By the co-author of The easy Guide to Your Walt Disney World Visit 2017, from the best-reviewed Disney World guidebook series ever. Paperback available on Amazon here. Kindle version available on Amazon here. PDF version available on Gumroad here.—Disney World Instructions for the First-Time Visitor

Accommodations at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge

By Dave Shute

For the first page of this review of Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, click here.


Upstream at Disney's Wilderness Lodge from

All Disney deluxe resorts have standard rooms; concierge rooms, which Disney calls “club” rooms; and suites. (See this for more on suites at Walt Disney World.)  The Wilderness Lodge has, in addition to these, club-level “deluxe rooms.”

Map of Disney's Wilderness Lodge from

Rooms in Disney’s Wilderness Lodge are in a connected set of six and seven story high buildings, in a “Y”  shape. On the map, the Wilderness Lodge is the green-roofed building at the top center.  The nearby Villas at Disney Wilderness Lodge (reviewed separately here) is the red-roofed area below and right.

Disney's Wilderness Lodge Standard Room Floor Plan from yourfirstvisit.netAt Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, standard and club/ concierge rooms sleep four, in two queen beds, or a queen and bunk beds. The floor plan above is for a two-queen standard or club room. There’s a photo tour of one of these rooms here.

(See photo for the bunks, the mattresses of which I measured as 5’9″ long and 39″ wide.)

A few standard rooms with a king, sleeping two, are also available.

Standard rooms are sold with “standard,” “courtyard”, and “woods” views.

Courtyard views look into the center of the open space, woods views into the woods, and standard views–the least expensive–onto something else…e.g. a parking lot.

Though these standard rooms are tied with the Animal Kingdom Lodge’s rooms as the smallest standard deluxe rooms on property, the space rarely feels cramped; it just has no more space than it absolutely needs.

Club rooms–which the rest of the world calls concierge rooms–all on the key-access 7th floor, have the same layout as standard rooms but have various services and amenities added on, as well as a substantial extra cost.  The outside balcony half-wall in many of these rooms (as well as other top-floor rooms in other areas of the Lodge) is solid, not railed–limiting views except for standing adults.  Some of these rooms also have sloped ceilings.

Club rooms are not worth the extra cost for most first time family visitors. However, they may be well worth it for families intending to spend more time at the Wilderness Lodge than implied by this site’s itineraries. has a great discussion of the value of concierge rooms here. Though focused on the Polynesian, it applies to any deluxe resort.

Deluxe rooms (sometimes called “junior suites”) are suite-like club rooms, although they are found on many floors, not just the 7th.  They sleep 6–four in two queens in the bedroom, and two in a fold-out couch in the sitting room. (See floor plan at right.)  For a review of these rooms, click here.

Suites sleeping 2 to 4 people are available for families seeking a particularly comfortable visit–see this for more on suites at Walt Disney World.  The Yosemite Vice Presidential suite, with 885 square feet, sleeps 4–two in the bedroom in a king, and 2 in a queen sleeper sofa in the parlor. The Yellowstone Presidential Suite has the same sleeping arrangements in 1000 square feet.

(To each of the capacity figures above, you can add one more kid under 3 at time of check in who sleeps in a crib.)

The Wilderness Lodge inspires devotion among its fans–of which I am one.

Families who have stayed at it once will have difficulty understanding why they should ever go to a different Walt Disney World resort hotel.

The Wilderness Lodge’s strengths for first time visitors are its unsurpassed kid appeal and its reasonable prices.

The Wilderness Lodge’s principal negatives compared to other deluxes are its small rooms and relative inconvenience for parks other than the Magic Kingdom.


This review continues here.

The 2017 easy Guide

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1 Kylie { 06.03.14 at 2:18 pm }

Yup, we are among those who “have difficulty understanding why they should ever go to a different Walt Disney World resort hotel.” We fell absolutely in love with the gorgeous grounds, pool, restaurants, everything. We found the rooms plenty big for a couple, and the transportation was awesome– never waited more than 5 minutes for a bus to any of the parks.
Anytime we visited another resort (during our first visit to WL, last September), my boyfriend would list the reasons why WL was so much better. We’re booked again for September 2014!

