My family and I have been to Disneyworld several times. When we go, we usually stay off property at a resort about one mile from the parks. To my children, that has always been their home away from home. It is quiet, and we have our own cabin. That is a big deal for us. With seven people in our family, it is not easy to find a place to stay when we go on vacation-unless we want to rent two rooms. That was the appeal that this property had when we started looking for a place to stay in the Kissimmee area.
The kids have always asked if we could stay on Disney property. It sounded like fun. But once again, we would have to rent two rooms. Disneyworld has several deluxe villas which would have room for a family the size of ours, but they are priced well out of our budget.
Well, in 2008, we finally decided to do it. We put a lot of thought and planning into deciding which Disneyworld resort we would choose. We researched to see what was available on disney property. We looked at pictures and online reviews. Finally, we decided on Pop Century Resort, mainly because we felt its theming would appeal to our younger children, and because the price was something we could afford.
When you pull into the parking lot of Pop Century Resort, you are in the center of the resort, directly in front of the main building. The main building is where you check in. It also has a huge gift shop and food court. The food court has several counter service restaurants. They are set up so that each member of the family can go to the restaurant they want and order their meal. Then everyone can meet back and pay for their meal together. It has plenty of comfortable seating, indoors and out. We never had trouble finding a place to sit in the food court.
We booked two rooms which were about a five minute walk from the Pop Century lobby/food court/gift shop. Some rooms were a little farther away, but everything was set up to be very convenient.
The rooms are small. They run about 250 square feet, but having two rooms made it more comfortable. If you want a small refrigerator in your room, Disneyworld will charge you about $10 per night. They will make an exception if you have to have medication refrigerated. We had no issue with noise outside our rooms like I have heard others mention. It was nice and quiet during our visit.
Pop Century has three swimming pools. On one end is the bowling pin pool. It is exactly what it sounds like. It is in the shape of a giant bowling pin. In the middle of the resort, and directly behind the main building, is the Hippy Dippy Pool. This one is in the shape of a flower and has giant flower water sprayers along the edges of the pool. In the back is a splash pool for the little ones. The third pool is the computer pool. It is on the opposite end of the resort from the bowling pin pool.
The two pools on the end of the resort are generally the quieter pools, while the Hippy Dippy Pool always seems to have lots of activity going on around it. Each pool has a laundry facility which makes it convenient to spend time swimming or relaxing while you are washing your laundry. Each one also provides life vests for non-swimmers. The pools are heated year around.
In addition to the pools, Pop Century Resort includes a small water play area with water jets. Nearby is a permanent Twister game mat with a huge spinner. If the kids want a playground, they have one of those as well.
If you just want a little quiet time to take a morning jog or a quiet walk, the back end of the resort has a lake with a walking area around it.
While we were at Disneyworld, the bus stops were usually very busy, but buses came and went on a regular schedule. There were only a couple of times when we arrived at the bus stop just as the last bus had left, causing us to have to wait a little longer than normal for the next one to come along. But Disneyworld transportation is very good. The longest ride we had while on Disney property was from Pop Century to Magic Kingdom. That would usually take at least 15 minutes.
As usual, Disneyworld thinks of everything. The week we were there, five out of seven of us had the flu! We had one child recovering on the day we left home. My husband got sick on the drive down. I got sick along with my oldest son two days into the vacation. The next day, my youngest son was sick. Three of us were worse than the others, with two of us having complications from asthma. On two separate occasions, Disneyworld called transportation to take us from Pop Century Resort to the doctor, and bring us back when we were finished. We were never charged for transportation. We were not so lucky, however, on the doctor’s bill.
Our family will definitely plan to stay at Pop Century resort the next time we go to Disneyworld. The smaller rooms were not enough of an issue to cause us to look elsewhere. After all, when you go to Disneyworld, you don’t go to stay in your room.