Shopping at Walt Disney World: where to begin? With numerous shopping spots in each park, not to mention at Disney Springs and at every Disney resort, the choices might seem overwhelming. But not all Disney shops sell the same merchandise, and some are a cut above the others for their theming, selection, or originality. Here are some of our favorite places to shop inside Disney theme parks. Happy souvenir hunting!
1. Savi’s Workshop
Unsurprisingly, building your very own lightsaber is one of the most highly coveted experiences in Disney’s Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Hollywood Studios. Cast members named Gatherers will help you choose your hilt theme and your lightsaber’s heart, a kyber crystal in different colors. Then, you’ll assemble your lightsaber hilt, choosing from the parts provided. And finally, you’ll receive your lightsaber blade to complete your experience. At $199.99, not including tax, per lightsaber, this is not an inexpensive souvenir – but definitely worth the money for die-hard Star Wars fans!
2. Tomorrowland Light and Power Co.
If you’re riding Space Mountain, you’ll exit into Tomorrowland Light and Power Co., in Tomorrowland, at Disney’s Magic Kingdom. This special shop features Disney-themed cell phone cases and will also customize MagicBands for guests. In fact, you can create your own magical design using the station here, choosing from dozens of graphics for a one-of-a-kind MagicBand that can also be personalized with a name on the outside.
3. The Tea Caddy
Shopping in Walt Disney World’s Epcot is a traveler’s dream come true. And Anglophiles will want to check out all the shops at the UK Pavilion, where you’ll find everything from Downton Abbey merch to Doctor Who souvenirs. But our favorite shop in this pavilion is the Tea Caddy. Step inside and browse the selection of delicious Twinings tea, and stock up on your favorite English treats and snacks. You’ll also find memorabilia featuring the Royal Family, and plenty of tea accessories to satisfy all the tea lovers in your life!
4. Droid Depot
What Star Wars fan wouldn’t want to create and adopt her or his own droid? Droid Depot, next to Savi’s Workshop in Disney’s Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, allows you to do just that. Choose between the BB-series and the R-series to get your blueprint, and then start selecting your droid parts. The easy-to-follow instructions show you how to put your droid together, and a remote control will bring it to life. You can even purchase extra accessories to further customize your droid, including a personality chip! The theming in Droid Depot is breathtaking, so even if you’re not building a droid, it’s worth stopping by for a look!
If you’re like us, you probably find it hard to tear yourself away from Pandora – The World of Avatar in Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Luckily, you can search for the perfect piece of Pandora to bring home with you at Windtraders. You’ll love the floating island mug, and the Alpha Centauri Expeditions apparel is wonderfully subtle. Kids will enjoy the plush toys, science kits, Na’vi Translator cards, and wearable Na’vi tails. Don’t forget to stop by the Rookery to adopt your own hand-controlled banshee, complete with sounds!
6. Memento Mori: Art & Collectibles
There’s nothing we don’t love about this Haunted Mansion-themed gift shop in Magic Kingdom’s Liberty Square. From postcards to board games, tees to purses, collectibles to dishware, you’ll find all things Haunted Mansion here. In additional to all the fabulous merchandise, you may be able to catch a fleeting glimpse of Madame Leota herself in the magic mirror! And don’t forget to pose for a haunted portrait that turns you into a ghoul – we can’t imagine a more spooktacular souvenir.
7. Black Spire Outfitters
There’s a lot of great merchandise in Hollywood Studios’ Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Walt Disney World. And one of the must-visit shops is Black Spire Outfitters, where you’ll find all kinds of Star Wars-related clothing and costumes for both adults and children. There’s an extensive selection of robes and accessories, so you can create your own outfit, whether you want to look like a Jedi Master or a Sith Lord! Just keep in mind that guests 14 years old and up aren’t allowed to wear costumes – including the robes found here – inside the parks.
8. Bhaktapur Market
It may be tiny, but Bhaktapur Market is our favorite place to shop in Animal Kingdom. Head here before or after a meal at Yak & Yeti, and imagine you’re at a vending stall in Nepal as you peruse the unique merchandise. This isn’t a place to shop for run-of-the-mill Disney park souvenirs: Bhaktapur features Asian (and Asian-inspired) clothing, hats, shoes, books, dishware, and mementos. You can pick up a cast-iron tea kettle, or maybe bring back a Buddha figurine, Terracotta Warrior sculpture, or a beautifully ornate hand fan.
You can’t go wrong shopping in the China and Japanese pavilions at Disney’s Epcot. We love House of Good Fortune in China, but Japan’s Mitsukoshi has just the slightest edge because of its gorgeous pottery section – every visit, we bring home a new bowl, mug or plate to remind us of our vacation. If pottery and dishware don’t excite you, check out the Japanese treats and snacks, the Sake Bar, and the selection of kimonos, scarves and handbags.
The Emporium is Magic Kingdom’s biggest souvenir shop, and it’s a fantastic spot to find any and all Disney merchandise on your must-buy list. It’s also beautifully themed and staffed by cast members in turn-of-the-century garb, which adds to the appeal. The shop is on your left as you walk down Main Street towards Cinderella Castle, and it’s helpfully divided into several different sections to help you find what you’re looking for. You’ll find specialty apparel, pins, candy, kitchen items, toys, pins, and more. There’s even a children’s section that sells princess dresses, where your child can make his or her own jewellery. Think of the Emporium as your one-stop shop for all things Disney!