The Campsites at Fort Wilderness, and Hotel Hopping in Disney World.


– First, let’s replace
my rear stabilizer jack which, if you recall, I broke last winter getting out of the RTR in Quartz site in the Arizona desert. Today, taking the trip north. The one we’ve taken so
many times towards Orlando. But today, it is special. We’re going to be camping at Disney’s Fort Wilderness RV Resort and we can’t wait. Oh, getting out of South Florida is always a little bit of an adventure but we’re almost at the halfway point now on the dreaded turnpike, of course, which as you all know, it’s not my favorite highway. But time is of the essence. We wanna enjoy as much as possible, every minute in Disney World, so that’s why we’re taking this less interesting route. Cool Aorstream. Of course it wouldn’t be Florida if it didn’t rain at least once. Well sooner or later we were gonna get caught up with the rain. It was just a matter of time. By the way, did you notice my Magic Band? A couple of hours later, we arrive at the place where dreams come true. Disney World. (upbeat music) ♪ I’m riding ♪ ♪ Riding, riding ♪ ♪ Riding in my RV ♪ ♪ My RV ♪ ♪ Wherever I want to be ♪ ♪ Because I’m free ♪ ♪ In my RV yeah ♪ And here we are but this weekend we are not going to do any of the parks. We just want to experience Fort Wilderness and perhaps do some hotel hopping. We pre-registered and according to the instructions on the website, we just had to wave our magic bands. But no. – [Man] Are you checking in, sir? – [Woman] We already checked in. – [Man] Is this your
first time through the– – [Robert] Yeah. – [Man] Then you’re not checked in. – [Robert] Well the app said we were. There seems to be a disconnect between the promise and the reality. – [Woman] The app– – [Man] What’s the last name? – [Robert] Morales. – [Woman] Yeah, the app said
that we were checked in. That we could come in. – [Robert] Yeah we checked
in online, it should have– – Everybody does but you gotta, first name? – [Robert] Robert. – 1434 is your site. – [Woman] Yeah.
– [Robert] Yes, we know. – And away you go. – [Robert] All right, thank you. (upbeat music) Yeah, somehow that didn’t feel like
the Disney experience we were expecting but anyways let’s just go find our site. Nowhere did they mention the extra step with the cranky security guard. Supposedly, you would
just wave your magic band and magically, you would be in. Well, greetings from
Fort Wilderness RV Resort here in Orlando, in Disney. And this is our elite site. By the way, Disney-phytes, Disney-phytes. How do you pronounce it? Disney-o-phytes. Cover your ears because you’re not going to like
what I’m going to say. This is our $200 elite site here. And everybody in this
loop has to come here in front of our picnic table to
throw away the trash because the trash cans are right there. I don’t know, I really hope
that our weekend improves because so far it’s, even our grill here, it looks like it hasn’t been replaced
since the seventies. And as you can see, no privacy whatsoever, everybody just walking in front of our picnic table. I don’t know. We had to try it at least once, right? We had to come here to see it firsthand. We’re gonna walk around
the campground now, and then we’re gonna walk
around the rest of the Disney property and you know, I’m gonna take you with me and we’ll see how it goes. Other than that, beautiful day here in Central Florida. Blue skies, scattered clouds. I mean it rained a little bit on the way here but that was it. Well here we are this is the Meadows Recreation area. They have a swimming area, tennis courts. Oh, the campfire, I think it’s this way. No? Well this is what they
call a comfort station. Let’s check it out. Key access required from 2:00a.m. Okay, so. Did you see that? That was so cool. Yeah, technically I didn’t
need to use the magic band but that was cool. The bathrooms are pretty impeccable as expected. That is pretty nice. And here’s the laundry facility. Let’s check it out. There’s a station here where you pay for the laundry. Makes sense. And while you wait for your laundry, oh this is a, detergent machine. I thought it was gonna be like beer while you wait for your, oh someone forgot their, their clothes in the dryer. All right, let’s continue (laughs) exploring the campground. Paper towels, very important. Let’s continue towards the meadows and here they have this outdoor theater. Well this is the theater
where they do the campfire at night, I guess, and, and they play a Disney movie afterwards. Alligators and snakes in the area. Here you can rent canoes
and all that stuff but the beach is closed. And here’s the main swimming pool. You want mosquito prevention? Actually, Disney does a remarkable job with mosquito control. They pretty much have it down to a science and the results are short of a miracle because if you’ve been
down here in the summer, you know the mosquitoes are epic. This perhaps a little
too crowded for my taste, I was hoping to do the slide but maybe not. (jazzy music) There, that’s where you would rent bicycles and other equipment and this is one of two convenience stores where you can buy souvenirs, supplies and here’s the other one, here by this area closer to the lake called The Settlement and here’s the beach but there’s no swimming. They have two ferries, one going to Magic Kingdom and one going to the other
resorts around the lake and once you figure out the
transportation system, it actually works really well. Pioneer Hall, Crockett. The Trails Inn, everything is here. Yes, the website kind of implies that there are many dining options but it is really all sections
of the same building. One of them is a pick up window. Let’s go into Crockett’s Tavern and this is not it. This is the arcade, actually. Here we are. It is actually just a bar inside
the Trail’s End restaurant. And all of this is inside
the building called Pioneer Hall. Okay, that beer hit the right spot. Now, we’re gonna go to, to the boardwalk because it is Friday and it is almost 6:00 p.m.
