The Complete Guide to the Disney BoardWalk

The Complete Guide to the Disney BoardWalk

The Disney Boardwalk is so tucked away in the corner of Epcot that it usually takes a few trips to Walt Disney World to find it. Once you do, however, you’ll find yourself wanting to go back again and again. The Boardwalk atmosphere is fun whimsical, and easygoing. Pastel colors, cute resorts, and little patches of sand make The Disney Boardwalk more like a seaside vacation than the one you’ll find in central Florida. Here’s a quick guide to everything the Disney World Boardwalk has to offer, and secretly, why it’s one of our favorite places to go. 

Disney BoardWalk Things to Do

What is the Disney BoardWalk?

The Disney World Boardwalk Area is a part of Walt Disney World that is disconnected from the parks. As such, you won’t find it on a park map. Themed to the 1930s Atlantic City seaside this  boardwalk area circles Crescent Lake. This EPCOT Resorts area includes restaurants, resorts, and shops. Spanning a quarter mile, this promenade helps you go a little slower, admiring the views, the water, and in the evenings, the lights. Sometimes you can even see the Fireworks from the Disney BoardWalk! 

Located just outside of the EPCOT International Gateway Park gates, unlike the theme parks, the Disney BoardWalk does not require a ticket and is free to visit for the public. Much like Disney Springs, you can come and go as you please. And it’s one of the nicest places to visit in the Orlando, Florida area. 

Where is the Disney Boardwalk?

You can find the Disney World Boardwalk in a few different ways. On any Disney map, it will look like a little island disconnected from everything, and in some ways that is its appeal. Accessible via Disney Skyliner, by Boat, by Walking Path, and by any Disney Bus, arriving at any BoardWalk Resort, there are plenty of easy ways to get there. 

Disney Boardwalk Location

Tucked between Hollywood Studios and EPCOT Park, this area includes all the BoardWalk Resorts and sits adjacent to the Disney Swan and Disney Dolphin Hotels. The Disney World BoardWalk does have an “entrance” which is noted by a little BoardWalk sign arched over the pathway. But, it’s not necessarily where you will enter the area as it’s nestled in between the larger BoardWalk Resort Areas. 

Disney Boardwalk Map

Accessible via walking path you can head from the Disney Boardwalk to Epcot or from the Disney Boardwalk to Hollywood Studios. Both are included on the walking path to the Disney Boardwalk route, and brings you from Hollywood Studios to EPCOT. 

Disney World BoardWalk Map

How Do You Get to the Disney Boardwalk?

The Disney Boardwalk is located on Walt Disney World property, and tucked just between EPCOT Park and the Swan and Dolphin Resorts. Within walking distance of the parks, the Disney Boardwalk can be accessed in a few different ways. From driving to walking to complimentary Disney transportation within the Walt Disney World area, here are all the ways you can get to the Disney Boardwalk. 

Disney BoardWalk Boat Transportation

  • By Boat. The Disney BoardWalk can be reached by stopping at several docks around Crescent Lake. You can take the boat sailing from Hollywood Studios, accessible by parking at Hollywood Studios, and get off at The BoardWalk Inn or Yacht Club dock. You can also catch the boat at the Swan and Dolphin Hotels and at the International Gateway at EPCOT’s park gate. Since all of these docks are outside of park gates, you can ride the boat for free from any of these places.  

Take the Disney Skyliner to the BoardWalk

  • By Disney Skyliner. The Disney Skyliner stops at the Boardwalk, just outside the International Gateway at EPCOT. Upon leaving the Skyliner, guests can simply turn right towards the BoardWalk, instead of turning left into EPCOT. 

Walk to the Disney BoardWalk

Disney Bus to the Disney BoardWalk 

If you’re staying at Walt Disney World then you have access to the Disney Bus Transportation. There are a couple of options.

  • You can take the complimentary bus transportation to Hollywood Studios, as it stops just outside the gates, and you can either take the walking path or boat to the BoardWalk. 
  • Or take the Bus from any park, or Disney Springs to one of the Boardwalk Resorts, all of which have entrances onto the BoardWalk. Buses running to Disney’s BoardWalk Inn, Yacht Club, or Beach Club will all work. As a result, you can simply get off at one of those hotels, walk through the lobby, and out onto the BoardWalk. 

