With more than 100 restaurants to choose from in Walt Disney World, guests have plenty of dining options open to them. In fact, it can be hard to narrow down the options! To make it easier, try picking a dining location that offers a complete, unforgettable experience rather than simply an amazing meal. Here are 10 essential dining experiences that every Disney guest should enjoy at least once!
10. Cinderella’s Royal Table
Probably the most iconic of dining experiences in Walt Disney World is Cinderella’s Royal Table, located inside Cinderella Castle itself. As far as dining locations go, it doesn’t get any better than this! You’ll overlook the Magic Kingdom as you eat, and, if you time your dinner reservation perfectly, you may even be able to see fireworks from your table. Every member of your party will feel like a prince or princess when dining under the castle’s vaulted ceilings and majestic tapestries. This is the perfect way to top off an already magical day!
9. Dine With an Imagineer
What Disney fan doesn’t dream of meeting an Imagineer? Well, how about dining with one on property? Walt Disney World offers a unique dining experience that gets you face to face with an actual Disney Imagineer as you chat over a meal. There’s no better way to have all of your Disney questions answered, first-hand! This is a dining experience that should be on every Disney fan’s bucket list! But fair warning – spots for these coveted dining experiences are not easy to snag – and they’re not cheap.
8. Be Our Guest Restaurant
We talk about Be Our Guest Restaurant a lot, for good reason – it’s one of the best, and hardest to book – restaurants in Walt Disney World. But it’s more than just amazing food. You’ll feel like you stepped right into the Beast’s castle when you dine here. You can eat in the massive ballroom, with snow falling gently beyond the gothic windows. Or choose the stormy, decaying West Wing, and watch the portrait change from Prince to Beast and the rose petals slowly fall. Finally, you can eat in the castle gallery, with its beautiful tapestries and artwork. Plus, if you dine here for dinner, you can meet the Beast himself!
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7. 50’s Prime Time Cafe
If you’re looking for a dining experience that will make you feel like a kid again, Hollywood Studios’ 50s Prime Time Cafe is just the thing. The restaurant serves all-American comfort food, and even better, “Mom” and her extended family are your servers. And they won’t hesitate to scold guests for not cleaning their plates, or for their table etiquette. You’ll be treated to sarcasm while you dine, and staff will even hand out punishments (no dessert!) for guests who don’t mind their manners! While it may be slightly anxiety-provoking for some guests, we definitely think everyone should try it once!
We love resort hopping, and one of our favorite stops is the Polynesian Resort. This is where you’ll find ‘Ohana, a Hawaiian-themed restaurant that is more than a feast of delicious all-you-can-eat tropical dishes. You’ll dine among surfboard dining tables and carved Polynesian gods under a thatched roof, with a huge firepit in the center of the room. You and your guests can participate in coconut races and hula dancing, and enjoy music and story-telling while you eat. It’s a must-do dining experience for everyone!
5. Hoop-de-Doo Musical Revue
If you’re looking for entertaining dinner theatre in Walt Disney World, look no further than the Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue at Pioneer Hall in Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort! The Pioneer Hall Players will entertain you with their singing, dancing and zany vaudeville antics. You may even become part of the show. Of course, this is all while dining on down-home favorites like cornbread, baked beans, BBQ ribs and fried chicken, topped off with strawberry shortcake and all-you-can-drink wine, beer and sangria (and soft drinks). We think every guest should experience this roaringly entertaining dining experience!
A must-have dining experience in Disney Springs is T-Rex Café – this is for the young and the young at heart! Picture Rainforest Café with dinosaurs: different prehistoric settings complete with larger-than-life animatronic dinos and other prehistoric creatures (including a 15-foot tall roaring T-Rex, wooly mammoths and pterosaurs)! There’s even a “meteor shower” every 20 minutes or so, as well as a a hands-on Paleo Zone for kids, and a dino shop for all ages. This restaurant will be a hit with the whole family.
One of the essential dining experiences you can have in Walt Disney World is enjoying fireworks while you eat. And our favorite place for this is the Grand Floridian Resort’s Narcoosee’s restaurant. Plan your dining reservation for 30 to 40 minutes before the Happily Ever After fireworks start. You’ll be able to see them from the window tables, or you can always go to the outdoor viewing area for an even better view (the servers can usually hold the next part of your meal until you return). It’s an experience you’ll never forget!
2. Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater Restaurant
Located in Hollywood Studios, the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater Restaurant is one of the most unique dining experiences in the park, and something every guest should do once! You’ll eat in a classic car under the stars while watching classic sci-fi scenes on the big screen. Fare here is pretty typical, with all-American food and feel-good favorites. You’ve never had a drive-in experience like this!
1. Chef’s Table at Victoria & Albert’s
Victoria & Albert’s is one of the most elite, popular restaurants in Walt Disney World. Its award-winning cuisine makes it worth the splurge, and for guests looking for a once-in-a-lifetime dining experience, the restaurant’s Chef’s Table option is the way to go. It’s a personalized 10-course gourmet meal that’s completely catered to your tastes. The chef will consult with you to create the perfect meal including global delicacies and wine. We can’t imagine a more essential dining experience in Walt Disney World!