Universal Orlando’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort Guide


Located on Universal Orlando’s property, approximately a mile walk from the gates to Universal’s theme parks, is Cabana Bay Beach Resort. Transporting you back to the iconic beach resorts of the 1950s and 1960s from the moment you arrive, Universal Orlando’s Cabana Bay is a great resort for families, large and small. Cabana Bay is also the largest on-site hotel with 1,800 hotel rooms, with another 400 rooms being added in 2017.

Cabana Bay is an excellent choice for family fun and it’s at a value price. Compared to other popular value priced resorts in the Orlando area, Cabana Bay is at the top of the list for a great vacation on a family budget. As one of the newer properties at Universal Orlando, Cabana Bay offers value and moderate options to fit every family’s needs. Between the pools, and the recreation, Cabana Bay is a fit for moms, dads, teens, tweens and even grandma and grandpa.

I recently got to tour this great resort and I hope this list of pros and cons will help you decide if Cabana Bay is the vacation property for you and your family!


Cabana Bay Beach Resort Pros:

  • Family Suites are available and are a perfect fit for larger families, and comfortably sleep 6
  • A kitchenette, an additional 40′ TV, a living room with a pull-out sofa, and an extra large bathroom are all part of the family suites
  • Both standard rooms and family suites have queen sized beds and a mini-refrigerator
  • All rooms have been designed with lots of electrical outlets and even USB charging stations
  • Both the Cabana Courtyard and the Lazy River Courtyard pool areas have zero entry, which is perfect for little ones
  • Cabana Courtyard pool features an iconic dive water slide, cabanas for rent, interactive kids play areas and the Atomic Pool Bar
  • Lazy River Courtyard pool feathers a sand beach, lazy river with waterfalls and geysers for interactive fun and the Hideaway Bar & Grill
  • Resort refillable mugs are offered just for Cabana Bay’s guests
  • Registered resort guests receive early park admission to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, one hour before the theme park opens (valid park admission required)
  • Walking distance to Universal Studios, Universal Islands of Adventure and City Walk
  • Free Universal Shuttle Buses to Universal Studios, Universal Islands of Adventure and City Walk
  • Resort wide charging privileges with your room key card
  • Free scheduled transportation to nearby Wet ‘n’ Wild (through December 2016), Sea World and Aquatica
  • Galaxy Bowl is a 10 lane alley perfect for a day spent hanging at the resort or during rainy weather
  • Game-o-Rama arcade is another perfect way for kids to spend time at the resort
  • Jack LaLanne Physical Fitness Studio is available for all resort guests
  • Dining choices include Atomic Tonic and Hideaway Bar and Grill (in the pool areas), Bayliner Diner (food court), and Delicioso Pizza (delivery available during select hours)
  • Starbucks and the Swizzle Lounge Bar are both available in the lobby

Cabana Bay Beach Resort Cons:

  • The Unlimited Express Pass is not complimentary at Cabana Bay like it is at the Hard Rock, Loews Portofino Bay and Loews Royal Pacific Resorts
  • There isn’t a water taxi option from Cabana Bay to the Universal Orlando parks, which leaves guests with only the options to walk or take a bus
  • There is a daily fee ($12 per night) if you are parking a car on the property
  • Because it is such a great fit for families, it is not always the best choice for vacationing couples looking for a relaxing swim or a quiet romantic place to have dinner
  • There is a fee to rent inner tubes for the lazy river. (But you can bring your own from home, which they will blow up for free)
  • Cabana Bay does not accept the Universal Dining Plan

As with any destination or hotel there are going to be pros and cons depending on your taste, your comfort level and your family’s needs. After seeing the property for myself, I think the pros outweigh the cons at Cabana Bay. And with the right planning and help from a travel agent, you can definitely avoid some of the cons of staying here.







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Amanda Major CheapskatePrincess.comAmanda Major is the creator of cheapskateprincess.com. She remembers her first visit to Magic Kingdom like it was yesterday, because she had a ham sandwich tucked in her shorts pocket. The whole family snuck in their lunch; you can’t make that kinda stuff up. 40 years worth of trips to Orlando later, she is still trying to save money on vacations.

Amanda is a Disney Vacation Club Member and Annual Pass holder. Her amazing husband, band director Carl Major, plus three teen children and two dogs keep her busy. Amanda teaches Leadership to high school seniors in the almost-coastal town of Foley, Alabama. Read about her cheapskating local vacations with this link. When she’s not writing, she’s reading, walking somewhere, or paddling a kayak. Life is indeed a blast. 

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