Disney BoardWalk Parking 

If you are driving to the Disney Boardwalk then you have a few options. Know that the Disney BoardWalk does not have a parking lot. As such, unless you are booked into a Disney Resort or booked at a Restaurant on the BoardWalk, you are unable to park at any of the hotels there. That said, even with a reservation, you are only able to park for 3 hours, which is not nearly enough time. So we have other options for you if you’re visiting the Disney BoardWalk with a car. 

Park at Disney Springs and take the Bus to Boardwalk Inn

If you’re hoping to spend all day on the Disney BoardWalk, then plan to park at Disney Springs. This offers you all-day parking for FREE. With lots and garages, your car has a better chance of staying safe here and not getting towed. From Disney Springs, simply head to the Bus Depot and catch the bus to Disney’s Boardwalk Inn. From there, you can simply walk through the lobby, and out onto the BoardWalk. 

Park at Fantasia Gardens Mini Golf and Walk

Another option, though unconventional, is to park at Disney’s Fantasia Gardens Mini Golf Course. This course has a huge parking area, right next to Disney’s Swan Reserve Hotel. While it is about a 15-minute walk to the Boardwalk through the Swan and Dolphin Resort Area, we love this area, and on a nice day, you can even add in a round of mini-golf to round out your Disney Boardwalk Day. 

Get Dropped Off at the Disney Boardwalk

Another option for experiencing the Disney BoardWalk is to take a taxi or rideshare to the Disney BoardWalk Inn, and simply get dropped off and picked up.

disney boardwalk from hollywood studios path

Walt Disney World Swan Reserve

disney board walk from the swan and dolphin hotel

Is the Disney Boardwalk Free?

Yes! You can visit the Disney Boardwalk in Orlando for FREE. Plus take advantage of the views, beaches, window shopping, and whatever else catches your fancy in this resort area of Walt Disney World.

Do have to be Staying at Disney Resort to Go to the BoardWalk?

No. Anyone is allowed to visit the Disney BoardWalk. Much like Disney Springs, this is a free, public space for all to enjoy. 

Is it Free to Visit the Disney Resorts on the BoardWalk?

Yes, ALL Disney Resort Hotels are free to visit. And the resorts here are no exception. Resorts on the Disney Boardwalk include Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club, Disney’s Boardwalk Inn, and the Swan and Dolphin Resorts.  

Do you Need a Disney Park Ticket for the Disney BoardWalk?

No. Disney’s BoardWalk is FREE, and you do not need a park ticket, or a park reservation to visit. You can simply grab a Disney bus to any of the Disney BoardWalk Resorts and enjoy your Disney day in this free area. No Ticket is required.

What Hours is the Disney Boardwalk open?

Places on the Disney Boardwalk are typically open from 8 a.m.- 11 p.m. Since the Disney BoardWalk doesn’t really have a gate, it doesn’t necessarily have an opening and closing time. It’s just a wide walkway connecting resorts, restaurants, and shops. However, all the establishments on the Disney BoardWalk have hours that are typically between 8 a.m. and 11 p.m. The exception is at places like Jellyrolls Dueling Piano Bar, the Lounges, and Atlantic City Dance Hall, which can be open sometimes as late as 2 a.m., depending on the day and the season. 

Disney Boardwalk Resorts at Walt Disney World

What Can You Do on the Disney Boardwalk?

The boardwalk is historically considered the more “adult” area of Walt Disney World. Don’t get the wrong idea about this though, as it’s such a fun place for both kids and adults.

As a turn-of-the-century Atlantic City-themed playground you can experience a dueling piano bar, a dance hall, street performers, and a photo booth. Along with midway carnival games, and places to test your fair game skills. There are beaches and little boats that take you from one side to the other. You’ll find shops, restaurants, and a calmer atmosphere than you’ll find anywhere else at Disney. We love going here to walk, grab cupcakes or ice cream, and browse the shops. The Boardwalk is often the closest place we can go to get sand in between our toes. The Beach and Yacht Clubs both have little beaches that are perfect for lounging, or an afternoon lunch. We also love this area at night. The Boardwalk has jugglers and magicians, and at night you can see the fireworks from Hollywood Studios right over the water. Check out our Top 10 Things to Do on the Disney BoardWalk for even more ideas. 

