Best Character Meals at Disney World

Character breakfasts are a great way to start a day at Walt Disney World, and dinners a good way to end it. We’ve done character dining experiences at restaurants in all of the parks and several hotels, with mixed results. Some we’ve loved, others have felt like a rip-off. In this post, we’ll share our favorite character meals. (Updated June 12, 2024.)

Our favorite character meals make the list for a variety of reasons. In a couple of cases, we’re swayed heavily by the unique outfits of Minnie & Mickey Mouse that you can’t find elsewhere. Other meals have especially unique settings or are known for particularly good character interactions.

Finally, some have far superior cuisine choices as compared to other restaurants. When it comes to character meals, the food is pretty important to us. Some character meals have notoriously bad food, which gives the distinct impression that you’re simply paying to meet characters. That’s fine for some people, but we have qualms with it. The good news is that things are getting better, which is why pretty much every new or reimagined meal ranks highly here.

For the flip side of this post, see our companion post: Worst Character Meals at Walt Disney World. Not everyone agrees with our choices there, so be sure to read the comments for different perspectives. Some of you agreed with our choices, many of you disagreed, and a few felt it was a personal affront that we would dare list your favorites among our least favorites.

As always, we welcome respectful and constructive disagreement with any post here. We’re hardly definitive authorities, and reasonable minds may vary on a lot. Our hope is to offer a helpful resource and one perspective about these character meals–but we can only offer reviews and feedback based on our personal experiences, and of course those can differ from what you have experienced.

There is also the caveat that the very nature of buffets (which is what most character meals are) at Walt Disney World is hit-or-miss. Buffet food quality is in large part dependent upon how long your food has been sitting under the heat lamp. Nevertheless, some restaurants have objectively better food choices on their buffets, so we think it’s still possible to rank them.

Now that we’ve explained a bit of our “methodology” for choosing our list of the best character meals at Walt Disney World, let’s dig into the choices…

1900 Park Fare (Breakfast) – Wish Makers Enchanted Dining at 1900 Park Fare features Aladdin as Prince Ali, Cinderella, Mirabel, and Princess Tiana who believe in the power of wishes, or something like that. These are the newest character meals at Walt Disney World, replacing the Supercalifragilistic Breakfast and Happily Ever After Dinner. That alone has been a controversial change with many Walt Disney World fans, who miss the quirkiness and charm of the old meals and feel the new characters lack cohesion and are odd picks for a Victorian-themed hotel.

While both meals are proving popular, as is the case with almost anything new at Walt Disney World, breakfast is the tougher Advance Dining Reservation to score. That’s probably because the price is lower, making breakfast objectively more attractive–especially for families who want to see the characters as cheaply as possible.

Our full review of the Wish Makers Enchanted Breakfast at 1900 Park Fare gave the individual components mostly high marks. On paper, it’s arguably the best character breakfast at Walt Disney World. The problem, for us at least, is that it doesn’t quite coalesce into something that’s great as a whole and worthy of the astronomical price tag. That’s why we said we were “truly torn” about this breakfast. Some good news for those debating 1900 Park Fare, though…

1900 Park Fare (Dinner) – The Wish Makers Enchanted Dinner at 1900 Park Fare costs more than breakfast, but it’s also superior–and significantly so. In fact, this is precisely why our review of breakfast concluded with such a tepid endorsement after having praise for each aspect of the experience. We had already done both breakfast and dinner when writing each review, and knew we far preferred dinner. We also ate dinner first, which is probably why breakfast was (comparatively) a letdown for us–and why we’re not in a rush to revisit it. If we dined in the reverse order, we probably would’ve loved breakfast…until doing dinner!

Anyway, the cuisine caliber is the difference maker. Necessarily so, since everything else (well, save for cost) is consistent between the two meals. Dinner features several excellent entrees: Curry-roasted Chicken, Baked Salmon, Roasted Garlic Sausage, ‘grown-up’ Mac & Cheese, Peel-n-Eat Shrimp, and more. The best item, by far, is the Prime Rib from the carving station, which by itself justifies the price difference between breakfast and dinner. Everything else is icing on the cake–and speaking of which, there are a few top-tier desserts.

Carried by cuisine quality, the Wish Makers Enchanted Dinner at 1900 Park Fare reaches the same high bar as character dining experiences at Topolino’s Terrace and Artist Point, managing to achieve both high quality and high quantity (of food). As far as the food goes, dinner at 1900 Park Fare is the #1 character buffet at Walt Disney World. That’s doubly true if you’re on the Disney Dining Plan, as dinner only requires 1-credit, making it an exceptional value.

