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Best Disney World Character Meals (Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner)

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Best Disney World Character Meals (Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner)

One of the things that many people want to include on Disney World trips are character meals, but there are so many to choose from that it’s hard to figure out which one (or ones!) to do.

In this post, we have listed all the character meals at Disney World with info on which characters appear, prices, menus, plus we have some handy transportation information on how to get to early breakfast reservations.

Let’s get started…

Are character meals back to normal?

Yes, they are!

Guests can once again hug characters and have them sign autographs.

At this time, all non-face character meals have either returned OR have a reopening date.

Character meals with face characters (like 1900 Park Fare and Akershus) have not reopened, and we do not have a reopening date for those.

Can the characters sign autographs?

The characters can once again sign autographs!

chef mickey's pluto hug

What character meals are available?

Here is what is currently available:

*While not currently considered an “official” character meal by Disney, we have included them in this list because a character DOES make an appearance at the meal.

Character Meal Comparison Chart (Graphic)

We go into more details below, but here’s a quick overview of how the current character meals compare to one another:

Click to open full-sized PDF

Disney character meals

What is the best character meal at Disney World?

While we love the experience you can find at many of the character meals, right now out of all the available options, Garden Grill at Epcot is still our favorite.

Not only can you get delicious food here, but the rotating restaurant is fun for both adults and kids, and the characters are adorable.

More on why we love it down below, where we list out the pros and cons to all character meals.

When to schedule Disney World character dining meals

Trying to decide the best time to schedule a character meal?

Because character meals are a fun experience that (in our opinion) shouldn’t be rushed, we recommend you choose days and times when you can relax and fully enjoy it.

One great option for that is to book your character meals on non-park days. Just make sure you pick restaurants that are located at one of the resort hotels (and not a theme park) so that you don’t have to use a park ticket for entry.

Ohana with Mickey

Another great time for character meals may be your arrival and departure days.

Lots of people don’t like to waste a park ticket on their travel days, but they still want some of that Disney magic, and character meals are a great way to do just that. 

Just make sure you give yourself plenty of time to get to (or from) the airport if you’re flying. 

If you opt to dine with the characters on a day you’ll be visiting one of the theme parks, we highly recommend you book your dining in the park where you’ll be (or at a nearby resort) to save transportation time. 

How long do character meals take?

You’ll want to budget about 90 minutes (plus travel time) for your meal.

That gives you time to check in, be seated, and then time to eat and see all the characters without racing through anything.

Mickey Topolinos Terrace

It may take less time than that, but for planning purposes 90 minutes is a good rule of thumb.

In a hurry? If eating at a fixed-price meal, ask for your check as soon as you sit down, so you can pay and then leave as soon as you’re finished eating.

What about character breakfasts?

Character meals for breakfasts are a popular way to start a day, but here are some things to keep in mind:

  • If you want to maximize your park touring, you’ll definitely want to have the earliest reservation possible (which on most days is around 8:00 a.m.).
  • Park hours can (and do) change, which means that pre-park opening breakfast might wind up not being before the park opens, which can throw off your touring plans for the entire day.
  • Breakfasts are generally the least expensive character meals, so while they aren’t always a good value on the Disney Dining Plan, they are a great way to save a few bucks if you’re planning to pay for your meal out-of-pocket.
  • Some character breakfasts put you in a good position to be at the front of the line for a popular nearby attraction, so that is something to consider as well. 

How to book a character meal at Disney World

As you can imagine, character meals are very popular and many on the list below are some of the most difficult reservations to get in all of Walt Disney World.

If you want to dine with the characters you’ll definitely want to plan on making your Advanced Dining Reservations at that 60 day mark right when the booking window opens which is typically around 5:45 a.m. EST.

We have lots more advice for maximizing your chances of getting exactly what you want in our How to snag hard-to-get Disney World dining reservations post. 

Pros and cons of every Disney World character meal

First, it’s important to note that the Disney Dining Plan is temporarily suspended, but Disney has that dining packages are returning at some point in the future.

Please keep in mind that some photos below may not reflect current procedures and are intended for reference only.

