Spectro's Ultimate Guide to Activities Outside of the Parks
Updated: Jul 11, 2020
With daily park attendance limited, and AP park reservations limited to three days at a time due to Covid-19, this seems the perfect time to explore all the fun and exciting activities you can do at the Disney Resorts without every even going through the park turnstiles!
This list looks at some of the more unique and lesser known activities and is divided into four categories: Activities, Entertainment, Nightlife, and Unique Dining and Drinking.
Enjoy and please comment with YOUR favorite activities outside of the Disney Parks.
1. Go Fishing! Fishing poles are available for rent at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort and Disney's Port Orleans Resort. Also guided fishing excursions on boats out on Bay Lake and the Seven Seas Lagoon are available at the marinas at Disney's Wilderness Lodge, Disney's Contemporary Resort, Disney's Polynesian Village Resort, Disney's Old Key West Resort, and more!
2. Do a Monorail Bar Crawl! Start at any one of the resorts located on Disney World's Monorail System and hit their bars and lounges!
Disney's Contemporary Resort
• The Wave of American Flavors
Disney's Polynesian Village Resort
Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
3. Enjoy a ride around your resort on a Surrey Bike.
4. Play a relaxing round of Miniature Golf. Walt Disney World has two mini golf courses, Winter Summerland at Blizzard Beach, and Fantasia Gardens at the Swan and Dolphin Hotels.
5. You can visit the horses the pull Cinderella's Carriage! These white horses reside at the Tri Circle D Ranch at Disney's Fort Wilderness Lodge. While you’re at the Fort Wilderness Campground you can actually ride ponies, take a carriage ride, and also learn archery among other activities.
6. Enjoy the culinary delights of Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge. Here you can take a cookie decorating class, do a wine tasting at Jiko Restaurant, or take a culinary tour of Boma.
7. Take a break from the resorts for some value retail therapy at nearby outlet malls just a quick drive or uber ride away. These can be found in both Orlando, FL and Anaheim, CA.
8. Head to the Lego Store. The open play area will keep the kids occupied for hours! There's one at both Disney Springs in Florida, and Downtown Disney in Anaheim!
9. Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Lodge. A hilarious, high-spirited hootenanny with unlimited beer, wine, and sangria as well as amazing ribs, fried chicken, mashed potatoes, and strawberry shortcake!
10. Visit YeHaa Bob! Head over to the River Roost Lounge at Disney’s Port Orleans Riverside Resort for some late night drinks and be entertained by Yehaa Bob’s piano and singing for a repertoire that includes Disney Standards and songbook classics.
11. Listen to Gijs Van Winkelhof. If you happen to find yourself at Disneyland Paris looking for something to do outside of that park, head to their beautiful Cafe Fantasia for a cocktail and on select nights you will hear the piano stylings of Gijs Van Winkelhof (Gijs is pronounced 'Hice'). He’s an amazingly talented pianist from The Netherlands. He knows a seemingly endless number of contemporary and Disney music and he’s able to play it all by ear. He doesn’t use any music. For those of you who aren’t going to find yourself in Paris any time soon, he’s been quite active on social media entertaining fans during Covid 19. Follow him on instagram @gijsvwinkelhof.
12. Catch a televised live sporting event at the ESPN Club at Disney's Boardwalk Hotel.
13. Visit one of the resorts that sit on Bay Lake or the Seven Seas Lagoon in the evenings for a performance of The Electrical Water Pageant. This original floating parade predates the nighttime electrical parades such as SpectroMagic and the Main Street Electrical Parade we have come to love. And it's still going after all these years since debuting in 1971.
14. Watch the nightly fireworks at Disney's Magic Kingdom from the Beach at the Polynesian, the Marina of the Grand Floridian, or from the balcony at the California Grill.
15. Enjoy a great dinner at one of the many restaurants at Disneyland's Downtown Disney district and then head off on a quick drive to see an Angel's Baseball or Duck's Hockey game!
16. Sing Karaoke at Kimono's japanese restaurant at the Walt Disney World Swan Hotel.
17. Enjoy some drinking and dancing at the Atlantic Dance Hall Video Dance Club at the Boardwalk Hotel.
18. Jelly Rolls Dueling Piano Bar. Here piano geniuses can play any song by request. No song is too obscure for them. Enjoy drinks and great music at this Boardwalk Hotel hot spot.
19. Head over to the town that Disney built - Celebration, FL. This beautiful pre-planned town built by Disney is a great spot for an evening stroll. While you're there stop at The Tavern for a drink.
Unique Dining & Drinking
20. Enjoy a proper afternoon tea at the Garden View Tea Room at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa.
21. Find a Dole Whip Outside of the park! At Disneyland, you can head to the Disneyland Hotel’s Tangaroa Terrance. In Disney World you can satisfy your slushy pineapple craving by heading to Pineapple Lanai at Disney’s Polynesian Village, you can also pick one up at Pop Century Resort. You can also head to Disney Springs to get one at the Market Place Snacks kiosk.
22. Attend the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic. For two nights each year in the Fall, the restaurants of the Swan and Dolphin resort, along with wineries from around the globe, come together for a food and wine event featuring food samplings from around the resort along with live music and a festive atmosphere.
You can watch the EarzUp Podcast segment on this topic where we discuss this and more here: