Character News – Walt Disney World

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There is a WHOLE BUNCH of New Character News for Walt Disney World this Summer. Check it Out!

Disney just released a whole bunch of amazing Character News for this summer and I AM SO EXCITED! Let’s get into it!

MIRABEL!!!!

While still not a proper Meet and Greet (you have to head to Disneyland for those!), Mirabel will FINALLY be making an appearance in the Most Magical Place on Earth! Beginning June 26, Mirabel will be a part of the “Disney Adventure Friends Cavalcade” at Magic Kingdom Park! She will be joining Miguel, from Coco, Nick and Judy, from Zootopia, Max Goof, Goofy’s son from A Goofy Movie, and more! Check the times guide for show times!

Coming This JULY!

Get HYPED for summer! Everyone’s favorite Minnie returns to Town Square Theater on July 6, where her and Mickey Mouse will once again be doling out hugs on the regular! They’ll be decked out in their EARidescent 50th Anniversary finest so you are not going to want to miss this!

As if the news of the Hoop-Dee-Doo Revue returning June 23 wasn’t enough excitement at the Fort, Chip ‘N Dale’s Campfire Sing-A-Long returns to Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground on JULY 6!! Here, you’ll be able to join the nutty friends for a campfire celebration followed by a classic Disney movie under the stars.

On July 10, catch Fantasyland favorites Peter Pan and Snow White, as they once again greet guests in Magic Kingdom Park!

Star Wars Launch Bay RETURNS!!!

In perhaps, the BEST news, since this is a gigantic, unused space in Hollywood Studios, Star Wars Launch Bay is set to return on July 17! Here, fans can usually meet Chewbacca, Darth Vader, and BB-8. Pre-COVID, you were able to also bump into the likes of Boba Fett, Stormtroopers, and, occasionally, R2-D2! Plus, see artifacts and props from all 9 movies!

And There’s Still More to Come!

Character News - Launchpad McQuack

Disney also teased there is more to come this summer, including Donald’s Dino-Bash at Animal Kingdom; a visit to Magic Kingdom Park will bring chances to meet Aladdin, Jasmine, Merida, Pooh, Tigger and Storybook Circus pals like The Great Goofini in Pete’s Silly Sideshow; and the Toys will once again be roaming the backyard in Toy Story Land at Hollywood Studios!

Not to mention the Harmony Barber Shop is reopening July 31! With so much happening, you aren’t going to want to miss this! Contact me today to talk about visiting Walt Disney World this summer!!!

Check out more information about Walt Disney World Resort!

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Best Mocktails of Disney World

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The best Non-Alcoholic Drinks at Walt Disney World and Where to Find Them!

I love to drink around the World, but there are some who, for whatever reason (you do you! Live your life!), cannot, will not, do not want to drink. Not only that, but Florida is very hot. Sometimes you just want something cold to drink that tastes amazing and cools you down. So, for these people, and everyone else, too, here are the best mocktails of Disney World!

Mocktails at Disney Lounges

Best Mocktails of Disney World
pina colava

This first one is a classic, and SO good. It also comes with rum, if you want the virgin for the kids while you imbibe the real thing! This tropical twist on the classic colada invites a thick raspberry puree into the mix. Personally, raspberries make all tropical flavors that much better, so I prefer this to the real Colada!  Sip this down at various locations around Walt Disney World, including the Polynesian. Because this is the perfect drink to end the day on the beach while watching Enchantment!

Best Mocktails at Monorail Resorts

Best Mocktails of Disney World - Schweitzer Falls
schweitzer falls – trader sam’s grog grotto, the polynesian

Yes, Trader Sam’s has great cocktails. And they also have great No-Booze Brews, too! So while you’re having the Uh-Oa or the Tiki Tiki Tiki Tiki Tiki Room, the kids or your sober companion can also enjoy a tropical beverage, like the Schweitzer Falls! Of course, this amazing mocktail is named after the great explorer good ‘ol Albert…..Falls! This is Sam’s Gorilla Grog and tropical juices topped with Sprite. So refreshing!

