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Our Guide to Disney World Hotel Character Dining

by Mommy Frog on April 11, 2017 22   Video

Disney World Hotel Character Dining

As we've outlined at length, there are a ton of reasons to stay at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel. You get the benefit of being right there on property, just a hop, skip and a jump away from the parks. You get the benefit of making FastPass+ reservations, dining reservations and more ahead of other visitors. But perhaps best of all, you are fully immersed in the Disney magic the whole time you are visiting! You know we frogs are all about the pool, it's one of the main hotel selling points for us, but another primary consideration of where to stay—especially if you are staying on site—are the dining options and the character dining options.

The Disney World hotel character dining experiences take place at some (not all!) of the Disney deluxe resorts. We highly recommend you make Advance Dining Reservations as far in advance as possible for the character meals. Some of the Disney World hotel character dining experiences are especially popular! While you don't have to be staying at the hotel hosting the breakfast or even be a Walt Disney World hotel guest to book a character breakfast, it sure does make it convenient if you are! Here is an overview of all the Disney World hotel character dining options.

*All Disney World hotel character appearances and entertainment listed here are subject to change.

Here is Our Guide to Disney World Hotel Character Dining

Chef Mickey's

Disney World Hotel Character Dining - Chef Mickey's

Location: Disney’s Contemporary Resort

Featured Characters: Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Pluto, Goofy

Meal Details: Breakfast & Dinner – Buffet

Menu Samples: Breakfast – seasonal melons and fruit, ham and cheese or Italian frittata, Mini Mickey waffles, Minnie's Muffins; Brunch - seasonal salad selection, peel-n-eat shrimp, cheesy potato casserole, Mickey Mousse Domes, sundae bar; Dinner – beef-port short ribs, carving station, baked salmon, sloppy joe's, mac ‘n’ cheese, cocktails and non-alcoholic specialties

Highlights: Chef Mickey’s is THE place to meet the Fab Five. Have an early breakfast here then take the monorail to the Magic Kingdom. The lunchtime can be very crowded and noisy, but Mickey in a chef hat makes up for it. Because this location is so close to Magic Kingdom, it's a very popular character dining spot. Make sure to book your reservations in advance!

1900 Park Fare

Location: Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa

Featured Characters: (Breakfast) Mary Poppins, Alice, Mad Hatter, Pooh; (Dinner) Cinderella, Prince Charming, Lady Tremaine, the two stepsisters

Meal Details: Breakfast – Buffet; Afternoon – Wonderland Tea Party; Dinner – Buffet

Menu Samples: Breakfast – custom-made omelets, carved ham, Mickey waffles, pancakes with bananas foster; Wonderland Tea Party - apple juice "tea" and cupcakes; Dinner – Mongolian beef, mojo roast pork loin, chicken tenders, macaroni & cheese

Highlights: The themed aspects of the character dining experiences here are extra special. Join Mary Poppins, Alice in Wonderland, the Mad Hatter, Tigger and Winnie the Pooh for the Supercalifragilistic Breakfast. Cinderella, Prince Charming, Cinderella and other storybook characters host the Cinderella’s Happily Ever After Dinner. If you want something "for kids only," check out the Wonderland Tea Party held in the afternoons. (If you’re not between 4 and 12, you’re not allowed.)

Garden View Tea Room

Disney World Hotel Character Dining - Perfectly Princess Tea Party

Location: Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa

Featured Characters: "Rose Petal," a magical rose from Aurora's garden; Princess Aurora

Meal Details: Select mornings at 10:30 a.m.

Menu Samples: Apple juice "tea," fruit, cheeses, sandwiches and princess cake

Highlights: Young tadpoles are encouraged to dress as their favorite prince or princess. Each princess party attendee (ages 3-9) will receive a Princess Aurora doll, a tiara, a silver princess bracelet, a princess necklace, a fresh rose, a special princess sticker page and a princess cinch bag. Each prince will receive a sword and shield, a souvenir pin, a plush bear and a "best friend" certificate.

