If you’ve ever wanted to experience the cheerful, vibrant and carefree living of the Roaring Twenties, you’ll love visiting the BoardWalk in Disney World. Reminiscent of the colorful, vintage, turn-of-the-century coastal sights like Coney Island and Atlantic City, this quarter mile promenade truly is a magical experience. From Surrey bikes, to vintage fair games to fishing there are lots of things to do at Disney Boardwalk with kids.
To find the BoardWalk, go to the Disney map and look for a tiny island tucked away from the bustle of Disney World. You will find it located in the southwest of Orlando, right outside the back of Epcot, between the UK and France at the International Gateway. Below you will learn all about what to do at Disney BoardWalk when visiting with the whole family!
Things to do at Disney BoardWalk
Disney BoardWalk Shops
The BoardWalk is home to many shops to roam through, explore and spend money (and even Disney Dollars, if you have them)! Read on to discover all that there is to do at the Disney BoardWalk stores.
Disney’s Character Carnival
From plushies to apparel and even housewares, there is plenty of merchandise that make the best souvenirs for those who love all things Disney. And when there’s golf wear available too, even parents will be able to indulge to their heart’s content.
Screen Door General Store
This is your one-stop destination for groceries, snacks, gifts, stationery, jewelry, and really, anything else you might have forgotten at home! However, it’s the bakery section with its Disney-themed goodies that really makes the Screen Door General Store shine.
Thimbles & Threads
Located a couple doors down from the Screen Door is a place that can only be described as a haven for Disney fanatics. With Mickey ears, clothing, bags and more, commemorate your visit to the Boardwalk in Disney World with some exclusive merch from Thimbles & Threads! The Pin Station, in particular, is a must visit for those looking to expand their collection.
Characterized by its elegant marble flooring and bronze dolphins, Wyland Galleries truly is a gem that stands out among Disney Boardwalk’s other shops. Hidden in a nook by the entrance, the gallery has attracted thousands of visitors since the time the Boardwalk opened in 1986. Inspired by marine life, the walls are filled with breathtaking art, paintings, sculptures and jewelry.
Disney BoardWalk Hotels and Accommodation
Located just 0.18 km away, the luxurious Boardwalk Inn provides breathtaking views of Crescent Lake. Guests also get to access the Luna pool (with kiddie pool available), Fantasia Gardens and Fairways mini golf course, playground, Disney BoardWalk arcade and a sports center. In the evenings, head to the Community Halls for their complimentary “Movies Under the Stars.” Enjoy jogging trails and boardwalk campfire activities.And if you’re lucky enough to visit during Disney boardwalk Christmas, you’ll even get to catch a glimpse of the resort’s spectacular life-size gingerbread house in the hotel lobby!
These deluxe villa resorts are situated around 0.3 km from the BoardWalk, and are knows for offering some of the most beautiful views of the BoardWalk scenery. Standard room sleep from 2-5 adults with 2 bedroom suites sleeping up to 9 adults. There are also Club Level and Disney Deluxe Villas available too – sleeping from 5 to 12. They also allow access to the Luna pool, golf course, arcade, fitness center and the other facilities listed above.
Remember: Fairway Miniature Golf and Fantasia Gardens are located near Disney’s Boardwalk In and Villas too, with walk-ups allowed!
0.55 km away, this deluxe resort is inspired by casual yet elegant holidaying. While staying here, kids can dive into the Stormalong Bay that is shared with the Yacht Club next door, and have breakfast with Minnie and friends at the Cape May Cafe. There are also arcades, a pirate adventure cruise, and boat rentals to explore. And don’t forget to indulge in some fine dining, Disney BoardWalk style, at the Yachtsman Steakhouse before the end of your trip!
This sophisticated Disney BoardWalk resort is centered around a New England theme and is characterised by coastal and nautical vibes. With its air of stately grandeur, it’s definitely better suited for families with older kids and teens. When it comes to recreation, however, it is the same as at the Beach Club, which is situated right beside it, very close to the BoardWalk (0.58 km). One big, noteworthy bonus is that this resort offers dog-friendly accommodations so you can bring your whole family along!
These deluxe resort hotels are sister accommodations for those who would like a fairy-tale like experience to elevate their Disney hotel stay experience. While there, kids get to laze in the sun at one of the 5 pools, game at the arcade, burn some energy at the playground, and swing away the mini golf course. There’s also a dizzying array of dining options to explore, like the breakfast buffets at the Fresh Mediterranean market, decadent seafood at Todd English’s Bluezoo, hearty steaks at Shula’s Steak House, and more. Parents who want some time off can drop the kids off at Camp Dolphin, an activity center for kids aged 4 through 12.
