With more than 430 restaurants in the four theme parks, onsite resorts, and Disney Springs, dining at Walt Disney World is an exciting part of any vacation. There are restaurants choices to please every palette, and each one is carefully themed to provide guests with an amazing experience. While some of the eateries are geared toward a quiet and relaxing meal, many restaurants offer top-notch fun and entertainment. Here are a few of the restaurants that should be on the must-do list of guests seeking a dining adventure that only Walt Disney World can provide!
1. Spirit of Aloha
Check in at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort and get ready for a South Seas adventure! The Spirit of Aloha luau dinner show enthralls guests with authentic Polynesian island hulas, fire dancing, and amazing drummers. This show takes place in an open-air theater in Luau Cove at the resort. Guests are served a delicious feast of roasted chicken, ribs, pulled pork, and fresh vegetables in a family style meal. The dinner must be paid in advance, so advance reservations are required. Immerse yourself in the tropical island atmosphere unlike anything else in Walt Disney World!
2. 50’s Prime Time Cafe
As soon as you enter the lobby of this eatery in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, guests begin to feel transported back to the 1950s. The waiting area features family room and den décor from this era that many guests will recognize. The eating area will put you right into a cozy kitchen, complete with a black-and-white TV, the Formica table, cookie jars, and retro décor everywhere. But the fun is just beginning; your server might be “Mom” or a “Cousin”, and they will make sure everyone in your party is minding their manners and eating all the veggies on their plate! The menu features homestyle favorites everyone loves, like fried chicken, meatloaf, and chicken pot pie.
3. Sci Fi Dine-In Theater Restaurant
Who doesn’t love going to a drive-in theater? Step into this darkened restaurant and you’ll swear you are in a drive-in theater under the stars. Most of the tables are open top “cars” and black-and-white sci-fi and monster movie clips play continuously throughout your meal. Meals include delicious sandwiches and burgers, and a milkshake or ice cream sundae will hit the spot for dessert. Every time I eat here, I always have a hard time believing I’m still inside of a theme park!
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4. Be Our Guest Restaurant
Walk through the gates of the Beast’s castle, and enter into a magical place! The hallways are adorned with impressive suits of armor, and each room of the castle offers a unique dining experience. The Ballroom lets guests dine in a majestic setting with snow falling gently outside the window, the Gallery showcases beautiful portraits, as well as the lovely life-sized music box figures of Belle and the Beast, and the foreboding West Wing offers a mysterious picture of the Prince and the enchanted rose. After you finish your meal, greet the Beast in the library, and don’t forget to admire the lovely stained-glass window on the way out. There is so much to look at and admire in this restaurant that it’s sometimes hard to concentrate on the savory meals. Breakfast and lunch guests order at a touch-screen and the meal is delivered to their table. Dinner guests choose from a prix fixe menu offering French cuisine specialties.
5. Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue
Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground is the setting for an old-fashioned night of delicious food and top-notch entertainment. Grab a seat in Pioneer Hall and enjoy all-you-can-eat ribs, fried chicken, baked beans, cornbread, salad, and strawberry shortcake. The Pioneer Hall Players keep the atmosphere lively with silly skits, dancing, and singing, and it’s truly a show that everyone will love!
6. T-Rex Restaurant
Ready for some prehistoric entertainment? Head over to the Marketplace section of Disney Springs to the T-Rex restaurant and get ready to share your meal with a bunch of dinosaurs! Tables are situated around a primeval forest, and audio-animatronic dinosaurs are around every corner. While you’re waiting for your meal to arrive, walk around the restaurant and check out the dinos on display, the gigantic octopus, the awesome ice cave, and the Paleo Zone, where younger guests can dig for fossils. To make the adventure complete, a meteor show occurs on a regular basis. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, feast on tasty sandwiches and wraps, pasta dishes, seafood, and burgers.
7. Coral Reef Restaurant
The view always changes when you’re dining at The Coral Reef Restaurant in the Future World section of Epcot. The ocean world takes center stage for guests as sea turtles, rays, sharks, and 85 species of tropical fish glide by in by in the six-million-gallon aquarium. Guests can dine on seafood specialties, steak, and chicken dishes.
8. Tusker House
Dining with the characters is always a must-do on my Disney vacation list, and the best spot to do this, in my opinion, is the Tusker House. This gorgeous airy restaurant in the Harambe Village section of Disney’s Animal Kingdom is filled with African artifacts, and the buffet offers African-inspired dishes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. My favorite part of dining here is when Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Goofy greet guests at their tables in fun safari outfits. Not only is the character interaction top notch here, the Disney pals also invite the younger guests to parade with them around the restaurant. Having a great meal with my favorite characters sure beats standing in line to meet them in my book!