This list of the best bars & lounges at Walt Disney World ranks the top spots in the parks and hotels where you can go to relax and unwind the good ole fashioned way: with alcohol, the cause of…and solution to…all of life’s problems! It focuses on our favorites in terms of theme and ambiance, with drink quality largely ignored. (Updated November 24, 2023.)
The reason for emphasizing design and details is simple: that’s what Walt Disney World does best. Beyond that, our days of competitive drinking are behind us, and although we visit Walt Disney World’s lounges to unwind, we’re not all that concerned with the booze situation. For us, it’s much more about a relaxed ambiance and decompressing after a day racing around the parks than it is about imbibing.
To that end, I suppose we’ve become “part of the problem” and the reason why WDW’s bars and lounges have a surgary mess of vibrant concoctions on the Generic DisneyParks® Drink Menu®. If you are looking for a stiff drink, we’ve always found the best options to be least interesting ones. Bars that exist just to be bars, often the ones located just outside the lobbies of Deluxe Resorts or those otherwise existing without much fanfare.
As far as other “rules” and caveats go, only stand-alone bars and lounges are eligible. Many table service restaurants offer bar or lounge seating, but that doesn’t make them bars. This disqualifies a lot of interesting locations, including my beloved Steakhouse 71 Lounge, plus fan favorites like Tune-In Lounge at 50’s Prime Time Café and the newer Space 220 Lounge in Epcot, among many others.
There are others that simply can’t make the cut due to a lack of space. These include tried and true favorites like Tambu Lounge at the Poly or the Outer Rim at Contemporary. Then there are a ton of pool bars that have cult followings like Oasis, Hurricane Hanna’s, Petals, and many more (most of which are overrated with their hardcore fans–if you ask me, it’s mostly sentimentality). Finally, there are a lot of excellent bars that are glossed over at Disney Springs–enough to fill up another list all on their own.
With that said, we have expanded this list to 23 entries with our 2023 update because we were snubbing way too many good bars when limiting it to a top 10 list. Walt Disney World can be rightfully criticized for a lot in the last few years, but holy cow have they improved the bar game.
Just in the last 5 years, there have been at least a dozen additions worthy of making this list–hence our doubling the length of the list! The proliferation of bars itself might prompt criticism from some Walt Disney World fans who think the company is emphasizing alcohol too much. But we’d note that many of the newer additions are family-friendly, and most of the ones that aren’t are located either at Disney Springs or in the convention resort.
Enough with the rambling, let’s cut to the chase and take a look at the best Walt Disney World bars & lounges…
23. Territory Lounge — This lounge in Wilderness Lodge is probably one of the unheralded gems of Walt Disney World. In functions as a de facto waiting area for Artist Point, and you’ll even find the same Pacific Northwest-inspired theming. This lounge is a bit more rustic and relaxed, making it the perfect place for a more laid back evening.
What elevates Territory Lounge is that it has more detail, including shadow boxes with sportsman memorabilia and other items of Americana. Carved bears gracing the bar and a beautiful ceiling mural are among the highlights, and the decadent pub grub is the icing on the cake.
22. Enchanted Rose Lounge– Otherwise known as the Beauty and the Beast Bar inside Grand Floridian Resort, this is an expansion and reimagining of Mizner’s Lounge, which used to be the best place at Walt Disney World for “serious” drinking. Enchanted Rose is pretty much the exact opposite–a spot specializing in photogenic drinks and Instagrammable backgrounds.
Enchanted Rose Lounge does not make this list due to it appealing to us. Quite the contrary–we aren’t fans of it at all. However, it’s undeniably popular and appealing to many guests. Some of the details and design work are well done, and the upscale atmosphere is generally good. From our perspective, it’s not a ‘destination’ bar and doesn’t deliver very well on the Beauty and the Beast decor, but it’s still good enough to make this list.
21. Crew’s Cup Lounge – Let me start by saying that we love Crew’s Cup Lounge and regret that it was snubbed from past entries of this list, pre-expansion to over 20 locations. My only/best defense is that Crew’s Cup isn’t what it once was when it had its own menu, and didn’t simply serve up a few options from Yachtsman Steakhouse or Ale & Compass. (I’m still bitter about not being able to order the once-glorious burger with a side of truffle fries.)
Nevertheless, Crew’s Cup Lounge is a nice spot. It has an abundance of masculine woods, and reminds me of a quiet place Teddy Roosevelt would come for some whisky after some strenuous sculling. Even if you don’t get down with rowing, it’s the kind of place I’d recommend anyone go for a breather from World Showcase or Disney’s Hollywood Studios on a hot, humid day. Crew’s Cup only ranking #21 is less an indictment of its quality and more a testament to the strength of the lounges at Walt Disney World!
