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Old 03-08-2016, 05:24 PM   #1
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My Disney/Fort Wilderness Trip

We're going to Disney!

This thread will cover the planning, travel and experience of our upcoming trip to Disney.

I've never been to Disney, my wife went once when she was a little girl. It's difficult to find the type of information I've been looking forward to, so hopefully sharing my experience will be of some use to others potentially planning this trip.

We'll be making the trip from our home in southern Ontario this coming December. We're moderately experienced Airstreamers but this will be our longest trip, both in days and distance, as well as our first trip during the winter months.
To add a further challenge, we have 2 children, our daughter will be 3 and our son will be 11 months at the time of the trip.

So far everyone has either said we are crazy to do this type of trip with small children or that we will have the time of our lives. I guess I'll see!
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Old 03-08-2016, 05:43 PM   #2
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Went a couple years ago, but not to Fort Wilderness. I believe the three year old would enjoy it, but the baby won't remember much. This would be a parent's trip and I guess you would want to avoid the white-knuckle rides. There is a lot to do and see. We spent 4 days in the parks.

One thing we should have done was get the meal package. It makes food much easier. You have to buy it at least 72 hours in advance of arrival.

Enjoy and take lots of pictures!


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Old 03-08-2016, 06:00 PM   #3
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Having spent 8 years in a row camping at FW during Easter break in the 80's when my kid were small I can tell you just one thing, get ready for the trip you will never forget. FW is RV heaven. BTW, back then it was $15 a night.
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Old 03-08-2016, 06:30 PM   #4
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having spent 8 years in a row camping at fw during easter break in the 80's when my kid were small i can tell you just one thing, get ready for the trip you will never forget. Fw is rv heaven. Btw, back then it was $15 a night.

$15 :0
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Old 03-08-2016, 06:38 PM   #5
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How fun.

My advice is to get the book the Unofficial guide to WDW.
Read it.
Know it.
Live it.

Their #1 tip, which is so true. Be there as early as possible to begin the day. As in as soon as it opens. Do stuff until about 10:45 am. The you leave, go back to your hotel/campsite. Eat, rest, swim, take your shower for the day. Then you go back to the parks about 3 -4pm when all the other people who arrived at 10:30 are cranky and leaving for their break. Then eat an early dinner, do more touring, fireworks, and off to bed.

Doing this will let you see so much more with so many fewer people about.
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Old 03-08-2016, 06:38 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AldeanFan View Post
We're going to Disney!

This thread will cover the planning, travel and experience of our upcoming trip to Disney.

I've never been to Disney, my wife went once when she was a little girl. It's difficult to find the type of information I've been looking forward to, so hopefully sharing my experience will be of some use to others potentially planning this trip.

We'll be making the trip from our home in southern Ontario this coming December. We're moderately experienced Airstreamers but this will be our longest trip, both in days and distance, as well as our first trip during the winter months.
To add a further challenge, we have 2 children, our daughter will be 3 and our son will be 11 months at the time of the trip.

So far everyone has either said we are crazy to do this type of trip with small children or that we will have the time of our lives. I guess I'll see!

With a 3 year old and a 11 month old, don't waste your money on tickets to the parks. If staying at Ft Wilderness, the playgrounds will keep the 3 year old very happy. Add in the pass to ride the boats to all the hotels and their fun, you never need to go to a park.
You will still have the time of your lives.
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Old 03-08-2016, 06:41 PM   #7
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We recently priced FW and it's just too expensive for a long stay. I believe it's in the area of $160 a night or so. You get a nice asphalt pad, table, water, electric and sewer. But that's a lot of money to us, Then again, we stay down there 3 months

For WDW I strongly suggest getting the book "The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World. It tells you how to set up a schedule so you're on the rides while people are eating lunch and vice-versa. An interesting item, they did a survey among children about what their favorite part of the trip was. The overwhelming winner was the hotel pool. So maybe checking into a motel with a pool is a good choice too.

I have 3 adult children but I remember taking them to WDW back in the 70s. They were all very young but we had a great time, stayed in the Contemporary when it was brand new, rode the monorail, had a great time.

Get reservations as soon as the window opens at their site. Florida drivers are not so polite (my observation, YMMV). When you go, pace yourself, make sure the kids get plenty of water, you too. Take frequent breaks. Disney Springs (old Downtown Disney & Pleasure Island) is free and has some interesting restaurants and stores. There's a balloon ride, video game building, theaters, water features etc.