Mocktails in the Magic Kingdom

While you won’t find that many cocktails, the Magic Kingdom actually has a lot of the best mocktails of Disney World! Adventureland? Main St? I’m sure there’s something! Let’s check it out!

Lefou’s Brew- Gaston’s Tavern, Fantasyland
Best Mocktails - LeFou's Brew

Don’t sleep on LeFou’s Brew! This vegan-friendly no-sugar-added frozen apple slush presents a hint of marshmallow flavoring and is topped with a passionfruit-mango foam. Surprisingly delicious. Amazingly refreshing. This is definitely a delicious mocktail to enjoy! Wash down your GIGANTIC cinnamon roll with LeFou’s Brew!

frozen mint julep lemonade – casey’s corner, Main St USA
Best Mocktails - Frozen Mint Julep Lemonade

Hang on, Disneylanders, we know you have the Mint Julep game under control over there in CA, but this version is a refreshing, frozen, slushified mix of mint julep perfection! Frozen Minute Maid Lemonade, topped with fresh mint leaves, cherry, and lemon. A timely reminder in the best mocktails competition that sometimes, less is more!

dole whip float – aloha isle, Adventureland

A contender that needs no introduction, it’s THE DOLE WHIP FLOAT. The classic Dole Whip, pineapple, vanilla, or swirl, topped with pineapple juice. JUST what the doctor ordered on a hot, August day in Central Florida! For the non-mocktail version, head to Pineapple Lanai or Tamu Tamu and get yours with rum!

i lava you float – sunshine tree terrace, Adventureland

That brings us to my personal favorite snack in all of Walt Disney World (I said what I said) , the I Lava You Float at Sunshine Tree Terrace. Now, hear me out: Fanta strawberry soda, passion fruit flavor served with DOLE Whip Orange, and topped with Popping Candy. TASTE BUD HEAVEN. Seriously, who would have ever thought strawberry Fanta was SO GOOD?!?!?

Not sure where to stay? Take a closer look at Walt Disney World Resorts!

Best Mocktail – Hollywood Studios

sunset boulevard – hollywood brown derby lounge
Best Mocktails of Disney World - Sunset Boulevard

Checking in with another “less is more” offering in the best mocktails competition, the Sunset Boulevard at the Hollywood Brown Derby Lounge. SO SIMPLE. It is tangerine and sprite, served with a glow cube. It is delicious and refreshing.

Best Mocktail in Animal Kingdom

Best Mocktails of Disney World - Night Blossom
night blossom – pongu pongu

Described as, “layers of Apple and Desert Pear Limeade topped with Passion Fruit Boba Balls,” the Night Blossom is the perfect pick-me-up in the middle of a hot day at Animal Kingdom aka the hottest of the hot theme parks! Additionally, I don’t think too many people would argue if I said this is the BEST MOCKTAIL in all of Walt Disney World!

EPCOT – Best Mocktail

The american dream – fife and drum tavern

“You look like the Fourth of July! Makes me want a hot dog REAL bad!” This patriotic non-alcoholic refreshment is perfect for washing down that hot dog, turkey leg, or Mickey pretzel! Frozen Fanta strawberry, vanilla ice cream, and frozen Fanta blue raspberry slushy! It is as good as it sounds!

So there you have it! If you are not a drinker, you are not doomed to a week of water or milk. Disney has plenty of non-alcoholic options available that are delicious, whimsical, and quite refreshing! Which one are you most excited to try?!

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Character Dining at Tusker House

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Character Dining in Animal Kingdom: Tusker House Restaurant

Character Dining Check In

Character Dining is slowly returning to Walt Disney World and Disneyland, although it is a modified experience, but anything is better than nothing! One of the most popular Character Dining experiences is located in Disney’s Animal Kingdom, at Tusker House Restaurant. Tusker House is currently an all-you-care-to-enjoy family-style meal featuring African-inspired food, and hosted by Safari Donald Duck!

