The Animal Kingdom is celebrating the arrival of the Hakuna Matata Time Dance Party, but that isn’t all that’s going on here!
We spotted a new photo op, some new food options, and new merchandise on our latest visit to Animal Kingdom.
In the pantheon of character meals at Walt Disney World, there’s only one where you can dine with big, fluffy friends straight out of the Hundred Acre Wood — and in a classic Magic Kingdom location: Crystal Palace!
Truth be told, we’ve had a bit of a roller coaster relationship with Crystal Palace over the years. Some visits have been good (like this lunch four years ago and like breakfast here back when you could get into the nearly-empty park!), and one was particularly awful (dinner at the end of the night = icky buffet remnants…I didn’t even do a post about it).
But the opportunity to dine with Winnie the Pooh, Eeyore, Piglet, and Tigger is pretty much a Disney World rite of passage and something that every Disney fan should do at least once. And dining in the Crystal Palace — a gorgeous building that’s been a mainstay since Magic Kingdom opened in 1971 — is a lovely experience.
But what about the food — arguably the most important aspect of any restaurant? It’s standard, but acceptable on most visits, with breakfast having, perhaps, the most interesting options with Pooh’s Breakfast Lasagna and Puffed French Toast being crowd favorites. And so I returned recently, for lunch this time, to see how things are going.
Oasis Canteen is an Indiana Jones-style snack spot where guests at Disney’s Hollywood Studios can pick up funnel cakes, cold drinks, and floats. We love the design of the kiosk, with its industrial details and aged signs.
And right now, there’s a totally indulgent funnel cake on the menu that you’re definitely gonna want to add to your how-much-sugar-can-I-eat-on-vacation list (we’re not the only ones with one of those, right?): Cookies & Cream Funnel Cake!
Storybook Treats at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom is the place to go for ice cream in Fantasyland. Located adjacent to Friar’s Nook — where you can currently find Loaded Tots! — Storybook Treats serves up hot fudge sundaes, strawberry sundaes, and floats to guests looking for cool snack.
Every once in a while you’ve gotta go back to the classics.
Let’s head over to Disney’s Hollywood Studios to Oasis Canteen!
You’ll find this unassuming little kiosk in the back of Studios, near the Indiana Jones attraction.
Ice cream treats are the norm for this place. But at least once in the past, they took us by surprise when they offered a selection of savory options. That was mostly during a busy season when more eats were needed around the park, and since then ice cream and classic treats have returned.
In fact, the menu has changed very little from long ago visits — except that the prices have gone up. 😀 There are also a couple of grown up floats to try here — both root beer and dreamsicle versions — that include Stoli Vanilla vodka.
With all the changes taking place at DHS, who knows what will come next to Oasis? So let’s enjoy a favorite classic while we can! It’s funnel cake time. [Read more…]
What? You’ve recovered from the DFB Grilled Cheese Crawl, and you’re ready for another one? We are right there with ya!
So today, we’re heading to the Mecca of Diverse Disney food options, Epcot!
There are literally hundreds of delicious dishes and tempting snacks to be savored throughout the park. And that makes sense, since World Showcase immerses you into the cultures of eleven different countries.
But then, there’s Future World, too. Home to great little kiosks featuring flavored popcorns as well as one of our favorite counter service spots, Sunshine Seasons, there’s plenty to enjoy there as well.
We all have our favorites, but it’s also fun to check out the NEW stuff! And so today, that’s what we’re doing. Let’s head into Epcot and arrange the day around trying brand new (or in some cases, returning items) in our DFB “Just the New Stuff” Crawl, Epcot Edition!
I hope you came hungry. Let’s go!
To kick our day off right, we should start with a good breakfast. Sure, you could grab a bowl of cereal at the resort or head to Starbucks for a muffin, but I say let’s check out Sunshine Seasons in The Land Pavilion for their Cinnamon French Toast Bread Pudding.
Is it breakfast, or is it dessert? Who cares? Because this is vacation, and you NEED to have this rich, delicious dish to jump start your day. (Oh, and to answer the question, clearly, this is breakfast. I mean, who eats bacon with dessert? 😉 ) [Read more…]
Today, we head to the west coast for a guest review of Goofy’s Kitchen at the Disneyland Hotel. Let’s take a tour — courtesy of guest author, Liz Jostes.
