Fort Wilderness at Disney World is truly a hidden gem. The rustic resort offers over 700 acres of cabins, campsites and a boatload of activities. With a fully working horse stable, various recreational offerings and exciting entertainment, there are plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy. Whether you're already staying at the resort or visiting as a day guest, you'll definitely want to saddle up for all the activities at Fort Wilderness!
Overview of Activities at Fort Wilderness
Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground is an outdoor retreat with a rustic, woodland charm. Guests can enjoy a relaxing stay in the cabins or camp out in tents or an RV. While we have our complete guide to Fort Wilderness at Disney World, we wanted to highlight all of the extracurriculars the resort has to offer. With so many outdoor activities, there is plenty to do at the resort to keep you busy.
The majority of activities at Fort Wilderness are available to anyone, so you don't have to be staying at the resort (though did you know Undercover Tourist offers discount prices for the Cabins at Fort Wilderness?). Some activities have an extra cost and/or require a reservation, which can usually be made online in advance.
If you are driving over as a day guest, a reservation for either a dining or recreational activity may be required to park. Typically, you can just tell the parking attendant which activity you are there for and they will let you in (be sure to have your photo ID ready). Sometimes (especially during peak crowds) if you do not have a reservation, be prepared to park elsewhere, such as the Transportation and Ticket Center. Free Disney transportation is available via bus or boat. Keep in mind that Fort Wilderness has an internal bus system so you'll want to allow extra time to arrive at your destination.
With that, let's dive into the activities at Fort Wilderness in Disney World!
Tri-Circle D Ranch at Fort Wilderness in Disney World
Over near the Settlement, Tri-Circle-D Ranch houses all of the horses that you see inside the Disney World parks. So the horses that carry you down Main Street, U.S.A. or the ones hooked up to Cinderella's Coach? They all live right here in Fort Wilderness. Our new BFF is Rocky, the Headless Horseman's horse.
Home to the "happiest horses on Earth," Tri-Circle-D is typically open to the public from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. You can tour parts of the barn free of charge, but keep an eye out — there's often a sign detailing the time to return for a guided tour. Cast members close down the barn briefly to give the tour, giving you more time to get to know Disney World's draft horses.
Tadpoles who have dreamed of riding a pony can live out that goal. For an additional cost, petite ponies are available for a stroll around their pen from 10 a.m to 5 p.m. Riders must be at least 2 years old, under 80 pounds and less than 48 inches tall. Rides are around $8 per person and are available on a walk-in basis only — no reservations are required.
Even if your tadpole isn't up for a ride, walking through the pony pen is a thrill. Bring your camera as the ponies make for great photo-ops — we met one of Cinderella's ponies on our last visit!
Those ages 9 years or older can look forward to group horseback trail rides. For $55 per person (tax not included), you'll travel single-file along a horse trail that winds through Fort Wilderness. The 45-minute journey, at a walking pace, is perfect for beginner and intermediate riders. Check-in is at Trail Blaze Corral, located near the front parking lot. Note that cameras and phones aren't allowed, so there will be no selfies with your buddy during your ride. Complimentary lockers are available to store your belongings. Riders must weigh under 250 lbs, and strapless shoes are not permitted (skirts and dresses are not recommended). Helmets will be provided for all riders.
Reservations are available online via My Disney Experience. Day-of availability may be extremely limited, so you'll want to book at least a few days in advance.
If riding them isn't your thing, there are other opportunities for horsing around at Fort Wilderness. Evening carriage rides (or holiday sleigh rides in December) are available for around $55. Enjoy a scenic 25-minute tour departing near Pioneer Hall. Each carriage holds up to four adults or two adults and three small children. Reservations are available online and are highly recommended.
Recreation Activities at Fort Wilderness in Disney World
There are so many recreation offerings at Fort Wilderness in Disney World — it's the perfect way to enjoy the outdoors!
Like other Walt Disney World Resort hotels, Fort Wilderness offers daily crafts for an additional cost, such as painting your own birdhouse or tie-dying. There are also free field games and poolside activities to enjoy.
The Wilderness Back Trail Adventure Segway Tour ($)
Explore the wilderness like the pioneers did — on a segway! No experience is required. These tours will teach you the segway basics before sending you out on a tour around Fort Wilderness. Available Tuesday through Saturday. Call (407) WDW-TOUR to book your tour.