Tusker House Restaurant: The Basics

Tusker House Character Dining
Directional sign for Tusker House Restaurant

Tusker House offers Breakfast (8:30am-10:30am), Lunch (11:00am-3:30pm), and Dinner (3:35pm-7pm) (hours current as of February 2, 2022. Check the Walt Disney World website or app for most recent operating hours). Previously a buffet, the restaurant is now a family-style all-you-care-to-enjoy meal. Breakfast is currently $42/adult, $27/child, while Lunch and Dinner come in at $55/adult, $36/child. This includes your food and non-alcoholic beverages like coffee, tea, water, and fountain drinks. Non-alcoholic specialty drinks, cocktails, beer, and wine are extra. Advanced Dining Reservations can be made up to 60 days in advance and are strongly encouraged!

Tusker House: The Food

Breakfast pastry platter at Tusker House for Character Dining

For this article, I’m going to focus on breakfast. I’ve eaten lunch and dinner at Tusker House, but that was pre-Covid. So breakfast starts with fresh fruit, with a honey yogurt sauce/dip. You also get a breakfast pastry plate. This includes Safari Bread, Multigrain Croissants and Cornbread served with Whipped Butter, Chocolate-Hazelnut Spread, and Strawberry Preserves. Again, everything is all-you-care-to-enjoy, so you can order more of any and all items!

For the main course, you will enjoy Simba and Mickey waffles, eggs, bacon, sausage, and chicken curry.

I will say that, while the food is nothing earth-shattering, it is good. However, we were a group of six, and this was what was initially brought to us. The youngest in our group was 15. Do you think this is enough food for 6 adults? Yes, I realize that it is all-you-care-to-enjoy, but we had to order more before they even set the plate down!

Tusker House for Food Allergies

Tusker House Food Allergy pastries
Allergy Pastry Platter
Tusker House Food Allergy Fruit Plate
Allergy Fruit

As with all other Disney-owned restaurants, they are great with food allergies. If you’re new here, I have Celiac, and I cannot eat gluten. I mark this on all my dining reservations, and communicate with the hosts and my server. When I don’t feel comfortable or have a specific question (like ordering a secret menu item), I ALWAYS ask to speak to a chef. So the first thing is that I receive my very own breakfast pastry plate and my own fruit, in case there is any cross-contamination with the normal eaters. It’s obviously nowhere near as exciting as the gluten-filled pastries, but since it’s rare I can have any of this, it’s perfect.

Tusker House Food Allergy Skillet

When the main course is brought out, a separate skillet is brought out, a separate skillet is brought out for me, including gluten free Mickey Waffles, eggs, bacon, ham, and breakfast potatoes. I don’t like curry, so I told them I didn’t want any, but it was available if that’s something your allergy diner enjoys. Unlike the skillet for the whole group, this has MORE than enough food for one person in it! Apparently they should apply this food-to-mouth ratio to the bigger portions!

Characters!

Character Dining-Mickey Mouse
Mickey
Character Dining-Safari Donald Duck
Everyone’s Number 1, Donald Duck
Character Dining-Daisy Duck
Daisy
Character Dining-Goofy
Goofy

Here, Donald Duck is the star of the show! Join Safari Friends Donald, Daisy Duck, Mickey Mouse, and Goofy. They are roaming around the restaurant while you eat, and are available for socially distant photos. They will not sign autographs, but we received a card with all of their autographs on it as a keepsake. Personally, I much prefer this style of Character Dining, because it’s much faster, less hectic, and you’re not standing up every 2 minutes. I love a good Donald Duck hug as much as anybody, but I much prefer the socially distant version of Character Dining!

