Staying at a Florida Disney resort can be a magical experience that elevates your vacation from good to unforgettable. However, picking one can be an ordeal, from choosing one that fits your budget and a theme you like to considering transportation, accessibility options, and amenities available.
Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort is perfect for those who don’t see palm trees daily while remaining affordable. That said, you’ll have to ensure it fits your needs, as this resort isn’t for everybody.
- What is Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort?
- Caribbean Beach Resort Rooms
- Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort Dining
- Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort Entertainment
- Four Playgrounds
- Old Port Royale
- Beaches at Each Village
- Classic Disney Movies Under the Stars
- Volleyball, Fishing Excursions, Pirate Adventures, and More
- Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort Amenities
- Frequently Asked Questions
- The Bottom Line: Is Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort Worth It?
Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort is a moderate resort, as it’s a resort that sits somewhere between value resorts and deluxe resorts in terms of luxury and affordability. It’s themed after the Caribbean, with six distinct “villages” themed after different islands, with the main area Old Port Royale serving as the “port of entry” with most of the resort’s amenities.
Old Port Royale, Barbados, Martinique, Trinidad, Aruba, and Jamaica each have their own area with brightly colored buildings and different color palettes that distinguish them from the other regions. Jamaica has yellow facilities with light blue roofs, Aruba has pink and purple buildings, and so on.
A small artificial island also hosts several secluded, relaxing areas and a Caribbean Cay playground. Depending on your location, you may have to walk through this area to reach the central amenity area of Old Port Royale.
There are 2109 rooms available; most are 300 sq ft each, slightly smaller than other moderate resorts, which are around 314 sq ft for each room. Most rooms have two Queen beds and a pull-out Murphy bed for guests under nine. You can also request a crib for a child under three, free of charge.
Cots cost $15 a night and an additional $25 charge for every adult guest after the first two.
You can upgrade to a preferred location room which will put you in a village and building close to Old Port Royale, which can be a significant upgrade to cut down on steps. If you can’t do stairs, request a room on the first floor as there are no elevators.
Rooms have a Standard View, a Water View that looks out over the lake or pool, King Bedrooms, connecting suites, and Pirate-themed rooms themed after the Pirates of the Caribbean that come with both Standard and Water Views.
If you want a Pirate-themed room, keep in mind these rooms are the farthest from the central hub of Old Port Royale and that the ship bed frames can’t accommodate a full mattress, which can be acceptable for children, but adults can find it uncomfortable.
If you want the Murphy bed for an additional guest, ensure you request it when booking, as not all rooms have this extra bed space.
All rooms have a flat-screen TV, minifridge, iron and ironing board, single-serve coffeemakers, a safe that can accommodate 15” laptops, and a shower with two sinks so one person can get ready while another shower.
This resort likes to serve a mix of Latin/Caribbean/American food, so there’s something for everyone, those with adventurous palettes and those who want familiar foods. However, the resort lacks character and fine dining, so if you’re looking for something a little more refined, head to the nearby Riviera Resort to satisfy your need for the finer things.
Centertown Market is the central hub for food. It’s not quite a food court-style dining, like at the value resorts, but it’s close. Breakfast and lunch are picked up at a window while dinner is served. It’s in the Disney Dining Plan, but if you didn’t opt-in for that, then most meals will run you around fifteen dollars.
You can also mobile order take-out, which might be the best use of this dining option, as it’s fast and there’s no need to wait in line, especially when it’s busy as it’s a single-queue system.
There’s also a Grab and Go section perfect for quick snacks and grabbing food on the go. While it’s not a replacement for a meal, it’s great for grabbing a quick bite before heading into the parks.
Spyglass Grill is a quick-service restaurant near Barbados Village. Unless you’re nearby and want to eat, it’s not worth a separate trip, as it offers much of the same dining as Centertown Market, with some flair. You can check out their menu to see if it interests you; otherwise, stick to the cheaper market option.