Now, let’s dive in and look at the pros and cons of each character meal…

Be Our Guest (lunch and dinner service)

Be Our Guest Beast Selfie

Location: Magic Kingdom
Character meals available: not a traditional character meal, but The Beast is available for pictures at lunch and dinner
Available: daily
Average Price:
Adult $62 / Child $37

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 2 Table Service credits
Buffet?: No
Link to menu

Character: The Beast

Pros: Interesting French food options (we like the french onion soup and desserts the best here), this is the only place to meet The Beast

Cons: Service and food are inconsistent, waits can be long even with a reservation

Tips: The Be Our Guest lunch and dinner menus are a fixed price format that includes an appetizer, main entree, and dessert. Even though it is a Signature Table Service meal (meaning it is more expensive) it is still one of the toughest reservations to snag. Check out our tips for getting reservations for help.

Chef Mickey’s

Chef Mickey

Location: Contemporary Resort
Character meals available: breakfast, dinner
Available:
daily
Average Price:
Adult $42-$55 / Child $27-$36

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 1 Table Service credit
Buffet?: No. Food is served family-style.
Link to menu

Characters (can vary): Mickey Mouse, Minnie, Pluto, Donald, and Goofy

Pros: Family favorite due to the fun vibe plus being able to ride the monorail right into the building

Cons: Food isn’t particularly good but is sufficient, reservations are hard to get

Tips: Request to be in the main dining room to get the maximum amount of fun. We’ve always felt left out when we were in the other rooms.

Cinderella’s Royal Table (Open, but not currently a character meal)

Cinderella

Location: Magic Kingdom
Current meals available: lunch, dinner
Available:
daily
Current Average Price for lunch and dinner (minus characters):
Adult $62 / Child $37

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 2 Table Service credits
Buffet?: No
Link to menus

Characters (can vary): Currently, only Cinderella makes an appearance. Historical character information below (in hopes that it returns sometime in the future!)

Historical Cinderella’s Royal Table Characters

  • Fairytale Dining – Ariel, Cinderella, Aurora, Snow White, and Jasmine
  • Signature Celebration – Prince Charming, Cinderella, Ariel, Aurora, Snow White, and Jasmine

Pros: The experience, view, characters and some of the food is good too. Cinderella still makes random appearances, even though it’s not a current character meal.

Cons: Expensive, waits can be long to get in even with a reservation

Tips: This is a popular spot, since you get to eat inside the castle. Be sure to make a reservation when your booking window opens (60 days in advance).

Garden Grill – WDW Prep Favorite

Garden Grill

Location: Epcot (Land pavilion)
Character meals available: lunch, dinner
Available:
daily
Average Price:
Adult $55 / Child $36

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 1 Table Service credit
Buffet?: No. Food is served family style.
Link to menu

Characters (can vary): Pluto, Mickey Mouse, Chip, and Dale (dressed as farmers)

Pros: This character meal is served family-style and is all-you-can-eat with the meal including various meat entrees, veggies, rolls and dessert. While you eat, the restaurant rotates slowly and Mickey, Chip, Dale and Pluto stop by for a visit. This is a great use of a Table Service credit when using the Disney Dining Plan and WDW Prep’s top fave character meals at Disney World.

Cons: Can be a bit tricky to get to and strollers aren’t allowed after a certain point

Tips: It is often possible to get a reservation here when many others aren’t available.

Hollywood and Vine

minnie at silver screen dine in hollywood studios

Location: Hollywood Studios
Character meals available: breakfast, lunch, & dinner
Available:
daily
Average Price:
Adult $42-$55 / Child $27-$36

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 1 Table Service credit
Buffet?: Yes
Link to menus

Characters (can vary): 

  • Disney Junior Play ‘n Dine Breakfast – typically Vampirina, Fancy Nancy, Doc McStuffins, and Roadster Goofy
  • Minnie’s Seasonal Dine Lunch and Dinner – typically Mickey Mouse, Minnie, Donald, Daisy, and Goofy (costumes vary by season)

Pros: Lunch and dinner experiences changes with the seasons, meaning you get to see the characters dressed in different costumes during certain times of the year.