Character Dining: Final Verdict

While this has always been one of our favorite dining locations, the switch from buffet to all-you-care-to-enjoy really soured our opinion. It was still good, as far as breakfast food goes, but the basic offerings, in our opinion, was not worth the price. Beware that you are completely paying for characters here now. The food is ordinary. What do you think of the new version of character dining at Tusker House?

You can read about other Animal Kingdom dining options here.

Are you ready to book your vacation? Contact me today for your free, no obligation vacation quote!!

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Up Close with Rhinos – Animal Kingdom

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Animal Kingdom has a ton of animals to look at enjoy, but what if you could PET one? Well, Up Close with Rhinos is the tour for you! This tour, which currently takes place once a day at Animal Kingdom, will literally give you the opportunity to pet a real, live white rhino! So what the heck am I talking about?

What is Up Close with Rhinos?

Animal Kingdom Up Close with Rhinos Check-in

If you’ve ever walked through Harambe on your way to Kilimanjaro Safari, you may have noticed the “Curiosity Animal Tours” booth. No, it’s not just a clever placement by Disney Imagineers, there are actually animal tours that you can book in Animal Kingdom! One such tour is Up Close with Rhinos! This tour is one hour long (roughly), and takes you backstage to the animal care area, where you will meet 2 keepers that work with the white rhinos.

How much are we talking?

Animal Kingdom Tours list including Up Close with Rhinos

The opportunity to not only get close to an exotic animal, but to also TOUCH one, sounds expensive, right? Well don’t dismay, this tour will only cost you $45 per person for one hour. Not too shabby, if I do say so myself. Again, what you get is a one hour tour backstage, where you will meet 2 rhino caregivers, who will teach you about the lives of white rhinos. It will culminate in the up close (hence the name) petting of a white rhino! Absolutely amazing!

What you Need to Know about Up Close with Rhinos

Rhino on Kilimanjaro Safari
Rhino found in Kilimanjaro Safari

This tour is outside, and runs rain or shine (unless there is lightning, then it may be delayed or altered), so dress appropriately. You will be going into areas with animals, so while your Birkenstocks may be adorable, you’ll probably want to wear a sturdy, close-toed shoe for this experience. Since you’re going backstage, you won’t be able to take pictures, so don’t think you’ll be getting a lot of content for your TikTok. You should plan to check in 15 minutes in advance at the Curiosity Animal Tours kiosk, and they WILL leave without you, so you will be out all the money paid if you are late. Plan accordingly.

Who is this for?

All participants must be at least 4 years old, so you won’t be able to take little ones younger than this. Other than that, this tour is for anyone that can walk it! Wheelchairs may be used for this tour, but ECVs must be left in the designated area. You must be able to walk on your own or with the aid of someone pushing you in a wheelchair. Call (407) 938-1373 to confirm all accommodation requests!

Unique Animal Experience: Up Close with Rhinos

Up Close with Rhinos lanyard via MouseHacking

Ready to experience this amazing tour? Contact me today for more information! Ready to talk about booking your vacation?

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Date Night Dinners

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All the BEST Restaurants to Visit for Your Date Night Dinner at Walt Disney World!

So you’re at Disney World, either with your kids or without your kids or you don’t have kids, whatever the situation, it’s just you and your special someone. And you want to have a date night. It’s not a lost cause, because Disney is NOT just for kids! There are plenty of great options for date night dinners!

However, what do you do with your kids? Now, for parents traveling with extended family, like grandparents or aunts and uncles, you may not think twice about going out for a dinner just yourselves. But not everyone has that option. FEAR NOT! Try Kids Nite Out!

But back to why you’re here, THE FOOD! Here are some of the best restaurants for date night at Walt Disney World!

High-End, Fine and Signature Dining

date night dinners at disney

Believe it or not, there are restaurants at Walt Disney World that are so fancy they actually have dress codes and age limits. So we’ll start there!