Eat at a Restaurant

Filled with Disney Restaurants you can find table service, quick service, pizza, and even Disney Table Service To Go Meals. Restaurants are both inside the resorts and on the boardwalk itself. Featuring Italian, American, New England Seafood, and Ice Cream Shops there is plenty to have here. 

Visit Resorts

The boardwalk has three resorts that surround the lagoon, and three more resorts just nearby in the Swan and Dolphin Resort area. We talk more about them below. 

Enjoy the Entertainment

One of the perks of visiting or staying on the Disney Boardwalk is all the classic entertainment. From hoola hoopers to dancers, to jugglers, and magicians, Disney pulls out all the stops to add a little more magic to the experience. Midway games and chances to win prizes are also on the docket. Be sure to check them all out when you visit. 

Boardwalk Inn, Disney Boardwalk Inn Resort Review, Walt Disney World Boardwalk, WDW Boardwalk area, Boardwalk Resort, Disney Boardwalk Resort

Disney BoardWalk Activities

With activities for both Kids and Adults, the Disney World Boardwalk offers a variety of carnival-like games, shops, bars, ice cream shops, and more. 

Atlantic Dance Hall

This dance hall, themed in the Art Deco style, is typically open Tuesday-Saturday nights, 8:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m. for guests 21 and up. And it’s FREE. 

Disney Boardwalk Jellyrolls Dueling Piano Bar 

This Dueling Piano Bar has a $10 cover charge and is open from 7:00 p.m. to 1:45 a.m. For guests 21 and up, you can visit, enjoy the free popcorn, and even have dinner here. 

Carnival Games

Typically about $2 each to play the Disney BoardWalk is lined with old-school carnival games. Shooting games, basketball games, and more await with loads of prizes to be won at each. 


Jugglers, Hoola Hoopers, Dancers, and more take to the Disney BoardWalk in the evenings with mini-shows to enjoy. During rainy nights, you can often still find these performers inside the Disney BoardWalk Inn. 


This gift shop has not only BoardWalk Inn-specific merchandise, but also a variety of resort wear, Mickey ears, specialty collections, and more. If you’re looking for a Disney souvenir, this little shop will surely have something for you. We also love that you can see new Disney merchandise here without heading into the parks. If you’re ready for browsing or shopping, then be sure to stop here. 

Surrey Bikes

A favorite activity for families and friends on the Disney BoardWalk is renting the Surrey Bikes. These bikes are available in a 2 or 4-person version and are available for $25 per 1/2 hour. If you’re headed to the boardwalk and want to see the sights by bicycle then these bikes can help you get around. While the Disney BoardWalk isn’t too large for walking, the bike experience can feel like a ride and is a great way to add a little more to your day. 


While a beach is just a beach, the beaches at the Beach Club are worth the visit. With views of the boats, BoardWalk, and hotels in the area the beach includes a wooden swing, loungers, plus a large connect four and tik-tack toe game. Hardly ever crowded, we love this beach for taking breaks at Walt Disney World. Proximity to the Disney Mug Refill station at Hurricane Hannas is a bonus. And if you’re looking for something to eat or a Disney treat, the Beach Club Marketplace and Gift Shop are just inside the resort. 

Take a Boat Ride

The Friendship Boats sail the lake that connects Epcot and Hollywood Studios. As a result, there are several docks at the Disney BoardWalk that you can use to embark on your next sailing trip. You can grab the boat at the International Gateway for the longest trip to the Hollywood Studios dock. Or grab any of the boat docks along the way. The Swan and Dolphin, and Yacht Club Resorts also have docks, if you’re looking to just sail a bit of your day away. 

