One of the biggest things debated is how big the Polynesian resort is and how long it takes to walk to something. Also many people (most who have never stayed at the Polynesian) say that you should only stay there if you want easy access to the Magic Kingdom. Well I always disagreed with the statments that the Polynesian is big or it is too long of a walk from a longhouse or that it was only quick access to the Magic Kingdom and below you will see the facts and you can decide.
I filmed me walking to different locations and my ride over to Epcot on the monorail so I could use the clock on my camera to record times. I did not walk fast in the video infact I stopped to look at things and I even had parents with kids passing me up so this shows you I was not rushing to reduce any of the times. I also realize people have a different sense of time. I have seen people state that it took 10 minutes to walk from their longhouse to the GCH and I can tell you now that it does not take 10 minutes to walk from one end of the Polynesian to the next. It may seem long when you are tired but the timer on the camera does not lie. Here are some times to go from one place to the next. I have added a comparison of going from our room at the Yacht Club to the middle of Epcot and going from my room in Hawaii to the same spot in the middle of Epcot. Also remember you can not bus over to Epcot from the Epcot resorts. You can only walk or take the boat which we found can take 30 minutes or longer just to get to the gates at World Showcase.
Walk from Yacht Club to center of Epcot:
- Time to walk from the Yacht Club building where we stayed which was right above the marina to the YC pool was 3 minutes.
- Yacht Club to the Beach Club's first building was 5 minutes.
- Yacht Club to the gates of the International Gateway was 10 minutes.
- Yacht Club to England was 12 minutes.
- Now remember in the morning none of this is open so you still are not anywhere near something you can go on since World Showcase is closed in the morning.
- Yacht Club to the beginning of Future World along the edge of the lake was 17 minutes with no crowds to walk through.
Walk and ride from Polynesian to center of Epcot (Polynesian time):
- From Hawaii longhouse to the TTC was 5 minutes. Other longhouses could be a few minutes less or more.
- From the TTC (yes I taped the whole trip on the monorail because we were up front) to Epcot monorail station the ride took 8 minutes.
- From the monorail station through crowds to the same spot along the lake in Future World as the walk from the Yacht Club was 4 minutes.
The totals are 17 minutes for both resorts (believe it or not) but 8 minutes of the trip from the Polynesian was not walking but relaxing on the monorail and add crowds to the walk from the Yacht Club and the Polynesian would win. So how is it that the Epcot resorts are better for Epcot and the Polynesian is only good for going to the Magic Kingdom? The point is that you are not farther time wise from Epcot at the Polynesian and access is very easy if not easier with much of the trip by monorail that we have never had to wait long for. I got very tired of waiting for the boat when we stayed at the Dolphin and the walk from the Yacht Club was nice but took a little while and if it was raining was no fun at all.
Walk time around the resort.
Now if you were staying in Tahiti you would take 2 minutes off your walk and if you were in the furthest longhouse at the Polynesian you would add 4 minutes for a total of 21 minutes from building to the middle of Epcot. It may sound crazy but it is true and I have the tape to prove this all.
Now for those who think the Polynesian is big or you need a building close to the GCH. Here are the times around the resort and I even stopped to smell the flowers.
- Hawaii to the GCH 2 minutes
- Tokelau to the Volcano pool walking the beach 4 minutes
- Tahiti to the Volcano pool walking the beach 4 minutes
- Tahiti to the GCH 3 minutes taking the path through the resort
- Tuvalu to the GCH 2 minutes
- Aotearoa to the GCH 2 minutes
- Fiji to the GCH 1 minute
- Niue and Rartotonga to the GCH less than 1 minute
- Now from one end of the resort to the other (from Aotearoa to Tahiti) 6 minutes
- From Tahiti to the Wedding pavilion 8 minutes
Now anyone who thinks 6 minutes or less is too long to walk or walk in the rain should not be walking in a park at WDW
So there are some times. I still think the Epcot resorts are great and offer a lot but don't count out the Polynesian or any of the monorail resorts if you like Epcot.
See the Transportation page for info about going from the resort to other destinations on Disney Property.