Five Favorites that take a Disney Vacation from Fun to Fantastic

For me, each Disney Vacation Club resort has its own appeal, and there are many things about all of them that I love! Yet, to help plan for your next Disney vacation, I want to share my five favorite features found at Walt Disney World’s DVC resorts!

Walt Disney World sign

  • Favorite Location

Hands down, the resort that has my preferred location is the one that’s walking distance to the Magic Kingdom! 

Exterior shot of Disney’s Bay Lake Tower Exterior shot of Disney’s Bay Lake Tower

Disney’s Bay Lake Tower tops my list because guests are a short stroll to the park’s entrance. 

Walkway from Disney’s Bay Lake Tower to the Magic Kingdom

To give an idea of how short the walk is, I’ve been in the Magic Kingdom and purchased an ice cream cone from the Plaza Ice Cream Parlor before heading out of the park. Walking back at a comfortable pace, I still had ice cream left (I was on my last bite) when I reached the resort’s lobby.  

Ice cream from the Plaza Ice Cream Parlor at the Magic Kingdom

Another bonus about this location is that you can see the magic from your resort!  

 Guests can book a theme park view and watch the fireworks from their balconies!  

Team Member Kelly watching the Magic Kingdom Fireworks as seen from a balcony at Disney’s Bay Lake Tower

 For guests that book into a standard or lake view, I’d recommend heading to the Skyway Bridge for the fireworks. The music will be played over the bridge’s speakers, and it offers a great view of the fireworks. For me, staying at Disney’s Bay Lake Tower is being surrounded by magic!

Exterior shot of Disney’s Bay Lake Tower

  • Favorite Feature Pool

Stormalong Bay at Disney’s Beach Club Villas is the most popular Disney Vacation Club pool, and it’s my favorite DVC pool. 

Stormalong Bay at Disney’s Beach Club Villas

The pool has 795,000 gallons of water and takes up more than 3 acres of space; it’s massive! The pool is shared amongst guests staying at Disney’s Beach Club Villas, Disney’s Beach Club Resort, and Disney’s Yacht Club Resort. There’s a 230 foot waterslide that starts at the top of a life-sized shipwreck and shoots guests into the pool. Heads up, there are 2 waterfalls within the waterslide, so if you are cheering as you’re zipping down the slide, you may end up getting a mouth full of water (yep, that happened to me).  

Stormalong Bay’s waterslide at Disney’s Beach Club Villas

In the Stormalong Bay pool area, there’s also a lazy river for guests to float down in an inner tube. With the size of this pool, guests can be as active or laid-back and relaxed as they want during their stay.  

Stormalong Bay at Disney’s Beach Club Villas Stormalong Bay at Disney’s Beach Club Villas

  • Favorite Leisure Pools

When I think of the best leisure pools at Walt Disney World, my mind jumps to Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa. 

Sign and Entrance to Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa

The resort has 5 pools (2 features pools and 3 leisure pools). The feature pools are a lot of fun, yet it’s the 3 leisure pools that stand out as stars for me.  

The Congress Park pool has beautiful views of Disney Springs and is a perfect place to spend an afternoon relaxing at the resort. This is my go-to pool when I want to lose a few hours sitting poolside and reading a book.  

Congress Park Pool at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa Congress Park Pool at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa

The 2nd leisure pool is located in the Treehouse Villas sections of the resort, and it’s a Hidden Gem. Surrounded by tall trees, the area feels like your own personal pool and as though you are miles away from everyone.   

Treehouse Villas Pool at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa Treehouse Villas Pool at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa

The Grandstand Pool, although it’s listed as a leisure pool, to me is a hybrid of a leisure pool and a feature pool (the best of both). There’s a water play area for younger guests to enjoy, and it has the Backstretch Pool Bar that offers a variety of snacks, beverages, and a few pizza options. There’s also a refillable Mug station at the Pool bar; for guests that are using Refillable Mugs and staying in the Grandstand area, this makes for a convenient spot to refill your mugs.    

The Grandstand Pool at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa The Grandstand Pool at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa

The Backstretch Pool Bar located at the Grandstand Pool at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa

  • Favorite Dining

Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows is home to ‘Ohana Restaurant, and that makes it my favorite DVC resort for dining! 

table setting at ‘Ohana restaurant at Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows

Open for breakfast and dinner; both meals are served family-style where the meal is brought to your table, and the Cast Members are happy to bring additional servings of any of the menu options you request.   

Breakfast options from ‘Ohana restaurant at Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows

The breakfast was previously a Character Dining experience, and I will be over the moon excited when Disney announces that Mickey, Pluto, Stitch, and Lilo will be returning. No date has been released, yet hopefully, it won’t be too much longer before these Disney friends are back at the restaurant. 

(Stitch visiting a table at ‘Ohana restaurant at Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows

Until then, I’ll continue dining there for the food; the freshly made Pineapple-Coconut Breakfast Bread and the Stitch juice are my favorites!  

Pineapple-Coconut Breakfast Bread at ‘Ohana restaurant at Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows

An honorable mention for another dining option at this resort is Pineapple Lanai, a walk-up window for the famous Dole Whip! Picking up a Dole Whip and strolling around the resort is something that I always enjoy doing during a Disney vacation.  

Pineapple Lanai at ‘Ohana restaurant at Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows

 

and last but not least is;

  • Favorite Overall Experience

 

I’ve said it countless times, and it’s still true. Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas is an experience unlike anything else! 

Chandeliers in the lobby of Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Jambo House

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Kidani Village

The ability to sit on a balcony and watch as a giraffe snacks on some leaves, a zebra walks by, or an ostrich runs past is something that amazes me. When I stay at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas, I’m reminded of the beauty within nature, and I’m in awe watching these magnificent animals.

Flamingoes at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Jambo House

Animals on the savannah at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas

After the sunsets, be sure to stop by the main Savannah outlooks at both Jambo House and Kidani Village; Cast Members will have night vision goggles for guests to use. You can watch as some Ankole Cattle gather together and choose the perfect spot for an evening nap.  

There you have it! These are my five features from five different DVC resorts.  I believe anyone of them can elevate a Disney vacation from fun to fantastic!  

Mickey Mouse at Disney’s Magic Kingdom

 

~Kelly