The California Grill – Disney’s Contemporary Resort
Date Night Dinners - Watch Disney's Enchantment from the California Grill

Located on the 15th floor of the Contemporary, and accessed via private elevator, this is by far the most popular of date night dinners. It’s probably the view of the Magic Kingdom and the fireworks. While not personally my cup of tea, I can absolutely understand the appeal.

The cuisine is California-themed and they also feature over 300 wines, most from California, for guests 21 and over. This is a hard-to-get reservation, so be prepared. You MIGHT not get one! But don’t give up! People cancel reservations all the time. Also, there is a dress code. Learn more about Disney’s Contemporary Resort.

Victoria & Albert’s – The Grand Floridian
Date Night Dinners - Victoria & Albert's New Menu

Photo: Disney

Coming back with a brand new look and delicious new menu, Victoria & Albert’s, at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort, is the fanciest of fancy locations for your date night dinner.

It is incredibly expensive (like $295 per person expensive), hard to get into (and there is a $100 cancellation fee if you cancel within 5 days of your reservation), and it has a formal/semi-formal dress code. Despite ALL of this, it is completely popular. Advanced Reservations can be made up to 60 days in advance, and you’re going to need them!

Narcoosee’s – Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort
disney grand floridian

Located on the “coast” of the Grand Floridian, this surf-and-turf specialty restaurant offers spectacular views of Disney’s Enchantment, but with a romantic seaside setting. Featuring not only fresh seafood from local sources and around the world, but also land fare, like filet mignon.

This is another hard-to-get reservation and another location with a dress code.

Signature Dining for Regular People

If you’re looking for a date night dinner that won’t break the bank or require you to pack a ballgown, there are plenty of amazing options available to you!

The Boathouse – Disney Springs
Date Night Dinners - The BOATHOUSE

A night at Disney Springs deserves a stop at the Boathouse. The great food and drinks are tough to beat. This is an incredibly popular restaurant so reservations are a must! I make absolutely no secret that this is one of my favorite restaurants in all of Walt Disney World. Absolutely love it.

Additionally, being in Disney Springs adds to the Date Night milieu! Want to cap the date night with an unforgettable event? Take a ride in an Amphicar or take flight in the Aerophile!

Le Cellier – EPCOT, World Showcase

Located in the Canada Pavilion in EPCOT, this is for SURE one of my personal favorites, if only for the maple creme brulee. Le Cellier specializes in regional Canadian cuisine, including steaks, fresh seafood, cheesy poutine, and Canadian beer. Oh, and delicious creme brulee. Did I mention the creme brulee?

It should come as no surprise when I say, reservations are incredibly hard to get. But it is totally worth it. Can’t get a reservation? Guess what? It’s time for Food & Wine, so get the filet at the Canada booth!

Sanaa – Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge
date night dinners

Sanaa is located at Animal Kingdom Lodge and offers African and Indian cooking with a view of the animals on the Savannah. People FLOCK here (get it?) just for the bread service. Enjoy the animals grazing the savannah prior to your reservation time, as an added bonus to your date night dinner!

Sanaa is great for all diets, but it is also a favorite stop for vegans and vegetarians. It is a family-friendly restaurant but there is a personal, romantic feeling to the dining area, especially at night.

Chefs De France – EPCOT, World Showcase
chefs de france date night

Time to head back to World Showcase to dine in the France Pavilion at Chefs De France. Dine on seasonal French Cuisine and sip on the Imported French Wines and Champagne! Don’t forget to finish off with the creme brulee or the tarte au chocolat! With the Eiffel Tower, it’s quite the romantic date night dinner setting!

The Hollywood Brown Derby – Hollywood Studios, Hollywood Boulevard
Hollywood brown derby

If your date night includes a trip to Batuu, make sure to first dine at the Hollywood Brown Derby. Inspired by the original Brown Derby, you will dine on California cuisine! Try the famous Cobb Salad, named after the original owner of the Brown Derby, Bob Cobb, or the absolutely AMAZING burger, and finish up with the grapefruit sponge cake!

