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Go-To Guide For a Resort Day at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge

An oft-overlooked Magic Kingdom Resort is located along the shores of Bay Lake, but slightly removed from the hustle and bustle of the ferry boat shuttling Guests back and forth to the Magic Kingdom is the Wilderness Lodge. 

Wilderness Lodge

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While the Resort is not on the famed “Resort Loop,” Guests can still quickly and easily make it to the Magic Kingdom aboard one of the boats that provide direct access to the Magic Kingdom. But, even if you don’t want to visit a theme Park, a stay at the Wilderness Lodge should be high on your list as there is so much to see and do — here are the things you should check out when planning a Resort day at the Wilderness Lodge.

All-You-Care-to-Enjoy Breakfast – one of the reasons that Guests will go out of their way to visit the Wilderness Lodge even if they aren’t staying there is because of one of the restaurants: the Whispering Canyon Cafe.  While the restaurant offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner, we love grabbing a filling breakfast here.

Guests can enjoy three different varieties of skillets with wonderful options.  For example, the Heritage skillet offers Guests delicious buttermilk biscuits (we can make a meal on just this!), as well as scrambled eggs, country potatoes, smoked bacon, sausage links, and the iconic Mickey waffles.  Guests wanting a lighter and healthier option may like the Lighter Side skillet, which features oatmeal, fresh fruit, yogurt, egg white frittata, turkey bacon, and sausage, as well as the potatoes and waffles.  If your appetite isn’t monstrous in the morning, you can order a la carte off of the menu from options such as a ham and cheese omelet, a Belgian waffle, and even avocado toast.

Relaxing Lobby – after a delicious breakfast, you’ll like spending some time taking in the vast lobby with soaring views of the interior of the main building.  Find a rocking chair or a comfy couch and take in the views or enjoy the fire that can be found in the fireplace — this is even more true for Guests who visit during the holidays — the Christmas tree in the lobby is one not to miss.  Guests will also enjoy the relaxing water feature in the lobby that runs to the outside, as well as the Wilderness Lodge Mercantile, where you can find the perfect souvenir from your trip!

Wilderness Lodge

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Explore Nearby Resorts – one of the benefits of a Wilderness Lodge stay is the proximity to other resorts — our favorite neighbor Resort can be found next door at Fort Wilderness.  Guests can take a short boat trip to gain access to the Resort where they can explore the Tri-Circle D Ranch, enjoy delicious food and drink from Trail’s End and Crockett’s Tavern, or shop at their trading outposts.  Guests can also get a boat ride over to the Contemporary and then hop aboard the monorail to explore the other two Magic Kingdom Resorts at the Polynesian Village Resort, as well as the Grand Floridian.

Wonderful Pool – situated with a waterfall in the background, Guests staying at the Wilderness Lodge can enjoy the Cooper Creek Springs Pool, featuring a geyser to complete the wilderness ambiance.  Like other resorts, Guests wanting a more relaxed pool experience can find that nearby at the Boulder Ridge Cove Pool, which does not have the dynamic water features but will allow any Guest to relax, recharge, and cool off!

Wilderness Lodge pool

Credit: Disney

Snacks and Drinks on the Water – one of the new dining experiences at the Wilderness Lodge can be found near the pool, and on the shores of Bay Lake at the Geyser Point Bar and Grill – listed as a lounge experience on the My Disney Experience app, this restaurant offers so much more.  Guests feeling peckish and in need of a snack have so many options — a charcuterie board, teriyaki chicken wings, edamame dusted with flavorful chili salt, as well as a re-thought shrimp cocktail with a Shishito pepper garnish.  Guests wanting heavier fare can also find that amongst choices such as a smoked turkey sandwich, roasted salmon, a bison bacon cheeseburger, and even a grilled Portobello salad with your choice of salmon, chicken, or steak. 

In addition to the expansive food menu, Guests can also find luscious libations and cocktails: a blueberry lemonade spiked with blueberry vodka and Blue Curaçao and a flavorful assortment of juices, as well as bourbon cocktail mixed with cranberry, lime, and pomegranate juice and ginger beer, and even a wilderness-inspired twist on a traditional Long Island Iced Tea.  Guests can also find an expansive beer list with offerings that will satisfy everyone’s taste buds.

Electrical Water Pageant – one of the most relaxing ways that we have found to end a day at the Wilderness Lodge is with a viewing of the Electrical Water Pageant, which moves past the Resort’s shores each evening.  This show has been entertaining Guests since shortly after Disney World opened almost fifty years ago.  It certainly does not have the same budget as one of the new nighttime entertainment options at the parks, but the tradition and intimacy of the show make it a crowd favorite in our book!

Photo Credit: Disney

Late Night Snacks/Drinks – as the day draws to a close, we don’t like returning to our rooms before enjoying a relaxing nightcap inside the Wilderness Lodge at one of the best-hidden gems on property: the Territory Lounge.  Guests can enjoy each other’s company, as well as check on the scores of the day’s games while enjoying specialty cocktails such as an assortment of flavorful margaritas, as well as a variety of mojitos, and other cocktail classics.  Even kids will like stopping in here as they can have a delicious mocktail while also having a small plate featuring savory snacks like their house-made potato chips, ribs, fondue, as well as decadent desserts.

The Wilderness Lodge can be an amazing place to visit even if you are not staying there. Still, we would highly recommend making a reservation here and enjoying all that the Wilderness Lodge has to offer. 

Have you stayed there?  What is your Resort must-do when visiting?

About Tyler

Tyler is a lawyer living in South Florida who visits Disney World at least once a month. He enjoys re-living classic Disney experiences and discovering new things about the parks when he visits. Friends and family always ask him to plan their trip for maximum Disney magic!