Our list of Best Disney Moderate Resorts For Families has options for every budget and type of traveler! Families looking to stay at a Disney resort who don’t want to pay the higher prices of the deluxe Disney resorts may want to consider staying at a Disney mid-range priced resort. Also referred to as a Disney moderate resort, they’re the middle tier of the three tiers of Disney property resorts. The moderate resorts offer more amenities than the value resorts at more affordable, mid-range prices than the Disney deluxe resorts. To many families, this is a great middle-ground for a Disney on-property vacation. But what are the best Disney moderate resorts for families? Choose whichever one appeals to you, whether you want to feel like you’re on a tropical vacation or immersed in local culture. This list breaks it down and includes some great tips too. Keep reading for more!
What Makes A Disney Moderate Hotel Different?
What sets Disney moderate resorts apart from their more luxury counterpart, Disney deluxe hotels, is the price. While moderate resorts are priced slightly higher than value resorts yet tend to be more manageable than the deluxe resorts. These mid-range resorts will give guests more bang for their buck compared to the value resorts.
On average, the moderate resort rooms are close to 60 feet larger than the value hotels. Families will have more room to spread out with their luggage and all the Disney merchandise in a moderate room. Recently, many of the moderate resorts at Disney have refurbished their properties, giving guest rooms a more updated, modern vibe. Bathrooms usually have two sinks and a separate room with a shower and toilet. They also come with mini-fridges. These are great to have if you plan to order groceries while staying.
Moderate resort themes tend to be a bit more subtle and grown-up than the value resorts, making them very appealing to families with older kids. Guests will find that the moderate resort themes are based on a specific location, and themes are subtly woven throughout the entire resort.
Disney Moderate Hotel Dining
Like the Disney deluxe resorts, Disney moderate resorts offer both table-service dining and quick service dining for guests, except for Port Orleans-Riverside. Guests staying at Disney’s moderate resorts with table service restaurants will need advanced reservations. For families with little kids, this is a great option if you don’t want to stay in the parks late, but still want to end the day with a wonderful, Disney table service meal.
Disney Moderate Hotel Properties and Transporation
Disney moderate resorts tend to be much larger than the Disney deluxe resorts and most of the Disney value resorts. Moderate resorts are spread out among many acres with smaller storied buildings to accommodate guests. Families will love the pools, which tend to be large with enhanced themes and also have slides as well as hot tubs. Moderate resorts also have counter-service restaurants right at the pool. Disney value resorts do not have these additional amenities. Larger moderate resorts have smaller, non-themed pools spread throughout, in case you want a quick dip and don’t want to walk. Disney moderate resorts also offer things like trails and transportations to the parks. Some even offer internal transportation to get around the resort.
Best Disney Moderate Resorts For Families
Now that you know about Disney moderate resorts, keep reading for our favorite picks for families!
If you love the American Southwest and Colonial Mexican design, Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort is the perfect match. The resort is split into 4 sections, Ranchos, Cabanas, Casitas, and the Gran Destino Tower. All sections of the resort encompass a central lake. Three-foot bridges will take you over the lake to the main pool and other amenities located on an island in the lake. There’s also a bus service to and from Disney parks, with multiple stops throughout the resort. Rooms range from standard options with one king or two queen beds to larger one-bedroom suites with a sleeper sofa.
Why Families Love It
Kids will love the large, main pool, The Lost City of Cibola, at Coronado Springs resort. The waterslide looks like an undiscovered Mayan/Aztec temple in the jungles of Guatemala or Mexico. You’ll also find a hot tub, volleyball court, arcade, and a playground. Parents don’t have to go far to feed kids, as there is a counter service pool bar located at the pool. Coronado Springs offers movies under the stars at the “Lost City of Cibola” pool. A perfect way to end a day with a swim and movie! The Coronado Springs Convention Center results in more dining options than other Disney moderate resorts as well. From grab-and-go breakfast to Spanish-style tapas at Toledo, there’s everything you could want here!
From the moment you check into Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, you’ll immediately feel as if you’ve been swept away to a Caribbean island. The resort is split up into 6 distinct villages, all with Caribbean Island names: Aruba, Trinidad North, Trinidad South, Martinique, Barbados, Jamaica. Each village is comprised of multiple 2-story buildings with guest rooms, a pool, and circling a central lake. Rooms are spacious and some also have a murphy bed for a 5th guest. Kids will love the picture of Mickey and Pluto! If you have a pirate in your family, then consider booking one of the pirate rooms. Families staying here can get to the park with a bus or the newer Disney Skyliner to either EPCOT or Hollywood Studios.
