I Tried Tenting at Disney World — Why I Would By no means Do It Once more


  • I camped two nights at Disney’s Fort Wilderness for over $207 and I would never do it again.
  • I ended up spending over $500 on the trip after getting camping supplies and rental items I needed.
  • For a little over $20 a night I could have stayed in a hotel with comfortable beds and no mosquitoes.

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I’ve been going to Disney World for over 20 years, but recently I went camping for the first time at Fort Wilderness Resort and Campgrounds.

It was $207 for a 2 night stay, although I also spent over $300 on basic camping gear and rent.

While I’m glad I tried camping at Disney, I definitely wouldn’t do it again and I’m not sure if it’s worth the cost.

Camping in Fort Wilderness is ideal for guests who are experienced campers or have an RV

Tent at the Fort Wilderness Campgrounds

Setting up our tent was challenging and took about two hours.

Jenna Clark

I was glad I had my first camping experience at Disney and I think the site is a nice place for other beginners. But I wouldn’t recommend staying here unless you’re taking an experienced camper, bringing an RV, or staying in one of the available cabins.

As someone who was born and raised in New York City and isn’t too comfortable with large amounts of mosquitoes, bugs, and other wildlife, I found this resort a bit intimidating, especially at night when it was dark and difficult to see.

It was also a challenge to set up a tent, which I had never done before.

Writer in Dark Holding Lantern

I got a little scared at night.

Jenna Clark

Although our campsite was relatively cheap to rent, all the gear we had to buy for it added up

At this point, Disney doesn’t have tent or crib rentals, so I had to bring everything myself (and lug it to the campsite).

Having never camped before and having no gear, I spent about $315 on supplies including a tent, air mattress, sheet, blanket, mosquito repellent wristbands, rubber mallet, mallet and rechargeable mosquito repellent.

I also spent $67 on a rental golf cart on the second day because the Fort Wilderness property is huge and it was incredibly awkward to get around on the first day. We were unable to drive our car as the only parking options were our campsite or the property in front of the resort which was a long way from the actual campsites.

the writer with camping gear

If I had stayed in a hotel I wouldn’t have had to spend 30 minutes lugging my stuff to a campsite.

Jenna Clark

While the golf cart wasn’t strictly a must, it felt like it made our stay that much more enjoyable. Also, I would say that about 85% of the families we saw used a golf cart or bicycles, which you can also rent, to get around the property.

Writers on Golf Carts

The golf cart felt like a must because the site was so vast.

Jenna Clark

The area has much better food than Disney’s budget resorts, but getting to the restaurants can be a hassle

The resort’s three restaurants — P&J’s Southern Takeout, Trail’s End, and Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue — offer some of the best resort fare at Disney World, in my opinion.

These spots are especially great if you love southern comfort food like macaroni and cheese and grilled meats.

Unfortunately they are quite a distance from the campsites and we would have struggled to reach them if we hadn’t hired the golf cart.

Pulled pork in a box

The pulled pork from P&J’s Southern Takeout was definitely a highlight.

Jenna Clark

Still, it’s nice to have unique options that are affordable. Most other inexpensive fast food restaurants only have basic burgers and fries.

The campsite does not offer much privacy

The fellow campers in our group were very nice and sometimes helped us to set up our tent or lent us an extension cord. But it still felt a little awkward being just a few feet from the nearest party.

Fort wilderness tent area

We were a bit too close to the other campers.

Jenna Clark

If you enjoy socializing and are more of an extrovert type, you will likely enjoy this closeness. But if you’re looking for seclusion and disconnection, you won’t find it at this campground.

Fort Wilderness is a great option if you don’t visit the theme parks, though I would have preferred to spend extra to stay in one value resort

If you like outdoor activities, this resort might be worth checking out. It offers archery, fishing, and canoe and bicycle rentals.

Plus, the amenities here are on par with those of a deluxe resort. If you want to swim and play, the on-site Meadow Swimmin’ Pool is perfect with its large pool with slide, whirlpool, arcade and outdoor games.

Fort Wilderness is also more ideal for those who don’t care about visiting Disney’s theme parks, especially as it can take multiple transfers and over 20 minutes to get to Magic Kingdom and other areas.

But I do enjoy going to the parks, and while I like deluxe amenities, I’d be happier at a budget resort with everything in one area than a tent at sprawling campgrounds. For a little over $20 extra per night, I could have stayed at Disney’s All-Star Music Resort with a real bed and a themed room.

Finally, I would much rather have a relaxing vacation near Magic Kingdom than one with strong lights and mosquito bites.