While we don’t think the complete package rises to the level of Topolino’s Terrace or Artist Point, the magnificent meats and decadent desserts–and unlimited nature of them–elevates dinner at 1900 Park Fare into the same league as those two meals. As a result, these are collectively the ‘top tier trio’ of character dining at Walt Disney World. Speaking of which…

Breakfast à la Art at Topolino’s TerraceThis character meal at Walt Disney World is the best breakfast–and close to the best character dining experience, period. The full name of this is a mouthful: Breakfast à la Art with Mickey & Friends at Topolino’s Terrace — Flavors of the Riviera.

Located on the rooftop of Disney’s Riviera Resort, Topolino’s Terrace is a great venue for a character meal. Thanks to the spectacular views, airy atmosphere, elegant design, chic character costumes, and a strong menu, Breakfast à la Art with Mickey & Friends definitely feels like the most upscale character meal.

The biggest downside to Topolino’s Terrace is that it’s very pricey by breakfast standards and you’re now limited to a single entree, some of which aren’t particularly ambitious and would be under $20 at a regular restaurant. However, we feel the full package more than makes up for it–this is the character meal Sarah wants to do again and again because the overall experience is so enjoyable. It’s probably the closest thing Walt Disney World has to a Signature Breakfast (…and with cool character costumes).

Story Book Dining at Artist Point – This character meal features Snow White, Evil Queen, Dopey, and Grumpy and is located in Wilderness Lodge. Story Book Dining at Artist Point is the best character dining experience at Walt Disney World if you’re judging primarily based upon food quality.

We’ve dined here several times since it debuted, and we’ve also had a consistently high-caliber experience. Unlike many meals, Artist Point isn’t trying to turn over tables as quickly as possible, so you generally get more time with the characters. That means better interactions, photos, and just a better overall experience.

The Artist Point menu is far more ambitious and inventive than anything other character dining experience, but that’s unsurprising given that this used to be a Signature Restaurant. The prix fixe menu is mostly very good, and a great option for those wanting quality over the quantity found on a buffet. When paying out of pocket, Artist Point is a solid choice for Snow White fans.

What’s interesting to us is how polarizing Story Book Dining is. If you read the comments here, you’ll see that a lot of Walt Disney World fans are not fans of this restaurant. We strongly disagree, but feel that it’s only fair to point out that not everyone shares our rosey opinion of this restaurant.

We also need to issue another ‘warning’ of sorts. On the Disney Dining Plan (DDP), Story Book Dining at Artist Point is now a 2-credit table service restaurant. This makes it an objectively poor use of DDP credits. That was not the case before, when Artist Point was a 1-credit restaurant on the DDP and the #1 value due to that. That is no longer the case as of 2024–the opposite is now true due to the doubling of credits required.

Cinderella’s Royal Table – For princess lovers, Cinderella’s Royal Table is the character dining experience at Walt Disney World. Located inside Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom, Cinderella’s Royal Table is a rite-of-passage experience…and one that is priced accordingly! Because of that, it becomes almost impossible to assess this meal. It’s the type of thing your kids will talk about for months afterwards, and it leaves an indelible impression…with a price tag to match.

In that regard, it’s a lot like Chef Mickey’s–an iconic experience with bottomless demand that could get away with low quality at high prices. Unlike that, Cinderella’s Royal Table is surprisingly good, with cuisine that’s near fine dining caliber (probably the best food quality in Magic Kingdom, or close to it).

The atmosphere is also excellent. Beyond the lavish and regal setting, it’s not as loud and chaotic as you might expect given the target audience. Whether it’s overpriced is subjective; for many young kids, eating inside a castle with royalty is a priceless experience.

Akershus Royal Banquet Hall (Dinner Only) – Located in the Norway pavilion at EPCOT, this character dining experience is housed inside a fortress-slash-castle, but it doesn’t look like a castle in the same way that Cinderella Castle does. So this is very much a “consolation prize” from that perspective.

That doesn’t mean Akershus is bad, though. Far from it. At least, at dinner. While we’d strongly recommend that princess-lovers prioritize Cinderella’s Royal Table, if you want a second in-park princess meal, Akershus is no slouch. The lunch/dinner menu is head and shoulders above the (weak) breakfast menu, and is a fantastic overall experience. It’s almost as expensive as Cinderella’s Royal Table and not nearly as memorable, but it’s still top tier.

(Note: as with Story Book Dining at Artist Point, Akershus also now requires 2-credits on the Disney Dining Plan for lunch and dinner. Accordingly, it is also now a poor use of credits. It’s still only 1-credit for breakfast and a better value…but a worse experience. So pick you poison, we guess!)

Minnie’s Seasonal Dine at Hollywood & Vine – Our meal and overall experience at Minnie’s Holiday Dine was one of our best character meals ever at Walt Disney World. More recently, we did Minnie’s Halloween Dine, and also loved that. In fact, we enjoyed both so much that we view these as potential alternatives to Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party if your priority is meeting characters at a fun seasonal event.