Why Families Love It
Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort has 5 pools located in each village (Trinidad North and South share a pool). If your kids want a more exciting pool, then take them to Fuentes del Morro Pool. This colonial Spanish fortress-inspired pool is zero-entry with not one, but two water slides! Parents can take turns spraying kids with water cannons spread along the side. There’s also a shipwreck water play area designed for little swashbucklers in training. It features mini slides, a barrel dispensing water, and a crow’s nest to climb. The fun doesn’t end here. Check out the on-site dining options, which range from formal to casual. Families can also rent bikes, play a friendly game of volleyball on the sandy beaches, or take a stroll along the 1.25-mile pathway along Barefoot Bay. End your evening with movies under the stars!
Larger families may want to consider staying at the affordable, mid-range, The Cabins at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort. Located on 750 acres of land, the cabins are surrounded by pine and cypress trees. (If you’re lucky, you may even spot a deer or two!) They sleep up to six people and have kitchens with full-size refrigerators, a sink, microwave, 2 countertop burners, a charcoal grill, and a dishwasher. The Cabins at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground is the only moderate resort that offers boat service to Magic Kingdom. You can also take a bus to the park. Keep in mind there’s only one bus stop and the resort is very large.
Why Families Love It
Kids will love taking advantage of the great outdoors after a full day in the parks. Take a horse-drawn carriage, pony, and wagon ride, or try archery. Boat rentals and golf cart rentals are also available. The Meadows Swimmin’ Pool will delight kids with the crazy corkscrew water slide. When they’re done getting dizzy on the waterslide, everyone can relax in the whirlpool spa. Another great perk at the resort is that guests can pre-order groceries from a setlist and have it all delivered and put away before you arrive. Fewer dining options are available at the Cabins at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Lodge. However, since you have your own kitchen, your family will have the luxury of preparing food in the cabin and enjoying a meal on the balcony. With so many kid-friendly amenities, you’ll quickly see why is this one of the best Disney moderate resorts for families.
If jambalaya and beignets are on your mind, then you’re going to love your stay at Disney’s Port Orleans, Riverside. The resort has two guest room sections, the original Alligator Bayou lodges, and the Magnolia Bend buildings, designed to look like historic, grand estates of Louisiana. All lodges and guest buildings surround the Sassagoula River. Most rooms are standard 2 queen beds or king with standard views or garden views. If you have a prince or princess-loving child in the family, consider treating them to royalty by booking a Royal Guest room. Families can get to the parks utilizing the Disney bus service. A boat offers service to the Disney Springs shopping district too.
Why Families Love It
In the middle of the Sassagoula River, you’ll find an island featuring Ol’Man Island Pool,easily accessed by 3-foot bridges spread throughout the resort. This historic sawmill-inspired pool is a highlight of any stay at Port Orleans, Riverside! Kids will love the waterslide while parents will love the whirlpool. If you are looking for a quieter pool, then you’ll find that at the 5 smaller pools spread around the resort. Those who love to jog or walk will enjoy a leisurely run/stroll along the mile-long pathway overlooking the Sassagoula River. Perhaps the kids want a bike ride? No problem, families can rent bikes or Surrey bikes for the entire squad! Afterward, wind down with a movie under the stars or check out the on-site dining options.
Love New Orleans and Disney World? Combine the two favorite places at Disney’s Port Orleans, French Quarter. Families will immediately fall in love with the wrought ironwork throughout and magnolia-lined trees surrounding the resort. Located on the Sassagoula River, the Southern Charm and ambiance will make you feel as if you just walked into New Orleans. Rooms are standard size with either two queens or a king, accommodating 4 people. Keep in mind they’re a bit blander compared to the other Disney resorts. Older children may be ok with this, but for younger ones, it does take away some of the Disney magic of staying on property. You can get to the parks with a bus or take a Disney water taxi to the shopping district.
Why Families Love It
The Doubloon Lagoon Pool is the place to be for families. Parents can watch their little ones slide down a 51’ sea serpent waterslide, while the younger kids can splash around in the splash zone. Perhaps a stroll around the Sassagoula River path is the perfect way to end the day after spending time in the parks. If you’re looking for movies, no problem, kids will love winding down with movies under the stars. Make sure to try out the Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory for a southern meal with the kids. Don’t miss Mickey-shaped beignets! Certainly, this is one of the best Disney moderate resorts for families!
We hope you liked this list of Best Disney Moderate Hotels For Families! Whichever mid-range priced Disney resort you choose, you are guaranteed to have plenty to do at an affordable cost. Make sure to take some time from the parks to enjoy the recreation options at the Disney moderate resorts. You’ll be glad you did!
Written by FLT Top Contributor Alison Netzer! Alison is a Disney lover and a travel planner specializing in Disney. Find more from Alison and her family online and on Instagram @aliwishesandwizardstravelco.
*Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some of the attractions, accommodations, or things to do on this list may be closed. Please ensure availability before making your decision.
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