Cons: Can be loud

Tips: As the only character dining in the park, can be popular. Make sure to snag a reservation as soon as your booking window opens — 60 days in advance.

Good Morning Breakfast at Ravello

Goofy Ravello

Location: Four Seasons Resort
Character meals available: breakfast
Available:
Saturdays
Average Price:
Adult $48 / Child $28

On the Disney Dining Plan? No
Buffet? No. Prix-fixe menu.
Breakfast menu

Characters (can vary): Goofy, Mickey Mouse, and Minnie 

Pros: Convenient for guests staying at the resort, beautiful setting, and food is great

Cons: Feels rushed, character portion lacking compared to other character meals available

Tips: Only make a reservation here if you’re staying at the Four Seasons Resort, otherwise it’s not necessarily worth it.

Tusker House

Tusker House Animal Kingdom Mickey Mouse safari outfit

Location: Animal Kingdom
Character meals available: breakfast, lunch, & dinner
Available:
daily
Average Price:
Adult $42-$55 / Child $27-$36

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 1 Table Service credit
Buffet?: Yes, beginning Nov. 1, until then it is served family-style
Link to menus

Characters (can vary): Mickey Mouse, Donald, Daisy, and Goofy

Pros: Lots of good food (standard breakfast items, various African dishes available at lunch and dinner)

Cons: On the pricier end of restaurant prices at Animal Kingdom, service can be inconsistent

Tips: This is probably the most popular dining reservation at Animal Kingdom. Be sure to book 60 days in advance, particularly if you want the much-coveted 8 a.m. breakfast reservation.

Topolino’s Terrace

Minnie at Topolino's Terrace character breakfast

Location: Riviera Resort
Character meals available: breakfast
Available:
daily
Average Price:
Adult $42 / Child $27

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 1 Table Service credit
Buffet?: No
Link to menus

Characters (can vary): Mickey Mouse, Minnie, Donald, and Daisy

Pros: This meal is served traditionally (no buffet) which can make it easier for families with multiple little ones (no getting up and down to fill plates at a buffet)

Cons: On the pricier end of restaurant prices for breakfast

Tips: This is a great character breakfast option for people staying at Pop Century, Art of Animation, or Caribbean Beach since you can take the Skyliner, which starts running as early as Topolino’s reservations begin. Be sure to tell the Cast Members working the Skyliner that you have a dining reservation. (more on transportation below)

Story Book Dining at Artist Point

Location: Wilderness Lodge
Character meals available: dinner
Available:
daily
Average Price:
Adult $60 / Child $39

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 1 Table Service credit
Buffet?: No
Link to menus

Characters (can vary): Snow White, Evil Queen, Dopey, and Grumpy

Pros: This is one of the newest character meals offered, and it pairs delicious food with a chance to mingle with a villain (which is rare!). One of the best values of a Disney Dining Plan credit.

Cons: The menu may not appeal to everybody and only having 1 meal service/day can make reservations tough to get

Tips: The specialty mocktails and cocktails here are fun and very well themed

Minnie’s Beach Bash Breakfast at Cape May Café

Location: Beach Club Resort
Character meals available: breakfast
Available:
daily
Current Average Price for breakfast:
Adult $45 / Child $29

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 1 Table Service credit
Buffet?: Yes
Breakfast menu

Characters (can vary): Minnie, Donald, Goofy, Daisy (all dressed in beach attire)

Pros: Nice variety of foods to choose from, when characters are present, they’re dressed in beach attire, often easier to find a reservation here than other character dining locations

Cons: Fairly expensive for breakfast food

Tips: May be a good option before heading to Epcot or Hollywood Studios, which are both within walking distance.

Crystal Palace

Winnie the Pooh at Crystal Palace

Location: Magic Kingdom
Meals currently available: breakfast, lunch, dinner
Available:
daily
Current Average Price: Adult $45-$59 / Child $29-$38

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 1 Table Service credit
Buffet?: Yes
Link to menus

Characters (can vary): Eeyore, Piglet, Winnie the Pooh, and Tigger

Pros: This is a Winnie the Pooh and friends character meal that has the benefit of having both good food and fun character interactions.