20. Dockside Bar – If you know, you know. Dockside Bar at the Boathouse is an underrated one, and arguably deserving of a top 5 spot on this list. For one thing, the Boathouse is one of the best restaurants in all of Disney Springs (and arguably all of Walt Disney World, for that matter), with a powerhouse menu from top to bottom.
For another thing, the over-the-water dining experience at Dockside Bar is pitch-perfect. It’s on a pier surrounded by boats and nautical decor, with views of the amphicars and watercraft doing their routes between Disney Springs and the nearby resorts. Regardless of your budget or tastes, the Boathouse is great. Suffice to say, we highly recommend doing dinner at the Boathouse after the parks close!
19. Victoria Falls Lounge – This lounge is located between the lobby and lower level of Animal Kingdom Lodge, adjacent to high-traffic stairs and overlooking the Boma buffet. Because of this, Victoria Falls is not particularly quiet. But somehow, it’s also not especially loud. The loudness is consistent and it’s sufficiently removed, making it almost like white noise (if that makes sense).
As for Victoria Falls Lounge itself, it’s rather nice. Moody lighting, a formidable South African wine list, and a menu of light bites (last time we were there, the flatbread and burger were both fantastic) makes Victoria Falls a winner.
18. AbracadaBar – Located on Walt Disney World’s Boardwalk next door to Flying Fish, this is a relatively recent addition to Walt Disney World. Usually that would mean off-the-chart hype, before guests eventually moved on to the next new thing. Yet, Abracadabar has had a total lack of hype.
That probably has to do with expectations. After Trader Sam’s and Jock Lindsay’s, the bar was raised for this concept, and between that and an interesting premise, the end result here might be a bit underwhelming. Personally, I like it quite a bit, and although it’s more restrained, there are a lot of subtle details and hints about the illusionists who vanished from this sophisticated social club for magicians decades ago.
17. Jellyrolls — Located on Walt Disney World’s BoardWalk, Jellyrolls is somewhat divisive. I know a lot of people don’t like it, and I don’t have the slightest idea why…besides maybe that they hate fun. Yeah, it does feel a bit 90’s, and it can get really loud, but you really cannot go wrong with dueling pianos.
The drink menu here leaves a lot to be desired, but those dueling pianos performing mostly classic rock is just too fun to pass up. It’s one of my personal favorites at Walt Disney World, so perhaps I’m a bit biased to this one.
16. Bar Riva – Located along the promenade at Disney’s Riviera Resort, this is an excellent option if you want to escape the crowds and chaos of Disney’s Hollywood Studios or EPCOT, as it’s only a short Skyliner flight away from both.
15. Banana Cabana– A short walk (~5 minutes) from Disney’s Riviera Resort is Banana Cabana at Caribbean Beach Resort. The setup here is almost identical–a covered open air pool bar that’s actually family friendly.
14. Scat Cat’s Club – This New Orleans-style lounge at Port Orleans French Quarter pays tribute to jazz music true and features the great sounds of the French Quarter on weekends with live musicians! This is the biggest strength of Scat Cat’s Club, and on Friday through Sunday nights, it’s a true delight.
All other nights, Scat Cat’s Club offers is its pricing and relative low-key atmosphere. If you visit while there’s no live entertainment, there’s a chance you’ll find Scat Cat’s Club empty, even on days when the nearby food court is packed. If you’re staying at Port Orleans French Quarter, there’s also the unfortunate reality that it has no table service restaurant, so Scat Cat’s Club is the closest you’ll get to that here. Bonfamille’s Cafe’s used to be French Quarter’s table service restaurant, but due to the consolidation of the two Port Orleans Resorts and operational changes post-9/11, it’s no longer open to guests.
13. River Roost Lounge – Head over to the sister resort of French Quarter, Port Orleans Riverside, to find this cozy club. At River Roost Lounge, you can enjoy boogie-woogie musical stylings and comedy from a local legend, playing Disney standards, songbook classics and kid-friendly ditties.
Yehaa Bob Jackson has a huge fan-following among the Walt Disney World faithful, and he rocks the River Roost with his wacky piano playing and singing on select nights of the week. (See his schedule on DisneyWorld.com.) Although the Port Orleans Resorts normally are not “destination” dining or nightlife, we highly recommend taking the boat over from Disney Springs to one of the resorts, and then a serene stroll (it’s a delightful 10-15 minute walk) to catch both bars and entertainment acts on the same night.
