fort wilderness entrance

Maybe you love the great outdoors, or maybe “glamping” is more your style. Either way, experience a different side of Disney – by camping at Fort Wilderness!

I have a secret: my husband used to hate Disney. I dragged him on his first trip a few years ago, right after he came home from a military deployment. We stayed at one of the most crowded resorts and I made him stay in the parks from rope drop to park closing. Sure, we had fun, but he definitely wasn’t begging to go back. When I had the Disney itch again, we came to a compromise – take our fifth wheel trailer (and our dog) to Fort Wilderness. Since that trip, he’s been hooked. Now he asks when we can start planning our next trip more often than I do.

Here are our Top 10 reasons why camping at Fort Wilderness is so amazing:

  1. The campgrounds are centrally located

The location of Fort Wilderness is perfect – it’s an easy drive to all of the parks and Disney Springs. If you have a car, there is a grocery store nearby to stock up on food for your stay.

  1. Boat transportation

Not a fan of riding a bus to and from the parks every day? Fort Wilderness has boat transportation. The boat takes you to Magic Kingdom, and you can take the monorail to Epcot from there if you’d like. It’s a nice change of scenery and a relaxing way to wind down after a day in the parks.
fort wilderness boat

  1. Naps in your own bed

Who doesn’t love a midday rest at Disney World? When you camp at Fort Wilderness, you have the luxury of napping in your own (camper) bed, with your own pillow. It brings relaxation during a Disney vacation to a new level.

  1. Bring the family pet

Does your pet love to travel? Pets are welcome at the Fort Wilderness campgrounds! You can take your four-legged friends for long walks or visit Waggin’ Trails Dog Park, and then they can take naps on your bed when you head to the parks. (Just be aware of your pet’s behaviors; if your pet makes too much noise, you may be asked to find alternate accommodations for him or her.)
walking trail with ripley

  1. Save money on food and drinks

Because you have your own kitchen and you can bring food from home, staying at Fort Wilderness can be a huge money saver for your next Disney vacation. Eat your big meals in your camper, and only pay for snacks while in the park. Consider bringing a slow cooker so your lunch or dinner can cook while you’re out playing. Keeping a cooler of cold beverages can also help the wallet.

  1. Watch Magic Kingdom fireworks from the beach

There is nothing like watching fireworks over Cinderella’s Castle. But, it’s pretty cool to be able to see Disney fireworks while you’re camping. The music is not piped in, but if you’ve seen the show enough times you can sing along in your head.

  1. See the Electrical Water Pageant

After fireworks on the beach, stick around for the Electrical Water Pageant – a parade of water floats with twinkling lights and fun music. Even if you don’t walk down to the beach to see it, you can hear it from many campground loops. My husband calls it the magical version of Taps (those that have lived on a military installation will understand).

  1. Fun dinner shows just steps away

Two of the best dinner shows in Disney World – Mickey’s Backyard BBQ and Hoop Dee Doo Revue – call Fort Wilderness home. When you book your next camping adventure, make sure you grab reservations for one (or both) of these dinner shows.
fort wilderness mickeys backyard bbq

  1. Feel the Disney love

Fort Wilderness campers are hardcore. Many are repeat visitors, and they go all out making their campsite “home” for their stay. Yard signs, party lights, Disney-theming galore. If you’re lucky enough to visit during the holidays, make sure you set aside some time to walk the loops and see the holiday decorations.

  1. It just feels like home

I don’t know what it is, but the atmosphere at Fort Wilderness makes you feel like you’re home. It’s quiet, there are walking trails everywhere, you can find wildlife any time of day, and everyone is very friendly. It’s a nice contrast to the hustle and bustle of the parks.

Ready to plan your Fort Wilderness getaway? I’m here to help!

My name is Kate Oyer, and I love all things Disney. Since my first trip to Walt Disney World in 1989, I have always wanted to be a part of the magic. And now I am! As an experienced Disney traveler, a former Cast Member, and now an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner, I am ready to help you and your family make magical memories that will last a lifetime.

Looking for military-specific travel information? I can help with that, too. As an Army family, we have taken advantage of Disney’s generous military discounts as often as possible. Contact me today to start planning your next unforgettable family vacation!