By: Melissa Hayes, Magical Moments Vacations
The fact that Walt Disney World has so many great dining options is both a blessing and a curse; there's so many great choices but not enough time to fit them all in! We have been lucky enough to experience every character dining experience that Walt Disney World has to offer, so we consider ourselves to be experts in the world of character dining. Even though there always new meals we want to try on our trips, these are our must-do character experiences every trip that are worth giving up valuable meal credits or dining time for. You don't want to miss these top 3 meals!
#1 - 1900 Park Fare Breakfast or Dinner at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort
If you are looking for a highly entertaining character meal with surprisingly good buffet food, 1900 Park Fare is for you! You will be hard pressed to find funnier character interactions. At dinner, Cinderella and Prince Charming come around to greet their dinner guests, but the stars of the show are her step-family: Lady Tremaine, Anastasia and Drizella. The step-sisters will yell at each other across the restaurant to fight over who is prettier, while Cinderella's evil step-mother has no problem speaking her mind, or in my husband's case, telling you to get your life together.
At breakfast, Mary Poppins will make sure you are minding your manners, Tigger will teach you how to bounce and the Mad Hatter lives up to his reputation by making funny faces.
You also may get to chat with Alice and Winnie the Pooh.
The offerings for both meals are pleasantly surprising with such unique options as strawberry soup, cheese blintzes, butternut squash ravioli and honey-sriacha salmon, as well as more traditional and kid-friendly fare.
To top off the entire experience, don't forget to stop by the Photo Pass opportunity to take your picture with Cinderella's glass slipper. And while you are at it, explore the grounds of The Grand Floridian for a beautifully elegant experience.
#2 - Garden Grill Breakfast in Epcot
There is not one meal in Walt Disney World that we have gone to more than breakfast at The Garden Grill. I can't decide if it's the fun character interactions or that sticky bun that keeps me coming back again and again.
At the Garden Grill, you will have the opportunity to meet Farmer Mickey, his pal Pluto and the playful and fun-loving Chip and Dale. We have always had the best interactions here with those mischievous chipmunks.
Another thing that makes this restaurant unique is that it slowly rotates as you enjoy your meal, allowing you to have an inside glimpse of the Living with the Land ride.
I am sure lunch and dinner here are just as wonderful, but I am telling you right now, you have GOT to have that sticky bun. Add that to Mickey waffles, bacon, tater tots, eggs, sausage and fruit and you've got your ideal breakfast with a view.
#3 - Cinderella's Royal Table Breakfast or Dinner in Magic Kingdom
Not to worry, princess-lovers, we have a meal for you, too. Walt Disney World offers a few princess options but there really is no beating the atmosphere of being inside Cinderella's Castle.
This meal is the perfect opportunity to meet all of your favorite princesses. Cinderella is always greeting her guests with a photo, and princesses like Jasmine, Aurora, Ariel and Snow White are some of the royalty who will greet you at your table.
We have tried both breakfast and lunch at Cinderella's Royal Table and I would recommend both. If you are not on the dining plan, I would shoot for breakfast, as it is less expensive, but you can't go wrong either way.
If you have a hard time scoring a Cinderella's Royal Table Reservation or would like a one-credit option to meet a lot of princesses, Akershus Royal Banquet Hall is another worthy choice. We have done breakfast and lunch and enjoyed both, but if you have picky eaters, stick with breakfast and ask for extra cheesy potatoes!
So there you have it - the best character meals that you MUST try on your next Walt Disney World trip. Do you agree? What character meals are on the top of your must-do list?