The Caribbean Beach Resort was the first of three resorts that I stayed in during my recent trip to Walt Disney World. A moderate-priced Disney resort evokes the calm and serenity of a beach vacation yet includes a resort-style pool that’s sure to excite the kids. With its expansive grounds and lush, tropical landscaping, the Caribbean Beach Resort never felt crowded.
What I loved about the Caribbean Beach Resort
- The Pool–The Fuentes del Morro pool is a kid draw. With a pair of water slides, a couple of water canons and zero-entry, it wowed my boys, 8 and 11-years-old.
- Lots of kids activities–I found an arcade, bikes for rent, guided fishing and a pirate-themed cruise just for kids. It seemed impossible to find bored kids at the Caribbean Beach Resort.
What I wanted at the Caribbean Beach Resort
- It’s too big–Since registration, bell services and the Magical Express bus stop is at the Custom House, it needs an internal bus to get around. The Old Port Royale building houses the dining and pool area.
I didn’t use the registration area during my stay since I checked into my room before my arrival. When my room became available, I got a text with my room number. I recommend using this option.
I found the Magical Express (complimentary bus transportation to and from the Orlando airport) efficient. Though next time I will carry on my luggage into the Magical Express bus. My luggage was delivered to room 5 to 8 hours after my flight landed and I needed the sunscreen I packed in my checked bag.
Next time I will claim my checked bags and put them on the Magical Express with me. Just don’t use the luggage tags that Disney includes with your Magic Bands.
Since my room wasn’t ready, I left my carry-on with the bell services.The Caribbean Beach Resort delivered my Magical Express checked bags to my room but my carry-on luggage remained at bell services.
When I got back to the resort, I had to make a special trip to the Custom House to claim my bag. The trip took 30 minutes and that’s 30 minutes not swimming in the pool. Bummer.
The Caribbean Beach Resort ($$) is a moderate resort4.1 miles from Epcot. The expansive property includes seven villages with a total of 2,112 rooms along the shores of the 45-acre Barefoot Bay.
Each village provides a bus stop for the internal Caribbean Beach Resort Bus and the park buses. Also each village features a guest laundry, a white-sand beach and a large pool. Nice feature for avoiding the kids at the resort’s main pool at the Old Port Royale.
I found plenty of self-parking. We used the Walt Disney World’s complimentary shuttle service to get to the parks from the Caribbean Beach Resort. I found the bus transportation fairly regular though crowded enough to require standing at peak times.
The Caribbean Beach Resort features complimentary Wi-Fi.
The island colonial architecture and tropical landscaping offer lots of privacy and I rarely saw other guests. The Caribbean Beach Resort gives you an island vacation in the middle of Disney one.
I first visited Caribbean Beach Resort in April 2016. Then I stayed at the Caribbean Beach Resort again in June 2018.
My Room at the Caribbean Beach Resort
I reserved for a standard roomwith two double beds and a fun twin trundle on the first floor room of the Martinique Village. Each village features several buildings and I found the layout confusing and hard to navigate when hauling a week’s worth of luggage for a family.
The room features 314 square-feet with a semi-private vanity area and separate tub and toilet area. I found two double beds and a pull-out trundle that my boys fought over. The room sleeps five and not much room for a pack-n-play. Enter the room from an outdoor corridor and Caribbean Beach Resort doesn’t offer a private balcony or patio.
Included in the Caribbean Beach Room
- Small round table and two chairs
- Ceiling Fan
- Charging stationwith two outlets and two USB plugs
- Coffee maker
- Hair dryer
- In-room safe
- Iron and ironing board
- Flat-screen television
- Deluxe ice bucket with real glassware
I didn’t find an alarm clock.
My Bathroom at the Caribbean Beach Resort
The bathroom area features louvered doors that extends the island feel and allows for a separate changing area. Great for a Mom who wants to dress before the kids wake up. Tub and toilet are in a separate room with a standard tub enclosure and decorative shower curtain.
The vanity area features two separate sinks with a granite countertop, decorative lighting and mirror. I liked the lighted make-up mirror that’s mounted next to the sink and the decorative tissue cover and soap dish. I found standard toiletries: facial bar, bath bar, shampoo and conditioner.