Fantasia Gardens and Fairways Mini Golf

One of the best things to do while you’re visiting the Disney Boardwalk is to head to the Fantasia Gardens and Fairways Miniature Golf Course. Perfect for an afternoon at Walt Disney World you can grab a golf club and play a round. It lasts about an hour to an hour and a half. Fairways is more difficult, so if you have kids, or are just looking for fun, be sure to choose Fantasia Gardens instead. During busy times you can expect a waitlist, but it’s always worth it for some extra fun. 

jellyrolls at disney boardwalk

disney boardwalk

Disney Boardwalk Restaurants

One of our favorite parts about the Boardwalk is the food, so we just had to include all the main restaurants. Check out which Boardwalk Restaurants we recommend and which we think you can skip. Mind you, there are even MORE inside each of the resorts, which you can check out in our Boardwalk Resort Day Trip post. 

trattoria al forno disney world boardwalk at epcot

Trattoria Al Forno

Trattoria al Forno is home to the Bon Voyage Breakfast, featuring Prince Eric, Ariel, Rapunzel, and Flynn Rider. Definitely one of the better character breakfasts in all of Walt Disney World. Traditional Italian food, things here can get a little pricey. But if you like wine, this is the place to be. Check out Trattoria al Forno for amazing food at any meal. Perfect for breakfast or dinner, Trattoria al Forno serves cuisine with an Italian twist. This is one of the best restaurants on the Disney BoardWalk. Check out the Trattoria al Forno Menu

Pizza Window at Trattoria Al Forno

You can also grab a decent pizza here at the Pizza Window if you’re eating on a budget. Best eaten at a table outside on the boardwalk.


This bar is open from 4:00 pm to 12:00 am and offers magic at the ready. Check out the AbracadaBar Lounge Menu for a look at drinks and bar basics, like pizza, fries, and charcuterie. This bar is open from 4:00 pm to 12:00 am and offers magic at the ready. 

BoardWalk Ice Cream

One of our favorite places to grab a snack, this ice cream place features specialty desserts like the bayside brownie a la mode, and the shoreside sundae. You can also grab milkshakes and cones. This ice cream shop serves ice cream cones, sundaes, and milkshakes in fun flavors and offers outdoor seating. 

Big River Grille and Brewing Works

The Big River Grill is American burgers and beer. It’s been getting rave reviews and has both indoor and outdoor seating. If not for dinner, this would be an excellent lunch to help fuel the rest of your day. Check out the Big River Grille and Brewing Works Menu

BoardWalk Joe’s Marvelous Margaritas

A fan favorite, Boardwalk Joe’s is home to marvelous margaritas and soft pretzels. 

Boardwalk Deli

Previously known as Boardwalk Bakery, this restaurant got an overhaul late in 2022 and is now the Boardwalk Deli. Featuring classic deli fare. Specialty breakfast and lunch sandwiches, with plant-based options make this an excellent place to grab an early breakfast before heading into the parks. Or a lunch during a much-needed break. 

The Cake Bake Shop on the Disney Boardwalk | TBD 2024

This “whimsical table service restaurant and bakery” created by Gwendolyn Rogers serves up beautiful cakes in a delightful atmosphere on Disney’s Boardwalk. Offering up both a Bakery and a Restaurant you can delight in cakes, tea service, and savory sandwiches with French flair. 

Coming Soon to the Disney BoardWalk is Gwendolyn Rogers Cake Bake Shop Bakery and Restaurant. This restaurant includes fancy foods perfect for luncheon, high tea, and any Disney Girls Trip or Disney Mommy and Me Vacation you’ve got planned. This restaurant includes both a bakery side and a table service restaurant. The Cake Bake Shop Bakery offers grab-and-go cake slices, cupcakes, and treats perfect for a light and decadent treat. The Cake Bake Shop Restaurant serves a variety of beautiful simple foods perfect for brunch, high tea, and any fancy meal you desire. 

Pickle Dog

Blue Ribbon Corn Dog | Disney’s BoardWalk TBD 2024

Blue Ribbon Corn Dog is heading to Walt Disney World Resort at Disney’s BoardWalk in 2024. This new location will have some favorites from Disneyland Resort alongside brand-new options exclusive to Walt Disney World. Here are some of the menu items shared so far! Mexican Street Corn Dog, Pickle Dog, Lemonade and Strawberry Lemonade, Fresh Spun Cotton Candy

the flying fish seafood restaurant at disney board walk

Flying Fish

A higher-end seafood restaurant, this place feels like old New England in the 1920s. This is a fancy place and worth 2 credits on the dining plan. If you’re toting kids, you may want to check the menu first. It’s also the home of the AbracadaBar where you can find extra special fancy drinks. This seafood restaurant also offers up steak and contemporary American cuisine. Check out the Flying Fish Menu.