Cons: Can sometimes be a bit loud

Tips: The Cast Members here are known for providing great service, including recognizing special occasions, so be sure to note if you’re celebrating on your reservation and mention it when you check in as well.

Best Friends Breakfast at ‘Ohana

Location: Polynesian Resort
Character meals available: breakfast
Available:
daily
Current Average Price for breakfast: Adult $45 / Child $29

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 1 Table Service credit
Buffet? No. Food is served family-style.
Breakfast menu

Characters (can vary): Mickey, Stitch, Lilo, and Pluto

Pros: Food options to please most people (all-you-can-eat American breakfast), including Mickey Waffles, eggs, sausage, and even a plant-based skillet

Cons: Popular spot so reservations are hard to get, check in can sometimes take a long time so maybe even consider arriving early for your reservation

Tips: Book ASAP if you are interested in eating here, breakfast hours extend until 12:00 pm which makes it a great place to grab a late breakfast

Akershus Royal Banquet Hall (Not currently available)

Akershus character dining in Epcot at Walt Disney World

Location: Epcot (Norway pavilion)
Character meals available: breakfast, lunch, & dinner
Available:
daily
Average Price:
Adult $53-$63 / Child $34-$41

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 1 Table Service credit
Buffet?: Partial
Link to menus

Characters (can vary): Snow White, Cinderella, Belle, Princess Aurora, and Ariel

Pros: Great use of a Table Service credit when using the Disney Dining Plan

Cons: Expensive if paying out-of-pocket, waits can be long even with a reservation

Tips: Eat breakfast here if you have picky eaters since lunch and dinner feature foods that are a bit more adventurous and not as popular for families

1900 Park Fare (Not currently available)

1900 Park Fare

Location: Grand Floridian
Character meals available: breakfast & dinner
Available:
daily
Average Price:
Adult $45-$60 / Child $29-$39

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 1 Table Service credit
Buffet?: Yes
Link to menus

Characters (can vary): 

  • Supercalifragilistic Breakfast – Mary Poppins, Alice, The Mad Hatter, Tigger, and Winnie the Pooh
  • Cinderella’s Happily Ever After Dinner– Cinderella, Prince Charming, Lady Tremaine, Anastasia, and Drizella

Pros: Fun character interactions and it’s a treat to have both sushi rolls and gummi bears at dinner (where else would that be possible?)

Cons: Fairly expensive, especially since the food isn’t super good (you’re definitely paying for the experience)

Tips: If you arrive by monorail, it may not be obvious where this restaurant is located. When you exit the monorail, go down to the first floor and you’ll find the restaurant entrance there.

Garden Grove (Open, but not currently a character meal)

Location: Swan hotel
Character meal usually available:
breakfast
Available:
daily (when character breakfast is running, it’s available only on Saturdays and Sundays)
Current Average Price for breakfast (minus characters): Adult $35 / Child $22

On the Disney Dining Plan? No
Buffet?: Traditional (à la carte offerings)
Link to menu

Characters (can vary): Goofy, Pluto, Chip, and Dale

Pros: Typically not very busy so it is an easy reservation to snag last minute or a great option for families that require a quieter place to dine, convenient for those staying at the resort

Cons: The food isn’t all that great and the Disney Dining Plan is not available here, pay a parking fee if you’re driving

Tips: Skip it

Bon Voyage Adventure Breakfast at Trattoria al Forno (Open, but not currently a character meal)

Location: Disney’s Boardwalk
Character meals usually available: breakfast
Available:
daily
Current Average Price for breakfast (minus characters):
Adult $38 / Child $22

On the Disney Dining Plan? Yes, 1 Table Service credit
Buffet?: No
Breakfast menu

Characters (can vary): Ariel, Prince Eric, Rapunzel, and Flynn Rider

Pros: When a character meal, this is a unique experience to see the princesses and princes together.

Cons: Can be difficult to get to, however, if you are staying at a resort with Disney Skyliner (gondola) access you can take that to Epcot and walk over.