12. Geyser Point Bar & Grill – Thematically speaking, all Geyser Point really offers is an open air picnic shelter. Unless you count the brick and wood of the construction, there are really no details to speak of. However, I think that we could similarly diminish other places at Walt Disney World by parsing their merits; such reductio ad absurdum arguments are fallacious and, ultimately, self-defeating.
The very reason Geyser Point is so brilliant is because it gets out of its own way. There aren’t a ton of Imagineered details or over-the-top gags because they aren’t necessary. Geyser Point shines because of its beautiful setting on Bay Lake, and Disney made the right decision here in letting that be the star of Geyser Point. We think this was a wise move, and absolutely love the experience of sitting here and soaking up the serene natural beauty of the lake front setting. At sunset or during the Electrical Water Pageant, it’s pure bliss.
11.Three Bridges Bar & Grill – Located at Coronado Springs Resort, this one is very similar to Geyser Point above in that both are hidden gems and neither accept Advance Dining Reservations. Since it opened, we’ve probably dined at Three Bridges more than any other restaurant at Walt Disney World.
Atmosphere is the biggest upside here, as Three Bridges lives up to its name in being at the intersection of three different bridges in the middle of Lago Dorado. Its mostly waterfront seating offers big views of the outlying buildings at Coronado Springs, Gran Destino Tower, and even fireworks at EPCOT or Disney’s Hollywood Studios if you time your visit right. The menu is also fantastic, with one of the Best Burgers at Walt Disney World and, and the Warm Churros are a must-order for dessert. You really can’t go wrong here.
10. BaseLine Tap House– Added to Disney’s Hollywood Studios as part of the Grand Avenue expansion, which is basically overflow for Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, this whole area is nothing special. It’s supposed to be themed to the area of present-day Los Angeles with the same name, but it fails to leave a lasting impression.
BaseLine Tap House is the one exception. With an excellent selection of beer, underrated food, incredibly laid-back outdoor seating area, and great people-watching, BaseLine Tap House delivers. Truth be told, I can’t fully explain why BaseLine Tap House is so good. On paper and even in photos, it’s nothing special. In person, it exceeds expectations and is an unheralded gem. It’s one of those “if you know, you know” type of things.
9. Dahlia Lounge – This bar in Gran Destino Tower at Coronado Springs Resort is inspired by Spanish surrealism and is probably one of the more “adult” lounges in all of Walt Disney World. It’s not that kids aren’t welcome, but between the convention crowd and adjacent Toledo restaurant, they’re just much less common.
Dahlia Lounge’s rooftop location is a huge selling point, and the nice moody atmosphere and lighting give it a great vibe. If you’ve ever done Disney Cruise Line, you’ll probably find the atmosphere here similar to that of the adult areas of the DCL ships.
8. Rose & Crown — I’m guessing Rose & Crown in Epcot’s World Showcase is the liveliest and maybe most popular bar at Walt Disney World. (I’d also say that the restroom across from it is the busiest at Walt Disney World.) Go to Rose & Crown pretty much any evening, and raucous crowds are spilling out into Epcot’s walkways.
Rose & Crown’s popularity is for good reason…beyond the fact that it’s located in a busy thoroughfare at Walt Disney World’s second most popular park. The kitchen serves up authentic pub foods and the bartenders can mix up some delicious blended draughts, among other drinks. It is at once familiar and transportive, taking guests from Walt Disney World to an intimate pub located in the United Kingdom. On top of that, its outdoor seating offers great views of Epcot’s fireworks.
7. Raglan Road Pub — Raglan Road makes the cut here because it’s a bona-fide pub, and not just a regular restaurant. The bar here is literally made of wood imported from Ireland, but the real selling point here is the entertainment and pub ambiance, making it one of the best options for adult nightlife at Walt Disney World.
The ambience at Raglan Road is exactly what you’d expect from an Irish pub, albeit it a family-friendly flair, since this is Walt Disney World. Actually, it’s not just family-friendly…there’s a bit of a familial sense to the bar, as if you’re part of an intimate community, even if 90% of the other guests here are also tourists.
6. La Cava del Tequila — La Cava has taken the Walt Disney World fan community by storm with its unique margaritas, but I like it for a different reason: what better place to drink than in a cave? After a humid day working up a sweat racing around Epcot, a cold “tequila cave” with low lighting sounds like the greatest thing ever.
