On our last two visits to Walt Disney World my son and I have gone out of one of Disney’s guided bass fishing excursions. I wanted to offer a detailed description and review of our experience.
In conjunction with Take Me Fishing, Disney offers guided fishing outings on their various lakes in search of the all mighty bass. These outings are a great way to experience something different during your Disney visit and will satisfy the serious fisherman or fisherwoman and Disney guest.
As outlined on the Walt Disney World Take Me Fishing website:
Walt Disney World Guided Bass Fishing Excursion
Guided catch-and-release outings let you experience bass fishing at its finest—all year round! Whether you're a seasoned sportsman or an amateur angler, a guided fishing excursion is fun for Guests of all ages.
Choose from Guided Bass Fishing Excursions, which includes a 21-foot Tracker pontoon boat that can accommodate up to 5 Guests, and Bass Nitro Fishing, which features a tournament-style Nitro Bass boat for one or 2 people.
Both 2-hour and 4-hour excursions are offered, and if available, an extra hour may be added in person at the Marina. Solo anglers may book an afternoon excursion at a reduced rate. The 2-hour trip is $270.00 and the 4-hour trip is $455.00. The price is for the boat up to five people not per person.
All Walt Disney World Resort fishing excursions include:
- An experienced guide
⁃ Rods and reels and tackle
⁃ Spinning reels
⁃ One baitcaster (didn't use)
- Artificial and/or live bait
- Non-alcoholic beverages (Guests may not bring beverages, food or coolers aboard.)
- One year BASS (Bass Anglers Sportsman Society) membership, which includes 11 issues of Bassmaster Magazine (one membership per excursion)
Venture out on Bay Lake and Seven Seas Lagoon, skim across Village Lake or cruise Crescent Lake and World Showcase Lagoon. Fishing excursions are available at the following marinas:
- Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground
- Disney's Caribbean Beach Resort
- Disney's Contemporary Resort
- Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
- Disney's Old Key West Resort
- Disney's Polynesian Village Resort
- Disney's Port OrleansResort - Riverside
- Disney's Wilderness Lodge
- Disney's Yacht Club Resort
Call (407) 939-BASS or (407) 939-2277 to make a reservation, or submit a BASS Reservation Request Form online now and a Fishing Coordinator will contact you in 12 to 24 hours. Reservations can be made up to 180 days in advance.
Making your Reservation
To reserve your fishing outing you can either call the Disney number (407) 939-BASS or fill out the online form. On the form you will need to enter basic information about your stay, including dates and locations, three alternative dates and, or times for your fishing outing, place for pickup, and preferred excursion location.
For both this outing and the first outing we selected the Epcot Lakes location (encompasses Crescent Lake and World Showcase Lagoon). I submitted an on-line request and then spoke with the fishing coordinator on the phone. In the comments section I requested Rick as our guide the second time and they were able to accommodate our request.
We left from the main dock at the Disney Yacht Club Resort Bayside Marina promptly at 7:00. You do have a choice between the pontoon boat or the bass fishing boat. I highly recommend the pontoon boat as you can fish both live and artificial bait on the pontoon boat. You can only fish artificial lures on the bass fishing boat.
A little tip - We always plan on arriving twenty to thirty minutes early and stop by the Ale and Compass Lounge for a quick muffin or snack and a juice and coffee before we head out on the waters.
You might think that once all the Disney transportation boats begin service the fishing would suffer however that was not our experience. As the Crescent Lake and World Showcase Lagoon are not spring fed and the water does not circulate much, the boat traffic actually churns up the food on the lake bottom and the fish really become active feeders.
For us there were many benefits:
The main one for us is the bass fishing excursion combines our passion for fishing with our Disney passion.
For the Bass Fisherman:
- We caught a ton of bass. Well over thirty good size bass with the largest over 6 pounds.
- Our guide Rick was extremely knowledgeable and had the normal pleasant Disney Cast member charm.
- Rick has been a guide for some time and really knew where to take us to locate and catch fish.
- Rick spent the right amount of time at each location where we caught fish at each one. He provided a good balance between moving around to different spots and catching fish. We definitely spent a lot more time fishing than moving around. There was another guide out in the same lake and their boat moved considerably more and to different locations. Not sure they caught the same quantity and size of fish.
- Interestingly on both outings we finished up at the “money spot” right by the dock where we caught a significant number of fish and actually my son caught the largest one of the day (over six pounds).
- This is serious fishing with either live or artificial bait. The lake is not stocked.
- As the Disney waters are private there is very little traffic on the lake outside of the Disney transportation boats, the fishing guides and a few pontoon rentals. Nobody else is on the lake.
- Rick was not a clock-watcher so he was flexible on when we left and returned to the dock. On both the two-hour outing in December and the four-hour outing this June we got plenty of fishing in. That being said, Rick was prompt and ready to go right at 7:00 with towels on the wet seats and a full load of shiners in the live well.
For the Vacationer:
- You get to see Disney from a different vantage point before the park is open if you select the 7:00 outing.
- The lakes and locations are small so you are always close to the restrooms. We headed in for a quick break after two hours and were right back out fishing.
- I enjoyed talking with the guide Rick getting the Castmember perspective on things. For me I find that interesting.
- My son actually lost one of the poles overboard but there was no issue and he just baited up another rod and my son was off fishing.
- A side benefit was that while my son and I were out the door early my wife was able to relax, sleep and enjoy a wonderful morning.
- Even with the four-hour outing we got to the parks by lunchtime to hit all our afternoon FastPass+ reservations.
- Could be considered costly. Like most things at Disney it isn’t cheap. The 2-hour excursion is $270 with the four-hour excursion at $455. Don’t forget to use your DVC discount; we received a 15% discount.
- If you take the early excursion and are on property, you may need to get a cab to the location. On this first outing we had to arrange and pay for a cab. On the second outing we got a taxi voucher from the concierge - worth asking.
- If you select the afternoon outing it will take away from time in the parks if this is a first time or you are one to go non-stop at the parks.
- You cannot bring your own tackle, which may or may not be a big deal for you. There is actually no private fishing allowed on Walt Disney World property.
Bass fishing on the Walt Disney World guided fishing excursions is highly recommended. Although it isn't cheap I believe this is an exciting way to enjoy your Disney visit that will satisfy both the fishing enthusiast and Disney fan.