On our recent visit to Walt Disney World, we had the opportunity to stay at Vacation Villas at Fantasy World Resort in Kissimmee, Florida. As we arrived at the Villa, we were pleasantly surprised. It was like our own little apartment away from home. We had two bedrooms, so the girls had their room and we had ours. A bathroom was upstairs and one was downstairs, which is also a plus with two girls. We had a living room, dining area and a kitchen equipped with everything needed to prepare a meal excluding the food, of course. We had a screened in porch with patio furniture and table and chairs. A washer and dryer were also available on the second floor, which enabled us to pack much more lightly.
We took full advantage of our kitchen, eating breakfast before leaving in the mornings and dinner when we arrived home at night. This was a big money saver for a family of four. The Villa was extremely quiet. We never heard anyone moving around in the Villas beside ours. Usually staying in hotels you can hear people walking up and down the hallways at night or water running in the rooms beside you. I am hoping since we never heard anyone that they didn’t hear my children running up and down the stairs either.
If I were to have anything negative to say it would be that there is a charge for a change of towels during the week. For us this wasn’t a problem. We put our towels in the wash at night and in the dryer in the morning. We had our clean towels ready for us when arrived home at night. Additional towels were supplied for the pool area as well.
Upon arriving at Fantasy World Resort we immediately went to the on-site water park. It contained two water slides, a large shallow pool, a splash area for the smaller kids, and my favorite was the lazy river. It was all beautifully landscaped. During daytime hours there were cabanas available to rent equipped with a television. The ice cream salesman was on duty, and for the adults they had a poolside bar. There was a large game room, business room, and a long list of activities for the children to stay busy all day. During the week we took a day off from Disney World to enjoy the resort. The first thing we did was visit the indoor surfing. The price is greatly discounted if you are a guest of the resort. Two other pools along with hot tubs were throughout the villas. This was a favorite of my husband because our family was usually the only ones at the pool,
The location of the resort was very convenient. It was easy to find and within walking distance to several shops and restaurants. Disney World was only a few short miles away. We used this time to discuss what we would see when we arrived and on the way home, discuss what our favorite thing of the day was.
If I have any advice about a trip to Walt Disney World, it would be to plan ahead. Waiting until the last minute will cost you more money plus take you much more time. The closer it is to the peak season, the longer your wait will be on the phone making reservations for any extra activities you choose to do. I had a two hour wait time on the phone trying to book a wilderness trek because of procrastinating. Restaurant reservations can be made online but many evening appointments are booked up quickly.
While at Animal Kingdom, my thirteen year old daughter and I went on the African Wilderness Trek. During summer months it requires a reservation. An afternoon trek is cheaper than the morning appointment. It is definitely worth the price either way. It lasts three hours and you must be at least eight years old to go. During the trek, a guide will take you into Africa, well so it seems. You are hooked to a zip line while you walk along the edge of a small cliff overlooking the hippos below. We learned many things about the hippos while watching our guide feed them. Later you will cross a rope bridge that crosses over huge crocodiles. Next, you are taken on a safari making stops at the giraffes, lions and elephants taking plenty of pictures along the way. Finally, you are given an African inspired meal in a large gazebo overlooking the scenic view. A tour guide takes pictures along the way. You are mailed a CD of the pictures when you are home.
My little princess chose to be pampered at the Bibbity Bobbity Boutique. One salon is located in Magic Kingdom at Cinderella’s castle and a new one in the original Downtown Disney. If you are at Magic Kingdom for the day, you will need to take a Disney bus to the downtown area. It was quite time consuming getting there and back, but we were in an air conditioned bus during the hottest part of the day. No ticket is required to enter Downtown Disney, so you could easily spend a day shopping and letting your little princess get pampered.
A Fairy Godmother will give her a hairdo fit for a princess along with make-up and painted fingernails. She will receive a special bag to take home with her. Don’t forget to bring her favorite princess dress to wear with her beautiful makeover. You may also purchase them at the Disney Store. This was my seven year olds’ favorite part of our trip. No matter how much time you will have, it will seem like there is so much that you didn’t get to do. Plan ahead, choose a few favorite things that you definitely want to do and anything else will be a bonus. Slow down, enjoy your visit and have a magical time.