A Tropical Oasis Awaits at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

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You’ll feel the warm welcome the moment you step inside the Great Ceremonial House. Colorful, net-wrapped orb lanterns hang from the glass atrium ceiling of Disney’s Polynesian Resort. The cheerful totem in the center of the lobby seems to wink as you pass by. Beautiful flowers and green leafy plants peak around corners. The brown wooden beams and gray stone flooring are complimented by deep red and orange fabrics. (Look for a not-so-hidden Mickey at your feet.) Island tunes fill the air and set the stage for a tropical getaway. The sweet aroma of exotic flowers transports you to a Polynesian paradise. 

Click here to see a video tour of Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort.

The Great Ceremonial House is the heartbeat of this resort and where you’ll find front desk check-in, restaurants, quick service, Trader Sam’s lounge and retail shops. Take in the energy, and gaze up at the open-air space above you. Here you can relax, meet up with friends, shop or dine. On the first floor, just steps from the lobby, is the resort gift shop BouTiki. Here you can browse resort-specific attire, Disney merchandise, and tropical-inspired gear like Hawaiian shirts and ukuleles. Upstairs is Moana Mercantile, where you’ll also find clothing, toys, and Disney souvenirs, along with sundries, light groceries, and beverages.

A bridge links the upper level of the Grand Ceremonial House to the monorail platform – where you can zip over to Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa, Disney’s Contemporary Resort, the Magic Kingdom or the Ticket and Transportation Center (and transfer to a direct route to Epcot). This premium access to the theme parks is one of the best perks of this Deluxe resort. Complimentary bus service is available to the other theme parks, water parks, and Disney Springs.

The island ambiance is evident throughout the resort grounds, with lush vegetation, waterfalls, native carvings and bamboo tiki torches. Located on the Seven Seas Lagoon, the white sandy beach is the perfect place to relax on a hammock or watch the sun set while swaying on a bench. A mile-long jogging trail loops around the lagoon, great for a morning run or a leisurely evening stroll. The paved path from the Polynesian to the Grand Floridian takes approximately 10 to 15 minutes. If you’re looking for a full workout, resort guests are welcome to use the fitness center at neighboring Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa.

Looking for some fun outside the theme parks? Have a day in your schedule to spend at the resort? Gather the family for some friendly competition in a game of beach volleyball! Check out volleyballs from the Mikala Canoe Club Marina, where you can also rent motorized watercraft or set off on a guided fishing excursion. Feeling one with those island vibes? Check the resort schedule for hula dance lessons, offered in the lobby on select days. And on select days, you might be able to release lady bugs to help keep pesky insects in check.

One of the coolest ways to spend your day is lounging poolside. The Lava Pool at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort wraps around a towering volcano, where a 142-foot waterslide whooshes you through the inside of the volcano and spills you out into the pool below. Cool off at the adjacent Barefoot Pool Bar, and re-energize your crew with some fried wonton chips, chicken wings and smoothies. Nearby is a fun splash area with friendly tikis, bridges, smaller slides for children and plenty of water splashing and spraying.

Tucked into lush greenery, the Oasis Pool is a tranquil retreat. Private shaded “patios” featuring lounge chairs and towels, are available to rent on a limited first-come, first-serve basis. Belly up to the Oasis Bar & Grill for fish tacos, shrimp salads, or a cheeseburger. Or, if renting an Oasis patio, have your food and beverage order delivered! Don’t forget to try the scrumptious Malasadas, which are Portuguese doughnuts served with passion fruit curd. 

Evenings at the Polynesian have a unique, magical touch. Kids of all ages will delight in campfires s’mores and movies under the stars. Pull up a chair, dip your toes in the sand, and enjoy a front row viewing of the whimsical Electrical Water Pageant. This nightly parade of twinkling sea creature floats starts at the Polynesian and cruises around the lagoon projecting Disney tunes as it goes.  Afterwards, stay right where you are to watch the Magic Kingdom fireworks from this ideal setting. They even pipe in the music that accompanies the fireworks.

Disneys Polynesian Village is one of two original hotels that opened with the Magic Kingdom in October 1971. Recently, the resort completed a refurbishment, including the newly re-imagined Moana-themed guest rooms. The new design includes a fresh color palette, patterns and textures inspired by the Pacific Ocean.

The 847 total guest rooms are divided up into 11 different “longhouses,” each named after actual Polynesian islands — Tonga, Aotearoa, Fiji, Tuvalu, Hawaii, Samoa, Niue, Raotonga, Tokelau, Tahiti, and Rapa Lui. Thatched-style roofs house the 2-3 story buildings with interior hallways. Standard rooms are 404 sq ft and offer Standard Views, Garden Views, Lagoon Views, and Theme Park Views. Bedding in these rooms is 2 queen beds and a day bed, accommodating up to 5 guests plus one child under the age of three in a crib. Club Level Room are located in the Hawaii and Tonga longhouses. The main Club lounge, Big Kamehameha Club, is in the Hawaii building.

Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows are a great option for larger families and/or guests who want to prepare some meals. The Disney Vacation Club (DVC) deluxe studios are located in the Pago Pago, Moorea and Tokelau longhouses which originally offered regular guest rooms, Disney redesigned these longhouses to accommodate the DVC studios. At 460 sq ft, they are the largest Deluxe Studios at Walt Disney World, and accommodate 5 guests plus one child under 3 in a crib. They feature 1 queen bed, 1 queen sleeper-sofa, 1 single pull-down bed, a kitchenette, and a full bath separated into two spaces (one with shower and sink, the other with toilet, sink and tub/shower).

The real show-stoppers are the Bora Bora Bungalows, which may just be the ultimate vacation indulgence. These unique private “homes” are built atop posts directly over the lagoon. You won’t believe the incredible views of the Magic Kingdom fireworks from your back deck with a private plunge pool. And it gets even better, there are outdoor speakers that play the fireworks music. It doesn’t get more magical than this!

Each bungalow is 1650 sq ft and features two separate bedrooms, with 1 king bed, 1 queen bed, 1 queen sleeper-sofa, 2 single pull-down beds, a fully equipped kitchen with full size appliances, two full bathrooms and washer/dryer.

Building is well underway on a new DVC tower at Polynesian Village Resort! Anticipated to open at the end of 2024, the new tower is expected to include a variety of guest room types such as duo studios, 1 bedroom villas, 2-bedroom villas, and 3-Bedroom Grand Villas. This will be a wonderful compliment to the villa types currently offered at this resort, increasing capacity at this prime location along the Seven Seas Lagoon and on the monorail.

The tropical touch is present in the culinary delights at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort. Ohana means family. And here, it also means delicious food! This Polynesian-themed table service restaurant dishes out all-you-care-to-eat, family-style breakfast skillets, cinnamon sugar doughnuts, and pineapple bread. For dinner, the intimate setting brings out the fresh flavors in the teriyaki beef, island shrimp casserole, and kielbasa sausage dinner skillets. Pair your all-you-can-eat meal with a cocktail, mocktail, smoothie or bread pudding, and you’ll be in culinary heaven.

Captain Cook’s is a great place to pop in for a quick-service meal. Hot breakfast, including Mickey waffles, Tonga toast and oatmeal provide energy for your day at the theme parks. Classics like burgers and salads, along with tropical-inspired specialties including Thai coconut meatballs and chicken and pineapple skewers, round out the lunch and dinner menus.

Stop by Kona Island for a grab-and-go coffee and pastry in the morning, or a scrumptious trifle for an evening treat. If you have more time, duck into a booth at the Kona Cafe, where they serve up mouth-watering dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Breakfast favorites include cinnamon and banana-stuffed Tonga Toast and macadamia-pineapple pancakes. Dashi noodle bowls, chicken stir-fry and sushi rolls satisfy hungry bellies at lunch and dinner.

One of the most popular spots to visit at Walt Disney World is right here at the Polynesian Village Resort: the well-known tiki bar Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto. Brimming with personality, this adventure-themed lounge is open to all ages until 8:00 pm, when it turns into a 21+ spot. Pan fried dumplings and kalua pork tacos are served along exotic cocktails. Your HippopotoMai-Tai or Dark & Tropical Stormy can be served in a collectible tiki mug, which makes a great souvenir. This popular destination fills up quickly and may require a wait to enter. Guests spill out into the open-air Tiki Terrace, where you can enjoy an adult-beverage as the sun sets.

If Trader Sam’s is full, just a few steps away is the Tambu Lounge, where appetizers including barbecue pork ribs and California rolls are served along specialty cocktails, beer and wine.

Saved the best (treat) for last — Pineapple Lanai serves up the famous DOLE Whip frozen specialty! Indulge in the beloved dairy-free pineapple and vanilla treat. Whether you prefer the sweet swirls as a soft-serve in a bowl, mixed with pineapple juice in a float, or served in a souvenir tiki bowl, you can find it here. Adults can even add a splash of rum to make this an over 21 beverage.

With a dole whip in hand, toes in the sand, island vibes in your ear, and palm trees swaying above, it’s hard not to fall in love with the paradise that is Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort. From sun-soaked days to enchanting moonlit nights, the tropical ambiance has made this a top choice for guests, year after year.

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Small World Vacations is celebrating 27 Years of Magic.
Learn how our experience can help you!

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