plus that counts towards "balanced activity." :)
05-19-2008, 12:55 PM
Coming from far away, I would rent the cabin. :thumbsup: We love the cabins and have stayed there each of the past four years.
We camp all the time and just having a camper does not mean you have everything you need. When go on a camping trip, our truck and camper is full of tarps, grills, lanterns, sheets, pillows, etc.. that you do not get when you rent. The cabin comes fully stocked and you still feel like you are camping. The mouse keeping is a bonus that you do not get with a camper. :mickey:
02-22-2009, 10:35 PM
Okay we're booked at the cabins! Thanks for all the inside scoop everyone!!:thumbsup:
02-23-2009, 12:47 PM
As for tent camping in August - yikes!
It can be survived! We did it last August. Just budget for ample pool time...
02-25-2009, 09:28 PM
You will really enjoy the cabins. This last Jube was the first time together at WDW for my new family (Me, DW, and 4 boys aged 12-15). It was a great big huge exciting new endeavor, and the cabin was the perfect place for us. I have stayed in the cabins in the past (and been very happy), but our big crazy family was going to put the cabin to the test. How did it do ?? Every time we look at our pictures, my wife calls the cabin our "home". Have fun !!
02-25-2009, 10:17 PM
There is a lady on another forum, that rents here 5th wheel travel trailer for use at FW. She will deliver, setup, and it is stocked with everthing but food. If you want her info send me a PM.
02-26-2009, 12:40 AM
It depends on what kind of trip it is for us. If we are gonna park pound, I camp with a tent. If you get up early and get out of the tent and stay at the parks all day, you can camp in the summer. You can get a tent at walmart that will last yrs you just need to seal it with spray or it will rain in on you.
If you are taking your time rent an RV or a cabin. Personally If I were gonna rent a cabin, I would just stay at the WL and walk to fort wilderness. It has better transportation.
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