I’d say the margaritas at La Cava are interesting and generally satisfying, but no longer live up to the colossal amounts of hype heaped upon them. However, the environment and service more than compensate for that, making La Cava del Tequila a winner. One thing to note is that La Cava does get busy, and if you’re looking for similar ambiance without nearly the crowds, check out Tutto Gusto Wine Cellar (they serve much more than just wine) at the Italy pavilion. Tutto Gusto is arguably just as deserving of a spot on this list as La Cava.
5. Nomad Lounge – Attached to Tiffins restaurant (which we praise as the best in-park dining at Walt Disney World), Nomad Lounge is an extension of the theme of that restaurant, paying tribute to the explorations of Imagineers. This is reflected in the decor, which pays tribute the real-world places that inspired Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
Rather than being transportive or replicating any place, Nomad Lounge’s ambiance is so successful because of the way that it celebrates travel. It has a worldly atmosphere to it, and a palpable energy that makes you excited to see the world. Now that Pandora – World of Avatar is open, Nomad Lounge also feels like a prelude to adventure. As strange as it might sound, it has the same energy of an airport lounge, welcoming guests before they depart for an exotic (or, in this case, off-planet) locale. That might not sound like the highest of praise, but it’s meant to be.
4. Jock Lindsay’s Hangar Bar – Don’t feel bad if you don’t recognize the name “Jock Lindsay” as being a pilot from Raiders of the Lost Ark. I’ve visited and written about this bar several times, and still have to Google which Indiana Jones film he’s from. No one has ever accused Imagineering of failing to dig deep with in-jokes and obscure references, so I guess Jock Lindsay fits the bill.
In general, Jock Lindsey’s is incredibly praiseworthy for its Indiana Jones references, atmosphere, and deep thematic detail. In more than a few ways, it’s like Trader Sam’s: Disney Springs Outpost. There are layers of detail, gags, and references. Like Trader Sam’s, there are also a Easter eggs that extend beyond the Indiana Jones ‘universe,’ which makes for an interesting place to explore. I don’t think it ever devolves into needless fan service, and the ambiance at Jock Lindsay’s is really pleasant, all of which makes it a winner. We’ve found the service and drinks to be hit or miss, but it’s still a Walt Disney World bar you should check out.
3. The Edison – Between the moody environment that evoked the sense of being in a converted power plant and a steady lineup of unique entertainment acts, the Edison is a big winner. We’ve also been pleasantly surprised with the food, which surpassed other high-ranking bars on this list, many of which excel primarily on theme.
Unfortunately (and unsurprisingly), the Edison has gone downhill a bit since opening. There’s less variety to those entertainment acts, which is understandable since they’re expensive to hire, and we’ve never seen the venue exactly hoppin’. Nevertheless, it’s a great setting with a strong vibe, and unique entertainment is icing on the cake.
T1. Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto — The second outpost of Trader Sam’s follows the success of the original Enchanted Tiki Bar at Disneyland Hotel, and delivers. Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto at Disney’s Polynesian Village Hotel is the unequivocal fan favorite for bars at Walt Disney World.
What makes Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto so special is the intimate environments, embrace of tiki culture, self-referential and strong details, and interactive fun. Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto is packed with detail and always has a convivial, laid-back atmosphere. It’s really just unabashed, kitschy fun. Beyond the cool environment, the Imagineered effects and Disney backstories are nice touches, and although they can repeat slightly too often if you linger here, the effects are still cool to experience. You don’t need to be a drinker to have fun here, it’s a Disney experience through and through.
T1. Oga’s Cantina– In a perfect world, the watering hole for scoundrels and other notorious patrons in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge should be the runaway #1 bar at Walt Disney World. Stepping foot in Mos Eisley Cantina and mingling with the motley crew of intergalactic lifeforms ranks highly among the “dream come true” moments from the Star Wars universe that fans want to experience themselves.
Oga’s Cantina doesn’t quite deliver on that. It doesn’t have the same energy or eclecticness, with the only ‘chaos’ coming from the way it’s organized to cycle through tourists. With that said, Oga’s Cantina offers themed design, details, and immersion that are all off the charts. In so doing, it feels like a dive bar for scoundrels and other notorious patrons straight from the Star Wars universe. Likewise, DJ R-3X is awesome. The old Starspeeder 3000 pilot from Star Tours has been repurposed to provide travelers at the edge of the galaxy with interesting music, and REX fulfills that role admirably, while energizing the atmosphere of the outpost. Oga’s Cantina definitely is no Mos Eisley, but it’s still very good.
Do you agree or disagree with our rankings of the bars & lounges at Walt Disney World? What are your favorites and least favorites? Any questions we can help you answer? Hearing feedback about your experiences is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!