For our family’s first trip to Disneyland, I booked breakfast at Goofy’s Kitchen. Since we were staying at the Disneyland Hotel and our flight home wasn’t until the afternoon, it was a perfect and convenient stop on our final morning on property.
Goofy’s Kitchen is located next to the pool area in the Disneyland Hotel, and a short, easy walk from the Downtown Disney District (for those not staying at the Disneyland Hotel).
As you walk through the doors of Goofy’s Kitchen, you enter into a lobby and wait for your turn to check-in and pay for your meal (gratuity is automatically included). Then you are welcome to meet Goofy while waiting for your table. [Read more…]
I can say this much about our pal, Mickey Mouse…
He sure knows how to throw a Very Merry Christmas Party!
From the Once Upon a Christmastime Parade, to Holiday Wishes Fireworks, to all the fun in between, including character dance parties and appearances, special stage shows, and a whole, huge [Read more…]
Welp, boys and girls — it’s time to head into Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom and take in lunch at Crystal Palace! This is a beloved character spot for many Disney fans, and a must-do character experience for lots of you.
Me? I hadn’t been to Crystal Palace in foreva…not since an ill-fated late-night visit a couple of years ago when the food was AW-FUL! Yep, it was the end-of-the-night dregs of the buffet and we were pretty much just grossed out. (Have you ever seen a buffet about 15 minutes before a restaurant is about to close? Not pretty.) We ate very little and left as soon as we could. Sad, since we do love dining with Pooh and friends.
But it was time to revisit the 100 Hundred Acre Wood — after all, we’d had lots of great meals here previously — and I made reservations with some friends for lunch.
We have tons of shots to show you, so let’s get started!
You’ll find Crystal Palace to the left of Main Street USA’s end, just as you approach Cinderella Castle. The beautiful glass building, inspired by ornate conservatories of the late Victorian Age, is a slice of Disney history as well. The restaurant has been around since opening day in 1971.
And here’s a tip if you’re looking for an extra-special experience during your Disney vacation: try and book Crystal Palace for an early breakfast. You’ll be one of the first guests into the Park when you do this, and visiting a nearly empty Magic Kingdom is an event to remember.
Once you step inside, you’ll see whitewashed walls that carry the bright, light decor throughout. Artwork depicting inspiration for the architecture as well as photos of lush palms cover the walls.
The soaring atrium above is gorgeous — especially on a sunny day!
After you check in, you’ll wait for your table outside on the shaded veranda. But once you step in, pause a moment to take it all in.
Tons of windows and glass domes allow for plenty of natural light in the two dining areas.
And really — look up. Because the windows are really stunning. I love the beautiful stained glass detail.
The decor puts you in mind of a Victorian conservatory, with its outside-but-inside feel. Lush flowers and what reminds me of patio furniture finish the area.
Crystal Palace is, of course, a character dining experience, and you’ve stumbled onto a party!
In fact, visit here, and you’ll take part in a Friendship Day Celebration with Winnie the Pooh and his friends.
Just check out these gorgeous flower topiaries of the whole gang!
The sweet little figures appear to be made of dried roses, and foreshadow the characters you’ll meet while you dine.
And beautiful hanging arrangements of tropical flowers complete the classic conservatory feel.
Seating is standard and fairly comfortable. Heavy, padded chairs share the space with booths, but some tables are situated a bit too closely for our comfort.
Seating along windows gives you a glimpse of guests waiting to be seated! But beyond them, you’ll also see a beautiful view of [Read more…]
Last December, we were thrilled to report that Epcot had jumped on the cronut wagon!
Epcot’s Refreshment Port (if you’re walking from Canada, you’ll find the Port immediately before the paths that take you into Future World) quietly introduced them with this unassuming sign listing “Croissant Doughnut.”
Of course, “Croissant Doughnuts” is quite an apt description for these fried pastries formed out of rings of croissant dough (plus, as I mentioned in the previous post, the name “cronut” is trademarked — so legal stuffs and whatever).
We tried ’em. We loved ’em. But guess what!!
Not only are the cronuts still in full swing at the Refreshment Port… you can now get them A LA MODE.
You need to approach the counter to see this option: it’s on a small sign near the registers, so you can’t find it on the regular display… at least, not yet.
Just take a look!
The ice cream is a generous portion of vanilla soft serve. If you want ice cream with every bite, you’re set!
Of course, I had to get the regular (non a la mode) cronut for a side by side comparison… all in the name of proper research, of course 😉 .
Everything that we love about the cronut to begin with [Read more…]