Tips: May be a good option before heading to Epcot or Hollywood Studios, which are both within walking distance.

Everything Else

Perfectly Princess Tea Party (Not currently available)

Price (adult/child): $0/$334
Location: Grand Floridian Resort
On the Disney Dining Plan? No

Link to menu

Pros: A whole event rather than just a meal that includes each child receiving a doll, tiara, bracelet, rose, scrapbook plus food and entertainment (boys receive a crown and plush bear). The $334 price includes 1 adult and 1 child. More children can be added for an additional cost.

Cons: Only available Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday from 9:00am-10:30am.

Tips: Party goers are encouraged to dress up as their favorite princess or prince.

Wonderland Tea Party (Not currently available)

Price (adult/child): $0/$49
Location: Grand Floridian Resort
On the Disney Dining Plan? No

Link to menu

Pros: 1 hour tea party from 2:00-3:00 p.m. Monday-Friday for ages 4-12 where kids get to make and eat cupcakes, hear a story, have tea (juice) with the characters and make flower bouquets.

Cons: Kids do this event without parents so parents should plan to do something nearby like stroll the beach, order a drink, explore the resort, etc.

Tips: The price of this tea party makes it a popular option so be sure to book early if you’d like to attend.

How do you get to character meals?

You’ve booked a character meal, but have you thought about how you’ll get there?

Some places can be trickier to get to than others, so make sure you check out the information below for you’ll need to make it to your reservation on time.

Transportation to early morning character meals at Disney World

The only time we ever recommend breakfast is if it’s before the parks open (if you eat any later, you end up eating during prime park touring time), but it’s confusing to understand how to get to the dining reservations.

Although Disney will often tell you that transportation begins 1 hour before the parks open, there are earlier options for people with early dining reservations.

Here’s what’s available for early morning character meals at Disney World:

  • Buses for the Magic Kingdom and Magic Kingdom resort area start running at 6:30 a.m. daily
  • Buses for Animal Kingdom and Animal Kingdom Lodge start running at 7-7:15 a.m. daily
  • Buses for the Hollywood Studios and the Epcot-area resorts will start running at 7-7:15 a.m. daily
  • Buses for Epcot start running at 7-7:15 a.m. daily
  • The ferry from the Ticket and Transportation Center (TTC) to Magic Kingdom begins running 1 hour before Magic Kingdom opens
  • The express monorail (that goes from the TTC to MK) begins 30 minutes before MK opens
  • The resort monorail (which will go from TTC to The Polynesian to The Grand Floridian and then to MK) begins at 7 a.m.
  • The Epcot monorail usually begins operating at 8 a.m.
  • The boats that service the Epcot-area resorts and go to Epcot and Hollywood Studios start running at 8:30 a.m. daily
  • The Disney Skyliner (gondola) line for Epcot (which is also very close to the Boardwalk area) typically begins running 1 hour before Epcot opens
  • The Disney Skyliner (gondola) line for Hollywood Studios begins running before the parks opens, however, the starting time varies so be sure to check the schedule when you arrive
  • If staying at a Skyliner resort, you can use that to get to Riviera even if they aren’t boarding guests for Epcot yet. Ask a Cast Member for assistance.

Want to learn more about Disney World buses, boats, monorail, and more?

Take a look at these handy posts for even more information on how to get around Walt Disney World.

Is the Disney Dining Plan right for you?

Note: the Disney Dining Plan is currently unavailable, but Disney confirmed packages will return in the future.

If you end up doing several character meals, the Disney Dining Plan might make a lot of sense. Review our post on maximizing Disney Dining Plan credits to see which restaurants offer the best value.

********************************

Historical information

Although things don’t look like this right now, we are keeping this information here until we hear what to expect as we move forward into 2021 and beyond.

What about PhotoPass photographers?

A few of the meals do have PhotoPass photographers on hand to take your picture before you’re seated. 

You don’t get a physical copy of the photo but it will be added to your PhotoPass account and will be available to download – and the photos taken are included with Memory Maker, too.

