Resort Hopping – Taking the Monorail Express

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My writers and I love offering you Disney World Planning Tips and Tricks. Using our collective knowledge we like to prepare you for what to expect before, during and after your Disney World vacation.

Today I want to talk to you about something outside the Disney World Theme Parks and that is the Disney World Resorts. Specifically the Monorail resorts. They are the Polynesian, Grand Floridian, and the Contemporary/Bay Lake Tower Resorts.

Most people spend about 90% of the their time visiting the parks. I mean that’s what you’re paying an arm and leg for right? I want to share with you something fun my family and I like to do outside the parks while at Disney World for FREE!

When we buy our park tickets we normally buy one less day just for touring the other things Disney offers. This tip is also great for rainy days or on days you need a break from the parks.

Resort Hopping is time-honored tradition with my family dating all the way back to the 80’s and my first trips to WDW. My family would stay off site and we would drive to and walk around some of the Disney resort just to get a feel what it was like to stay in these super expensive, posh resorts.

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As I got older and started taking my own trips with my wife we would make our Disney Dining Reservations at places like Ohana’s and just find ourselves walking around, exploring, shopping and taking tons of photos around the various resorts. After more and more trips to Disney World we started to work them into our planning till we started to make a check list of resorts we have been to and ones we still needed to visit. Needless to say there are still a few we haven’t been to.

The Big 3 as we call them are the Resorts that the Disney Monorail stops off at, and some of the easiest to Resort Hop. All you have to do is jump on the Monorail and your there. Depending on where you are staying you might have to take a ride to the Ticket and Transportation Center or TTC first then ride the Monorail to the resorts.

We like to Resort Hop for meals and to break up the days. It’s nice if you have a child in a stroller as they can nap as you are walking around and shopping. Be sure to bring your camera! Disney’s attention to detail is everywhere. You can easily do all 3 resorts in a day. Each one is different and has tons of things to view and experience. My favorite is the beach at the Polynesian Resort. Stop off for a snack or drink, check out the arcades, or go for a leisurely stroll.

Quick Tip – One of the best places to see the Wishes is from the beach at the Poly! It is Chip’s Secret Spot.

If you have never tried Resort Hopping and have never spent time at the Big 3 Resorts I suggest jumping aboard the Monorail Express and checking them out, it is very relaxing and a welcomed change from the Disney Parks. Also it is a great way to save a few bucks since that is one less park ticket you have to buy.

If you have ever tried this or have some must see’s at the Monorail Resorts let us know in the comment box below.

>>Chip

  • Table Service in the Parks vs at the Resorts – Which is Better? Part 2 (chipandco.com)
  • The Best Things in the “World” are Free (chipandco.com)
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5 thoughts on “Resort Hopping – Taking the Monorail Express

  1. We just visited the World for our first trip…and we did a little Resort hopping. It was so fun and we really loved the Polynesian. Besides the monorails are amazing.

  2. My eldest daughter and I have started a tradition where we break away from the group one night ( we normally travel with 8-10 other family members) and we go to the Magic Kingdom on the Resort Bus and ride the Monorail around to the Polynesian. We then grab a drink on our way through to the beach so that we can cuddle up on a beach chair and watch Wishes from the beach. There’s no music piped in on the beach but the fireworks are beautiful just the same.

  3. My husband I and resort hopped when we came to Disney alone last May. We stopped and had an adult drink at each hotel. It was so much fun!

  4. we resort hopped for the first time during our last trip. we did the big three that the monorail stopped at. it was alot of fun! we didn’t stay long in each resort, but did shop a little and did the gingerbread house thing at the grand floridian. bought some awesome candy there! this trip, we plan on making more time to visit some of the other resorts, and to see the wishes show from the poly!!! thanks for reminding me of this!!

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