EPCOT; Mother and Son; Spaceship Earth
  • On Jan 14, 2013
    Kara Asked Note: This answer was provided prior to the change to planDisney and may still contain references to Disney Parks Moms Panel.

    Experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    Hi, we have a 9yo girl and a 6yo boy. This will be our first trip to DW. Can we expect to meet Disney characters while roaming the parks? Also, can you recommend a character dining experience that does not involve princesses?

    Hi Kara,

    How exciting it is to be planning your first trip to Walt Disney World with your family!

    While there are many ways to ensure character interaction at Walt Disney World, if you see characters out and about in the parks, they are typically heading somewhere and are unlikely to stop to interact with guests. If there are certain characters who your children are interested in meeting, you should consult the park maps and times guides that are available at each park. These both have clearly marked character greeting times which will tell you when and where you can meet specific characters. Another idea for viewing many characters without interaction is to watch one of the afternoon parades or one of the many shows at the parks. Schedules for these can again be found in the park maps and times guides.

    Character dining experiences are a great way to ensure character interaction.  Please remember that particular characters are scheduled, but not guaranteed, to appear.  For non-princess character dining for your children, The Garden Grill at Epcot would be a good choice, where you may meet Mickey, Chip, Dale and Pluto in farmer attire. Dining at The Garden Grill is harvest-inspired. The Garden Grill is open only for dinner. You also may enjoy Tusker House at Animal Kingdom, where you may meet Donald, Daisy, Goofy, and Mickey in safari gear. My husband and I very much enjoyed this location for the unique offerings on the buffet, which we could try while our daughter enjoyed more typical fare. Please note that at Tusker House, both breakfast and lunch are character dining; however, dinner is not. If you are willing to explore the resorts, there is also non-princess character dining available at Cape May Buffet at Disney's Beach Club Resort, Chef Mickey's at Disney's Contemporary Resort, and at 'Ohana at Disney's Polynesian Resort.

    Have a wonderful trip, Kara!
thumbnail image for Mona Leigh

Meet the Panelist: Mona Leigh, Maryland

I am a wife and mother who works in children's technology design and research. When I'm not at work or with my family, I'm often planning a Walt Disney World trip for my family or friends. I'm a Disney Vacation Club Member, and am excited to help you plan your Disney vacation!  Learn More About Mona Leigh

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