As you know, we loooove eating our way around Disney World!
But anytime someone asks us what restaurant they should try, we always have to say “that depends!” There are so many different dining experiences available in Disney, and the best choice is always what’s best for YOU! That said, we have some advice. Here are 5 restaurants that you might want to avoid in 2020.
Looking for TONS of our Disney World Restaurant advice? Check out our DFB Guide to Walt Disney World Dining e-Book here! It’s full of literally EVERYTHING we know about Disney World restaurants, special events, and more!
On A Budget?
Signature dining restaurants are higher-end locations like California Grill, Cinderella’s Royal Table, and Jiko. And while these restaurants offer fancy-schmancy digs and high-end menus, they have a price tag to match!
If you’re using the Disney Dining Plan on your trip, these spots will cost you 2 sit-down meal credits instead of the standard 1. So think carefully if the cost is worth it for your crew. If you’re counting each and every one of those Disney dimes, consider grabbing a (massive!) hot dog from Casey’s Corner and save the signature dining for another time!
Disney World can be a very romantic place! There are fireworks, princes and princesses, and magical memories to be made! But some restaurants don’t have quite the same level of allure as others! If you’re looking for a romantic night out, we suggest steering clear of animatronic-heavy restaurants that are themed with the kiddos in mind. Take, T-Rex and Rainforest Cafe, for example!
While these locations certainly serve their purpose for all the animal and dino enthusiasts out these (and I know that some of our readers and youtube viewers HAVE prioritized these restaurants on their honeymoon, so different strokes!), the atmosphere tends to be a bit hectic. (We’re all for shouting “I LOVE YOU,” but it’s more romantic when it isn’t done over a dinosaur roar.) And the food tends to be mediocre at best for the prices you’re paying.
Want to Try Something New?
Are you the type of vacationer that likes to try places you CAN’T find back home? Then there are a few places to keep an eye out for here!
Most dining spots in Disney World are unique to Disney and you won’t find anything like many of them back home. The main exception to this is Disney Springs, where you’ll find a few restaurants with locations across the country. The previously mentioned Rainforest Cafe is one example, and other names like Blaze Pizza and Planet Hollywood can be found elsewhere as well. And, of course, you’ll find Starbucks locations throughout Disney property (and on just about every block in America)!
If you’re a “go wherever sounds good” type of person, then have at it! But if you’re looking for something you can ONLY find at Disney, there are plenty of great options to choose from! Again, if you’re eating inside of one of the parks, just about all of the restaurants will be unique to Disney. At Disney Springs, a few of our favorite options are Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’, Raglan Road, The Boathouse, and Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar!
Check out these Disney World dining experiences you’ve probably never heard of before to add some adventure!
Wanna Keep It Casual?
For the most part, you can expect a laid-back atmosphere with most Disney dining. Hey, Cast Members know that you’ve probably been running around in a theme park all day in scorching-hot weather! So, most places are okay with guests in theme park attire. But there are a few exceptions to the rule.
Inside the parks over at Epcot you’ll find two signature dining spots that uphold a dress code as well — Monsieur Paul and Takumi-Tei. So, if you’re set on sticking to flip-flops and cut-offs the whole vacation, you might want to leave these restaurants off your list!
Check out our video of the best counter service restaurants if you’re looking for a place to keep it super casual!
On a Time Crunch?
Maybe you only have a few days in Disney and you want to get in as many rides as you can. Or maybe you’ve got a strict schedule you want to keep.
If you want to get in, eat, and get out, then skip restaurants with a dinner show! That includes Hoop Dee Doo Revue and the Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show. The entertainment at these locations can be a lot of fun, but with shows that run about two hours long, they aren’t a quick trip!
So, before booking dinner that comes with its own entertainment, be sure to check your schedule and make sure you have the time to spare!
We’ve eaten at EVERY restaurant in Disney World, and we can say they all have their pros and cons! Every Disney restaurant is right for SOMONE, but none of them are right for EVERYONE. And that’s OK! That’s why Disney has so many varied experiences — everyone can find something that fits their needs. So, it all comes down to what you want (and DON’T want!) on your Disney World experience. Keep these things in mind when snagging your reservations and you’ll set yourself up for a magical dining experience!
What restaurants are on your must-do list for your next trip to Disney World? Let us know in the comments!