Love the thrill of Mardi Gras but can’t escape to New Orleans each year? The Port Orleans French Quarter at Walt Disney World might just be the perfect resort for you. One of Walt Disney World’s “moderate” resorts, it’s themed to combine the beauty and romance of New Orleans’ iconic French Quarter with the energy and excitement of Mardi Gras.
7. The Ambiance
When the crowds at the theme parks start feeling a little overwhelming, retreat to this lush resort for tranquil cobblestone streets, gas lamps, and magnolia blossoms. Every inch of Port Orleans French Quarter was designed to capture the Antebellum era, but there are plenty of vibrant Mardi Gras touches to keep things lively (think carnival masks and trombone-playing alligators).
6. The River
Since Disney’s Port Orleans Riverside Resort is located right next door, you can experience the beauty of two Walt Disney World resorts with just a leisurely stroll. Both resorts have become known for the picturesque Sassagoula River that connects the Port Orleans French Quarter and Port Orleans Riverside. For those who truly want to experience the river, both Disney’s Port Orleans Riverside and Disney Springs are just a water taxi ride away.
5. The Pool
Some of Walt Disney World’s youngest visitors particularly appreciate the resort’s old-fashioned “swimmin’ hole.” Port Orleans French Quarter boasts a feature pool called Doubloon Lagoon. This pool has festive decorations, an alligator band, and a memorable blue sea serpent waterslide. Guests at Port Orleans French Quarter are also welcome to visit Port Orleans Riverside to enjoy a three-acre hideaway with a pool and sawmill slide. Inspired by the tales of Tom Sawyer, the resort’s Ol’ Man Island even features a catch-and-release fishing hole. For grown-ups traveling without their youngest family members in tow, the nearby Muddy Rivers pool bar and a hot tub provide some adult fun.
4. The Carriage Rides
At Port Orleans French Quarter, guests have the opportunity to take in the beautiful scenic landscape via a horse-drawn carriage. You can choose to ride through the pine and cypress trees of Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground or experience the charm alongside the banks of the Sassagoula River at the Port Orleans Riverside. If you’re lucky enough to visit during the holiday season, you can embark upon a cozy “sleigh” ride decorated with lights and garlands.
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3. The Nightlife
While Port Orleans Riverside may be known for its Creole and Cajun favorites, the Port Orleans French Quarter is home to Scat Cat’s Club, a Southern-style jazz lounge adorned with music memorabilia. The full bar serves specialty cocktails, draft beer, and an array of appetizers while live music in played on select nights.
2. The Food Court
Considered by many Disney-goers to be one of the best food courts on the Walt Disney World property, the Port Orleans French Quarter food court is called “Sassagoula Float Works.” Decorated with sculptures from Blaine Kern Studios in New Orleans, the food court stations serve up a variety of American-Creole cuisine ranging from burgers to jambalaya, and the bakery items are particularly mouth-watering—particularly the beignets.
1. The Recreation
If you want to skip the parks one day to simply relax and enjoy the resort, rest assured that there are plenty of things to do for all ages. Some of the poolside activities that take place at Port Orleans French Quarter are Name that Disney Tune, Goofy Bingo, and Disney trivia, and there’s a Mardi Gras-themed parade in the afternoon. At night, families can enjoy a Cajun Campfire or catch a movie under the stars. Pirate cruises are available for kids (and kids at heart) and even the most outdoorsy Disney-goers will find no shortage of recreational activities, from fishing excursions to boat and bike rentals.