Cape May Café

Disney World Hotel Character Dining - Cape May Cafe

Location: Disney’s Beach Club Resort

Featured Characters: Goofy, Donald, Minnie Mouse

Meal Details: Breakfast – Buffet

Menu Samples: Mickey Waffles, fresh-baked pastries, fresh fruit and yogurt bar

Highlights: Fill up on a yummy breakfast next to Minnie Mouse at Minnie's Beach Bash Breakfast at Cape May Café. (She’s dressed in her cutest beach attire!) Disney’s Beach Club Resort is walking distance to Epcot, so try to schedule the breakfast on a day that you're headed to Epcot. When you're done with breakfast, head toward the Boardwalk, which has its own entrance to the park.


Location: Disney's Polynesian Village Resort

Featured Characters: Lilo and Stitch, Mickey, Pluto

Meal Details: Breakfast – Family-style

Menu Samples: Scrambled eggs, Island-style fried potatoes, Hawaiian pork sausages, Mickey waffles, assorted breads and fruit

Highlights: Lilo and Stitch will keep you in "stitches" during the Best Friends Breakfast at ‘Ohana. The family-style service is speedy, so an early breakfast will put you at the Magic Kingdom in time for park opening. This breakfast is very popular, so be sure to book early!

Garden Grove

Location: Walt Disney World Swan

Featured Characters: Chip and Dale, Pluto and Goofy.

Meal Details: Dinner – Buffet, Breakfast – Buffet (Saturday & Sunday only)

Menu Samples: Breakfast - omelettes, country casserole, fruits, macadamia crusted French toast; dinner - prime rib, cedar plank blackened salmon, turkey sliders, chicken fingers; seafood buffet on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights

Highlights: The Garden Grove is a Central Park-themed restaurant with a 25-foot oak tree that stands in the middle of the dining room. It’s a nice break for a quieter meal when the kids really want to meet a few characters.

Mickey’s Backyard BBQ Dinner Show

Location: The Cabins at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort

Featured Characters: Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Chip 'n' Dale

Meal Details: Dinner – All-you-care-to-eat buffet

Menu Samples: Barbeque smoked ribs, smoked chicken, hamburgers, hotdogs, corn on the cob, watermelon

Highlights: Mickey’s Backyard BBQ Dinner Show is technically not a Character Dining experience; it’s billed as a dinner show with character encounters. There’s a country-western band, line dancing and rope tricks at the open-air pavillion. The best part is being able to boogie with characters on the dance floor!

You make reservations up to 180 days in advance through My Disney Experience. You can see more Disney World planning milestones and include your own dates on our Orlando Planning Timeline

Need help deciding on the perfect Disney World hotel for your family? Use our handy decision matrix! Then book your next hotel room at a discount with us.

Hoppy planning!

Keep hopping, Mommy Frog!
View Comments
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Dec 25, 2017 at 11:36 p.m. Heather Says...

We are doing a make over at the Bibbity Bobbity Boutique at Disney Springs. Can you tell me which character dining experience is closest to that location? We would really like to do the character dining on the same day as the makeover.

Thanks for any help!

Dec 28, 2017 at 9:25 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Heather,

There isn't a character dining experience super close by, so we recommend you pick the one that your little one will most appreciate. If she is going as a princess, she might like Akershus at Epcot or dining in the castle at Magic Kingdom. It will be special no matter which one she chooses.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Nov 1, 2017 at 4:40 p.m. vanessa Says...

Ok I have a number of restaurants that my family and I would like to get reservations for that happen to be at different disney world resorts/hotels. I guess I'm confused with when I should book reservations? We will be leaving one of the 4 parks attend reservations. How would we get to the restaurant and back into the park again? And is the time spent away from the park for a meal elsewhere realy worth it? Say we book reservations for breakfast and dinner at a resort/hotel everyday how much time will we be missing at the park? Is their someone to assist us with navigation and transportation? Is their a website that could help me choose what restaurant would be closer to the resort/hotel from the certain park we would be attending that day so transportation is quicker? Where would I find information regarding bus times and travel destinations to insure exactly when I should set up are reservations?

Nov 2, 2017 at 8:55 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Vanessa,

Depending on the location, heading to a hotel for dinner and back to a park can be a minimum three-hour trip. You need to factor in travel time, waiting for transportation and waiting for seating.

We recommend using an off-day to do your hotel dining. If that's not possible, schedule your reservations at hotels that are near the parks you plan on visiting.

The Disney World website has a helpful transportation page to help you plan routes.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Oct 27, 2017 at 3:24 a.m. Jeanne Says...