so we have a live video to do. With a special guest, perhaps. Here we are at the bus stop trying to figure out which bus to take. And first we have to
go to the outpost depot where all the buses depart from. We’re never gonna make it to the, to the boardwalk by 6 but we’ll try. Here we’re gonna take the bus that goes to Disney Hollywood Studios. – [Woman] We get off here? – [Bus Driver] No, no, no, no,
no, no, no, no, no, no, no. Let me pull into the bus stop. – [Woman] All right. – [Robert] I guess it’s that way. The Disney boardwalk, where we’re going, is located between
Hollywood Studios and Epcot. Much closer to Epcot, actually and we’ve never actually been there. Check it out, there it is, Disney Hollywood Studios. We could have taken the boat but we’ve decided to walk instead. That’s a big raccoon. Oh, the Swan Hotel. How perfect. The boardwalk also happens
to be right next to the Swan and Dolphin hotels and across the lake from the yacht club and the beach club resorts. The boardwalk of course,
has its own resort as well. We’re going to Big River
Grill and Brewing Works which is the local brewery. Where Eric, DizTraveler on YouTube and actually my first patron is saving a table for us. Hello everybody and welcome to another live chat here today coming to you from the Disney boardwalk. Today before a live audience here. Let me show you where we are. This is the Disney World boardwalk. And it’s very nice. Not very crowded today, back there is the, I can’t really see it, it’s the Swan Hotel and today we have
DizTraveler here with us. So it’s really cool. Hello, Alex Cruz?
– [Woman] Oh there he is. – Do you see that guy? DizTraveler. Where’s your blue wrench, man? Oh! By the way, today’s IPA is, it’s called, where is it? It’s a, it’s a New England style IPA. It’s called Brazen Owl. And it’s kind of weird. It looks kind of like an orange juice but it tastes, it’s a, slight sweetness perfectly
balanced by the pineapple, grapefruit, and tangerine hop character without being overly bitter. An unfiltered IPA, that’s why it looks so cloudy. Pretty good, actually. For this review, he just arrived. Let me show you our surroundings here. This is the boardwalk here in Disney. And it doesn’t look so great here in this, and here’s Ili and DizTraveler our mighty moderator
there with the wrench, or a knife or, you never know what
he’s gonna come up with. Could be a wrench, could be a knife. Could be a bottle of mustard for all we know. (laughs) Easy tires, thank you so
much for that super chat. Are you going to Montana, yes, I’m going to Montana
probably in August. And now I’m gonna have my nacho. By the way if you happen to be on YouTube on a Friday at 6:00 p.m. eastern, I usually do these live chats and they’re a lot of fun. We talk about travel and beer and they’re usually a little more coherent than this one. All right everybody, it’s a, I’m not gonna be singing because I’m in a public
place and people are gonna look at me weird. But we’re gonna start winding this down, wrapping this up. Until next Friday, thank you so much for being here. I really enjoy these live chats and see you on the road. Okay, let me show you
guys inside real quick. Of course in true Disney fashion, it is all very well managed and immaculately clean and at least it does look
like a legit brewery. Yes, you can see it’s
a pretty legit brewery at the Disney boardwalk. Let’s, let’s walk around the boardwalk a little bit here. Before we go to the, where are we going afterwards? The Contemporary. (electronic dance music) As the sun slowly begins to set, we go for a leisurely
stroll along the boardwalk. (electronic dance music) All right, let’s take the bus to
our next destination. It is getting kind of late so needless to say, we decided to skip The Contemporary, leave it for tomorrow and return to Fort Wilderness. That’s the Magic Kingdom, by the way. And here we are. We’re gonna try and see the fireworks from the beach area. The Landing, I believe it is called. Oh they turn off the lights. This here is where they do
the Chip and Dale’s show and the campfire and the s’mores and then they show a Disney movie at night and they even have an
RV themed food truck. They even have a sticker map. It’s movie time. That’s the spirit. I think they’ve started without us. Well, at least, we are going to get to see some of the fireworks from here and it looks like someone
here to my left is live streaming the show. (chatter) By the way, Disney does one
of the best fireworks shows. Not the quantity, but the quality of what they can do. Of course, when you
witness them from the park, you have the music and the lasers and more context. So I imagine it’s even better. (uplifting music) After the fireworks, we get to see the
electrical water pageant. Which, let’s be honest. It feels somewhat dated at this point but not too bad actually
considering it is my age. One of Disney World’s oldest attractions. It was originally presented
