Your Ultimate Guide to Disney Resort Pools
I never had a pool growing up. Seemingly every summer I would ask my parents “can we get a pool in the yard this year?”. Even though I asked every year, probably 40 times a year actually, I began to anticipate their resolute and disappointing: “no”. So, I would look to fill my personal pool void with the pools at the hotels and condos we stayed at on vacation. No matter if we were traveling to the hottest place on the map or the polar ice caps, I looked forward to the pool the most. How big would it be, would there be floating toys for me to play with, would there be a slide? All of these questions burned in my childhood mind each time we took a trip.
There was one destination, though that I always knew would fill my pool quota, and then some. Walt Disney World Resort has a pool at each and every one of their resort hotels (some even have more than one!) so I would rest easy knowing what watery, high tide fun awaited me when I checked in! Little did I know the long days spent in the water would later act as years worth of research, so let’s dive right in!
A Great Pool for Every Budget
There are so, so many amazing pools across Walt Disney World Resort that it was tough for me to choose just a few to put on my list of favorites. No matter where you choose to stay, you’ll find a pool waiting for you. But if you have someone who longs for afternoons spent splashing in one of the coolest, most fun pools at WDW without breaking the bank, choose to stay at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort.
This resort has themed rooms, and three of the sections feature pools that match the themeing! Cars, The Little Mermaid, and Finding Nemo sections all offer specially designed and themed pools for the resort guests, and no matter which section of the hotel you choose to take up your residency, all of the resort pools are open for you to try! My favorite here is the Cars pool, as the little orange cones from Cozy Cone Motel get a larger than life-size treatment and serve as cabanas to seek refugee from the shade! Try diving under water in the Big Blue Pool in the Finding Nemo section, can you hear underwater music playing? With all that’s in store to discover, if you told me the pools at Art of Animation were attached to a Deluxe Resort, I would believe you!
If a moderate resort hotel is in your budget, there are multipl pool options to choose from! My favorite of the moderate resort pools is at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort. The giant temple complete with cascading water makes not only a great photo op, but is a marvelous backdrop for a game of pool volleyball or Marco/ Polo.
Age Old Fun
Another great amenity of this pool is the slide! I’m all grown up now, so I’m really thankful Disney allows both children and adults to take a ride on the pool slides. Check your resort’s daily activities board to see what fun pool games or trivia will be offered when you plan to make your splashdown.
Cool off on the Savanna
The Animal Kingdom Lodge is one of my favorite resorts and Disney resort pools for so many reasons. The thatched roofing, enormous lobby, best resort bar, and live animals on the savanna make it really tough to want to stay anywhere else, and the pool all but adds to the attraction of this Deluxe resort. The pool at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge is a massive one that features a slide and cushioned deck chairs for those not wanting to hit the water. Another thing I love about this pool? It’s zero-entry, which makes getting used to the water much more enjoyable on a sunless Florida evening and the lush greenery that surrounds you makes it feel like you’re really in the heart of Africa.
Speaking of evening…it’s the best time to take a dip in this resort’s pool! The architecture of the lodge becomes artfully illuminated after the sun sets, and the pool’s location directly at the foot of the building makes for incredibly impressive views. Make sure you take a minute between turns on the slide to appreciate the magnitude and detail of the hotel itself as it truly does add to the swimming experience. Again, check out the resort activities board daily to see what pool games you can participate in during your stay!
Splash Away the Day the Boardwalk Way!
As I like to do with all things, I’ve saved my favorite for last. After much deliberation, I’m happy to announce that taking home top honors on my ‘best of Disney pools’ list is….drum roll please…the Luna Park Pool at Disney’s Boardwalk Resort! Everywhere you turn there are articles attempting to convince readers to give in to the superficial lure of another Crescent Lake resort pool, ie: Stormalong Bay at Yacht and Beach Club. From a distance, the sand-bottom pool and beached pirate ship pool look impressive and appealing, but keep in mind this one fact: the pool is shared between two resorts. Although it may be bigger than Luna Park, it is always, always, always crowded, which makes me want to run the other direction!
Luna Park Pool offers the best slide, snack bar, and the best swimming views of any across the resort property! The slide is the best place to start, as its themeing is spot on with that of the Boardwalk! The pool slide twists and turns its way through a roller coaster like design that pays homage to the original lure of the shore in its heyday: boardwalk rides! This slide is faster than it looks, too, so make sure to lay down and cross your legs for maximum speed around those curves!
I can’t think of a better way to spend a hot afternoon than in the pool, especially when I’m floating along and taking in views like slow moving boats on the nearby lake and, my favorite…the Tower of Terror! You can see the daunting attraction right from your spot in the pool, reminding you just how immersed in the magic you are when you choose to stay at Disney’s Boardwalk! The proximity of the pool to the Boardwalk itself also means you can grab pizza, burgers, ice cream, and treats from the Boardwalk Bakery without ever having to walk more than 2 minutes from your pool chair. If you’re still not convinced, Leaping Horse Libations- the carousel-shaped snack bar right at the pool- offers drinks, tasty snacks, and Mickey ice cream bars to fuel you well into the night. Happy swimming! Did your favorite pool make the list? Which pool is your favorite? Let me know in the comments below!
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Special thanks to Maria Salerno for writing this article: Hiya pal! I am a NYC-based writer/musician thrilled to be bringing you all things Disney! I’m a WDW Annual Passholder, so you can find me in the parks regularly throughout the year. In addition to being a Disney Parks loving girl, I’m also a Disney toy and merchandise collector, a runDisney enthusiast, and Disney music and movie aficionado. You can follow me on Instagram: NYCtoAP and find me on YouTube: NYCtoAP. Thanks for reading, hope to see ya real soon!