Aloha! My family of 7 has found our FAVORITE resort to stay at while vacationing at Walt Disney World – Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort! Thanks to the great deals through David’s Vacation Club, we have been able to stay here during our last three visits to the most magical place on Earth. Today I am going to give you our top 10 reasons (in no particular order) why the Polynesian is our favorite. My husband will have a hard time trying to convince me to stay anywhere else!
10: The Overall Ambiance
Right when you walk into the Great Ceremonial House, you feel like you have ventured onto an island in the South Pacific. You are greeted with leis and friendly cast members. The pathways between the buildings are lit with tiki torches and the palm trees, plants, and flowers throughout the resort add to the atmosphere. While some resorts may feel more hotel-like, this one does not at all!
9: The Pools
Our most recent trip was in June, and to beat the heat, we often enjoyed 6 hours at the parks, came back to the resort to swim, and then returned to a park in the evening after it cooled off a bit. Therefore, the kids got a lot of swim time. We loved the larger pool area (Lava Pool) for the water slide, the kiddie pool area (my daughter loved the little slide!), and the added comfort of lifeguards. The older kids enjoyed playing the games organized by the cast members (and the prizes they received!).
The smaller pool area (Oasis Pool) was great when we wanted a quieter environment. We enjoyed dinner by this pool one night, which was a blast for the kids.
There were two occasions on this most recent trip that we were in the Lava Pool when the fireworks show was happening at the Magic Kingdom. This was so much fun!
Parents with strollers – listen up! The convenience of taking the monorail to Epcot and the Magic Kingdom is huge. Our day starts out better (i.e., sleeping in a little since it takes less time to get to MK and Epcot, no waiting in a bus line, no folding up strollers) and ends better. I will never forget having to take sleeping children out of the stroller at the end of a busy day, fold up the stroller, and STAND in the bus juggling a sleeping child and stroller. Being able to hop on the monorail right at the resort, or (in our case as we have stayed at Pago Pago and Moorea) walking the short distance to the Transportation and Ticketing Center is priceless (happy wife, happy life!).
We also love that we are able to easily hop on the monorail to get to our FAVORITE character meal at the Grand Floridian (the Supercalifragilistic Breakfast) as well as to Chef Mickey’s at the Contemporary.
With children between the ages of 2-10, we appreciate the convenience of the location because I am able to easily come back to the resort solo so my husband can stay with the older kids. It also makes coming back mid-day for pool time or naps so easy!
While the Polynesian does have buses to Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios, we prefer to drive there (since we road trip from Wisconsin, we have our car easily accessible). However, this past trip we did go to Hollywood Studios by way of the monorail to Epcot and then the boat to Hollywood Studios, which worked well (no folding of strollers needed so the babies can sleep, uninterrupted).
AHHH! The minute we walk into our room, I feel at peace! The waterfall shower is a favorite, and I love that we can use the separate bathroom to hang wet clothes. We are easily able to fit our family in the room; the pull-out couch fits two kids, and the pull-down bed below the television fits one (our 10 year old is able to sleep comfortably on this bed). We also have room for a small cot (we brought) and a pack ‘n play (provided by the resort). We enjoyed a couple of meals on our porch as well as a few drinks with my husband after the kids were finally in bed! The overhang is long, so we never needed to worry about anything getting wet in the rain.
4: Hospitality by Cast Members
While we have been so impressed by the cast members throughout Walt Disney World, we find that the cast members at the Polynesian go above and beyond to make the guests’ resort stay magical. There were a few things that stuck out on our most recent trip that emulates this.
- Bellhop Service: We initially had a problem with an Amazon Prime Now order (this is a GREAT idea for snacks, drinks, easy breakfasts) so it ended up being delivered at 9:30 PM. My husband was at the parks with the older kids, and I was in the room with sleeping children. Since there were refrigerated items, I called the bellhop desk, and someone brought my items right to my room (including a 24-pack of water!).
- Lifeguards: I was so impressed by how GREAT the lifeguards were. They were very diligent and always on their toes. My daughter befriended one of the lifeguards while in the kiddie pool area. While on her break, this lifeguard brought some water toys for us to keep! If that wasn’t enough, we were gifted 7 (7!) Dole Whips at the Pineapple Lanai on our last day – how magical, and what a wonderful display of kindness.
- Front Desk: My son lost his Magic Band while swimming in the pool. We contacted the front desk and, unfortunately, they didn’t have it in their lost and found. However, they said that we could just stop by the front desk at our convenience and pick up a new one for him!
3: Disney’s Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show
This was an incredible, unique experience offering a breathtaking show and a family-style meal! While it is not something that we can afford EVERY trip, it is definitely a treat every once in awhile. We experienced the luau during our second stay at the Polynesian and reminisced about it many times on our most recent trip. The show was amazing, as was the food. Having the ability to go to this unique dinner show right at our resort is great and adds to the overall ambiance of the Polynesian!
2: Quick Service Food
I really like that there are so many options for quick service meals throughout the resort. My picky eaters were all able to find items that they liked, and I, no longer eating pork and beef, had no problem choosing food. Prior to this trip, my FAVORITE meal was the meatballs and coconut rice; however, I tried the fish tacos this trip and fell in love! My kids gobbled up the chicken nuggets and chicken wings no problem. The chips (only $3 for a good amount) were outstanding!
My husband went and picked up dinner for us a couple of times (everything was still hot when he got back to our room), and we ate poolside once.
Because we prefer to sleep in as long as possible, if we were not going to a character breakfast, we grabbed breakfast from our room (Amazon Prime Now for the win!) and ate on the way to the monorail. Therefore we didn’t try any quick service breakfast this trip, but we did during previous trips, and the food was good.
We also loved the convenience of ordering drinks poolside; this drink in a pineapple from the Pineapple Lanai was DELICIOUS!
The white sand beach is so fun! It adds to the overall ambiance of the resort, and what kid doesn’t love digging in the sand and building sand castles? The first night there I relaxed on the swing while the youngest two play in the sand…ahh, vacation. I like that they also have a volleyball net!
I hope you all can see why our family has gone back three times to the Polynesian for our family vacation; after fun (but long and tiring) days at the parks, it is so nice to come home to Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort. It is relaxing, refreshing, and rejuvenating. I can’t wait for our fourth trip!
~ Guest Blogger Kara is a big Disney fan! With five kids 10 and under, Kara and her husband and have found some great ways to save money during their annual trips (which includes DVC!). She loves her job as a speech language pathologist and is looking forward to a mission trip to Africa in a couple of weeks where Kara will be utilizing those skills.