What to do all day at the Polynesian
Well we all know it’s not cheap to stay at the Polynesian resort so why consider it just a place to sleep?
There are days that I just stay at the resort and don’t even go into the parks. What do I do all day? Well there is more to do there than can be done in one day.
Some days I will start off with a jog over to the Grand Floridian Spa & Health Club. Since it is located halfway between the Grand Floridian and the Polynesian it is as easily accessed for Polynesian guests as it is for Grand Floridian guests. Spa services charge but the health club is free to Polynesian guests. There are even large hot tubs that you can use as a Polynesian guests. Just make sure you use the hot tubs located inside the spa and not at the Grand Floridian pool areas.
Starting September 19, 2011 the Spa building will be closed for 18 months while they do construction on the new Grand Floridian DVC. The fintess center will still be open to Polynesian and Grand Floridian guests.
After a nice workout and hot tub soak, maybe take a nice walk around the Polynesian grounds and learn the paths, check out the 3 beach areas and then go have breakfast. Not only do you have a choice of a sit down breakfast at Kona Café but if you want something quicker or that you can take back to your room you can go to Captain Cook’s. Both locations have the famous Tonga Toast. Also with being on the Monorail you have easy access to the Grand Floridian and Contemporary for food. For Character breakfast you can go to ‘Ohana (at the Polynesian), Chef Mickey’s (at the Contemporary) or Supercalifragilistic Breakfast (Grand Floridian).
If you want something else to do early in the morning than check out the fishing excursions. It’s a 2 hour private excursion (catch and release) that you can do right from the Polynesian. Its also a nice way to check out the lagoon or Bay Lake early before the activity of the day starts. For more information call (407) WDW BASS.
When things get hot in the afternoon I enjoy going to my favorite pool in Disney World. The Polynesian’s Nanea Volcano Pool. I have been to the Boardwalk, Yacht Club, Swan, Dolphin and Animal Kingdom Lodge pools and for me nothing beats the water slide, zero entry next to the beach and view of the Polynesian’s pool. It is so popular that a common problem is people from outside the resort trying to use it. They have off and on used a wristband system to identify resort guests and lately it seems they are using it more. This is my favorite place to relax, watch the boats on the Seven Seas lagoon and get a tropical drink for the best bartenders in Disney World. Maybe sure to say Aloha to Tim and Steve if they are at the Barefoot Bar next to the pool. Ask for the Aunty version of the Mai Tai.
Now with the cabanas there is another way to spend the day relaxing next to the Polynesian’s pool. I know when we go to Maui there are many times we have rented a cabana so we had a place to relax in the shade while enjoying the pool and now they have two great setups available to rent. There is one Premium Cabana and two standard cabanas (more info on my pools page). The nice thing if you are staying Club Level is that the building you are in is right next to the pool and you have easy access to snacks, drinks and even beer from the Club Level Lounge.
If the pool is too active for you but you want to relax on the beach you can grab a swinging chair, hammock or a lounge on any of the 3 beaches. Many times I actually rather sit out on the beach when I am enjoying the pool. The sand on the Disney beaches almost seems fake but it actually came from when they dug out the lagoon and lake.
The beaches are sometimes the location for day time activities run by the resort and many times there is a vollyball net set up to use. Just ask activities for a ball.
Other activities that go on at the resort might be found at the pool area or inside the Great Ceremonial House. Besides maybe running into Auntie Kau’i giving free hula lessons (see article for some history behind those at the Polynesian) but a list of other activities might be Arts and Crafts, Learning how to make a Kukui nut necklace and the story behind it, Decorating with Hawaiian stamps, Learn Lau printing, Learn how to Lauhala weave, Make your own candy lei, Treasure Hunt, Arcade Challange and more.
So it’s about lunch time and you don’t want to leave the resort. What options do you have? Well if you want to just enjoy your lagoon view from your room or just got up from a nap you can order from the in-room dining menu. My favorite place for lunch is Kona Café but make sure you get there before 3:00 PM. They close from 3 to 5 to get ready for dinner service. The sushi bar opens at 5:00 but I remember getting a menu for sushi from there when eating at Kona Café for lunch.
If you want some quicker food you can go to Captain Cook’s. In the past Captain Cooks was your typical burger, fries and snacks kind of thing but since it was redone and the new menu was introduced they have many different items available that are much better than what use to be offered. I have tried everything that they offer and I thought it was all tasty. Many times I even order something like the flat bread pizzas or an aloha pork sandwich and take it back to the club lounge to enjoy. Don’t miss out on the self serve Dole Whip!! This is the only other place in Disney World you will find Dole Whips besides Adventure Land!