Boat Rentals and Guided Fishing Excursions ($)
If Bay Lake and Seven Seas Lagoon are calling to you, feel free to set sail. Rent a motorized boat at the Marina for some water fun. Rentals for Sea Raycers (seat two), Boston Whalers (seat up to six) Montauk or Sun Tracer boats (seat up to 10 people) may be rented by the half-hour and are first come, first served. If fishing is more your style, you can venture out on a guided catch-and-release fishing adventure. Excursions depart from the Marina and are available daily at 7 a.m., 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Call (407) 939-BASS to reserve a spot. There are also Fireworks Cruises available for up to 10 guests!
Fort Wilderness Archery Experience ($)
This experience will teach you the basics of holding and firing a bow. After training, it's onto target practice. Sign up for the experience at the Bike Barn in the Meadow or call (407) WDW-PLAY to sign up. #justlikeMerida
Crockett's Craft Corner – Wine and Woodshop ($)
Create a personalized wooden piece of artwork, with a guide, of course, while enjoying an alcoholic beverage and light snacks.
Biking, Canoe, Fishing Equipment and Kayak Rentals ($)
The Bike Barn, located near the Meadow Trading Post, is your stop for all kinds of recreation equipment. Rent a canoe or kayak for a tour around the waters of Fort Wilderness. Rentals are typically per hour. With plenty of space for bikes, Fort Wilderness is a biker's dream. Bike rentals are per day. You can also rent sports equipment here, including basketball, tennis, shuffleboard and pickleball.
Tennis, Volleyball, Basketball and Playgrounds
The court is in session all across Fort Wilderness. Enjoy volleyball on a sandy court at the Marnia. Hoop it up at various basketball courts. Channel your inner Novak Djokovic at the tennis courts near the Meadow Swimming Pool.
For your little climbers, Fort Wilderness is full of playgrounds. There is one playground in the settlement near Trail's End Restaurant. The Meadow is home to two playgrounds. A final playground is located near loop 500 by the Waggin' Trails Dog Park. (That's right, you can even bring your dog to stay with you at Fort Wilderness!)
Daniel Boone's and Davy Crockett's Wilderness Arcades ($)
Located at Meadow Swimmin' Pool and Pioneer Hall, these small arcades pack big fun (even though neither of them has "Frogger").
Evening Entertainment at Fort Wilderness
Disney World is known for its esteemed entertainment, though you may be surprised to hear there's lots of noteworthy entertainment outside the theme parks. In fact, some of our favorite live entertainment is located at the Resort hotels, such as Hoop-Dee-Doo Revue at Fort Wilderness.
The Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue
The longest-running live show in Disney World continues to pack Pioneer Hall. With lively skits, sing-a-longs, Vaudeville comedy and dancing, this show delights adults and kids alike. You'll dine on all-you-care-to-enjoy fried chicken, smoked BBQ pork ribs, tossed green salad and — SPOILER — strawberry shortcake. Beer, wine and sangria are also included. There are three seating tiers, each at a different price point according to your proximity to the stage. This show had Leap in stitches, and Tad and Lily loved clanging on the washboard. Hoop-Dee-Doo is very popular, so be sure to make your reservations 60 days in advance! Hey, howdy, hey!
Chip 'n' Dale's Campfire Sing-Along
Brush up on your John Denver lyrics. Starring everyone's favorite chipmunks and led by a guitar-playin' cowboy, this evening show is a lyrical way to wind down for the evening. Located at an outdoor amphitheater in the Meadow area, you're encouraged to sing and dance out loud to country-and-western favorites with Chip 'n' Dale. Yes, the hokey pokey is involved. You can also roast hot dogs and s'mores! Bring your own or mosey on up to the Chuck Wagon for supplies. The Sing-A-Long is typically held Wednesday through Sunday nights and is a great activity for both resort and visiting guests.
Movies Under The Stars
Immediately following the sing-along, you're invited to stay to watch a Disney movie, varying from classics to newer films. The schedule is listed online, as well as at the campsite or in your activity guides. On our visit, it was "Moana," which made it a night of back-to-back sing-alongs. #yourewelcome.
Magic Kingdom Fireworks
The Marina at Ft. Wilderness provides a great view of the nearby Magic Kingdom fireworks. The music from the show is piped in, so spending a few moments on the beach watching the night light up with wonder is pretty cool.
Electrical Water Pageant
WE LOVE THE WATER PAGEANT. This classic Disney World show makes a nightly stop at Fort Wilderness. First appearing in 1971, the Electrical Water Pageant show dazzles with twinkling lights and appearances by sea serpents, dolphins and King Triton — all set to an upbeat electrical score. It's a Main Street Electrical Parade on water!
So much room for activities! Let us know your favorite thing to do at Fort Wilderness in the comments below!
Related: Frog Family's Guide to Fort Wilderness at Disney World