Tiffins – Disney’s Animal Kingdom
tiffins at disney's animal kingdom

Does your date night involve visiting Pandora? Tiffins is the place for you! Inspired by Africa and Asia, this dining location offers a delicious stop with great food and great views. Tiffins is another location known for it’s bread service, but if you can’t get into the restaurant for your date night dinner, try Nomad Lounge, located right next door, instead!

La Hacienda de San Angel – EPCOT, World Showcase
watch Disney's Harmonious

Want to cap a night at EPCOT with a front-row seat for the all-new Harmonious? Try to get a reservation about an hour and a half before the scheduled fireworks show at La Hacienda and ask to sit at the windows! Located in the Mexico Pavilion on the waterfront, this delicious Mexican restaurant is PERFECT for your date night dinners!

What is your favorite Date Night Dinner at Disney? Did yours make my list? Let me know! When you’re ready to book your next Walt Disney World Vacation, I’m ready to help! Contact me today to talk about your upcoming vacation!

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Expedition Everest

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Back in Asia, in Disney’s Animal Kingdom, stands Mt. Everest, and you are invited to conquer it. As many times as you want! Expedition Everest – The Legend of the Forbidden Mountain is one of the most popular attractions at Walt Disney World, and for good reason. Quite frankly, it’s awesome. Opening on April 7, 2006, Expedition Everest is the tallest attraction at WDW, standing 199.5 feet (Disney keeps all of their attractions below 200 feet to avoid having to put airplane beacons on the tops of them, hence ruining the illusion). It is also the tallest Disney mountain in the entire world. The ride is set in Nepal, and the queue has a stand-by line and a single rider line (it also has a fastpass return lane, but Disney is not offering fastpasses at this time). The queue starts in the office of the Himalayan Escapes Travel Agency. From here, you continue into a tea garden. The trains of the ride are modeled to look like tea trains, because Himalayan Escapes Headquarters used to be a tea plantation, and the trains were used to carry tea from the mountains down to the base camp.

From the tea garden, the queue then enters an equipment room that displays equipment used in successful expeditions. You then proceed to the “Yeti Museum,” that showcases artifacts and photos from Yeti Expeditions.

Expedition Everest was designed by LEGENDARY Imagineer Joe Rohde, who was the lead designer for both Expedition Everest and Animal Kingdom. He was also the lead designer of Aulani, a Disney Resort and Spa, located in Hawaii. Joe joined Imagineering in 1980 during the development of EPCOT, where he worked as a model designer and scenic painter of the Mexico Pavilion. Following the creation of Aulani, he was tasked with designing Pandora: World of Avatar. He also led the team that transitioned the Tower of Terror in Disney California Adventure into the Guardians of the Galaxy Mission Breakout ride. He retired in 2020.

Joe Rohde did a lot of really awesome, groundbreaking things at Disney Imagineering, but people will never let him forget that we’re still waiting for him to fix the Yeti! (I kid, I kid. I love you, Joe!!) When the Yeti, Disney’s largest and most complex audio animatronic EVER created, actually moved, it required the same force as a 747 jet engine. FOR EVERY RIDE TRAIN. That is incredible. No WONDER it stopped working so quickly!! Until 2019, this was the most expensive roller coaster in the world, costing $100 million. (Hagrid’s Magical Creature Motorbike Adventure replaced it)

Now, about the ride: the ride features a first-of-its-kind “proprietary silent chain lift” hill. This is designed to make it seem more like a real train expedition and less like a roller coaster. It features WDW’s longest ride trains, with 17 rows. This gives the ride a lot of potential and kinetic energy. PHYSICS!

The trains reach 55 MPH, making this the third fastest attraction at Walt Disney World! There are two track switches that create the 180 degree switch to go backwards and change paths. The ride does NOT go upside down when you’re going backwards in the dark. The darkness and backwards motion is designed to trick your brain and make you think you’re going upside down, but you’re really just going down a spiral track, closely resembling the track going outside down the final hill.

