It’s no secret that a visit to Walt Disney World (WDW) over the holiday season can be even more expensive than a normal visit. After all, there are after-hours parties, special holiday food and drinks to try, and Christmassy merchandise to shop for, and more. But there are lots of completely free ways to experience a bit of Disney holiday magic, from the Christmas Tree Stroll at Disney Springs to a Christmas decorations tour along the WDW Monorail.
There are also several hotels along Disney’s BoardWalk that put up impressive displays of holiday decorations. Here’s how to conduct a self-guided tour of the Christmas decorations found at the resorts at Disney’s BoardWalk.
There’s even something NEW at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort!
Disney’s BoardWalk Holiday Decoration Tour
All of Disney’s hotels decorate for the holiday season and sell festive merchandise in their gift shops. While even the value resorts, like Pop Century and Art of Animation, will have holiday decor up, the deluxe resorts at Disney go all out.
Luckily for families, three deluxe resorts lie right along Disney’s BoardWalk:
- Disney’s Yacht Club Resort
- Disney’s Beach Club Resort
- Disney’s BoardWalk Inn
- Bonus: Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin hotels
A fun and free family-friendly activity to do at WDW during the holiday season is to stroll around the BoardWalk, checking out the holiday offerings at each of the deluxe resorts there, as well as the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin hotels.
Want to visit Disney’s BoardWalk for some holiday decoration peeping? Read on for a complete guide to how to do it.
By the way, there are lots of other free activities at Disney resort hotels, year-round!
How to get to Disney’s BoardWalk
Getting to Disney’s BoardWalk can be a bit tricky, as most hotels only allow parking for guests who are staying on property or those who have a dining reservation at one of their hotels.
The simplest way to secure parking at Disney’s BoardWalk is to make a dining reservation at a restaurant inside a resort and park at that respective resort. However, in keeping with doing a BoardWalk decoration tour for free, there are a few hacks to getting to the BoardWalk without spending money.
The simplest way would be to park at Disney Springs, where parking is free, then take a resort bus to one of the BoardWalk resorts. When you’re finished seeing the holiday sights, any of the BoardWalk resorts will be running a bus back to Disney Springs, where you can grab your car.
Bonus! You’ll be able to see some of the Christmas Tree Stroll at Disney Springs too!
If you’re staying at a WDW resort that is on the Disney Skyliner’s path, you could also take the Skyliner to its EPCOT stop and walk from there to the BoardWalk.
Ride-share options like Lyft and Uber also work, but be prepared that sometimes the gate guards at the resorts will not let those services drop guests off without a dining reservation.
Sample BoardWalk Resort Christmas Decoration Tour Itinerary
- Make a dining reservation at Beaches and Cream Soda Shop inside Yacht Club.
- After parking at Yacht Club and enjoying your meal, visit the Yacht Club lobby to see the decorations.
- Walk from Yacht Club to Beach Club to see the lobby decorations there.
- Walk from Beach Club to BoardWalk Inn to see the lobby decor.
- Walk from BoardWalk Inn to the Swan and Dolphin hotels to see their holiday decorations.
- Walk from the Swan and Dolphin back to the Yacht Club to retrieve your car.
Holiday Decorations at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort
Inside the Yacht Club lobby, you’ll find a beautiful Disney-themed train garden, complete with a scene from Frozen and lots of nods to Mickey Mouse.
There’s also a NEW gingerbread lighthouse and lots of beautiful poinsettias decorating the lobby.
Holiday Decorations at Disney’s Beach Club Resort
At the Beach Club, there’s a gingerbread carousel with beautifully-themed horses that pay tribute to the Duck Tales World Showcase Adventure at Epcot.
There’s also a pastry cart selling holiday treats. On Fridays and Saturdays from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m., the Yacht and Beach Clubs’ pastry chef de cuisine will be on-site signing holiday pins.
Holiday Decorations at Disney’s BoardWalk Inn
While we haven’t made it to see the holiday decorations at BoardWalk Inn just yet, in previous years there’s been a gingerbread replica of the BoardWalk promenade and beautiful Christmas trees on display.
Holiday Decorations at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin
Holiday decorations at the Swan and Dolphin typically go up right after the Thanksgiving holiday. And feature their own unique charm.
While the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin is along the boardwalk, it is its own outcove. You can enjoy the holiday directions around the main path, but if you want to extend your decorations tour then consider taking the extra time to see these dazzling resorts.
The Walt Disney World Dolphin has a large tree in the massive lobby, while the Swan showcases chocolate sculptures.