Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
The Polynesian Village Resort is one of Disney’s most enchanting resorts. It is one of the original Walt Disney World Resorts and has a rich history. The resort sits on the Seven Seas Lagoon and is just across from Magic Kingdom however, the resort atmosphere takes you away to what feels like Hawaii. This is my favorite Disney resort for many reasons. It is very convenient, beautiful, has incredible views and is spacious.
The History at the Polynesian Resort
The resort was opened on October 1, 1971 and had a grand opening ceremony on October 24, 1971. On hand for the grand opening included celebrities such as Bob Hope, Lucille Ball, as well as the Governor of Florida.
The early concept for the resort featured a 12-story tower that might have looked more at home among luxury hotels on Honolulu’s Waikiki Beach, however, the plans changed to give it a more authentic village layout in 1970. You can read more about the history of the Polynesian on Disney Parks Blog.
The main building, also known as the Great Ceremonial House, is where you will find check-in, as well as shops and restaurants. The guest rooms in the buildings just outside the Great Ceremonial House are named after Polynesian islands and create a village-type feel. At check-in, you’re greeted with “Aloha” and a flower lei. The theme runs throughout the resort from the Great Ceremonial House to the Long Houses that hold the guest rooms. Inside the guest rooms, they have an island getaway feel to them.
The rooms are bigger than moderate rooms so it is ideal for larger families and those with little ones. Rooms on the first floor have a lanai with a small table and two chairs and upper floor rooms have a small balconette. Similar to other resorts they have different view types that include: standard, lagoon, pool/marina, and theme park. There’s enough room inside to put your stuff and not feel crowded in the room, which is often an issue we have with two little ones and a stroller. It’s also nice because our kids go to bed around 9 when we are at Disney (normal bedtime is 8 and if we go too much past that it’s a nightmare the next day) so it’s nice to be able to sit out on the lanai or stand on the balcony and watch fireworks.
The standard rooms are typically ones with views of the parking lot or monorail, there’s a lot of lush landscape on the property to assist in making it prettier. The theme park view, as well as some of the marina and pool view rooms, are able to see the fireworks.
The resort grounds are lush and beautiful with plants and trees. As you walk out the back entrance of the Great Ceremonial House, you can see Cinderella’s castle and in the evenings sit on the beach to watch the Electrical Water Pageant and see fireworks. There are speakers spread out around the property where you can hear the soundtrack that goes along with the fireworks and electrical pageant.
Transportation at the Polynesian Resort
You can use the monorail or boat to get to the Magic Kingdom or you can walk to the ticketing center to catch a monorail to Epcot. This is so much easier than having to get in the car and drive. Especially when kids and strollers are involved. If you want to head to Hollywood Studios or the Animal Kingdom there are buses (shared with the Grand Floridian) that can get you there.
Dining at the Polynesian Village Resort
One of the fun things about Disney Resorts is you can find food that is unique to them. Of course, you will typically always find chicken nuggets and pizza but in the case of dining at the Polynesian, you will also find some flavors of the Polynesian isles.
Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto- Tiki bar with appetizers and live music.
Barefoot Pool Bar- counter service by the pool that serves drinks and snacks
Oasis Bar and Grill- counter service by the pool that serves drinks and snacks
Captain Cooks- cafeteria-style, quick-service restaurant. This is a simple quick service restaurant but I’ve never gotten anything that was bad from here and it is a quick, easy place to stop in for a bite of food.
Pineapple Lanai- located right outside the back doors facing the Magic Kingdom this is where you can get a Dole Whip!
Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show- a luau dinner show. I have never tried this as the kids were too small and would not sit through it but it’s definitely on my list of things to do. Reservations are recommended.
Ohana- for breakfast, this houses the resorts character dining where you can see Mickey, Pluto, Lilo and Stitch.
Kona Café- sit down restaurant that serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Disney resorts offer fantastic pools and the Polynesian pool doesn’t disappoint. There is the Lava Pool, which has a 142-foot water slide that starts inside a volcano. It’s a beach entry pool where you can relax and enjoy a view of Cinderella’s castle. For little ones, there is a water playground area where they can have lots of fun. It includes some kid size slides as well. If you want to venture away from the crowd, there is an Oasis pool that is surrounded by abundant landcape and shade.
Have You Stayed At The Polynesian Village Resort?
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