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Old 05-10-2013, 11:50 AM   #1
brhalstea
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Fort Wilderness Boat Rental?

I was just looking for some information on boat rental at Fort Wilderness. We will be staying at the Lodge in October and would like other peoples feelings on whether or not it is worth checking into. Positive and Negatives are welcomed! We have a 6 year old and 2 year old, both girls. It sounds like fun, but would it be worth skipping an evening at the parks for?
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Old 05-10-2013, 12:15 PM   #2
grimley1968
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I've done it twice with my girls. It's somewhat entertaining. It's also somewhat expensive for a 30 minute rental, and to be honest we were kind of bored after about 20 minutes of it. I would do this at a time when you would not otherwise be at a park, like when relaxing at the resort, etc. It's a good supplement to "pool time". But I certainly wouldn't skip any park time to do it.
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Old 05-10-2013, 12:17 PM   #3
GrandCalifornian
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We enjoy renting boats, especially on Bay Lake (which is where WL and FW are located). You can actually rent from either resort, and the boat options and prices are the same. You can cruise around Bay Lake, go around the old Discovery Island, and cross the water bridge into the Seven Seas Lagoon where the Grand Floridian and the Poly are located. It is fun to drive the boat right in front of the Magic Kingdom.

You have some options as far as what size boat to rent. We usually rent a pontoon boat, which holds up to 10 people, although we had a ball with just two of us on one. It is relaxing to have seats for everybody as you cruise around and enjoy the view. As of last summer, the cost for a pontoon was $45 per 30 minutes. Here is a picture of the pontoon boats:


You can also rent a smaller Montauk boat that holds up to 6 people for the same price. These look more like a regular boat than the "party barge" pontoons do, and might be a little faster, but no WDW rental boats are what you would really consider "fast".

Another popular option that a lot of people enjoy is the small "SeaRaycer" boats that seat up to two people. These cost $32 for 30 min or $45 for an hour, but you might want to rent more than one to have your family all go out together. They are small and a lot of fun, but you will need multiple drivers.

Overall, we definitely recommend renting a boat and exploring Bay Lake. Below is a picture of the rental rates sign from last September when we were there:



Let me know if you have any more questions, and enjoy your trip!
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Old 05-10-2013, 12:21 PM   #4
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I also just noticed that you mentioned doing the boat rental in the evening, and in our experience they do not allow rentals after sundown. In September the rentals actually close really early, like 5PM.

If you choose to do it , it would be a good mid-day activity. Our 2 year old was not in a mood to go out on the boat during our last trip, and we ended up taking her back to the dock. It might be a fun activity for one of you to do with your older daughter to take out a SeaRaycer. I did this with my Dad when I was 5 and it ignited a love of Disney boating.
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Old 05-10-2013, 12:28 PM   #5
brhalstea
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrandCalifornian View Post
We enjoy renting boats, especially on Bay Lake (which is where WL and FW are located). You can actually rent from either resort, and the boat options and prices are the same. You can cruise around Bay Lake, go around the old Discovery Island, and cross the water bridge into the Seven Seas Lagoon where the Grand Floridian and the Poly are located. It is fun to drive the boat right in front of the Magic Kingdom.

You have some options as far as what size boat to rent. We usually rent a pontoon boat, which holds up to 10 people, although we had a ball with just two of us on one. It is relaxing to have seats for everybody as you cruise around and enjoy the view. As of last summer, the cost for a pontoon was $45 per 30 minutes. Here is a picture of the pontoon boats:


You can also rent a smaller Montauk boat that holds up to 6 people for the same price. These look more like a regular boat than the "party barge" pontoons do, and might be a little faster, but no WDW rental boats are what you would really consider "fast".

Another popular option that a lot of people enjoy is the small "SeaRaycer" boats that seat up to two people. These cost $32 for 30 min or $45 for an hour, but you might want to rent more than one to have your family all go out together. They are small and a lot of fun, but you will need multiple drivers.

Overall, we definitely recommend renting a boat and exploring Bay Lake. Below is a picture of the rental rates sign from last September when we were there:



Let me know if you have any more questions, and enjoy your trip!
Thanks for all the information! Is the Water Mouse listed on the Fort Wilderness Boat Rental site the same as a sea racer? Or is it a small boat? Also on the site it mentions weekly rentals for 199. Is this the case? I didn't see it on the price chart in your picture.
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Old 05-10-2013, 12:30 PM   #6
brhalstea
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrandCalifornian View Post
I also just noticed that you mentioned doing the boat rental in the evening, and in our experience they do not allow rentals after sundown. In September the rentals actually close really early, like 5PM.

If you choose to do it , it would be a good mid-day activity. Our 2 year old was not in a mood to go out on the boat during our last trip, and we ended up taking her back to the dock. It might be a fun activity for one of you to do with your older daughter to take out a SeaRaycer. I did this with my Dad when I was 5 and it ignited a love of Disney boating.
Thanks for the feedback! I just noticed on the sign in a post that they close at 5pm. That is valuable information. I am pretty sure my 6 year old would love it, not real sure about the 2 year old. So your advice of just taking the 6 year old is good.
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Old 05-10-2013, 12:32 PM   #7
brhalstea
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Originally Posted by grimley1968 View Post
I've done it twice with my girls. It's somewhat entertaining. It's also somewhat expensive for a 30 minute rental, and to be honest we were kind of bored after about 20 minutes of it. I would do this at a time when you would not otherwise be at a park, like when relaxing at the resort, etc. It's a good supplement to "pool time". But I certainly wouldn't skip any park time to do it.
Thanks for your response. I would definitely use it as "pool time" as I am not real fond of swimming everyday!
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Old 05-10-2013, 01:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brhalstea View Post
Thanks for all the information! Is the Water Mouse listed on the Fort Wilderness Boat Rental site the same as a sea racer? Or is it a small boat? Also on the site it mentions weekly rentals for 199. Is this the case? I didn't see it on the price chart in your picture.
Yeah, the "Water Mouse" is the prior version of the "Sea Raycer". They are very small two person boats, but lots of fun. Here is a picture of the SeaRaycers:


The closing times may vary somewhat seasonally, as it is changeable on their sign, but I am almost certain it will always close before dusk. The 5:00 closing was definitely the case in September, but it was a low crowd time.

As for weekly rentals I have not seen anything about that. I imagine it is outdated information, and perhaps they used to offer an "unlimited" option, but I imagine it wouldn't have proven profitable, even at $199! If they did offer that I would seriously consider it, but I would miss out on a lot of the rest of WDW...
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Old 05-10-2013, 01:47 PM   #9
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We love the mouseboats! 30 minutes goes quickly on them, but they are zippy little things.
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Old 05-10-2013, 03:37 PM   #10
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We love the mouseboats! 30 minutes goes quickly on them, but they are zippy little things.
They look like fun! I will probably at the very least try one out for half an hour!
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