Sebastian’s Bistro is known for seafood and American food with a Caribbean twist. However, it might not be worth the price point, even if it is the only sit-down restaurant at the resort.
Centertown Market is cheaper and has similar food, making it the more reasonable option. If you want to use your Disney Plan Dining credits, head to Riviera Resort and Topolino’s Terrace to put them to good use.
Of course, if you’re a big fan of seafood or want to check it out, it’s worth a meal.
Banana Cabana is the pool bar at the resort and is located between the main feature pool and Sebastian’s Bistro. It’s the best-themed restaurant in the resort and has plenty of snacks and drinks for hungry guests.
It’s dine-in only for food, but you can take your drinks and lounge around the pool while the kids play.
Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort Entertainment
This resort has tons to see and do, and it’s one of the best Disney resorts for families with younger children, as the pirate-themed water play area has a zero-entry pool, multiple slides, water spouts, and a big bucket that dumps every couple of minutes.
Six Pools and a Great Water Play Area
Naturally, this area has tons to see and do regarding water. Besides each village’s beach, there’s a pool, the main feature pool in Old Port Royale, and a water play area right next to the main feature pool. This makes a total of six pools in the resort, so many options exist for families.
Fuentes de Morro, and Pirate-Themed Play Area
Fuentes de Morro is the name of the main feature pool in the hub area of the resort. It’s styled after an old-school Spanish fort and has two water slides, water cannons, a whirlpool area, and waterfalls. A ton of pool activities are held every day, so check the schedule to see what works for you.
There’s a nearby play area for children under 48”, so if you have older kids, they won’t be able to play in the pirate area. It features three smaller slides, a bucket, and a small pool. Younger kids might love it more than the play areas in the deluxe resorts, making this resort great for families.
Quiet Pools in Each Area
The main feature pool can get very busy, especially on hot afternoons and evenings, so if you’re looking for a calmer experience, check out your local village pool. Chances are it’s less busy than the feature pool while offering a refreshing experience.
Remember that these pools don’t offer towels to their guests, while the main pool does. However, you can take your room towels and ask Housekeeping for more towels.
Barbados, Jamaica, and Trinidad each have small playgrounds on their beaches for children to play, but there’s a more extensive playground at Caribbean Cay where all children can enjoy playing.
You have to keep an eye on kids at each playground, so you just can’t leave them to their own devices, but it can be a great way to get them to burn off some energy or make friends on their vacation.
Old Port Royale
Taking your time to explore the central hub of Old Port Royale is a great way to spend time. There are typically vendors and games out on the streets, and you can enjoy some of your favorite pirate characters walking around.
Of course, there are some places you should drop by to see everything the resort has to offer.
Calypso Trading Post is named after the mythical Mediterranean island (which doesn’t make much sense for a Caribbean resort) and is your typical Disney shopping experience. It includes Disney souvenirs, resort souvenirs, travel essentials, and themed clothing, everything you’d expect to find in a resort store.
Goombay Games is an arcade in Old Port Royale where everyone can enjoy pirate-themed games and play. You have to buy tokens, but it’s a great place to take kids and can be fun for everyone in the family.
If one of your family members needs to get some work done, they can head to the lobby. They have many outlets, spacious tables, chairs, and singing pirates. If they don’t mind the noise, it can be a great place to focus, and since guests only go in and out during check-in and check-out, it’s not as hectic as you might think.
Beaches at Each Village
Well, it is called the Caribbean Beach Resort. Each village has its beach with hammocks and other amenities. While enjoying the sun and sand, you can’t get in the water. Swimming in the lake is illegal, so you’ll have to head to the village pool to get some water.
Nightly Beach Campfires
Weather permitting, there’s a campfire on the beach at Martinique Village every night. Kids can roast smores, sing along to campfire songs, tell spooky stories, and so much more! It’s an excellent way for them to play with other kids while on vacation, and you can sit back and stuff your face with smores by the fire.