At Garden Grove - is it still true that Rafiki and Timon are there on Fridays for dinner?! As well as having a seafood buffet that night too?! Wasn't sure how old this article is ☺

Oct 27, 2017 at 8:43 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jeanne,

Bad news. Timon and Rafiki no longer appear at Garden Grove. You may look forward to dining with Chip, Dale, Goofy and Pluto. We've updated the post to reflect this change. Good news - the seafood buffet is still on!

Keep hopping!

Mommy Frog

Oct 22, 2017 at 9:42 p.m. Tracy Says...


We aren’t staying at a Disney hotel.

Would we be able to book to go to a breakfast at one of the hotels and then after the breakfast leave our car in the same car park at the hotel and get transport to the park?

Thank you

Oct 24, 2017 at 4:42 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Tracy,

You are allowed three hours free parking at a resort hotel with a breakfast reservation. Unless you are staying at a Disney resort, you'd need to move your car to the theme park parking after your breakfast.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Jun 7, 2017 at 7:53 p.m. Chotter53 Says...


I am staying at the Disney Art of Animation hotel and plan to dine at Chef Mickey one morning then take the monorail into Magic Kingdom. The bus is the only transportation option (and I have been told it is dedicated to this hotel only) to and from that hotel (we are not renting a car) - do you know if the bus will be able to drop us off at the Contemporary Resort early enough to attend an early reservation?

Jun 7, 2017 at 3:05 p.m. FrogBlog Says...


There are no direct resort-to-resort buses. For an early Chef Mickey's reservation, we would suggest taking a taxi or rideshare to Disney's Contemporary Resort. You could take the bus from Art of Animation to Magic Kingdom then walk to Contemporary Resort. Note that Disney Transporation begins 45 minutes before the theme park opens.

Hoppy Planning!

Mommy Frog

Nov 16, 2016 at 12:47 a.m. Momis worried Says...

My daughter is turning 17 and her dream has always been Alice in wonderland breakfast this year I'm been saving for her to be able to have breakfast lunch dinner anything with her and the mad batter not sure how or who to call

Nov 16, 2016 at 11:14 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there,

Alice is part of the Superfragilistic Breakfast at 1900 Park Fare, but characters can change. There is no guarantee, but that is the best bet.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

May 1, 2016 at 3:54 p.m. Kassie Says...

My family will be at a Disney resort for one day (Friday) in Oct. Seems everything is booking fast. Where are some great character dinners we could do outside of Disney that the hotel can transport us to?

May 12, 2016 at 4:03 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kassie,

Most of the character options are in the parks. Those at the Disney hotels (or some of the Disney Springs hotels) offer breakfasts. We really like the Lilo & Stitch breakfast at Disney's Polynesian Village. Other popular options are Chef Mickey's at Disney's Contemporary Resort and Minnie's Beach Bash Breakfast at Disney's Beach Club Resort.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Mar 7, 2016 at 5:59 p.m. Jennifer Says...

Does anyone know what characters are at the restaurant Boma

Mar 8, 2016 at 1:37 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jennifer,

There are no characters at Boma, but it is a wonderful restaurant.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Feb 29, 2016 at 4:16 p.m. Amelie Says...

Hi, I am planning our trip to WDW and I was planning to reserve a table at the 1900 Park Fare for breakfast, as we would love to meet the Mad Hatter. I would like to book it as late as possible, and I saw you can book as late at 11:45. But I was just wondering, will the character still be there for us? Are we going to feel rushed through the meal? And will we have fresh food, or leftover buffet? Thank you!

Feb 29, 2016 at 1:26 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Amelie,

Yes, the characters will be there and make time to meet with you, and the food should be fresh too!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Sep 25, 2015 at 12:04 a.m. Sarah Says...

Is it possible to eat at these restaurants if you aren't staying on site or visiting the parks? Thanks

Sep 25, 2015 at 1:36 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Sarah,

You don't need to be visiting the parks to eat at the resort restaurants!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Jul 26, 2015 at 10:14 p.m. Krista Says...

Can you book and go to these restaurants even if you are not staying on site? Would you be able to do free transport from DW to the resort and back?

Aug 5, 2015 at 11:30 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Krista,

Yes, you can book these restaurants even if you are not staying on site. You can take Disney transportation, but keep in mind, that transportation might be difficult for a really early reservation, if you are transferring from a theme park.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

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