Looking for some romantic things to do and places to dine at Walt Disney World on Valentine’s Day? This guide to the holiday covers the best restaurants, activities, and more around the parks and resorts, with tips & info for the perfect date night at Walt Disney World! (Updated January 31, 2021.)
As an added bonus, this Valentine’s Day at Walt Disney World Tips post is written for the procrastinators out there. It offers restaurant recommendations for last-minute ADRs and other ideas that don’t need to be booked months in advance. Perfect for anyone who has had to Google “what day is Valentine’s Day?” because they forgot it’s on February 14th every year. (Not that this has ever happened to me or anything…)
There are several things to do that are romantic at Walt Disney World. You could book a romantic horse-drawn carriage ride at Fort Wilderness Campground. You could surprise your spouse with a couples spa treatment at one of the Deluxe Resorts. However, there’s one thing that’s an absolute must-do…
Of course, we’re talking about EATING. Nothing says romance is in the air like devouring some lobster mac & cheese, scarfing down a steak the size of your head, and finishing things off with a dessert that’s literally on fire. (Hey, you can always work off those calories later!)
Unfortunately, if you’re visiting Walt Disney World in 2021 for Valentine’s Day, it’s worth noting that there are a lot of temporary changes during the phased reopening. For one, several restaurants–including a disproportionate amount of fine dining options–are still closed. (Noted below as applicable.)
For another, those visiting with kids cannot currently hire in-room childcare. Normally, Kid’s Nite Out offers one-to-one babysitting in the comfort of your Walt Disney World hotel room. These babysitters provide arts & crafts, read, and play games (among other activities) for kids 6 months to 12 years of age.
With all of that said, here are some of our top picks for Valentine’s Day dining at Walt Disney World, including several options inside the parks or with last-minute ADR availability…
Topolino’s Terrace (Open) – Located at Disney’s Riviera Resort, this is another rooftop restaurant with fireworks views similar to Toledo. The biggest difference is that Topolino’s Terrace is a convenient Skyliner flight from Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Pop Century, or Art of Animation.
After dinner, we’d recommend taking the Skyliner to Epcot, where you wander around Crescent Lake, enjoying the evening entertainment on the BoardWalk. Better yet, if you have park admission (and it’s not too late), enter Epcot via International Gateway for a lap around World Showcase.
California Grill (Open) — The rooftop restaurant at Contemporary Resort is going to be the pick of many fans as the best place for a romantic meal at Walt Disney World. The ambiance is top-notch–sophisticated decor with a view of Magic Kingdom and great views of the fireworks.
California Grill is an unquestionably solid choice, but also somewhat overrated. This is especially true now that Toledo and Topolino’s Terrace have opened. Both of those restaurants offer similar views (albeit of different parks) and better cuisine at comparable price-points.
Todd English’s Bluezoo (Open) – We really enjoy this restaurant over at the Walt Disney World Dolphin Hotel (a short walk from Epcot or Disney’s Hollywood Studios), and find it to offer exceptional value for money, great food, and a relaxed ambiance.
However, it primarily makes this list as a fallback option. Last-minute ADRs are typically fairly easy to score–even for Valentine’s Day.
STK Orlando (Open) – In terms of atmosphere, this is the most chic and trendy restaurant at Walt Disney World. In the evenings, it has a quasi-party atmosphere, with a more “adult” playlist than you’ll find anywhere else. To get you in the mood for the special holiday, expect to hear tunes like Lonely Island’s gift-giving song.
Suffice to say, STK really embodies the two s’s of Valentine’s Day: steak and…snuggling.
The Edison (Open) – There are a lot of great Valentine’s Day dining options at Disney Springs, so naturally, we chose the most divisive. While we love the food menu at the Edison, we’re recommending this more as a nightcap for dancing, drinks, and entertainment.
It’s not for everyone, but the Edison is worth checking out after a meal at STK, Paddlefish, the Boathouse, Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill, Morimoto Asia, or Jaleo. (All of which are also good Valentine’s Day dinner specials for 2021–and often have last-minute availability.)
Amorette’s Patisserie or the Ganachery (Both Open) – Valentine’s Day is the holiday for expensive chocolates…or so I’m told.
Personally, we love Amorette’s Patisserie and find it to be one of the top dessert spots in all of Walt Disney World. Even if you do a full meal at Disney Springs, you might want to hold off on dessert and do it at Amorette’s.
