Do you ever go to a resort to hang out when not a guest?

Discussion in 'Disney Resorts' started by Cayaco, Dec 8, 2017.

  1. Cayaco

    Cayaco Mouseketeer

    Sep 12, 2015
    I thought of this when making plans to go to Boma while not staying there and seeing what else there is to do for someone not staying.

    So, since you can't use the pool or hot tubs, are there any resorts people go to hang out at for longer than just a stop at the bar or a meal while not a guest? What are your favorites to spend time at and while there what do you do?
  2. Hopefully

    Hopefully DIS Veteran

    Nov 3, 1999
    No We don"t do that
    Shanti likes this.
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  4. wdwjeffc37

    wdwjeffc37 DisneyWorldFan

    Jan 18, 2013
    We visit resorts all the time. We like to check out the lobbies, gift shops, and restaurants. A lot of the time we will grab a snack a or drink and walk around. Animal Kingdom Lodge is really cool. There are public spaces where you can watch the animals. The Grand Floridian is nice and sometimes there is entertainment. The Contemporary is iconic "Disney." The Wilderness Lodge is cozy especially in the winter, rocking chairs by the fireplace. Cheers!!!!
  5. JennaDeeDooDah

    JennaDeeDooDah My oh my what a wonderful day!

    Mar 29, 2012
    Yeap! Wilderness Lodge is my favorite resort and I can't remember the last trip I took where I didn't venture over there, guest or not. I love to spend some time in the lobby and go shopping in the Mercantile. Also, I love to watch Fire Rock Geyser go off. We also have been known to visit Animal Kingdom Lodge for a meal at Sanaa and spend a little extra time at the resort walking around and watching the animals. We do sometimes also head over to Fort Wilderness but I'm not sure if that counts since we go to visit Tri Circle D Ranch. Summer of 2016, my daughter did a Pirate Cruise that left from Port Orleans Riverside so my husband and I spent time walking the grounds of POR and POFQ and enjoyed that.
    mickeynut1 likes this.
  6. tobikaye

    tobikaye DIS Veteran

    Dec 6, 2009
    When I was a teenager, my parents would let me do the monorail resorts to look around and shop to give me some time to myself. This was back in the 90's and we usually had 2 non-park days.

    As an adult, other than once using BC to get from MK to Epcot since I wanted to go in via the International Gateway, I have only visited resorts when I was there to eat. I know when I stayed at AKL in June, there were lots of families that seemed to only be there to look at the savannahs.
    Hopefully likes this.
  7. nursejackie

    nursejackie DIS Veteran

    Oct 11, 2014
    We have a hire car so have visited all every resort over the years to dine and look around. As we visit at Christmas we like to see the gingerbread displays and decorations and the deluxe resorts. It's part of our trip, and a great way to pass an afternoon if it's not good enough weather for the pool or water park. One thing to remember though, at busy times certain resorts will not let you park up without an ADR in place.
  8. Shanti

    Shanti Momketeer

    Nov 29, 2015
    No. I've never seen the appeal of resort hopping at all.
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2017
  9. AngiTN

    AngiTN DIS Veteran

    Mar 7, 2011
    No I've not seen the appeal of hanging out at a resort just to hang out. We've only gone and stayed when we were doing something there such as eating
  10. Wild4Walt

    Wild4Walt DIS Veteran

    Jul 28, 2008
    We do resort stops all the time - usually we will incorporate a meal, some exploring of the common areas, and shopping. We've always looked at it like we were shopping for our next stay...
  11. Ensusieasm

    Ensusieasm DIS Veteran

    Feb 14, 2013
    Animal Kingdom Lodge and The Grand Floridian Resort are my two favorite resorts to spend time.
  12. Teamubr

    Teamubr Formerly racing around the country.

    Nov 7, 2010
    Resort hopping? Sure!

    Shop, eat, drink, people watch and just check out the atmosphere and theming. Just another way to take in “Disney”.