for the dedication of the Polynesian luau back in 1971. Gotta love the synthesized music, like an old video game. Here we are. Our little piece of forest. Well good morning everybody once again, we’re gonna see if we can check out that other pool and walk around the
campground a little more. It’s a beautiful morning
here, not a cloud in the sky. (upbeat music) We’re going to the
Wilderness swimming pool which is by the cabins and it is supposed to be less crowded, more tranquil. Too quiet, perhaps? Well, this is the Wilderness pool. Which is, as you can see, the more quiet one or the quieter one. Just one thing though, it’s one of those pools that never, it’s never deep enough if you really want to enjoy it. Only four feet six inches
at the deepest point which is right in the middle and then it tapers off, you know, to three feet nine, zero point nine meters right at the wall. So it’s like a bowl kind of thing. Yeah, this is the deepest spot right here. This is not bad, but, I guess it’s meant, made for kids, right? We are at Disney, after all. It’s, it’s a, it’s heated. Not a lot of heat, but it’s heated. It’s comfortable on this 75 degree morning. So that’s it. It’s very nice. The Meadows pool is also
much emptier this morning. (jazzy music) Okay here’s the, the Walt Disney World RV. We’ve been to more states than they have. Do you think they’ll mind
if I stick my sticker? They probably will. (slow jazz music) Breakfast time. Robert, be positive. Don’t mention anything about the quality of the service. Let’s focus on the food and they do have a pretty good variety as far as breakfast or brunch buffets go. Mm bacon, sausage, that’s the kind of stuff that I like. Mickey shaped waffles? Gotta have those. That’s the frittata. Blackened shrimp. And pulled pork benedict. By the way, we are still
waiting for our server. Second plate, and I found the chili. Out here, they have pony rides, but that’s not what I’m looking for. I’m looking for the ruins of the abandoned River Country water park. And I suspect it is somewhere back here. Rumor has it that they are building a brand new resort where River Country used to be. Oh that’s it back there. Can’t really see anything. Looks like they’re constructing something. Moving along. The plan today is to go hotel hopping. Let’s see how many we can visit. They have fishing too. And here’s the pier. We were gonna rent one
of these little boats but we changed our mind. All right, let’s get on the boat and go to the next resort. You have to admit, these little Disney transit boats are very cute. And I know I’m probably going to regret not renting one of these
little two person boats because it is kind of
unlikely we will return here but who knows? (light music) All right, that was a
fun little boat ride. Let’s check out the Wilderness Lodge. Yes, our first stop is
the Wilderness Lodge. Its design is inspired by
the National Park Lodges of the American west. Particularly Old Faithful Inn in Yellowstone National Park. Here’s the pool and the eighth floor’s made from lodge pole pine imported from Oregon. This is the lobby. The lobby here, quite impressive with this tall atrium. It’s very grand. (upbeat music) It is all so perfectly landscaped. The type of experience you expect and love from a Disney property. Love the architecture too. Okay, let’s continue
towards the next hotel which is going to be the
iconic Contemporary resort. How cool is that when
you get the life vest instructions from Mickey himself. And there goes the Magic Kingdom ferry. All right, we’re at the contemporary. Here they have lockers. Let’s check out the pool. From here, you know, we don’t want to intrude. (upbeat music) And here they have this topiary sculpture of Mickey himself and a nice metallic version that I’m going to take a picture with. (camera noise) Open sesame. It appears to be an Easter egg art collection, perhaps? Easter was like two weeks ago as of this filming so they’re a little behind. Double espresso here is called, Contemporary grounds coffee. You know the bathroom paper
towels are a good sign of the quality of a hotel and this one has excellent paper
towels in the bathroom. And here’s this Wave place. The lobby and now we’re gonna go up toward the, the monorail station is located. (upbeat music) This here seems to be
more like a shopping level with several stores and there’s Chef Mickey’s where you get to dine with your favorite
Disney character sort of. I think they just show up and say hello from time to time, still very cool. I’m sure the little ones will love it. Let’s step outside and here they have this area which I imagine is set up for fireworks watching at night because guess what? The Magic Kingdom is right there. And that my friends, is the Magic Kingdom. And that’s the Disney monorail passing in front of the Magic Kingdom. This must have looked so futuristic back in the 1970’s. So much that it still kind of does in a retro sort of way. Oh the little rockets. I forgot what they’re called but good memories, good times. One of these days, we’ll
