Navigation Tips for Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World

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Downtown Disney has a lot to offer for Disney enthusiasts as well as those who would prefer to avoid the parks.  With the construction taking place as Downtown Disney transforms into Disney Springs, getting to the area can be a challenge.  So if you’re planning a day at Disney Quest, or you just want to enjoy the shopping and dining options available at Downtown Disney, here are some helpful hints for making your way through the mayhem that can be the approach and parking. During this period of construction, which promises to last into 2016, many of the parking areas are unavailable.

If you’re driving yourself:

  • From I-4, use exit 67: If you’re staying off property, or if you like to make “arrival day” a day at Downtown Disney, exiting I-4 at exit 67 will bring you into the area from a different direction than the local traffic.
  • Follow the signs:  Once off the highway, lighted signs will direct you to parking that is available. This may include parking areas across the street.
  • Use valet parking: If parking across the street is not convenient or feasible based upon your needs, you can choose to use valet parking. This is available for $20/vehicle at both The Marketplace (entrance 2 – 10am-1am), and the West Side (entrance 3 – 2:30pm-2am).

If you’re not driving yourself:

  • Use Disney Transportation:  If you’re staying on property, Disney Transportation is complimentary.  If you’re staying off property, but at one of the resorts along E. Buena Vista Drive, you might be able to walk to Downtown Disney. Disney Transportation includes not only the well-known buses, but also boats available from Disney’s Port Orleans, Old Key West, and Saratoga Springs resorts.

No matter what:

  • Plan for it to take longer than you think:  Whether you’re driving yourself or using Disney Transportation, you will want to plan for delays, particularly if you have a dining reservation, or tickets to a movie or La Nouba by Cirque de Soleil. Remember also that if you plan to “just make a quick stop at Downtown Disney” prior to catching the Magical Express for the ride to the airport, you need a great deal of “cushion” time. Even Disney buses may get caught in traffic (especially on weekends, when crowds are high), and you don’t want the end of your vacation to be too stressful.


Jeri Chafin

Chip and Co Past Writers and Friends
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