It’s safe to say that Walt Disney World’s theme parks are the main attraction for most Guests visiting. After all, it’s impossible to see and do everything in the parks in just one vacation!
But, I’m here to make a case for setting aside a day in your vacation on which you don’t go to the parks, but instead have a Resort day. And if you’re staying at Disney’s Art of Animation, here’s how to plan – and spend – the perfect Resort day.
Like most aspects of a Walt Disney World vacation, planning is key to a successful Resort day on property. Pick a day for your Resort day well in advance, and avoid buying Park tickets that day to save money. You’ll also want to avoid making dining reservations in any of the theme parks that day; plan to dine at the Resort, at Disney Springs, or add some Resort-hopping to your day, and check out the dining options at another Resort!
Make a Splash
Who doesn’t love a pool day?
With Orlando’s hot, and (usually) sunny weather, it’s a good bet you’ll need one. And lucky you, Walt Disney World’s largest Resort pool is right in your backyard! The Big Blue Pool holds over 308,527 gallons of water and features all of your favorite characters from Finding Nemo – giant-sized, of course. Young Guests will love the Schoolyard Sprayground, where they can splash to their hearts’ content amid water jets.
There are also two other pools to enjoy: Flippin’ Fins Pool, with a Little Mermaid theme, and Cozy Cone Pool, where you’ll find life-sized versions of characters from Cars. And those massive cones flanking the Crazy Cone Pool serve a purpose – they’re complimentary cabanas, which you can snag on a first-come, first-served basis.
Play a Game
Whether you are a fan of classic video games or only the latest and greatest will do, you’ll find something fun to play on a rainy (or not-so-rainy) day. The Pixel Play Arcade can be found in the Animation Hall building, and it’s open every day.
Take a Hike
No matter what Resort we’re staying at, we always love jogging (or walking, when we’re less ambitious) around the grounds to check out all the marvelous details of our home-away-from-home. Disney’s Art of Animation has a scenic trail around the Resort that runs for over a mile; plenty of room to get in a workout or just a leisurely stroll.
The Resort is fabulously themed, so it’s also worth wandering around beyond the trail to check out all the life-sized (or larger-than-life) characters waiting for their close-ups with you!
Enjoy the View
Disney’s newest and most exciting mode of transportation is at your beck and call when you stay at Disney’s Art of Animation. Hop aboard the Disney Skyliner (bonus points if you get one painted with a Disney character), and see Walt Disney World as never before as you soar above it, enjoying panoramic views. On a Resort day, you have the luxury of riding at off-peak times just to enjoy the view, which sure beats waiting with crowds during busy hours.
While there’s no table service restaurant at Disney’s Art of Animation, you certainly won’t starve during your Resort day. The Landscape of Flavors offers tons of tasty dishes for every meal of the day, with five different quick-service stations to choose from and four themed areas for you to sit and enjoy your food. Looking for a bite to eat or a frozen cocktail or mocktail during
an afternoon by the pool? You’ll want to visit The Drop Off Bar, adjacent to the Big Blue Pool, where you can enjoy refreshing treats’ poolside.
Disney’s Art of Animation is a dream come true for wannabe Disney animators and anyone who appreciates art. Leave some time to enjoy the Resort lobby (instead of rushing by on your way to or from a Park), and you’ll be glad you did. The walls are lined with animation sketches from Disney and Pixar films, and Guests can glimpse how Disney characters are brought to life.
Sure, you came to Walt Disney World to enjoy the theme parks – but they’ll still be there tomorrow! Take some time to truly appreciate Disney’s Art of Animation on a planned Resort day, and you will be amazed at what you’ll discover (and how refreshed you’ll be for the rest of your vacation).
Have you ever stayed at Disney’s Art of Animation? How was your stay?