RV Camping at Disney’s Fort Wilderness has been one of the highlights of our adventures so far and we can’t recommend it enough. We got a taste of the American Frontier as we drove our home on wheels down winding pathways through the pine and cypress forest with wild turkeys, squirrels and deer roaming throughout. Our campsite had tall trees that provided shade, cover and easy access to a lush green dog walk along the creek. The sounds of birds singing, children playing, boat horns blowing and fireworks exploding added to the experience of staying at the Fort Wilderness campground.
Although we prefer to boondock or dry camp, the four nights we spent at Fort Wilderness was worth the splurge. The campground was serene and well maintained. We enjoyed it so much we decided to add an extra night. For us, there’s no better way to experience Walt Disney World than staying at Fort Wilderness in our home on wheels.
RV Camping at Disney’s Fort Wilderness
Below is a collection of all the information we gathered from our four night stay along with a few tips as well as a video that includes our time at the campground.
We looked for availability online as early as four months in advance, but only found tent sites. As luck would have it, we checked again the last week of December for dates the first week of January and found a full hookup site for three nights. We booked online through Disney and immediately received our confirmation and additional information about our stay. During the booking process we did not see a place to include information about pets and RV size and called the reservation department to followup. They took notes on the size of the RV, number of slides and number of pets.
Tip: We asked the resort to hold our MagicBands for check-in instead of sending it in the mail since we travel full time. When we arrived, our bands were ready and in the color we selected.
Type of Sites and Cost
There are four types of RV campsites at Fort Wilderness: Tent or Pop-up, Full Hookup, Preferred and Premium. We booked a full hookup site which was $69 per night Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and $79 for Thursday. There is a 10 person max per campsite and we saw many sites with a motorhome and a tent. Below is the 2016 room rate we received from the front desk. Pet fee is $5 per night and collected at check-in.
Full hookup loops 1600-1900, one RV plus one tent in the sandy area
Preferred loops 100-300, located close to marina otherwise same as a full hookup site, one RV plus one tent in the sandy area
Premium 400-1400, only for RVs, no sandy area for tents, close to the pool, trading posts, and view of fireworks from the Magic Kingdom. It can be as wide as 24ft and as long as 60ft to accommodate large RVs.
We took Interstate 4 to Epcot Center Drive (Exit 67) and followed the signs to Fort Wilderness. When we drove through the Magic Kingdom gate, we stayed to the right and informed the gate attendant we had a reservation. Once we went through the gate, we followed the sign to stay right to Fort Wilderness. All the signs on property are clear and easy to follow and the roads are well maintained and wide.
We arrived at the Fort Wilderness gate at 9:30am on Monday and were checked in to our campsite right away because it was available. Official check-in time is 1pm. By 10am we were setup and on our way to explore the property and spend the afternoon at Disney Springs. Watch our VLOG on Fort Wilderness at Walt Disney World.
After the check-in gate, to the right is an overflow parking area where RVs can park until the last Disney park closes. This is provided for campers who arrive early and their campsite is not available or for those who need a place to park their RV after check out. The example the front desk gave us was, if someone checks out and wants to visit the Magic Kingdom that day, they can leave their RV in the overflow parking lot until the park closes. If the park closes at midnight that day, they can leave their RV until then. Overnight parking is not permitted. Many storage trailers and RVs were parked in the area during our stay.
On the way into the campground is a hitch and unhitch area to disconnect and connect tow vehicles. There is one area on each side of the road for those entering and exiting the campground. We used this area to disconnect on the way in and used the overflow parking area to connect on the way out. Our campsite was long enough to park our Jeep in front of the RV without blocking the road.
Full Hookup Campsite
As mentioned earlier, there are four types of campsites for RVs and we were in site 1904, a full hookup campsite. The paved site was very clean and had a picnic table and charcoal grill. The picnic table was not tied down which allowed us to move it around. Our site was long enough for our 29’ motorhome and Jeep Wrangler Unlimited. It was across the way from the comfort stations (bathrooms) and the trees offered some privacy from neighbors. A trashcan was conveniently placed outside our site that was emptied multiple times a day by the maintenance crew. This site wasn’t as wide as some of the others we saw, but we were able to put out all our slides and the awning without any issues.
The loop we stayed in (1900) is pet friendly and comes with a dog bag dispenser at the entrance of the loop. Loop 1800 is right next door and provides access to a lush green dog walk along the creek. There is also a small park where dogs can run around and stretch their legs. Clear signs are posted throughout the campground on where pets are not allowed, such as comfort stations and trading posts. Pets are also not allowed in common areas, on buses or boats. Pet friendly loops: 300-900, 1600-1900.
Each loop has a comfort station with toilets, showers and laundry. The comfort station in loop 1900 was clean and well stocked with paper towels and toilet paper. On our first day, the shower never got beyond warm, but once we reported the issue it was fixed. The sink water is cold, unlike the water at Wilderness Lodge which is warm. Also, the comfort station is not heated.
Wifi is only available in select areas and was not available in loop 1900. We picked up a complimentary cable modem package from Meadows Trading Post to get high speed internet. Unfortunately, we lost our thunderbolt adapter for the Mac and did not get a chance to try it out.
Groceries and Supplies
The two trading posts offers groceries and RV supplies at an inflated rate. A six pack of Budweiser, for example, is $15. We stocked up on essentials before arriving at Fort Wilderness, but it’s good to know if we need something in a pinch that we can run over and grab it.
Entertainment and Activities
At check-in, we received a recreation calendar for January with all the activities. Everyday there was a jamboree by the pool, campfire sing-a-long and a movie. We didn’t participate in any of these activities, but they are included with the stay at no additional charge.
We highly recommend the Wonders of the Lodge Tour at Wilderness Lodge. Take the boat from Fort Wilderness to the Wilderness Lodge and meet at the fireplace at 9am Wednesday thru Sunday for a guided tour of the lodge. No reservation is required and the tour takes about one hour concluding with a viewing of the lodge’s version of old faithful which erupts every hour on the hour. We enjoyed learning about the history of the lodge and the fun facts. There is also a hidden Mickey hunt at the lodge. Ask the concierge for a clue sheet to get started. We didn’t take part in the hunt, but we did find two hidden Mickeys on the tour.
The great thing about Fort Wilderness is the ease of getting around. Shuttle busses and boats were available to take us where we needed to go. To get to Disney Springs and Disney’s Hollywood Studios we parked the car by the transportation hub and took the bus (they also have shuttles in the campground to take you to the hub). There is a monitor at the bus stop with arrival time for the next bus. We never waited more than 10 minutes.
To get to the Magic Kingdom we took the bus from our campsite to the settlement bus depot and walked to the marina to hop on a boat. There are a few ways to get to the Magic Kingdom from here. Option 1: Take the Magic Kingdom boat. The boat starts operating at 8:30am. Option 2: Take the Wilderness Lodge boat, starts running at 6:30am, which also stops at the Contemporary and either walk or take the monorail to the magic Kingdom. This will get you to the park before it opens to watch the opening ceremony. The reason we found out about these options is because we wanted to optimize our time and got creative with how to get back and forth from the Magic Kingdom.
Official check-out time is 11am. Late check-out requests can be made, but are not guaranteed. Complimentary late check-out can be extended to 1pm and verified the day of. Our late check out request was denied when we called the front desk.
Looking for more information about the campground? AllEars has a good article about Fort Wilderness Campgrounds.
Need an alternative to Fort Wilderness? Check out Thousand Trails Orlando in Clermont, FL.