Next to the vanity was a long closet rod and the luggage rack. I found the lack of an official closet a serious draw-back. The vanity area gets messy with kids quick.
The Caribbean Beach Resort offers pirate-themed rooms for an extra charge. The pirate-themed rooms have two double beds with sleeping for four, no trundle.
9 Things for Family Fun at the Caribbean Beach Resort
- 6 Pools–The Fuentes del Morro pool with its Spanish colonial-themed fort with a pair water cannons and two water slides, one over 80-feet long, is the main attraction. I especially liked the zero-entry so I can watch my kids and get my toes wet without putting on a swimsuit. Find five additional pools across the resort.
- Water Play Area–For the younger kids, I found a separate water play area for kids under 48”. Lots of lounge chairs and the Banana Cabana Pool Bar for your favorite cocktail, it’s the best.
- Pirate Adventure Cruise--Caribbean Beach Resort offers a cruise for kids aged 4 to 12 that departs at 9:30 a.m. from the marina. Reservations recommended.
- Guided Fishing Excursions–Take the kids fishing with a guided trip with all the gear and bait.
- White sand beach–Next to the Barefoot Bay find a beach.
- Campfire–Caribbean Beach Resort lights up a campfire nightly.
- Movies under the Stars–Let the kids watch their favorite movies.
- Sand volleyball court–Play a game at the Martinique Village.
- Jogging Trail–Run along the .6-mile course with views of Barefoot Bay.
- Arcade–Find itat the Old Port Royale area next to the main pool.
Where to Eat at the Caribbean Beach Resort
With a quick-service food court and casual dining options, feeding the family is easy. I used the grab-in-go section that features sweets, healthy snacks, drinks and even individual, alcoholic beverages that can be enjoyed by the pool.
Since the weather was perfect, we took our purchases outside and ate on the large patio area. I found a table, though there should be more. I got the last one.
What I loved about this area is the outdoor entertainment located near by. The kids could watch the outdoor movie or participate in the campfire activities. I watched my kids while I enjoyed a cocktail without having to sit right next to them.
Transferring Resorts During Your Stay
I changed resorts three times during my five-day/four-night stay at Walt Disney World. Walt Disney World will transfer your bags free of cost. I packed up our bags and rolled them down to luggage services that transferred them in the afternoon, usually between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m.
If I wanted a bell hop to grab my bags from my room I would have to stay with my bags until the bell hop arrived. I found this inconvenient and brought them to luggage services myself, located next to the main entrance.
The Caribbean Beach Resort is undergoing a renovation during 2018. Check the resort’s website for up-to-date information.
During our stay in June 2018 the Old Port Royale Food Court, Shutters at Old Port Royale and the Calypso Trading Post were all closed. In their place I found a couple of food trucks parked near the pool. The arcade is also closed during the renovations.
The pool remains open and the same. The movies and actives have been moved to Caribbean Cay. Construction noise starts around 9 a.m. and runs to nightfall.
Not only is the Caribbean Beach Resort a construction zone, a brand-new property is going in across Barefoot Bay. Rivera Resort is a new DVC property with a tentative completion date of late Fall 2019.
The Caribbean Beach Resort will also be serviced by the new aerial tram, the Skyway. With 10-person gondola cars, Caribbean Beach Resort will connect with Epcot and Hollywood Studios. Along with the Caribbean Beach, the Art of Animation and Pop Century value resorts will also be on the new aerial tram line.
See all the projects to be completed along with the Grand Opening of the new Star Wars-themed area, Galaxy’s Edge, in Hollywood Studios in late Fall 2019.
Looking for more reviews and information?
I’ve stayed at the Pop Century Resort, the Art of Animation Resort, theCoronado Springs Resortand the Grand Floridan Resort and Spa.
Looking for off-property resorts, I’ve stayed at the Wyndham’s Lake Buena Vista, the Best Western Lake Buena Vista and the Mystic Dunes Resort and Golf Club.
I use the Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World by Bob Sehlinger and Len Testa for every trip. It provides a comprehensive guide, packed with information.
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Know before you go:
- Towels are available at the Fuentes del Morro Pool only.
- Lifeguards are on-duty at some of the pools. No posted schedeule.
- Allow extra time for bus transportation at the Caribbean Beach Resort.The resort includes eight bus stops.
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