Remember, it's a vacation, it's supposed to be fun
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Old 03-08-2016, 07:00 PM   #8
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So the first part of the adventure has been picking a date and making a reservation. I have to be in the office at the end of every month so we need to travel in early to mid December. We want to be home for Christmas so we decided on the first week of December, but there was no availability so we booked later in the month which cost more because it's closer to Christmas, but now we've got something on the books! Maybe a spot earlier in the month will open up and we can change our reservation.

I don't think we spent as much time choosing a wedding date!
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Old 03-08-2016, 07:03 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Piggy Bank View Post
How fun.

My advice is to get the book the Unofficial guide to WDW.
Read it.
Know it.
Live it.

Their #1 tip, which is so true. Be there as early as possible to begin the day. As in as soon as it opens. Do stuff until about 10:45 am. The you leave, go back to your hotel/campsite. Eat, rest, swim, take your shower for the day. Then you go back to the parks about 3 -4pm when all the other people who arrived at 10:30 are cranky and leaving for their break. Then eat an early dinner, do more touring, fireworks, and off to bed.

Doing this will let you see so much more with so many fewer people about.

That's great to hear, that schedule will work well with our nap time schedules
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Old 03-08-2016, 07:06 PM   #10
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I took my son at 18 months and daughter at 4 months to Legoland as part of a camping trip. Since then we've made (3 years later), we've been to Legoland 8 times, Disney twice, Seaworld twice, and Busch Gardens twice. We have camped in excess of 90 nights and driven over 10,000 miles in those 3 years. Just took them back to Disney in February and my son didn't remember his first trip at 30 months. We do take lots of pics, print them out and put in photo books and this helps with memories. You can probably guess that I think Legoland is the best park in central Florida for kids under 8 - consider it if you have time.
As far as trip itself, my practice is to start first segment of drive around 4 pm and try to drive for 6-7 hours. Kids go to sleep about half way through drive. I let the kids get some exercise next morning before hitting road again and limit subsequent day drives to 5-6 hours broken up with interesting stops.
I'm a big fan of Turkey Lake - a City Park in Orlando - if you end up looking at other camping options for future trips. There is a great private rv parkTT1125Z5Q less than a mile from Legoland and Hillsbourgh River SP is a good spot near Busch Gardens.
As for Disney tips, I second the recommendation to get there early. Be strategic in fast pass. They make you use app and don't just pick rides with long wait times at beginning of day because those are typically rides near front of park and by end of day they will have short lines.
Most of all have fun. Jarrod
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Old 03-08-2016, 07:35 PM   #11
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I should also add that on both trips to Magic Kingdom my young kids really enjoyed the animatronic shows - the Magical Tiki Hut, Country Bear Show, and Carousel of Progress. The good news are these have very short lines. My son liked Pirates of Caribbean and the Buzz Lightyear Ride. My daughter liked the Little Mermaid ride and Jungle Cruise.
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Old 03-08-2016, 07:43 PM   #12
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Great place for all ages just take lots of money.
Lots to do, you will have a great time, take pictures and pace yourself it is easy to overdo.
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Old 03-08-2016, 07:52 PM   #13
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FortFiends.net is a great source of info about the ins and outs of experiencing Fort Wilderness. Joe
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Old 03-08-2016, 08:12 PM   #14
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go.... we took our 3 sons and my baby sister back in '86... it was and is a memory I shall never regret...

Back then, we stayed in a 'mobile home' on Fort Wilderness... rode the boat to and from the Kingdom... bought the 'meal package'... etc..

Our sons were 17, 14, 11... my sister ran them into the ground and they slept peacefully as soon as the sun went down... Our youngest had a CRUSH on Jasmine.. the princess in 'Aladdin' movie... we had a breakfast and special visit from Jasmine at our table... He was 'smitten'.. and 'Jasmine' worked him over good..

I got to ride the 'Magic Carpet' at the Kingdom... a virtual reality experience which my motorcycling and flying skills helped to master.... It was NOT good for me afterward... my 'internal' sense of balance was FOULED up for over a month... very weird... they even made me sign a 'release' for any damage it may cause... I know why now..

My youngest son loved Aladdin movie... and did not talk to me for a full month because I got to 'fly the carpet'...

memories.... what a gift....

Our kids were old enough to really grasp the fun... the experience... they still talk about it to this day...

I told them if they each saved $200 I would take them back to DW... turns out I did not have to make the trip...

You will remember it.. your kids.. well, you know them best...

But the TRIP... wow... let us know the 'route'... perhaps we can all give you ideas where you can stay for a reasonable cost or help if needed along the way..
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