Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – Riverside is a moderate resort located near Disney Springs. From the mansions of Magnolia Bend to the rustic Alligator Bayou, this resort is filled with Southern charm.
First of all, I absolutely love the Port Orleans Riverside resort. It’s special to us because it’s where we spent our honeymoon, and it’s also just beautiful. The Royal Rooms are in a building that is conveniently located – not too far from the main building, one of the bus stops, the main pool and a smaller pool.
Alligator Bayou, Magnolia Bend, and Royal Rooms
The Alligator Bayou section is the more rustic section of Port Orleans Riverside and features buildings that resemble small cottages. The buildings and landscaping are meant to make you feel like you are in the rural bayou.
Rooms in the Alligator Bayou section have either two queen beds or 1 king bed. These rooms also have an additional fold-down bed so the rooms can accommodate up to 5 guests.
The other section of Port Orleans Riverside, Magnolia Bend, has a completely different feel. The buildings resemble southern Mansions and the surrounding gardens are well kept and beautiful. These rooms have either 1 king bed or 2 queen beds and a few have a child sized pull down bed. All but king rooms can accommodate up to 5 guests.
You can also find the Royal Guest Rooms in the Magnolia Bend section of the resort. In these rooms you can discover mementos from the Disney Princesses left behind for their host Tiana from the Princess and the Frog. One of the best features of these rooms are the headboards with fiber optics that look like fireworks. Royal Rooms sleep up to four guests.
Because we are a family of five, there are limited places on Disney property that can accommodate us. Thankfully, Port Orleans Riverside has rooms created specifically for families of five; so we have made that our ‘home away from home’ at Walt Disney World.
There is more than enough to keep you busy at Disney’s Port Orleans Resort. There are 6 pools on property. 3 in Alligator Bayou, 2 in Magnolia Bend, and a themed pool on Ol’ Man Island. The themed pool includes elements from an abandoned saw mill complete with a 95 foot-long rustic waterslide.
Also on O’Man Island you will find a children’s play area, a campfire for evening marshmallows, and The Fishin’ Hole. Get up early and grab an old fashioned cane pole and head to the waters to see if you can catch and release a fish from the Sassagoula River.
Head back to the Sassagoula Steamboat Company lobby for a horse drawn carriage ride, a boat ride to Downtown Disney, or try your skills at the Medicine Hat arcarde.
If you are looking to stretch your legs take to the paved paths that stretch over a mile long. You can also check your room for a brochure that lists all of the daily activities and night time movies in a courtyard in Magnolia Bend.
At night stop by the River Roost Lounge in the Sassagoula Steamboat Company lobby on select night to catch a fan favorite, Yehaa Bob. His piano act will have you singing along.
…This first hour of our trip, spent alone together [with my daughter] wandering Port Orleans: Riverside together, was very special for me. I was able to share something that was incredibly special to me…with my new daughter, a teenager. I will remember that hour for the rest of my life.
You can grab dinner to go at the Riverside Mill Food Court located inside the big mill wheel. Here you will find pizza, burgers, pasta, and specialty items. You can also have pizza delivered to the room if you prefer.
If you are hanging out on Ol’ Man Island you can gab a snack or a specialty drink at the Muddy Rivers Pool Bar including their famous non-alcoholic Orange Freeze.
For a sit down dinner try Boatwright’s Dining Hall. Open only for dinner this casual dining option is located in a rustic shipyard warehouse. It offers New Orleans style favorites like Cajun crawfish bites, gumbo and jambalaya in addition to prime rib and port tenderloin.
We have only stayed at Port Orleans French Quarter, but we did take the water taxi up the Sassagoula River to visit Riverside once. The difference between the two resorts is striking, just as the differences between the countryside of Louisiana and the French Quarter of New Orleans is different. I think that the Imagineers have done an incredible job of bringing each resort to life and giving it it’s own identity, and I would have no problems at all staying at Port Orleans Riverside in the future!
For More Information
- Port Orleans Riverside – Old vs New – Heidi’s Head
- Our Kids’ First Trip pt. 2: Riverside with my Daughter – Distalgic
- Bucket List: Stay in a Royal Room at Port Orleans Riverside – Disney in Your Day
- Virtual Tour of Port Orleans Riverside – Heidi’s Head
- Disney World Freebies – Yehaa Bob– A Disney Mom’s Thoughts