revisit, I promise. It’s been so long since we visited the Magic Kingdom. There’s the Grand Floridian, the newer tower at the Contemporary and I love how the monorail just rolls into the building. (slow jazz music) There, I told you, you can dine with your
favorite Disney characters. All right, let’s get on the monorail. – [Man] Please stand clear of the door. – [Robert] Our next stop is
going to be the Polynesian. Here’s the beautifully decorated lobby. And I guess I never noticed it before but apparently all Disney resorts seem to have this grand
multi-story atriums at the lobby. Although, now that I think of it, I’ve never really stayed at
a Disney resort before so, I mean we’ve visited
here at the Polynesian in the early nineties but somehow I don’t remember this. For good reason, the whole thing was recently renovated replacing a waterfall garden that used to be here with this. We’ve been told that
the thing to have here is something call the dole whip with coconut rum. Well this is the famous dole whip with coconut rum. The whole pool area
has also been renovated and we have a view of the Magic Kingdom. Next, we’re going to walk
to the Grand Floridian. It is relatively close. These resorts are so big, sometimes you need a map. It’s a wedding chapel. The Grand Floridian
here was inspired by the Victorian era east coast Florida resorts. Although the exterior is modeled after the Coronado in California and the Mount Washington
Hotel in New Hampshire. I have a thing for these types of water contraptions especially
when they empty the bucket which is about to happen. Let’s go inside. This is quite luxurious. (slow jazz music) Yes, the lobby is truly magnificent. It conveys opulence, lavishness, luxury. Oh what is that in the Grand Floridian? Can’t be. Maybe I’ll refer them
to my pest control guy. He’s great. And they also have the eggs. Must be a seasonal thing. There’s even a BB-8. There’s a scary wabbit. Joking aside, I mean these things are truly works of art. (slow jazz music) You almost forget where you are and imagine it is some kind of historic building. Some more props here by the entrance to keep the Victorian illusion going. Very nice. All right, let’s take the
bus to Disney Springs. (light jazz music) Well as you may have noticed, we didn’t go to Disney Springs. We just changed buses and we are now at the Port Orleans resort. So let’s check it out. We weren’t kidding when we said we were gonna do some hotel hopping today. And we’re not done yet but this is really cool. This may actually be
the coolest resort yet. I didn’t film it, but there was a guy at the entrance in costume greeting visitors and that really put us
in the festive mood. Sometimes it is the little things, those little details
that make the experience far superior, far more pleasant. Most of which were missing from Fort Wilderness by the way. Let’s face it, Disney is
all about the experience and in my opinion, here at Port Orleans, they nailed it. How about an adult beverage? It is PM after all. It’s a sunshine margarita. Port Orleans here is
really two resorts in one. French Quarter and Riverside and we’ve been on the French Quarter side with its cobblestone streets, gas lamps, iron balconies and fragrant magnolia blossoms and a festive Mardi Gras atmosphere. Now we’re going to the Riverside. Which recreates the down home appeal of the Louisiana bayou. With antebellum mansions, back wood cottages and, yeah it is very charming. (big band jazz music) All right, let’s check out the lobby. Not as impressive as the Grand Floridian but I like it. I think that’s the boat we gotta take. (light jazz music) We’re gonna start walking back
to the French Quarter side and take the ferry to Disney Springs. By the way, I really like
the architecture here but I probably prefer the
more festive atmosphere of the French Quarter. I don’t know, I’m kind of torn, I like both. We might stay here one of these days. (light music) And here we are, back at the French Quarter. Definitely my favorite side, perhaps because I like New Orleans so much and check out those magnolias. Here comes our boat. (light jazz music) And off we go towards Disney Springs where we can take a bus
to our next destination. I think one of the main benefits of staying at a Disney resort and having the magic band, is that you have access to the
Disney transportation system. Although I don’t think
anybody is checking whether you are really staying at a Disney resort and if they are, they are
very inconspicuous about it. (slow jazz music) There it is, Disney Springs. Cool to see it from the water. And that’s that really cool
amphibian car that they have. I wanna take it one of these days. Whoa, the volcano is erupting. That is, of course, the Rainforest cafe, where you get to eat inside a fake jungle. Fake alligators and all. We would love to linger,