Quick tip: if you visit the spa, Steak House, Bluezoo or trattoria, you get 2 hours for free at Camp Dolphin!
Disney Boardwalk Entertainment
What’s there to do at Disney’s Boardwalk besides shopping and dining? Keep reading to learn about the many ways you and your family can enjoy yourselves to the fullest!
Stroll along the Disney Boardwalk Promenade
The BoardWalk in Disney is a perfect spot to relax. Enjoy the view of the sparkling lights, and watch the sunset and twinkle of the stars. This is a special place to unwind and really soak in the magic.
Just Keep Pedaling on Surrey Bikes
What is a Surrey Bike you ask? They’re multi-person bikes for up to 4 adults, and they come with a basket in front for small children and a loud bell for them to ring! They’re perfect for exploring Crescent Lake, and they make a great photo op. They’re available outside the rear lobby exit of Disney’s BoardWalk Inn & Villas.
Be Mesmerized by Street Performers
Disney World’s Boardwalk at night is a great place to watch amazing jugglers, magicians, stilt walkers and so much else that will dazzle your entire family. Remember to bring your camera for pictures of all the magic!
Try your hand at BoardWalk Games
From vintage fair games to basketball, trying out the classic BoardWalk games is one activity you don’t want to miss. Score a toy at the Lob-A-Lobster or Hoop Toss, and show your kids who’s really the coolest!
Fishing is a great activity to do with your kids, and a lot of fun to try for the very first time at the BoardWalk in Disney World. Just book a 2 or 4-hour slot on the boats, and set sail!
Move to the Groove at the Atlantic Dance Hall
This one is exclusively for mom, dad and adults over 21, so make sure the kids are taken care of before you head to the Art Deco style ballroom nightclub at the BoardWalk! Free to enter on most nights, its the place to be after the sun goes down to show off your best moves and get your groove on.
Music Battle at Jellyrolls
Another adult’s only hangout, this is a place that is constantly brimming with energy and fun. Jellyrolls features two dueling pianos, and is popular for leaving patrons breathless with laughter! Note that guests are required to pay a cover charge upon entry.
Parking at Disney BoardWalk
Unless you’re a guest, you will need to make a resort or dinner reservation at one of the hotels to park your vehicle. And if self-parking is unavailable, guests may also need to pay for valet parking.
Parking is also available at the overflow lot near the BoardWalk Resorts and at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, a short distance away. The parking lots do offer a free 3-hour parking pass.
Pro tip: Skip the hassle of finding parking altogether, and take a cab, Uber, or Lyft!
Best Disney BoardWalk Restaurants for Families
If you are on a Disney dining plan, we have some good news for you! Be it table or counter service, a tap of your MagicBand is all you need to indulge in any and all of the dining options available. Table service restaurants include Trattoria Al Forno, and the Big River Grille & Brewing Works, while the Pizza Window and BoardWalk Ice Cream offer counter service. Some popular joints like the ESPN Club, Flying Fish, The To-Go Cart and Funnel Cake Cart are temporarily closed according to the official Disney website, but are expecting to be up and running shortly!
This Quick Service traditional Disney-themed bakery features a huge variety of baked treats that will leave you spoiled for choice. From Mickey-shaped cupcakes, mouthwatering snacks and sandwiches, to Belle’s dress in the form of a cake, there is so much to try that you’ll likely end up visiting twice! Bring your Disney resort refillable mug with you to enjoy the soda fountains and free hot drinks at refill stations.
Trattoria al Forno
It’s true what they say – Italian food is for the soul; and so is this wholesome cafe! Trattoria al Forno’s open kitchen, stone oven pizzas, “Create Your Own” options for kids, and chilled out atmosphere make it a great place to start your day, or unwind after a long day at the parks. Open for breakfast and dinner. Opt for the Bon Voyage Adventure Breakfast to get a chance to dine with the Characters!
Funnel Cake Cart
Fresh, hot and oh-so-sweet, this classic carnival treat is exactly what you need as you saunter along the lake. If you would rather make your own, you can buy their Funnel Cake Gift Kit and take some Disney magic home with you!