At both meals, the character interactions were head and shoulders above anything else we’ve been a part of at Walt Disney World. The costumes are also incredible–far better than what you’ll find at the hard ticket events, in fact. We also appreciated that the characters had fun moments together between tables for everyone to witness–this made it more of a communal experience, and more than just your typical ‘pose for a picture’ greeting.

Then there was the buffet itself, which had a wide selection of cuisine. It was definitely not in the realm of Boma or Tusker House in terms of ambitiousness, but the quality was on nearly the same level for several entree and dessert items. If you’re looking for good comfort foods, you really can’t go wrong with Minnie’s Seasonal Dines at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The only real downside is price, but that’s no worry if you’re on the Disney Dining Plan. (It’ll be one of the top values on the 2024 DDP since it’s still only 1-credit!)

Cape May Cafe – Minnie’s Beach Bash is the character breakfast at Cape May Cafe, and it’s perfectly fitting for Disney’s Beach Club Resort. It’s also one of two nostalgia choices on this list. Cape May Cafe was one of our first character meals as adults, and we also enjoyed this breakfast on our honeymoon. (As such, we might be just a little biased and sentimental about Cape May Cafe!)

We love Cape May Cafe because it is fairly low-key and laid back by Walt Disney World character breakfast standards. Minnie’s Beach Bash has great breakfast food variety, fun costumes for characters we like. Despite being better than Chef Mickey’s or ‘Ohana, it’s never as busy as either of those, and we’ve had great success with the character experiences here.

Garden Grill Restaurant — Chip ‘n’ Dale’s Harvest Feast dinner is one of our favorite character meals for a few different reasons. First, you’ve got some great character costumes with Farmer Mickey Mouse, Chip, Dale, and Pluto.

Second, the setting itself is iconic–an EPCOT Center gem for old school fans like us. Not only is it a rotating restaurant in The Land pavilion in Epcot’s Future World, but it also offers views into the Livin’ with the Land attraction. That’s huge and would give the restaurant a lot of appeal even without characters.

Then there’s the family style dinner, serving pot roast, turkey breast, carved pork, mashed potatoes, mac & cheese, and berry short cake. Some people might lament the lack of diversity among these dishes or having fewer choices than buffets, but we feel the quality and consistency are higher here, so it’s a mostly fair trade-off.

Tusker House – When it comes to the intersection of cuisine quality and quantity, Tusker House is the best character meal at Walt Disney World. This is like “Boma-Lite” on the cuisine front for lunch and dinner, which is about the highest possible praise for character dining since Boma is the best buffet at Walt Disney World–and one of the top meals, period.

Since this is character dining that appeals primarily to families, Walt Disney World wisely offers standard options in addition to the more adventurous African foods. It’s a pretty healthy split between safe choices and ambitious ones, meaning everyone leaves happy here. This is a huge distinction as compared character meals, which are overwhelmingly unadventurous.

If that’s not enough, Tusker House also has some of the best character outfits for Donald’s Safari meals, and the value for money offered here is much better than most character meals. For all of those reasons, this ranks as our top overall character meal at Walt Disney World. Tusker House really offers something for everyone.

Bon Voyage Adventure at Trattoria al Forno (Temporarily Unavailable) – Another of the newer character breakfasts at Walt Disney World also remains unavailable over 3 years after reopening. Our expectation and hope is that it’ll be back by late 2024, especially with the Disney Dining Plan driving more demand for character meals.

This is another instance of a character breakfast living up to the hype, and Bon Voyage exceeded our expectations. The prix fixe menu features a couple of ambitious entrees that are far superior to what you’d find on a buffet, and are incredibly filling. That plus the fun interactions and nice atmosphere makes Bon Voyage a real winner–arguably the best character breakfast at Walt Disney World! (On the lunch and dinner front, we’d put it behind a couple other restaurants on this list.)

Planning a Walt Disney World trip? Learn about hotels on our Walt Disney World Hotels Reviews page. For where to eat, read our Walt Disney World Restaurant Reviews. To save money on tickets or determine which type to buy, read our Tips for Saving Money on Walt Disney World Tickets post. Our What to Pack for Disney Trips post takes a unique look at clever items to take. For what to do and when to do it, our Walt Disney World Ride Guides will help. For comprehensive advice, the best place to start is our Walt Disney World Trip Planning Guide for everything you need to know!

Your Thoughts

Do you agree or disagree with our best-of list for Walt Disney World character dining? Any restaurants you’d add–or remove–from this list? 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!

83 Responses to “Best Character Meals at Disney World”
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