A former Disney Imagineer’s guide to the Walt Disney World Resort – Orange County Register

There are many more things to do at Walt Disney World than just visit its four theme parks – Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Animal Kingdom or Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

Its many hotels all have, as this is Disney, a variety of themes, making many of them worth a short visit. They all have dining options too, some with very fine dining or dinner shows.

Beyond the four theme parks and hotels, there are two water parks, water recreation such as boating and water skiing and for the links-minded, golf on three full championship courses, or a nine-hole course. For the kids, there are four miniature golf courses.

There are dozens of shops, restaurants, and many other entertainment choices — even horseback riding.

With that in mind, here’s an overview of the rest of the Walt Disney World Resort, including how to get around the giant place. It will not capture every hotel, only the main ones, and does not deal with the various Disney Vacation Club options.

Getting to Walt Disney World

Some people drive to Walt Disney World, others fly into Orlando International Airport.

Once at the airport, there are several options to get from there to the resort: Rental car, taxi, Lyft or Uber, or shuttle bus.

There is also a unique service for those with reservations at one of Disney’s hotels: Disney’s Magical Express. It comes with the reservation if so desired. If an airline participates in the program, visitors will receive a special extra set of baggage tags. They are coded to that person’s stay and hotel.

Disney’s Magical Express is a way for visitors staying at a hotel on Walt Disney World property to get from Orlando International Airport to their hotel. Visitors also do not have to worry about their luggage, the Magical Express picks up your bags and has them delivered right to your room. (Photo courtesy: The Walt Disney World Resort)

Once the bags are checked in at the departing airport, they will be transported directly from Orlando Airport to the hotel and placed in a visitor’s room the day they arrive. Then all a visitor has to do is get to the Magical Express location at the Orlando Airport to board a bus that will take them directly to the hotel where they have the reservation.

It also works in reverse. Bags for the return trip are checked at the hotel, and will make their way to the airline to be seen again at the baggage carousel at home. Then just board a bus for a direct drive to the Orlando Airport.

Getting around Walt Disney World


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