So there you have it: Expedition Everest! I LOVE the rides that have incredible stories attached to them, and this one does NOT disappoint! Have you conquered the Yeti?

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Animal Kingdom Sustenance

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Disney food is it’s own subculture. There are restaurants that are impossible to get into; there are snacks people will wait in incredibly long lines for; and there are all kinds of Mickey-shaped foods. In short, there is literally something for everyone, from kid staples hot dogs and chicken nuggets, to adult staples like corn dogs and chicken tenders.

Wocka Wocka. So anyway, Animal Kingdom has some awesome eats. Here is a list of my Top 5 Places to Find Food at Animal Kingdom:

Tusker House Restaurant

The only reason this isn’t ranked is because it is not open right now (please, Disney, will you reopen???) and when it does reopen, it’s likely to not be a buffet, BUT….based solely on what I know already, this is actually my number 1 Nomz stop at Animal Kingdom. In the before times, this was an awesome buffet, with something for everyone and featuring food with an African flair.

**As a reminder: Disney’s current policies require all guests ages 2 and up to wear face coverings at all times unless actively eating or drinking (while stationary) or for socially distant photos. Photos may not show current compliance, as they are older.


We have eaten breakfast, lunch, and dinner here and we have never left hungry OR disappointed. And there was a chef that brought me not one, but TWO special allergy plates. You cannot beat that kind of service. Hopefully Tusker House reopens soon!

5. Yak and Yeti Restaurant

Yak and Yeti Restaurant is a Landry’s restaurant, so you can join Landry’s Select and get a table without an Advanced Dining Reservation. Serving pan-Asian food, it is good, but not great. I did like that the chef took my order for food allergies and basically made whatever I wanted (I ordered beef lo mein and while it was delicious, I’ve had better in my own kitchen), rather than me having to stick to a limited menu. The highlight of my meal was the excellent mango sorbet with raspberry sauce and fresh mango. IT WAS SOOOOO GOOD!!!!

4. Nomad Lounge

The Nomad Lounge has specialty cocktails and appetizers, and I’m sure they’re wonderful, but the only reason I go here, and the only reason this is on the list, is for ALLERGY-FRIENDLY CHURROS. Those with gluten/wheat, peanut/tree nut, and fish/shellfish allergies can safely eat these treats right here at Nomad Lounge!!

3. Flame Tree Barbecue

Located in Discovery Island near the entrance to Dinoland USA, this is one of the best quick service restaurants in Walt Disney World. They have HUGE portions, so meals are shareable. Get the ribs and chicken!! This is a great way to save money! Or a great way to try the whole menu! BONUS: they are currently serving the adorable Flamingo Cupcake!!

2. Tamu Tamu Refreshments

ATTENTION: Dole Whip with rum! While this may be the reason many people go to Tamu Tamu, it actually has a little bit more to offer. They’re currently serving a Colossal Mickey Cinnamon Roll for breakfast, among other options. Currently, they have the Simba Sunset, which is a Dole Whip pineapple with watermelon, strawberry, and coconut-flavored syrup that I hope is still available on my next trip, because it sounds AMAZING!!!

1. Restaurantosaurus

Maybe not what you were expecting? A quick service restaurant when there’s Tiffins? For starters, I travel with picky eaters, and have been known to be one myself. Secondly, the last thing I want to do when I’m sweaty from Animal Kingdom is go to a super nice place to eat. And Restaurantosaurus LITERALLY has something for everyone, now that they offer the Impossible Burger! VEGANS RISE UP! I mean, I’m not a Vegan and I like meat, but since I have dietary restrictions, I appreciate restaurants that try to be all-inclusive, and serving the impossible burger is quite a start.