PhotoPass pic at Signature Celebration

While not guaranteed, you’ll generally find these pre-meal photograph opportunities at:

  • 1900 Park Fare – in front of a mural of Cinderella Castle
  • Akershus – with Belle
  • Artist Point – with the Evil Queen
  • Be Our Guest – with The Beast (dinner only)
  • Chef Mickey’s – with a giant plate
  • Cinderella’s Royal Table – Cinderella (if you book the Signature Celebration you get your picture taken with both Cinderella and Prince Charming)
  • Hollywood & Vine – varies
  • Ohana – with Pluto
  • Ravello

There are no PhotoPass photographers at the tables themselves, so you’ll need to be ready with your own camera or phone if you want your picture taken.

Buffet – yay or nay?

As you go through the pros and cons of all the character meals below you’ll find that lots of them are buffets.

Buffets are great for picky eaters, and the nice thing about Disney World buffets is that they all have a section of kid-friendly options like mac and cheese and Mickey Waffles, however, kids are welcome to eat from any of the food stations available.

The downside to buffets is that they are often a bit loud and if the number of kids in your group outnumbers the adults, getting everybody’s plates filled in a timely manner can be tricky

If buffets aren’t your thing, Disney does have character meals that serve food family style (like Garden Grill) or ones where you order off of a menu and the food is brought to your table (like Cinderella’s Royal Table) so keep your preference in mind when making your selections.

Will you be doing any character meals at Disney World for your trip? Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments.

Related News
Heather Thomas

Melissa Strohmeyer

Wednesday 19th of February 2020

Staying off-site and have double stroller and 1 yo and 5 you in tow. I saw above that you posted that TTC ferry to Magic Kingdom starts 1 hour before park opens, but we have a dining reservation for 8:30 AM and park officially opens at 9 AM, though they have a ticketed Early Morning Magic event that same day which starts at 7:45 AM. So is 1 hour before park opens 1 hour before 9 AM or 1 hour before 7:45 AM????

Dolly edwards

Friday 21st of August 2020

Which character meals would you expect to open next?

Amanda Moore-Roberson

Thursday 16th of January 2020

Tusker House has Daisy instead of Minnie.

T

Wednesday 30th of October 2019

Newbie question::is it possible to tell from your character dining guide which places I need a park pass to attend? We will be at Disney for 7 days but only getting park passes for 4 days.

Erik

Thursday 14th of November 2019

Yes, the pdf guide does show location including parks. There are 3 Character Dinners in Magic Kingdom, 2 in Epcot and 1 each in Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom. The rest are resorts, which you do not need a park pass to get into.

Sounds like your stay is the same length as my upcoming trip, but I found that it was only a little extra (Comparatively speaking for Disney) to add 2 more park day tickets for 3 people, so we're doing 4 full days in the parks and a couple half days, then spending the following weekend at the beach.

If you've never done Character Dining before, they're a lot of fun. We did 2 on our first trip and I plan to do one at least every day on the next including a couple at resorts. It's such a great way to meet characters without standing in lines worrying about the kids getting cranky or mom or dad getting hangry. Enjoy your trip!

Libby N.

Tuesday 25th of June 2019

How much will breakfast for one adult and two children under 9 years cost in September 2019? I am taking my kids to the Magic Kingdom for one day (we have Universal tickets for the other 5 days) and I have seen several sites show different amounts for the adult price. Some say it’s $35 for adult breakfast and others say $40-45. Also for the kids some sites say $19-22, others say $24. Could you tell me how much breakfast will be on Monday September 9th, 2019? I am wondering if I should go to Be Our Guest for breakfast instead since it has the price listed so I know exactly what to expect. I don’t want a surprise bill at the end of the meal. Thanks!

Libby N.

Tuesday 25th of June 2019

I forgot to type the name of the restaurant: Crystal Palace character breakfast buffet.

T Watkins

Sunday 17th of February 2019

I didn’t see anything about Anna & Elsa. Are they normally with the other Princesses?

Joscelynne

Monday 18th of February 2019

No. You have to go to Epcot to see them in a separate attraction. :)

Comments are closed.