The Art of Disney Towel Animals

The Walt Disney World Resort's housekeeping staff (known fondly as Mousekeeping) is known for it's friendly service, attention to detail, Grand Floridian parasol parades, and perhaps most of all, the towel animals. What's that? You've never heard of a towel animal?

Mickey Icon  Left on BedSimple Mickey Icon Left on Bed

A towel animal is a special little gift that is sometimes left for guests staying at the Disney Resorts to create a little extra magic in their vacation. A creative display offered by your "mousekeeper" that uses bath towels folded in elaborate designs to create animal friends to welcome you back to the room. Not exclusive to Disney, you can sometimes find towel animals making their homes with other brands. However we're pretty fond of the artistic skills of Mousekeeping and think it's a great occasional surprise perk of staying on property.

Large Towel SwanLarge Towel Swan

Towel animals can be simple, or sometimes they can be quite elaborate. They come in many shapes and sizes, some are made from a small wash cloth like the butterfly below, others (such as sea turtles and hanging monkeys) use several towels that are folding together to complete the design. You simply never know what friends you may find at play.

Butterfly with Pipe Cleaner AccentsButterfly with Pipe Cleaner Accents

There is never a guarantee that Mousekeeping will leave behind a Disney towel animal on any given day of your trip, and tipping doesn't seem to increase your overall odds of getting one. Disney towel animals are most likely related to factors considering the available time and skill of your maid. I've been lucky enough to enjoy a variety of towel animals at both Deluxe and Value Disney Resorts, as well as on the Disney Cruise Line.

Mouse with Sticket AccentsMouse with Sticket Accents

Disney considers the towel art left in your room a gift! That means that if you are lucky enough to come across a towel animal in your room, you are welcome to tuck the little treats into your suitcase for home. My little mouse lives in the bathroom of my home and reminds me every day to remember the magic. Are you a fan of Disney towel art? If you'd like to see more fun creates that have been left for guests be sure to visit our forums, where people are sharing pictures of their displays!

roz wrote on Thu, 03/07/2013 - 23:18:

roz's picture

I have yet to receive one, but the magic of Disney is such that a middle-age person (me) is actually excitedly looking forward to getting an animal towel. LOL

Elaine wrote on Fri, 03/08/2013 - 15:54:

Elaine's picture

We stay at the All-Star resorts and all we ever got was the same old bunny in the window. Some of the windows we passed really had some nice ones. We also had the Mickey on the bed but only the day we arrived.

Sarah M. wrote on Fri, 03/08/2013 - 23:15:

Sarah M.'s picture

I always look forward to what towel animal I will get! Last time I has 2 mice...I think that's the only time you would want mice in your room ;)

Kristen K. wrote on Sat, 03/09/2013 - 14:12:

Kristen K.'s picture

LoL! I completely agree Sarah!

nancyjvanwyk wrote on Mon, 03/11/2013 - 17:59:

We visited for my mom's 75th Birthday and they made her a 3 layer decorated towel cake!! She kept it in her bathroom. It made her smile and remember her special visit.

V No Privacy wrote on Thu, 03/14/2013 - 14:58:

V No Privacy's picture

Whoa is that true that you're allowed to keep the towel animal? I've never taken mine home but I would if it was definitely allowed!

Kristen K. wrote on Sat, 03/16/2013 - 13:31:

Kristen K.'s picture

It is true V! Several Disney fan sites have independent confirmed that you can take the towel animals home. Some of then travel better than others. My favorite was a sea turtle that I got last fall at AOA, but when I lifted 'him' up he fell apart. However the small ones are pretty easy to tuck into your bag and take home.

Cheryl wrote on Sun, 04/07/2013 - 19:14:

Cheryl 's picture

Wow, we just got back from staying at a cabin at Fort Wilderness, and we had towel animals everywhere! Wish I'd known we could have kept them! We had a very ornate swan in our cabin window on arrival, and a Mickey icon on one of the beds. The next day, we had another swan in the other window. The next day, a duck and an elephant (my favorite!), both with sticker eyes, appeared in the bathroom. We enjoyed them during our visit, but would have felt bad taking them. They really did add that little bit of extra Disney "magic" during our stay.

Kristen K. wrote on Tue, 04/09/2013 - 14:57:

Kristen K.'s picture

Awesome Cheryl! I love getting towel animals, I agree that they make things a little more special.

Kelleen wrote on Tue, 04/23/2013 - 00:45:

Kelleen's picture

We loved our towel animals. We looked forward to seeing what we would be waiting for us when we got back to the room. It rounded up our day with a special Disney magic touch.

KanineKrunchies wrote on Thu, 05/30/2013 - 19:43:

KanineKrunchies's picture

I am going to WDW for the 3rd time in just about two months for my honeymoon--I hope to get at least one towel animal for a keepsake! : )

Diane Speigle wrote on Fri, 07/05/2013 - 00:24:

Diane Speigle's picture

I was unaware on previous trips that I could take them home, so I was determined to get one this trip - On day 3, when we hadn't received one, I left a note with the Mousekeeping tip (I tipped every day) that my daughter really wanted a turkey (we saw one in someones window) - We had 2 turkeys and 3 rabbits waiting for us when we returned to the room that evening - I wouldn't suggest asking for one of each kind of animal, or a different one every day, but one request should be ok - They also daily rearranged her toys in funny ways.

Kristen K. wrote on Fri, 07/05/2013 - 12:20:

Kristen K.'s picture

Wow Diane! Sounds like you hit the jackpot with your request. I'm glad that they were able to come through for you.

jennie wrote on Fri, 03/14/2014 - 14:23:

jennie's picture

We revived a large bunny in a dress and everything! So happy to pack her and bring her home!

Elizabeth wrote on Mon, 12/15/2014 - 04:47:

Elizabeth's picture

When my family was on a Disney cruise we got a different towel animal everynight, my fav was the sting ray, the monkey, swan, and of course mickey. we were on a 7 night cruise got a new one each night.
Now we are going to DWD next week for Christmas and can't wait to see what we get.

Deborah Kochert wrote on Thu, 07/09/2015 - 00:00:

Deborah Kochert's picture

We stayed at Art of Animation July of 2014. The children were so surprised and excited to recover a towel sculpture most nights. Ezekiel left these special sculptures made with rubber bands. Whe I asked housekeeping about it she said they were not doing this anymore . We've come here fore 3 years now and one year at port Orleans and each time found these left in our rooms. Last year several were left to the delight of our children. I did call housekeeping today and she explained the new rules but when we came back we did find two made for the kids. A swan and an elephant much to their delight. I hope you reconsider and begin doing this again. It is part of the Disney Magic. Thanks so much for a wonderful surprise.

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly. If you have a Gravatar account associated with the e-mail address you provide, it will be used to display your avatar.

More information about formatting options