Big River Grille & Brewing Works
Perfect for a nice American lunch or dinner with the family, this Disney BoardWalk restaurant has a kid’s menu for your minions to feast on and a Shirley Temple for sipping on. Adults will appreciate watching the brewmaster do their thing through the glass windows at the microbrewery!
BoardWalk Ice Cream
Is any meal complete without dessert? The answer is NO! So grab a scoop of your favorite flavor of ice cream or treat yourself to a milkshake as you amble along the BoardWalk at this Quick Service location. Even those with dietary restrictions and preferences can feel free to indulge because there are plenty of plant-based and sugar-free options to pick from as well!
A slice a day keeps the sad away, so pop by the Pizza Window and grab some deliciousnous to accompany your stroll around the lake. Picking up something to sip on is a smart idea too! Open for lunch and dinner.
When it comes to snacking during family vacations, nothing beats some good old fashioned deep-fried food! Drop by the To-Go Cart keosk to keep those hunger pangs at bay with dogs, hot dogs, fries and more. Don’t forget to also grab a drink while there!
BoardWalk Joe’s Marvelous Margaritas
Despite what its name suggests, there is a lot more for kids to enjoy here than you would think! Kids will enjoy snacks and drinks like Mickey pretzels, nachos and smoothies. Parents, on the other hand, will love sampling the watermelon margaritas and spiked pineapple smoothies!
This is the perfect place for the sports-obsessed family. With nearly 100 monitors tuned in to 30 different channels, TVs even in the bathroom stalls, food, fun, loud cheers and excitement all round, the ESPN Club is one place you don’t want to miss! Make sure you drop by the Sports Central television and radio studio that showcases some of the greatest broadcasts. If you’re lucky, you might even get to catch a live interview with a celebrity!
If you love your fish fresh, and your meat well-done, this gourmet restaurant is where you need to be! Flying Fish prides itself on its sustainable fishing methods, elaborate menus, and stellar atmosphere. Just make sure you make advanced reservations and follow their dress code if you plan to dine here.
Disney BoardWalk Frequently Asked Questions
Is Disney’s BoardWalk open?
Yes, the BoardWalk in Disney World is currently open to visitors!
Is Disney BoardWalk the same as Disney Springs?
Not to be confused with Disney Springs, the BoardWalk is actually part of Disney’s BoardWalk Inn Resort and Disney’s BoardWalk Villas. In fact, the distance from Disney Springs to Disney BoardWalk is about 1.5 miles.
Do you have to be a guest to go to Disney BoardWalk?
You do not have to be a guest to visit Disney BoardWalk. It is completely free and open to the public.
Does the Disney Skyliner go to the BoardWalk?
The aerial gondola, Disney Skyliner does not stop at the BoardWalk, but worry not, because it does stop at the International Gateway station at Epcot, which is only a short walk away. It interconnects the Caribbean Beach, Riviera, Pop Century, and Art of Animation resorts, and Epcot and Hollywood Studios parks, so hop on for a free ride and take in all the beautiful views while you can!
Quick Note: The Disney BoardWalk Skyliner will not be operational between Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, Disney’s Riviera Resort and Epcot between January 23 and 28, 2022.
Does it cost to go to Disney BoardWalk?
Disney BoardWalk is entirely free to enter and look about. Only a few attractions have a cover charge, making it one of the best budget-friendly places to visit at Disney.
How to get to Disney BoardWalk?
Directions to Disney’s BoardWalk depend on how you plan to get there. Here are a few:
Because of its location next to Crescent Lake, you can always choose to arrive at the BoardWalk by foot. Situated 10 minutes from Epcot or Disney’s Hollywood studios, it makes for a pleasant stroll with the family.
If you are driving in, take the I-4 to Exit 64-B (Epcot), then the 2nd exit for Epcot Resorts/Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Once turning right at the fourth traffic signal, you will find the BoardWalk on your left.
If you are planning on staying at Disney, simply hitch a ride on one of Disney’s World buses to reach BoardWalk Inn and Villas directly.
Floating there on a Friendship Boat is another fun (and relaxing) way to get there. They transport visitors between Hollywood Studios and Epcot’s International Gateway, with stops at the BoardWalk along the way.
What are the BoardWalk Timings?
While Disney BoardWalk Hours are usually from 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., the Disney BoardWalk restaurants, entertainment and shops may extend their timings up to 2 AM. So, make sure you look up individual timings of the places you specifically wish to visit while there.
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