One of the most important steps of planning a Disney World vacation with your family is finding the right resort. With a long list of Disney World resorts, it’s important to figure out what accommodations are the best fit for you and your kids.

Art of Animation Resort” by HarshLight is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Every resort has magical theming that your kids will appreciate, but some have unique experiences and amenities that will make your special trip even more memorable. Every location is categorized into an area based on proximity.

Some are even close enough to walk to a park! Each resort is distributed into three major categories based on cost: value, moderate and luxury. No matter how much you decide to spend each night, every resort will have an immersive theme and a fun experience filled with magic.

Here are some benefits and amenities that all Walt Disney World resorts offer:

  • Extra Magic Hours
  • Complimentary Magic Bands
  • Gift Shop
  • Transportation and Parking
  • Dining Services
  • Pool
  • Early Access to FastPass+ Planning

Depending on your family’s interests, resort importance could vary. Maybe you are just looking for a place to sleep and eat because you want to spend most of your time at the parks, or maybe you want to split your vacation between relaxing resort time and hectic park days.  Either way, these are seven of the best Disney resorts for kids, guaranteed to keep them occupied and having fun during your entire trip.

Disney’s All-Star Resorts

Technically, there are three different value resorts:

These three resorts have different themes and names, but they are very similar in theme, layout, amenities and cost. The All-Star Resorts are all found in the same location, so it’s kind of like one massive resort sectioned in three different parts. However, when you book your room, you must specify which resort you’d like to stay in.

The significant difference of the three resorts is the theme of each. All three have coordinating pools, themed areas, and fun statues of recognizable Disney characters and props. You can find simple food court dining areas at each of the resorts. The themes are very cute and showcased through every detail.

These are the cheapest of all the Disney resorts in Orlando. The rooms are very basic and look like any other hotel room. The theming is unique to Disney, of course, but that is basically the only factor that sets it apart from an ordinary hotel chain. This resort is perfect for a family that is looking to spend most of their time and money in the parks rather than the resort. Because of the cheap prices, these resorts are very popular with large tour groups and sports teams. This is another reason why it might not be the best fit for your family if you want to spend a lot of time relaxing at the resort.

Resort Category: Value

Resort Area: Animal Kingdom

Transportation: Bus

Disney’s Art of Animation Resort

This is a value resort, and it has much to offer families. The theme is something both parents and children will enjoy – the process of animation that creates our favorite characters. The atmosphere of the lobby is sophisticated, but it is also inviting as doodles of Disney characters smile from their autographed drawings. This resort is affordable without abandoning style and amazing details that all members of the family can appreciate.

Disney’s Art of Animation has many features that make the resort unique. For example, you can find the largest pool of any Disney resort that offers something special – there are speakers underwater that play voices of Disney characters. If this pool gets too busy, there are two others and an interactive water area for younger children. This resort also offers a casual dining service that serves fresh, made-to-order food. If you’re looking for something fun to do between plans, this is the only resort that has a daily drawing class.

This resort is perfect for a family wanting to spend a decent amount of time away from the parks without spending most of their budget on the room. It’s a great place to stay for larger families because there’s a family suite option. These themed rooms can fit up to six people. There are also dog-friendly accommodations here, so you can share the magic of Disney with every member of the family.

Resort Category: Value

Resort Area: Wide World of Sports

Transportation: Bus

Disney’s Port Orleans Resort

Disney’s Port Orleans is divided into two different resort areas – Riverside and French Quarter. Just like Disney’s All-Star Resorts, these two resorts are in the same general area and have many similarities. The significant theme of these resorts is the rich culture of New Orleans, Louisiana. The buildings, landscape, food, decorations and details are very immersive.

Both resorts feature a pool with a waterslide for the children and a hot tub and poolside bar for the parents. Disney’s Port Orleans – French Quarter Resort features a 25-minute horse-drawn carriage ride alongside a beautiful river. If you are wanting to bring the family dog along, stay at Disney’s Port Orleans – Riverside, where there are dog-friendly accommodations. The dining options at these resorts have delicious southern and Cajun-style options. If you have any picky eaters, have a pizza delivered to your room instead.

This is a moderate resort, and it might be better for older kids. Other than “The Princess and the Frog” theme in some details, there isn’t much that a toddler can identify in the New Orleans and Mardi Gras décor. However, this resort is great for families wanting to spend the day in the park and unwind at night within the resort. The cost per night is reasonable, so it’s also great for families wanting to splurge a little on a resort without breaking the bank. Disney’s Port Orleans Resorts focus more on the engaging theme than recognizable Disney characters and movies. For this reason, young children might not find it as “magical” during a Disney vacation.

Resort Category: Moderate

Resort Area: Disney Springs

Transportation: Bus, Boat

Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort

This resort will transform your Disney vacation to a trip to the Caribbean tropical islands. There are five different islands that this resort displays themes of: Jamaica, Barbados, Martinique, Aruba and Trinidad. Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort is a perfect mixture of relaxation and adventure. The resort is scattered with palm trees, colorful buildings and bright flowers.

You can find amazing amenities here for your adventurous and curious kids. The pool here is extremely great for children who spend a lot of time swimming. It’s a large, zero-entry pool with a fun theme, two slides and water cannons that spill onto the buccaneers below. For younger kids, there’s a themed play area to splash around in.

If your children enjoy pirate ships and sword fights, stay in a pirate-themed room. These special rooms have beds shaped like ships and have nautical details throughout. If you’re planning on spending a lot of time at the resort, there are fun pirate-themed children’s activities available for kids ages 4-12. Also, there’s a sandy beach for children to build sand castles and for parents to relax at.

If your family is planning on spending a decent amount of time at the resort, this is a great option. Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort is a moderate resort with a lavish theme and plenty of activities for children. There are several different dining locations here, so there are options for the entire family. This resort features fun for everyone without the high cost.

Resort Category: Moderate

Resort Area: Epcot

Transportation: Bus

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge

As soon as you step into the lobby of this resort, you will feel transported to Africa. This resort might be expensive, but it’s worth it for the experience. Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge offers an extra charge for rooms with a view of exotic animals in the savanna below. There are over 30 species of African animals right under the windows of this resort.

There are also spectacular award-winning restaurants at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. Some dining options offer special experiences like interacting with an animal expert or going on a private safari before your meal.

Every member of the family can enjoy this resort. It has so much to offer, and the animal encounters make it even more interesting. The pools are breathtaking and entertaining. Even the children’s 24-hour playground overlooks a flamingo area and the savanna. For family fun, you can visit the arcade or wander around the savanna viewing area with a Wildlife Field Guide.

No matter how long your Disney vacation is, be sure to eat at least one meal at this resort with your family. Kids will enjoy the fun activities while parents appreciate the beautiful architecture and luxurious rooms.

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge is a deluxe resort, and it is for good reason. There is so much to see and do here for people of all ages, and the hospitality and luxury is very apparent throughout. One major benefit of staying here is being able to view the savanna from your room’s balcony. Children will find this exciting, and there is plenty to do during the day. If your family is looking for a memorable experience within the resort itself, this is the place.

Resort Category: Deluxe

Resort Area: Animal Kingdom

Transportation: Bus

Disney’s Beach Club Resort

You can find many family-friendly activities and restaurants at this resort. Disney’s Beach Club is a deluxe resort, and it offers entertainment for the entire family. With a New England theme, there is a charming and quaint atmosphere to this classy resort. The theme is simple and doesn’t showcase many Disney characters and movies. However, there’s still much to see and do here for children.

There is a 3-acre water recreation area at Disney’s Beach Club Resort. Children can spend a lot of time going down waterslides, floating in the lazy river or swimming in one of the many pools at this location. There are two kiddie pools for younger children, so much of your family’s time can be spent having fun in the sun at this resort.

There are many different dining options, including a character dining location where children can visit with their favorite characters while eating delicious food. A popular restaurant at this resort is Beaches and Cream Soda Shop. Your kids will be delighted to take on the “Kitchen Sink,” a gigantic sundae of five different ice cream flavors, every topping available and an entire can of whipped cream. After accomplishing the giant sundae, the family can head to the fun arcade next door.

This resort has so much to explore. It’s a perfect place to stay for a family that wants to splurge on a resort. Other than the kiddie pools here, there aren’t many options for entertainment for toddlers and young children. The theme isn’t very “Disney,” but it’s a great location for older kids who like to swim and play in the arcade. Disney’s Beach Club Resort is also in a great location, so convenience is a major benefit.

Resort Category: Deluxe

Resort Area: Epcot

Transportation: Bus, Boat

Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

This deluxe resort is a great place to stay for families with children. The theme is fun, and there are many amenities that keep children entertained. Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort has a tropical theme that showcases the beauty of the South Pacific. There’s a relaxing beach with a beautiful view, and the location is extremely convenient for transportation to and from the parks.

Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort features a convenient form of transportation straight from this resort. Families can stress less about traveling to and from the parks by taking the monorail that arrives right outside this resort.

The monorail will take you straight to Magic Kingdom and one transfer away from Epcot. This resort offers some great dining services, including a popular character dining restaurant called ‘Ohana. Here, children can be visited by Lilo, Stitch and other Disney characters during breakfast. Before going to bed, view the Electrical Water Pageant, a fun light show that takes place in the lagoon.

With a calm and inviting atmosphere, this resort is a great place for families to make memories. The restaurants are family-friendly, and there are some that kids can especially enjoy. This resort is conveniently located, so it’s perfect for families wanting to minimize travel time with tired kids after a long day at the parks. It’s very expensive, but Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort is an iconic resort that is sure to make the entire family happy.

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