  13. Yarbogash

    Yarbogash Mouseketeer

    May 2, 2006
    We’ve started doing this in the past year. I actually find that lately I enjoy the resorts more than the parks mainly due to the crowds. Favourite resorts to visit are AKL, for reasons given above, WL for Trail’s End and the general ambiance and now BW for visiting the Boardwalk so kids can run on the ‘grass,’ watch a busker or two, have some treats or eat dinner (we like every restaurant there).
    mickeynut1 likes this.
  14. MelanieRI

    MelanieRI Mouseketeer

    Mar 21, 2006
    Heck yeah! I love visiting resorts. It's visiting different resorts while not staying there that eventually lead me to staying there. Obviously, the best time to resort hop is Christmas but it's great all year. There are so many activities to do at each resort. Other then when it's in pool area that you can't get into, why not check it out? You can look online at the resort activities calendars to see what's available. AKL is definitely a resort that has a lot of extra activities to look into. Have fun!
    Summer2018 and mickeynut1 like this.
  15. mi*vida*loca

    mi*vida*loca Collect memories, not things

    Mar 29, 2008
    I only go to a resort if we have an ADr. Once we are done we may check out the gift shop but then we leave. I’ve never resort hopped and don’t see the appeal.

    ETA: i May purposely make an adr at a specific resort because i want to see something specific. Like WL or AKL during Xmas to see the lobby. But i wouldn’t just go over to hang out.
  16. Disneylover99

    Disneylover99 DIS Veteran

    Jul 17, 2012
    Sometimes we go to the Poly or GF just to walk around. Usually we end up grabbing a drink or snack. Often it means sitting in the lobby and relaxing for five minutes or so. If that's considered hanging out, then yes we do that.
    Micca likes this.
  17. loves to dive

    loves to dive DIS Veteran

    Aug 21, 2011
    I've stayed at most of the resorts so don't do it as often as I used to but before I had stayed at all of them we used to do resort roulette. We would go to the bus stop at whatever park we were at, decide if we wanted to visit a deluxe/moderate or value (they tend to be a different spots at the bus stops) and just wait for the first bus to come and hop on. We would check out the lobbies, the shops, look at the restaurants and walk around the grounds. Then hop on the first park bus to come. At Christmas we like to do a resort hoping day at the deluxe resorts to look at the decorations. We go to WDW often so it's not all about rides for us, even when we are in the parks we tend to spend more time taking in the details then riding rides. We still do bus roulette for meals, just hop on the first bus to come and go to the resort for something to eat or if we are at MK we hop on the first boat at the dock.
    Fangorn and JerseyJanice like this.
  18. spiceycat

    spiceycat dvc-blt

    Oct 26, 2000
    use to often when first being a DVC member - did it little before then - would never have consider a value resort until I visited them.
    clayfolks and JerseyJanice like this.
  19. Simba's Mom

    Simba's Mom <font color=green>everything went to "H*** in a ha

    Aug 26, 1999
    I've done it, at Art of Animation and Carribean Beach. Both times it was during a "no parks" trip. I just took buses over there, ate lunch in the food court, and at Caribbean Beach I went over to the little island and rested in the hammocks. At A0A, I walked around and looked at the big icons.
  20. Shellyred8

    Shellyred8 I'd rather be at Disney

    Mar 17, 2016
    We've gone to Ft. Wilderness Campground to wander around and check out Tri-Circle D ranch. They have a few other activities there that you can check out too.
    We will wander around other resorts during the Christmas season to look at the decorations.
  21. JerseyJanice

    JerseyJanice A Disboards original...

    Aug 20, 1999
    As a matter of course, we will explore a resort when we go there to dine.

    But one of my favorite memories of Disney was in 2000 visiting the Fort Wilderness and the Wilderness Lodge. Back then, multiday tickets included hopping and never expired so we included non-park days in our plans. We were staying at the Contemporary and took the boat to FW. My son was 4 at the time and he rode a pony with my husband leading the horse.

    We went to the petting zoo and visited Minnie-Moo. We walked to the Wilderness Lodge, ate lunch in Roaring Fork and explored the lobby. I took a lot of video of the Lodge for my in-laws since they mentioned treating us to a trip there, which they did do in 2002 and 2012.

    Anyway, this is the only time I can recall going to a resort only to hang out.
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2017

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