Funnel Cake Cart

For a sweet treat, you can head to the funnel cake cart and feel like you’re really enjoying the carnival on the Atlantic BoardWalk of the good old days. 

disneys yacht club at the boardwalk

Disney Boardwalk Resorts

Disney Boardwalk Resorts are deluxe resorts within walking distance to Hollywood Studios and Epcot.  Add in the new Disney Skyliner access and an atmosphere away from the chaos and the WDW boardwalk will soon become your favorite resort area. With a variety of Disney boardwalk Lodging options, if you’re looking to stay in the Disney BoardWalk Area, you have choices! 

Yacht Club

The Yacht Club is the more grown-up of the Club resorts. It is known for a pool that has sand on the bottom and wide deep porches with rocking chairs. The Yachtsman’s Steakhouse and Ale and Compass are both grown-up food options here and can add extra elegance to your vacation. The resorts also share a poolside quick service restaurant, called Hurricane Hannas which offers a pretty decent lunch option filled with options like falafel and fries.

Disney’s Beach Club

Disney’s Beach Club Resort is known for a lobby that smells like aloe and cucumber. And if you can pull yourself away from the lobby you can visit the plethora of restaurants these two resorts share. You can try Beaches and Cream Soda Shop, an ice cream parlor and restaurant, or Cape May for a buffet meal with seafood and pasta at dinnertime. 

Disney’s Boardwalk Inn

The main Disney Boardwalk hotel is known as The Boardwalk Inn and is decked out with Coney Island-type decor, stripes, and a feeling of the county fair. It also has a lawn that routinely fills with kids playing frisbee or people lounging about reading. We absolutely loved this resort when we stayed here. It’s classic and low-key. And so close to everything!

Walt Disney world swan reserve

Walt Disney World Swan

The Swan Hotel at Disney World is a wonderful boutique hotel just off the pathway that connects Disney BoardWalk and Hollywood Studios. As part of the suite of three Swan Dolphin Marriott Hotels, the Swan offers a cute coffee counter, with food to go, and a quiet lobby, complete with seating to get away if you need it. 

Walt Disney World Dolphin

The Walt Disney Dolphin Hotel is a massive building, with a lobby on the second floor, accessible by a grand escalator. Home to Todd English’s Blue Zoo, and The Fountain, serving up quick service food and shakes. Head to the Dolphin in the evenings to watch the light show on the palm tree avenue that leads to the front entrance. Or stop by anytime during the day to walk the grounds, and browse the resort. 

Disney Swan Reserve

Across the street from the BoardWalk, and sharing a parking lot with Fantasia Gardens Mini Golf, is Disney’s Swan Reserve Hotel. Very upscale, this resort is within walking distance of Hollywood Studios and offers calm away from the Disney crowds. Read our Walt Disney World Swan Reserve Review.

Disney BoardWalk Guide

We hope you enjoyed this guide and it’s given you a glimpse of everything you can see on the Disney Boardwalk. And if you’re looking for even more things to do, check out our 7 Things to Do on the Disney Boardwalk. We’re sure you’ll enjoy it as much as we do!

Everything you need to know about the Walt Disney World Boardwalk. Where to eat, what to see and what to do! #disneyboardwalk #waltdisneyworld #polkadotpixies #disneytips

Co-Founder and Director at Polka Dot Pixie Co LLC | Website | + posts

Rochelle Mariah is a writer, designer and photographer with an MLIS in Information Science and a B.S. in Arch and Design. Determined to make Planning a DIY Disney Vacation easier she makes lots of lists and drinks lots of coffee. When not designing apparel at Polka Dot Pixie Shop, she's watching old movies and planning the holidays. She has been traveling to Disney destinations since 2010.

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