A monorail resort crawl is a fantastic way to spend a day at Walt Disney World. Since you don’t need a park ticket, it can be one of the best ways to soak in the WDW vibes and appreciate the resorts without feeling as though you’re missing out by hanging out and lounging all day.
While we don’t believe there’s a ‘right’ way to do Disney, we think that the right tips can improve your experience immensely, which is why we’ve created a list of recommendations for what we consider a ‘slow crawl.’ At PTM, we’re fans of elevated itineraries that are enjoyable, relaxing, and indulgent—qualities you don’t always associate with Walt Disney World, we know.
So, read on because we’ve got the Walt Disney World monorail resort crawl recommendations you need without any blue curacao or glow cubes in sight.
Disney’s Contemporary Resort
Steakhouse 71 Lounge
We recommend starting (and potentially finishing—more on that later) your day at Disney’s Contemporary Resort. Steakhouse 71 opens before our other recommendations on the Monorail loop, and the food is impressive, which makes it an ideal base for anything to come throughout the rest of your day.
While Steakhouse 71 takes reservations, the lounge is walk-up ready and just as good! We highly recommend the Stack Burger ($20) with stacked smashed beef patties, melty American cheese, tangy lemon aioli, onion, and pickles on a fluffy brioche bun, served with your choice of salad, fries, or pasta salad on the side. If you’re looking for something (slightly) lighter, you can’t go wrong with the PB&J wings ($14) or the pork belly-focused Bacon & Eggs ($15), either.
For drinks, we like the Cocoa Boulevardier ($17), which features Knob Creek reserve bourbon, Campari, Carpano vermouth, and chocolate bitters, or the Raspberry Gin Sour ($14) with Tanqueray Gin, lemon juice, and a perfectly balanced raspberry sage syrup. Before you head out, grab a photo in the lounge’s modern seating area, then head to your next stop.
Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto
You never know what’s going to happen at Trader Sam’s. It’s a place of mischief, island vibes, and big personalities, which makes it an ideal stop on any Walt Disney World trip. Cozy up to the bar and order a ‘no-booze brew’ like the Polynesian Punch ($5) with Sam’s Gorilla Grog (it’s juice) and hibiscus grenadine, or a Spikey Pineapple cocktail ($15) with Barbancourt rum and pineapple Dole Whip, or a Mosquito Mojito ($15) of Bacardi Dragon Berry rum, agave, mint, lime, and seltzer.
They also offer pan-fried dumplings and pork tacos, but we prefer to nibble at the next spot on our list. Enter the Tambu Lounge.
The Tambu Lounge is a monorail crawl fav thanks to its reliable eats and vacation-ready cocktails. We love them for their Barbeque Pork Ribs ($16) with Korean-style BBQ sauce, pickled peppers, and flavorful pineapple slaw, and we can’t get enough of the ‘Ohana options that are available to order in the lounge. Nosh on gooey bread pudding, or the teriyaki noodles that everyone goes wild for, or just focus on drinks. The choice is yours. You can’t go wrong.
Personally, we love the Lapu Lapu ($19), featuring dark rum, tropical juices, and Gosling’s 151 Rum served in a freshly cut pineapple. What can we say? We’re suckers for presentation, and this one is perfect for taking a few selfies with before heading over to Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort.
The Grand Floridian
The Enchanted Rose, a Beauty and the Beast themed lounge, is located in the Grand Floridian Resort. The lounge is upscale and elegant, with subtle touches from the film scattered throughout. The vibe at the Enchanted Rose is warm, glowing, and relaxed, making it the perfect location to spend an evening with your crew.
Sip on an Island Rose cocktail ($17) of Ketel One, grapefruit, rose, lime, almond, and pineapple essences mixed with bitters. Or try a French Rose Martini ($16), which features g’Vine Floraison Gin, apricot brandy, Dolin Dry Vermouth de Chambery, lemon, and grenadine syrups. Wanting to chill on the spirits? Enjoy a non-alcoholic Garden Spritzer ($13) with Seedlip Garden’s 108 Herbal Distilled Spirit, lime, soda, and agave nectar.
Feeling hungry? Bite into sumptuous Mini Smoked Brisket Sliders ($16) of tender brisket, crumbly blue cheese, and orange-zest marmalade stuffed into butter-topped buns, or check out the House Made Flatbread ($18) with broccolini, mushroom, and fennel char with tomato confit. Or, if you’re looking for something a little smaller, the lounge offers truffle fries ($14) with aged parmesan that are as reliable as they are earthy.
When you’ve finished up at the lounge, head down to the Grand Floridian’s lobby, which is one of the best on property, to relax until you’re ready to ride back over to the Contemporary.
(Back to) Disney’s Contemporary Resort
California Grill Lounge
The California Grill can be one of the hardest reservations to obtain at Walt Disney World, especially at seating times close to the Magic Kingdom fireworks. Enter the lounge, which is walk-up and first-come, first-serve. The experience at the California Grill Lounge is exquisite, featuring small plate options and an array of cocktails and libations.
Since the menu changes all the time, we’re focused on drinks, but we highly recommend checking out the food options, as everything that comes out of their kitchen is exceptional. The lounge offers practically everything: wine, cordials, cognac, whisky, beer and cider.
However, their cocktails are standouts. We highly recommend their Blueberry Lemon Drop Martini ($16) with Three Olive Blueberry Vodka, lemon and pomegranate juice, and a sweet sugared rim, or Sonoma Maple Bourbon Old Fashioned ($18) with bourbon, bitters, vanilla maple syrup, and (PTM fave!) Luxardo cherries. Feeling burnt out on booze? the Egyptian Chamomile tea is the perfect way to wind down.
If you’re not staying for the fireworks, or the lounge is too crowded, we have an ace up our sleeves, and it involves a breezy ferry ride over to Disney’s Wilderness Lodge.
Bonus Option: Geyser Point at Wilderness Lodge
Sure, this is a Monorail resort crawl guide, but that doesn’t mean we can’t recommend a breezy boat ride alternative to end the night, does it? We don’t think so. Sometimes the best way to cap off the evening is sitting by the shores of Bay Lake under Tiki torches, and our favorite place to do that is at Geyser Point. End your night by tucking into Teriyaki Chicken Wings ($15) with soy, sesame, and green onion, or Cheesy Barbeque Brisket ($11) with house-made chips. Or focus on drinks with a Lava Smoothie ($6) of pureed Raspberry, coconut, and pineapple, or a cocktail like the Worth Melting For ($15) with huckleberry vodka, pineapple juice, sour mix, and agave syrup. The Banana Cabana ($15) with mango rum, coconut rum, crème de banana, orange-pineapple juice, and grenadine is also an excellent choice.
No matter what you choose, you’re bound to have a lovely evening at Geyser Point, and if you’re still left hungry, split the Bison burger ($20). The marionberry sauce and garlic aioli may sound like an unusual mix, but it’s delectable, and is the perfect way to end the night.
The Best Way to Monorail Crawl
The best monorail crawl plan lets you relax and enjoy good company, friends, food, and drinks without having to worry about transportation. Uber into your first spot and ride the ‘rail to your destinations with ease. Once you’re done, book a ride share and head back to your hotel for a well-earned night of rest. If you don’t overdo it, it’s bound to be a great time.
Our recommendations highlight the best of each stop, but choose the best schedule for your needs. For us, drinks and food are best shared, so bring your friends, and make Walt Disney World memories you will never forget. Don’t forget to take lots of pictures!
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