So lunch is done, now what to do? Well you could go back to the pool or you could head over to the marina and rent one of the watercraft to go out on the lagoon or over to Bay Lake. If you want an exciting ride but limited to two people you can take a Sea Racer out on the lake. If you want something a little more relaxing or to fit the whole family then I suggest renting a pontoon boat and heading over to Bay lake. We have enjoyed renting a pontoon boat in the past and taking some new found friends out on the water for an afternoon to go over to Bay lake and check out the now closed Discovery Island or where River Country use to be. If you are into something more exciting on the water you can monorail over to the Contemporary and rent jet ski watercraft or even parasail.
When things start to cool down it might be a good time to check out the resort paths by renting a Surrey bike. You can get a 2 or 4 seater and see if you can get lost in the garden areas of the resort. Many like to hop on the resort monorail and go over to the Grand Floridian or Contemporary to eat or shop.
Evening time at the resort brings on all sorts of fun and exciting things. The first might be coming across a Polynesian dancer at the entrance of the resort throwing fire around. On Tuesdays to Saturdays you can see the torch lighting ceremony at 6:00 PM.
After that you can head off to anything from a quick dinner at Captain Cooks, a great selection of Polynesian inspired food at Kona Café or Family Style stuffing at ‘Ohana. Kona Café and ‘Ohana are known throughout Disney World as places not to miss. If you really want to immerse yourself into the feeling of traveling to an island in the Pacific than book a dinner at one of the two Spirit of Aloha dinner shows located at Luau Cove. I have always enjoyed the food and the show but if you have smaller kids I suggest going to the earlier show. The late one can run late and after a long day in the parks and a full stomach you might end up taking a nap in your plate. Also if you do the early one you can stick around for one of the best things to do at the resort.
So what is the best way to end your day? Sitting on the Polynesian beach watching the sun set and getting ready to view the Electrical Water Pageant. The water pageant was created for the Polynesian opening ceremonies on October 24, 1971. It has played ever since and always starts at the Polynesian before moving on to the other resorts. The best part with it starting at the Polynesian is that right after you can watch the fireworks. There are also Specialty Cruises available for dinning or just viewing fireworks.
So now that you have had a full day at the resort, is it time to go to bed? Maybe but if you need one last thing before you go to bed I suggest going over to Captain Cook’s and getting a Dole Whip from the self serve dispenser. The Polynesian is one of only a handful of Disney resorts that has 24 hour food service and while the grill closes at 11:00 PM there is always drinks, and snacks available. This is great for when you get back from the parks late and are starving for something.
Something for the Keiki (kids)
Looking for a little something special for the kids visit to Walt DIsney World? Here is something that might add some magic to your kids visit.
Three Fairies Couture is a whimsical world of costumes, princesses, and fairies. We make tutus, tutu dresses and costumes, capes and more for you and your little princess. We are a local Kissimmee company so you can save shipping costs if you live near or are traveling to Walt Disney World. We even offer free delivery to all Florida Disney hotels. Check out our Facebook page for pictures and more information. www.facebook.com/ThreeFairiesCouture. You can also email us at
for more product information and to place orders.
Disney Cast get $5 off their first order!
All orders are handmade and custom made for the best fit and selection.
My favorite time of a trip is the arrival day. I just enjoy driving into Disney World and getting ready to plan out the rest of the trip. Depending on where we check in first (Epcot Resort or the Polynesian) I like to sit down somewhere and eat while going over the park maps and deciding on what to do first. If we are over near Epcot we will usually eat somewhere along the Boardwalk or go into Epcot. At the Polynesian I head right up to Kona Café and sit there listening to the music and the sounds of the waterfall while watching the monorail go by.
Stacy Lantz wrote up a great story about Arrival Days over at Touring Plans. Go check it out and leave comments.
New offers announced
Beci at Mousefan Travel was nice enough to let me know about some new offers out there.
See if your travel plans fit into either of these offers
Annual Pass offer
New music tracks
If you are interested in what some of the new songs are that play at the resort I was sent this list of some of the new songs.
Kowali - The Pahinui Brothers
O Kamawailua Lani - The Pahinui Brothers
Kananaka - The Maile Serenaders
Ho'okele - Roland Cazimero
Ho'onani la Hokule'a - Roland Cazimero
Lovely Hula Hands - Roland Cazimero
Hawaiian War Chant - Roland Cazimero
Hukilau - Roland Cazimero
Poki's Blues - Ohta-San
South Sea Island Music - Ohta-San
Has my site helped you?
If you have visited my site or emailed me for help and it has been helpful to your trip planning than that is what I am here for. If you want to give back than information, trip reports, photos are always helpful. If you would like to donate to help support the site there is a donation button at the bottom that goes to Pay Pal.
I also just enjoy emails letting me know that the site was helpful. Yes I read every email. Thanks to all of you who have supported me over the years.