What can you find here? Everything and anything about Disney.
I was a cast member a few years ago and I miss being able to help people save money and find the magic in their vacation. It was so great talking to fabulous people every day! I’m hoping to bring that joy here!
I’m also planning a Disney World trip for May 2015! The extra knowledge will help you & me!
Today:Disney Dining: The How & Why.
Here’s my Extra Magic Hours that I saved. I’m going to use these dates to set up where I want to eat.
- May 6 – Animal Kingdom (Early)
- May 7 – Magic Kingdom (Early)
- May 8 – Epcot (Late)
- May 9 – Disney Hollywood Studios (Early), Magic Kingdom (Late)
Dining does not have to be difficult. You have your calendar with the Extra Magic Hours. Use those hours to make your life easier!
There are different things that are easier to do if you have kids. Going back and taking a nap or a small swim at your resort is one (unless the kids are wired like I always am!). So you may not need your calendar for those times but there are a lot of special places to dine at.
Character dining is a huge, huge thing at Disney. It’s not always easy to get the character’s autographs while you’re out and about. While you’re dining at a character dining you will get every character’s autograph! And you can get some pictures with them too! There are also special events, like The Luau that you HAVE to have reservations to get into. And honestly, the character dining pretty much requires reservations because it is so hard to get in there.
How to make reservations!
This is the cool part. You can call Disney at (407) 939-5277, use a travel agent, or make your reservations online.
If you’re making your own reservations, do not let the amount of restaurants scare you. Keep your calendar close and ask yourself and your family the following questions:
- When do you want to get out of bed?
- Do you think your family will need breaks throughout the day?
- Is there a meal you don’t care for (breakfast, lunch, etc).
- Favorite type of food (Italian, German, etc..)
- Is there a certain character you are dying to see?
- Are there times you prefer to eat?
Taking these questions my answers are pretty simple. We love Cinderella and her breakfast is AMAZING so we know we want to try for that. Also, if my hubby were going he always wants to see Winnie the Pooh. I enjoy seeing Mary Poppins but it’s not a must. Italian is definitely my favorite but I also love Le Cellier (The Canadian restaurant in Epcot). My daughter eats everything but enjoys chinese and my Sister and Niece really want to see Mickey & Minnie.
Ok, so take this one at a time, we have:
- Cinderella, Mickey & Minnie, Mary Poppins (maybe).
- Italian, Le Cellier, Chinese.
Yay! It doesn’t look like much but THAT is an awesome start. Now it’s time to figure out where these characters show up! You can do that by going to Disney dining and putting in your criteria. Start with the park you are going to be in for that particular day to make your life easier.
First, the Animal Kingdom! They only have one character dining and that is breakfast with Donald. Since he’s not on our list but I know I want to go to AK, I’m going to look outside of the theme park. I’ll now set the search criteria to All Parks & Resorts with Character Dining. Chef Mickey’s & Cinderella’s table is available for the day I need. BUT I don’t want to go into a theme park that isn’t Animal Kingdom AND both Mickey and Minnie can show up at Chef Mickey’s so that sounds like a winner!
- May 6 – Animal Kingdom (Early) – Chef Mickey’s
- May 7 – Magic Kingdom (Early) – Cinderella’s Royal Table
- May 8 – Epcot (Late) – Le Cellier
- May 9 – Disney Hollywood Studios (Early) – Mama Melrose’s
Now you can keep doing that for each day until you have every day booked. Depending on how many breaks you need you may want to book breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Some restaurants do not require a credit card or advance notice so just make sure not jot down if they do need advance notice for cancelling.
We know Cinderella only shows up at her Castle and since we are all girls we definitely want to get into her breakfast!
Dressing for dinner
Something else we can touch on, especially if you’re going for a special event, is the fact that Disney has a few upscale restaurants. If you’re dining inside a theme park you do not have to worry about dress. Even in Cinderella’s Castle! In a few places outside of the theme parks you want to be aware of the dress code.
By far the one I want to go to most is Victoria & Alberts. Awww /swoon!
The restaurant is inside the Grand Floridian and boasts a very unique and upscale menu and dining experience. The menu changes daily so there is no menu for me to add! Dress code is Dinner Jackets and slacks and a dress or pants suit for women. No flip flops, shorts, capris, or tennis shoes are allowed! To book this VERY special place you can call (407) WDW-DVNA.
Men may wear khakis, slacks, jeans or dress shorts and collared shirts. Sport coats are optional.
Women may wear Capri pants, skirts, dresses, jeans or dress shorts.
Not permitted are tank tops, swimsuits, swimsuit cover-ups, hats for gentlemen, cut-offs, torn clothing and t-shirts with offensive language and/or graphics.
- Narcoosee’s – outside of the Grand Floridian (Seafood)
- Citricos – Grand Floridian (American, Mediterranean)
- Flying Fish Cafe – Disney’s Boardwalk (Seafood)
- Artist Point – Disney’s Wilderness Lodge (American, Seafood)
- California Grill – Contemporary (Multiple)
- Yachtsman’s Steakhouse – Disney Yacht Club (Steakhouse)
- Jiko – Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge (African)