Toledo Steakhouse (Temporarily Closed) – This excellent new table service restaurant is at Gran Destino Tower, the new high-rise hotel adjacent to Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort. Toledo has delightfully moody lighting, and is a rooftop restaurant with views of the fireworks at Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
While the atmosphere is perfect for a romantic meal, it’s the menu that really pushes Toledo over the top. In addition to some truly glorious cuts of beef, Toledo also serves tapas. (It’s in the full name: “Toledo – Tapas, Steak & Seafood.”) While it’s difficult to pass up those steaks, the smaller plates are great for sharing–and make for some easy conversation.
Narcoossee’s (Open) or Victoria & Albert’s (Temporarily Closed) – These two restaurants are obviously very different, but the commonality is that both are located at the Grand Floridian, Walt Disney World’s flagship hotel. Both will offer sophisticated settings and high-end menus, and Narcoossee’s is one of the top Signature Restaurants at Walt Disney World.
Victoria & Albert’s is next level. Unquestionably the absolute best restaurant at Walt Disney World, it’s the only AAA 5-Diamond restaurant in Walt Disney World. It’s also the least family-friendly, as children under 10 aren’t welcome in the main dining room. However, it’s also incredibly expensive, a bit of a production, stuffy or attentive (depending upon your perspective), and perhaps not ideal for a Valentine’s Day dinner.
Either way, we think these are the two best options outside of the parks at Walt Disney World. For either, we’d suggest an earlier seating. After dinner, we recommend a long walk on the beach over to Disney’s Polynesian Resort, where you can enjoy the Magic Kingdom fireworks…or simply the serene and romantic atmosphere of these resorts in the evening.
Sanaa (Open) or Jiko (Temporarily Closed) – Both of these restaurants are at Animal Kingdom Lodge (Kidani Village and Jambo House, respectively) and offer varying degrees of refinement and sophistication, plus adventurous menus. Ambiance-wise, Jiko is the better pick. Menu-wise, it’s more of a toss-up. Jiko is the more expensive and ambitious, Signature Restaurant. (We’ve had some mixed luck with Jiko recently.)
The other reason both make the cut is for the experience they offer. Before dinner, enjoy sunset overlooking the savanna. Afterwards, head back out and grab the night vision goggles and see if you can spot any wildlife. Finish things off with a drink at Victoria Falls Lounge, one of Walt Disney World’s most underrated bars.
Monsieur Paul (Temporarily Closed) – Located in the France pavilion of Epcot’s World Showcase, Monsieur Paul is our top pick as Walt Disney World’s best restaurant for Valentine’s Day. This is a substantial departure from most in-park dining, with a classy-but-restrained dining room and more adult ambiance.
Service is stereotypically French and isn’t too fussy, allowing for a more romantic meal where the focus is on the cuisine and your partner. It’s also one of the least family-friendly in-park restaurants at Walt Disney World, so expect to see few (if any) kids.
While some patrons will be sporting park attire, others will be adhere to the dress code at Monsieur Paul. Given the short walk from Crescent Lake, it could easily be a “dressed-up, date night” type restaurant if you’d like that. (Or not.) Any of the prix fixe menus are exceptional, and we’d highly recommend a later seating so you can enjoy strolling through an empty World Showcase after your meal. That’s the perfect romantic nightcap.
Ultimately, even if you don’t dine at one of these restaurants, you can make a lot of thing at Walt Disney World romantic picks for Valentine’s Day. Curate your attraction plans so you’re emphasizing slow-moving boat or dark rides like Living with the Land, Spaceship Earth, Navi River Journey, Haunted Mansion, and Pirates of the Caribbean. Dine at a darker restaurant like Nine Dragons or Hollywood Brown Derby. (Despite what others might claim, San Angel Inn and Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater are poor picks due to table spacing/layout.)
Plan your evening so you’re ending things with a leisurely stroll through World Showcase, Crescent Lake, or even Disney Springs. If you procrastinate too long, do a monorail resort lounge crawl. Generally speaking, Walt Disney World is a pretty romantic place–especially at night. Don’t fret too much about planning the “perfect” evening, as doing a date night together and simply giving things the old college try will be just fine.
What’s your perfect Valentine’s Day at Walt Disney World? Any preferred date night restaurant you’d recommend? Do you agree or disagree with our advice? Any questions we can help you answer? Hearing your feedback–even when you disagree with us–is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!