We spent 9 days at POR last summer from 6/4/2010 - 6/12/2010. Our vacation party consisted of My husband, Myself, My 12 year old son & my 4 year old son. We had a wonderful time at POR. My older son is in school so anytime we go to Disney we try to leave very soon after school lets out. It seems to be the best time for us. The parks are crowded but not unbearbly so. (Our last trip was in 2004 and we stayed at Caribbean Beach). POR is now my favorite!
For our 2010 I was celebrating my 40th birthday so my Mom, Dad, Sister & Niece also flew out with us, although they only stayed 3 days and they stayed off property
I was surprised and pleased that POR was the first stop for magical express, so as we arrived in Orlando at 10:35 am (yes we got up at 3:00am to make our flight from Dallas) we were at ME by 11:10, on a bus by 11:20 and at the POR on-line check desk a little before noon
I had requested an AB room but upon check in discovered that we were in Acadian house room 8220. I understand that requests are just that so I wasn't too dissappointed, besides the room was ready at noon & the location turned out great! It is a little far from the foodcourt and main pool but the walk is a very pretty one. The room was at the back of the building on the second floor and VERY close to the north depot which was great.
As I mentioned earlier we had a very early flight so my boys wore their swim suites on the plane and as soon as we dropped our carry on's in our very clean room we headed to the Riverside Mill foodcourt for lunch and then a swim. We really liked the foodcourt here much better than at Caribbean. My boys (including hubby here) loved the hamburgers, pizza, fish & fries & desserts. I loved the build your own pasta station. That is a wonderful choice that I think every food court at Disney needs.
This was my 4 year old's first trip and I knew that we would not be able to go commando in the parks every day and that we would probably spend a lot of time at our resort. With that in mind I did a lot of research before choosing POR. I am so glad that I choose this resort. We loved the laid back feel of the resort. After being in the busy parks, which we love of course, it is nice to come back to a resort that is quiet, lush, and refreshing. We spent quite a few afternoon's or evenings in the main pool. I loved how the life guards came out to play games with the kids every day, the slide and the shade! This pool has lots of shade at certain times of the day and it was a wonderful respite from the heat & humidity.
We planned one whole day to stay at the resort and that was one of our best days. We took the boat to the POFQ side and let the boys swim in the pool there while I did some laundry. We also ate lunch at their foodcourt that day. It was nice to take a 5 - 10 min boat ride and get a completley different experience. We spent about 4 hours on that side and although we enjoyed it, we all agreed that we liked the POR side better. I really thought the kids would be facinated by the sea serpent water slide and they did enjoy it but they still perfrerred POR. Yes, the resort is big and spread out, but for me that is a good thing. The resort never seems full and I think that is why it feels so laid back.
The food court just like any other can get busy at peak meal times but it only took us a day to figure out a good plan. We let the 12 year old go to whichever station he wanted (made sure he knew what he could get on the dining plan) and then either hubby or I would take the 4 year old to his station, we all met up at the register. This worked pretty well. We also got the refillable mugs which my kids loved. I liked that we could use those for our meal and then grab another drink in a bottle on the dining plan to take to the parks with us.
Overall we had good experiences with the busses as well. I always try to remember how many people Disney is moving in so many different directions all day everyday and it amazes me that it works so well. I read a lot of trip reports where this is a sore spot, but we have had really good luck on both of our trips. We actually did get a cab once on this trip though. We were leaving Hollywood Studios right after Fantasmic - so we expected the bus line to be long - well, it was huge and that was the one day where we had been going from rope drop until 10:30 pm. Our 4 year old did great that day and had so much fun, but he was passed out in his stroller by the time we made it to the bus line. My husband took one look at the line and ran to get us a cab. $15.00 from HS to POR and we were there in 10 min almost right to our door. It was $15.00 very well spent and from now on I will be adding a few cabs into my vacation budget for those occasions. Like I said I really am a fan of the bus system and we normally wait only 10-15 min at the resorts but I wont mind spending $15 or $20.00 on a late night when I don't want to wait.
Things we really loved about POR:
The main pool & quiet pools
The rooms are a good size ( glad to hear they are getting Queen sized beds though!)
Laid back atmosphere
The landscaping is wonderful
The location of the resort - Animal Kingdom is the farthest away and it was only about 15 min on the bus.
Boat to POFQ & DTD
If your looking at moderate resorts I hope this report helps you make up your mind.