Classic Disney Movies Under the Stars
If the weather allows, you can head to the main feature pool in Old Port Royale for a classic Disney movie under the stars. You can ask for the schedule to see what movies your family would be interested in seeing, or you can head out one night and be surprised.
Volleyball, Fishing Excursions, Pirate Adventures, and More
You can enjoy many other activities at this resort, like the volleyball court for classic beach volleyball, a fishing excursion out on the lake, or sending the kids off on a pirate adventure while you get some alone time. Fishing excursions and the pirate adventure cost extra, but you can get volleyballs using your park wristband for free, so you can easily find something to do.
Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort Amenities
The friendly staff always welcomes guests, and you can ask about anything you don’t know. The amenities for the resort include:
- Laundry (self-serve) and Dry Cleaning
- Parking at each village
- Concierge services
- Luggage and merchandise services
- Beach towels and sun umbrellas
- Online check-in, late check out
- Boat rentals
- Bike and Surrey bike rentals
- Early entry into theme parks
Suppose there’s one aspect where this resort struggles, its transportation. There are bus stops at each village, but all those stops tend to make the bus ride longer. Plus, if you’re at the end of the route, there might not be enough room for you on the bus. It may be best to bring your car to drive around this spread-out resort.
You can use rideshares, like Uber, Lyft, or Minnie Vans, to get to the parks, but those have their drawbacks, like high prices or dropping you off at the entrance where you’ll have to wait to get in.
The Skyline stations offer easy access to Hollywood Studios and Epcot, but depending on the attractions you’re going to, it may be faster to take the bus. You’ll have to plan and consider your transportation options to see what works for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort has its perks and disappointments, which all come down to what you’re looking for in a resort for your Disney vacation.
Does Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort have a complimentary breakfast?
No, you’ll have to buy breakfast from one of their restaurants if you want to eat out.
How far is the Caribbean Resort from the Magic Kingdom?
It’s four miles by road, but given all the bus stops between Caribbean Beach Resort and the Magic Kingdom, you can expect around a forty-five-minute bus ride, or even longer if it’s busy.
Budget plenty of time if you’re planning on taking the bus to the Magic Kingdom from this resort, and expect some delays if it’s hectic.
Are the pools heated?
Yes, the seven pools and the pirate water play area are heated, making them comfortable, even when the weather isn’t the best for swimming. The whirlpool is also obviously heated and is kept at a hot temperature for guests to relax.
How much time does it take for transportation between the Caribbean Resort and the theme parks?
There are no transportation options to get to other resorts quickly, except the Riviera resort, which is right next door, so you can easily walk over. The Skyliner stations, one in the Riviera resort to Epcot and one in the Caribbean Beach Resort in Jamaica Village to Hollywood Studios make getting to these parks easy, if not always practical.
Bus rides around the resort don’t follow a set route, and there are so many stops there’s little doubt that it would take less time to walk than to ride the bus unless you have luggage or are bushed from walking. It’s better to walk around the resort.
Taking the bus to theme parks can be hit or miss, as the number of stops and how busy they are can be a problem. Buses run every twenty minutes from an hour before the parks open to an hour after they close at night.
Parking is free at the park for resort guests, so that may be the best bet for those in the Caribbean Beach Resort.
Can you walk to any other resorts?
Riviera is next door, and this deluxe resort offers a lot, like upscale dining, a great spa, and different activities. You can also access their Skyliner station or take advantage of their pools once you get tired of pirates.
The Bottom Line: Is Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort Worth It?
It can be hard to say. While this moderate resort is more like a value resort with a better pool, it has some points that are hard to deny, like the play area for younger children, beaches you can enjoy, and tons of secluded places to relax play areas to bring children.
The ones who’ll get the most out of this resort are families with younger children who love pirates and can bring a car to the resort. Children under 48” can play in the play area, and the vehicle will make transportation around the resorts and parks much more accessible.
That said, you can still make transportation work without a car, and older children can enjoy this resort, too, depending on your situation and family.