get something to eat but the sun is coming down quickly and we want to see one more resort here before we go. We’re kind of saving the best for last. To infinity and beyond. Have I ever told you how much I used to love legos as a kid? Although, what I really had was an east German knock
off called Pebe because that’s what we had. We definitely have to come back later. Disney HD, no. (upbeat music) It is actually a pretty long drive to where we’re going which is none other than
the Animal Kingdom Lodge which is a safari themed resort. Wait ’till you see it. Welcome home. There are two sections, the lodge, and the villas. We’ll do the lodge first. The lobby is magnificent. They have a guy here carving wood and there are exquisite
details everywhere. I think my dad, who was an architect, would have loved to see this. They have many authentic African pieces of art spread around the building. Like this Nigerian Ajele mask, meant to be carried on someone’s head. Another example is this ladder from Burkina Faso. I think it is fascinating
and a fitting end to our day because this is the last resort we are going to visit today. I’m tired. I am officially impressed and we ain’t seen nothing yet. Here’s the piece de resistance. Fly, no, you’re a pelican? No, you’re not a pelican. And look at that guy over there. Fly, pelican. African pelican. Can you imagine staying at one of these rooms? It’s like a hotel inside a zoo. Oo it’s a real giraffe. Can you imagine getting up in the morning and you will see giraffe? I’m not even gonna ask how much those savanna view rooms cost but if you can afford it, it will be a unique experience for sure. The giraffe does look kind of sad though. Or maybe that’s just how their face looks? Maybe they like it here. I just can’t get over how cool this is. Oh and they have zebras too. The real thing, not those
Mexican painted burros. Have you seen those? Like in Tijuana. Hello giraffe. Get closer. Can you imagine waking up in the morning and seeing a giraffe? Next, we’re going to the Cadani village. The other side of the resort because we want to eat
a particular restaurant. It is aesthetically different but still very unique. The place where we want to eat, or at least have an appetizer and a beer, is call Saana and if you get a window table, you can see zebras and giraffes and other animals outside. Here, they also have all
kinds of African art. Beautiful lamps that almost looks like chihuly glass. Here they also have a savanna where you can sit down and relax and look at the animals. And here’s the giraffe. Sanaa, African cooking with Indian flavor. Sounds like a delicious combination. We don’t have reservations so we’re just gonna go to the lounge. Here we go. Meanwhile, in the dining room, it must be someone’s birthday. And there’s a giraffe casually walking by. We get IPAs of course and we also get a traditional Indian style bread service. Five different breads and nine accompaniments. As day turns into night, it is time to go. But I decided to do one last walk around the dining room. That was really good. All right, it’s time to, to go back to Disney Springs. (upbeat calypso music) Tell you what, it is late. We’re kind of tired and it is Saturday night so it is pretty crowded so we’re gonna call it a night. Catch our bus back to Fort Wilderness. Well this is it, check out time is upon us and we’re leaving this magical place although if you’ve been led to believe that Fort Wilderness is the same Disney experience
as everywhere else, I’m sorry to tell you it’s not and that’s the only negative thing I’m gonna say about this place but the cast members, they look like they were the ones that barely passed the test and they just put them here because they couldn’t put them anywhere else. And half of them are very, very nice but half of them are outright rude and that’s kind of unacceptable for Disney and our campsite, well you saw it. We’ve been on better thousand trails but besides that, the rest of the day
yesterday was outstanding and we had a great time and for the most part it is still the Disney experience, so. Will we return to Fort Wilderness? Probably not but we will
return to Walt Disney World at some point. Until next time, thank you so much for watching and see you on the road. Do you think I’m being too harsh? Please comments below, but it’s really out of love, really, if this was anywhere else, it would probably be fine, I guess. But I’m sorry, I just hold Disney to a higher standard and I was really disappointed
that the experience was less than perfect. It almost feels like Disney doesn’t care about this place like it is a legacy property
they have to keep open because it’s there but I wouldn’t be surprised if one of these days it ceases to exist. As for the rest of Disney, perfect as expected. Maybe next time, I’ll
just stay at Port Orleans where for a few dollars more, they give you clean towels and make your bed every day and they are much nicer to you. (easy listening music)

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