Like so many other families, we longed for a getaway, but we certainly wanted to put safety as our number one priority. When we came across a decent rate for a cabin at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Campground we decided a one-night stay would be a great weekend getaway. With the cabin being freestanding, we knew we could minimize our interaction with other guests, and cast members. In the end, it was the perfect choice and exactly what our family needed.
By Dani Dennison Meyering
Arrival Experience at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Cabins
Since we are local and annual passholders, we headed to Epcot, where we had Disney Park Pass reservations. We arrived around 11:30 a.m., which is near opening time with the park’s new operational hours. The summer sun beat down on us all and we knew we would not last long.
Our family had committed to enjoying outdoor activities only as a safety precaution. This didn’t leave us many options at Epcot, but we made the most of enjoying the scenery and finding quiet spots off to the sides in World Showcase.
I repeatedly checked the MyDisneyExperience app in hopes that our cabin number would magically appear in our resort check-in information. Finally around 1:30 p.m., the magic numbers we longed for appeared — our cabin was ready! We walked back to our car and made the quick drive over to Disney’s Fort Wilderness. It truly is a great feeling when your Walt Disney World room is ready early.
As we pulled into the entrance of Fort Wilderness, we spotted five deer wandering near the edge of the woods; a perfect sight to welcome us here. The security cast member, wearing a mask and gloves, scanned my MagicBand and confirmed my reservation information. He directed us to bypass the check-in area, and soon we were driving through the grounds.
We found the loop at which our cabin was located. How convenient it is to drive right up to our cabin! We walked up the steps to the lovely large porch and held my MagicBand up to the door — success! I am still rocking a first generation, skinny MagicBand so I am waiting for the day it no longer works, but for now it worked perfectly.
Room Amenities in the Cabins
The cabins at Fort Wilderness are free-standing, prefabricated buildings. They sleep six people total — two on a pull out couch in the living area, and two kids in bunk beds, plus two adults in a queen bed in a small bedroom in the back.
The nice-sized bathroom is self-contained, meaning the sink, toilet, and shower/bath combination are in one room without any sink area on its own like most Disney hotel rooms — which allow for multiple people to get ready for the day without crowding one bathroom.
The kitchen has a full-size refrigerator, microwave, toaster, coffee maker, sink, dishwasher, and a small two-burner stove. Standard dinnerware and cookware are provided. We brought some snacks and our breakfast. If our stay was longer, we easily would have brought a full load of groceries.
The living area is nicely appointed with a sleeper sofa, a large sitting chair, a coffee table, a large flat panel TV and a dining table. A small hallway leads to the bathroom and the bedroom. The bedroom is a little small with a queen bed, one night stand, a bunk bed, closet, and dresser with a small, flat screen TV.
We requested a bedrail for the bunk bed a few days before arrival. They were not in the cabin so we called the front desk. A cast member in a mask and gloves arrived about 20 minutes later with a bedrail in a plastic bag. He offered to set it up for us, but we opted to do so ourselves. We enjoyed the convenience of our cabin for an afternoon nap and refreshed ourselves before driving back to Epcot for dinner around World Showcase.
Overall Cleanliness of the Cabins
Health and safety is everyone’s top concern. The main reason we chose a cabin is because we knew we would have minimal contact with other guests, and even cast members. All Walt Disney World rooms now have a sign that explains the extra detailed cleaning that is conducted. We looked around and the room was essentially spotless. There were some small webs on one of the living room lamps, but it wasn’t a big matter to us.
Both TV remotes were wrapped in plastic with a sticker that said “cleaned.” The bulk shampoo, conditioner, and body wash dispensers in the shower/tub also had a plastic bag over the nozzles with the same “cleaned” sticker on it. The bathroom was sparkling clean and we felt comfortable using all the cabin’s amenities.
Resort Amenities at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Campground
Another reason we selected the cabins is because if we decided to enjoy any of the resort amenities, they would all be outside. As this was our first trip back to any of Walt Disney World’s theme parks, we were excited to spend time in Epcot and Disney’s Animal Kingdom. We also preferred to use our car to get around rather than using Disney transportation.
The resort pools, including the themed pool and the quiet pool, were open. Deck chairs were spaced out and towel retrieval and return bins were available. We were near the quiet pool and it had a large amount of guests enjoying it any time we passed by.
The campfire movie and sing-a-long, as well as the Chuck Wagon food truck were not offered during our stay and are temporarily closed for the foreseeable future. Motorized boat rentals, as well as canoes and kayaks are not currently available for rent. Bicycles and golf carts, however, are indeed available. You can also schedule a fishing excursion with a guide.
Basketball and volleyball courts are currently available, but playgrounds are not. During our brief stay, we spotted plenty of folks using rented golf carts and bikes to get around and explore.
The buses were running regularly, including the internal shuttle. The internal bus stops did not seem busier than normal. However, the main bus terminal at the front of the resort, where theme park buses are located, did seem quite busy. Buses are running at reduced capacity, only six parties per bus, with designated seats to allow for physical distancing. I am glad we had the use of our car available to us.
Final Thoughts on Staying at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Campground
The only bad thing about our stay was that it was too short. After our visit to Epcot for dinner, we slept soundly in our cozy cabin. We woke up the next day refreshed and enjoyed breakfast on our porch, beneath the shade of cypress trees.
Although some of the amenities are temporarily unavailable right now, there is still plenty to enjoy at Fort Wilderness. Our family, personally, is not ready to stay in a regular hotel room right now, even with all the additional precautions. But staying at the cabins gave us a comfortable and relaxing getaway, which we needed in these stressful times.