The theming is GREAT! Perfect for Dinosaur lovers! And there is ample seating inside and out.

So there you have it! My Top 5 (plus Tusker House) places to eat at Animal Kingdom! Did your favorite Nosh Pit make the cut?!

**As a reminder: Disney’s current policies require all guests ages 2 and up to wear face coverings at all times unless actively eating or drinking (while stationary) or for socially distant photos. Photos may not show current compliance, as they are older.

Looking to book a vacation? Contact me today for your FREE no obligation vacation quote today!

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Top Spots to Get Ice Cream at Walt Disney World

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There is nothing better on a hot day in Central Florida, and Disney World has many places to go to get that perfect ice cream treat. Here, I present some of my favorite picks for ice cream spots.

10. Aloha Isle. I know I’m going a different direction than most Disney fans, but while I LOVE me some Dole Whip, it is not my favorite ice cream spot. For starters, if you want anything other than Dole Whip or vanilla, you’re not getting it here. Secondly, Dole Whip is not something inherently unique to Disney. Still, it is a must-do for me each and every trip!

9. Pineapple Lanai. This is basically Aloha Isle, with 2 distinct differences: since it is located in the Polynesian, you don’t need a park ticket to get a Dole Whip, and second, you can get the Dole Whip with rum. Also much like Aloha Isle, Pineapple Lanai offers some seasonal variations on the Dole Whip. I highly recommend getting yourself a Dole Whip at Pineapple Lanai and eating it while walking to the Magic Kingdom.

8. The Plaza Ice Cream Parlor. This place would literally be nothing special except for the fact that you can eat your ice cream while staring at Cinderella’s Castle. Plaza Ice Cream has still not reopened since being closed due to Covid, so check for availability.

7. Hollywood Scoops. This spot is a perfect stop for guests of the Hollywood Tower Hotel. But seriously…while there is nothing absolutely spectacular about Scoops, Hollywood Studios is an incredibly hot park, and ice cream is the perfect snack.

6. Storybook Treats. I’m bucking the trend here, because most people disregard this location, but I happen to love it. First of all, the Peter Pan float, which is lime Dole Whip with Sprite and a chocolate feather, is perfectly refreshing. If lime isn’t your thing, you can make a float with chocolate, vanilla, or swirl ice cream and fountain drink of your choice (COKE FLOAT!).

Photo via Disney Food Blog

5. Ghirardelli Soda Fountain. Located at Disney Springs, this popular spot is full of delicious goodies. If you make the journey to Disney Springs, I highly recommend it. I would rate it higher, but it is out at Disney Springs and I would rather go somewhere in the parks than to take a trip all the way out there just for ice cream.

Photo via Disney

4. Anandapur Ice Cream Truck. Let me tell you exactly why I love this place: pineapple Fanta float. Pineapple Fanta sounded, quite honestly, really gross until I had it in a float with delicious vanilla (highly underrated ice cream flavor) soft serve. So take a ride on Everest and then grab a snack and sit and rest.

3. Sunshine Tree Terrace. Sorry, Dole Whip lovers, but the Citrus Swirl is the superior treat, and that is why Sunshine Tree is ranked so much higher than Aloha. That and the better variety and, of course, pot stickers. Now, with the new mobile ordering, I might not even have a Dole Whip anymore. There. I said it. (Just kidding, I’ll totally still get one)

2. Beaches and Cream Soda Shop. I know it has the same Edy’s ice cream as the Plaza but HOLY MOLY what a different experience. First of all, there’s food. Secondly, Mickey and Minnie Souvenir Sinks. Third, cookie fries, Fourth, THE KITCHEN SINK.

Photo via Disney
  1. L’Artisan Des Glaces. Located in the France Pavilion, just trust me. Go there. Macaron “ice cream sandwich” or ice cream served with warm brioche. Ice Cream Martini. Just delicious and amazing.

So where is your ice cream go to? Planning a Disney trip? Contact me today!!

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