Walt Disney World Resorts in June 1996

For this Looking Back post, we take a break from the theme parks and turn our attention to the Walt Disney World Resorts in June 1996. We stayed at one resort during our trip, and we visited several others. And I just happened to take a few photos along the way. Hang on to your hats for a whirlwind tour!

Dixie Landings

For this visit, we stayed at the Dixie Landings Resort. As you probably know, this resort was renamed to Port Orleans Riverside in more recent years. But while we were there, the resort was still relatively new, and it still had its original name.

The main Dixie Landings / Port Orleans Riverside lobby building was also the home of the Sassagoula Steamboat Company. This building houses the front desk, a food court, and the required Disney gift shop. Behind the building is the marina, which you can see in the foreground here. You could rent boats, and you could also catch one of the Sassagoula Steamboat Company’s boats (not actually powered by steam) to the Disney Village Marketplace and Pleasure Island, which are now parts of Disney Springs. You can see one of those Sassagoula boats in the foreground.

Our room was in the Acadian House building, pictured here, in the Magnolia Bend area of the resort. Because we have not been there in many years, I doubt I could tell the buildings apart now, except by reading the signs saying which building is which. Fortunately, I found my file where I noted which building we stayed in, and I checked online to make sure this was the same building. And it was.

Here is another view, although I believe this is a separate building. Do you know which one it is? If so, leave a comment and I will update this. If you have not been there, the resort is huge!

Another Dixie Landings / Port Orleans Riverside building view. I believe this one is Oak Manor, but again, feel free to correct me if I am wrong, which I often am.

One more view, this time from across the river. Those Sassagoula boats could often be seen cruising past here on their way from Port Orleans (now known as Port Orleans French Quarter) to Disney Village Marketplace (now known as Disney Springs). Wouldn’t it be easier if everything kept the same name over the years?

Magic Kingdom Resorts

Let’s move along from the name-changing resorts to the Magic Kingdom resorts to see what we can see there.

Here is the Contemporary Resort, which has fortunately kept its name for over 50 years now. This view of the Contemporary Resort is from one of the boats out in Seven Seas Lagoon, which explains the water in the foreground. You can see the somewhat new (in 1996) convention center buildings at the lower right, too. They are a bit more colorful than the original Contemporary building. And check out those cool white flags with the original Walt Disney World logo on them!

Unlike the Contemporary Resort, the Polynesian Village Resort has changed names over the years, because for a time they dropped “Village”, and it was just known as the Polynesian Resort. But it has now returned to its original name of Polynesian Village Resort. This view of the Polynesian is actually from the Grand Floridian Resort. By the way, jutting out into Seven Seas Lagoon at the right is part of the Disney Wedding Pavilion, which had opened a year earlier.

And here is the aforementioned Grand Floridian Resort, once again seen from a Seven Seas Lagoon watercraft. I should have titled this section “Magic Kingdom Resorts Seen from Outside Each Resort”. It appears that back during this time I liked to try to take photos that were an overall view of each resort, although I obviously did not get all of the resort in this photo.

Monorail Gold, one of the Walt Disney World Mark VI Monorail trains, arrives at the Grand Floridian Resort, as seen from one of the windows in the second floor gift shop. Interestingly, the “new” Monorail trains are now older than the old Monorail trains were when they were replaced with the newer trains. And it looks like someone was getting a delivery from FedEx, too.

Over at the Fort Wilderness Campground, which is also technically considered a Magic Kingdom Resort, we saw this peacock. It was moving quickly, so I did not get a good, clear photo of it. But you can still tell what it is. It was always fun to see a random peacock there.

And that is it for this roundup of the resorts of Walt Disney World that we visited in June 1996. Check back soon for more Looking Back photos!


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Burnsland is Steve Burns, with generous help from his lovely wife Laura. Steve is a husband, father, photographer, webmaster, writer, podcaster, artist, Christian. Steve enjoys sharing his photography, art, and stories through Burnsland.com, from the Burnsland World Headquarters in Tennessee.