2 Dave { 06.04.14 at 8:38 am }

🙂 Kylie

3 Linda { 06.23.14 at 9:25 am }

Hi Dave, we are a staying at WL in May with my parents. We have booked two rooms. One room for my husband, myself and our two sons and one for my parents. My query is regarding access to the rooms. If my parents were to babysit our sons one evening would it be possible to enable their magic bands to access our room? Also, if our parents room has two beds, is there any reason why the boys couldn’t stay with them for a night whilst we went out?
Many thanks, Linda

4 Dave { 06.24.14 at 3:59 pm }

Linda, I’m not certain but I doubt that Disney will enable cross-room Magic Bands. Simplest is for your parents to grab your sons’ bands while sitting. And yes the boys can stay in their room!!

5 Amy { 06.25.14 at 9:48 am }

Hi Dave. This site has been a wonderful resource for planning our Disney trip. Thank you! We are booked for the Wilderness Lodge in November. Just got a letter in the mail yesterday saying that the Silver Creek Springs pool and waterslide are closing for refurbishment from early September through late November! The pool was one of the reasons why we chose WL as our hotel and they are offering a shuttle bus to the Contemporary and Fort Wilderness pools during this time. This is unacceptable to me as I have two small kids and having the convenience of being able to go back and forth to our room frequently is the main reason why we chose a hotel with a “great” pool to begin with. Not sure what other help Disney will offer me – I’m planning on calling them to see what my options are. Any suggestions? Are the other pools as good?

6 Dave { 06.26.14 at 8:13 am }

Amy, the pools at Fort Wilderness and the Contemporary are lame–large, but dull, and in the case of Fort WIlderness, requiring a bus ride after you take the boat there. Depending on why you chose WL, I’d advise switching to Animal Kingdom Lodge. See this:

7 Chasity { 02.18.15 at 9:34 pm }

First of all…I have been reading your website nearly all day! Such a good resource! We are staying WL end of october 2015 and I have 2 questions (for now) . 1. Do you suggest woods or courtyard view? 2. Is the weather warm enough to swim at the end of October? I have read the pools are heated but Not sure if that is true.

8 Dave { 02.19.15 at 8:48 am }

Chasity so glad to help! I prefer the woods view, as it is lovely and quieter. The pools are heated. Weather in October is typically fine for swimming though cold snaps are possible. See this:

9 Chasity { 02.19.15 at 9:37 am }

Awesome that is what we booked! Thanks so much

10 wendy { 03.21.15 at 7:05 pm }

hello. absolutely love your site! was curious on you opinion on where to stay for 2nd visit (por was 1st & loved it) family of 3… daughter is 6 yrs old. had aoa booked for july 14 -19th. Disney sale is allowing us to stay at either akl or wl for same amt of money. plan on going to mk twice, epcot once & hs once ( ironically no time for ak). which in your opinion seems more fitting? thanks

11 wendy { 03.21.15 at 10:06 pm }

hello again.just wanted to add to my previous post….. I know ak seems inconveinient for my itinerary but I heard ak has dedicated buses to the other parks as opposed to wl that shares buses even thought great location ) & am torn on which one will make our vaca run smoother& more enjoyable…thx again

12 Dave { 03.22.15 at 10:47 am }

Wendy, WL hands down!!

13 Dave { 03.22.15 at 10:52 am }

Wendy, AK now shares buses with Kidani Village, and WL has boat service to MK. Between the two, WL is more convenient except to AK.

14 wendy { 03.22.15 at 12:21 pm }

thanks for you expertise! feel a little guilty because my daughter loves little mermaid but can’t see staying at a value when we can get a deluxe for same price & we will see plenty of ariel in the mk…have a great day

15 Dave { 03.23.15 at 11:39 am }

I’m with you Wendy!! There’s also a Little Mermaid show at HS!

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