- Disney’s BoardWalk Inn and Villas (host resort) – this is where I stayed last year, and it also happens to be my #1 recommendation! Not only is it gorgeously themed, but it is literally on the walking path toward Disney’s Hollywood Studios. My friend Morgan posted this great walking guide that illustrates just how easy it is to walk.
- Disney’s Beach Club Resort (host resort) – this resort is just a stone’s throw from the walking path, and boasts what just be the most incredible pool areas on Walt Disney World property – perfect for relaxing before the race, or the next morning!
- Disney’s Yacht Club Resort – although the Yacht Club is not considered a host resort, it’s location is adjacent to the Beach Club and is just as convenient to walk to and from the resort to the start and finish of the race. Just remember to walk to the Beach Club if you require transportation to the expo, 5K, or other race weekend events.
- Walt Disney World Swan and Walt Disney World Dolphin Resorts – the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin are operated by Starwood Resorts, which means they share many of the fantastic benefits of Disney operated resorts (like Fastpass+ and Extra Magic Hours) but fall under the umbrella of another hotel family, and so are eligible for benefits offered to the Starwood Preferred Guest program, among other booking discounts and offers. Although they are also not considered host resorts, it’s a quick walk to the bus stops at either the Beach Club or Boardwalk for race specific transportation.
- Disney’s All Star Music, Disney’s All Star Movies or Disney’s All Star Sports – if you are not planning to spend much time in your room, there is absolutely nothing wrong with staying at any of the All Star Resorts! Each offer fun theming, a large food court, and convenient bus transportation. Additionally, All Star Music offers family suites, which sleep up to 6 in one room, and include a kitchenette!
- Disney’s Pop Century – my Value pick – although it’s in the same category as the All Star Resorts, Disney’s Pop Century is a little newer and smaller, which means a slightly friendlier layout, which may make for less walking (especially helpful when you’re on your feet all day – either in the parks or running the races). Side note: Disney’s Art of Animation Resort is located just across the lake from Pop Century, so you could technically stay there and use runDisney transportation for race events, but it would be a bit of a hike.
- Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort – festive and fun, Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort truly transports you to a tropical paradise – and with rooms a notch above in decor and size than value resorts, this is a great alternative for those who are looking for a little more space to spread out and relax (see this visual guide of the comparisons of room sizes, from value to deluxe).
- Disney’s Port Orleans Riverside – not only does this resort feature both quick and table service dining options, it is the only place on property that you can currently stay in Princess “royal” themed rooms!
- Disney’s Port Orleans French Quarter – my Moderate pick – connected by waterway (boat) and walkway (foot) to Port Orleans Riverside, this quieter side of the resort is supremely walkable (the bus stop is not too far for any guest) and you can carb load with beignets!
- Disney’s Old Key West – my non-Boardwalk area Villa pick – the first Disney Vacation Club Resort, this sprawling property is an incredibly well-themed representation of the laid back locale it borrows its name from. The accommodations are the largest you will find in any of the villa resorts and Olivia’s, its table service dining location, is home of some of the best breakfast ever!
- Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa – equestrian fans rejoice at this 19th-century interpretation of Saratoga Springs, New York. The rooms here are well appointed, the grounds very walkable, and anytime you can stay footsteps from a full-service spa, that’s a great reason to celebrate!
- Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort – one of the original properties of the Walt Disney World Resort, at the time of writing, this resort is under some pretty major construction to both modernize and expand its offerings. A South Seas paradise in its own right, it is a fantastic choice for guests who prefer close access to the Magic Kingdom.
- Disney’s Wilderness Lodge Resort – my non-Boardwalk area Deluxe pick – slightly offset from the “monorail resorts” of the Polynesian, Contemporary and Grand Floridian, Disney’s Wilderness Lodge is a wooded retreat, closely themed after the grand lodges of the Pacific Northwest. Connected to the adventurous Fort Wilderness via a multi-use trail (read more here), it’s a destination vacation in itself, complete with an erupting geyser.
TAKE NOTE: A “host resort” designation is very important for runDisney race weekends, as it indicates that there is event transportation to race events, such as the expo (held at the Wide World of Sports) and the race start and finish areas for both participants and spectators.
If transportation is not a concern of yours, you are certainly welcome to enjoy your runDisney racecation at any other resort location (or even off-property), however, you are responsible for planning your schedule accordingly, as not to become stuck in traffic delays. Additionally, with the the Villains Bash finisher party raging on until 3:30 AM, it can be challenging enough to stumble out of the party, let alone attempt to find your car and drive it back to wherever you need to go in the wee hours of the morning.
No matter where you choose to stay, you can rest assured that your Tower of Terror Race Weekend experience can be made a lot less TERRIFYING with a little planning!
Have you ever run the Tower of Terror 10-Miler? Where did you stay? Where would you stay if you could stay anywhere on property?