In 2018, Hitched.co declared Disneyland, Paris the “most popular landmark for proposals.” Not the Eiffel Tower in Paris, Disneyland in Paris. The city of love and Disney?? Double whammy. The second most popular choice was the Magic Kingdom in Florida. Whether you’re honeymooning, celebrating an anniversary, or on a romantic getaway, there are SO many things to do on a special night out with your loved one. Where else can you clutch each other tightly while you tour a Haunted Mansion then finish the night with an insane firework display?
The hardest part about planning your romantic night-out is where to eat. You have to parse out what restaurants have the best views, food, and overall atmosphere. To make the decision process easier, I’ve narrowed down the best romantic restaurants for you to choose from. This is based on crowd-favorites and my personal favorites. To keep things simple, listed below are two fantastic restaurants from every theme park, two from Disney Springs, and two from Disney Resort Hotels. Out of the two, I’ve dubbed one the winner for “Best Food” and another for “Best Atmosphere.” Don’t let the titles fool you! Even if the restaurant is awarded “Best Atmosphere,” the food is still good. With the exception of one particular restaurant, which I’ll get to in a bit! The best part is that if you happen to have little ones with you, the restaurants will still allow minors. The only exceptions to this are Jellyrolls, Atlantic Dance Hall, Trader Sam’s Grogs Grotto after 8:00 PM, and The Edison after 10:00 PM.
Once you’re done here, head over to this helpful post: 6 Tips for a Couples Retreat to Walt Disney World
In addition to ranking the best romantic restaurants and making your night an evening to remember, I’ve created a free printable that lists every restaurant on Disney World property with an awesome view. This includes views of the fireworks, night shows, or just spectacular views in general. You can get this cheat sheet in my free, password-protected resource library. Find the form to get the password at the bottom of this post.
Helpful Disney Planning Resources!
- 10 Ideas to Make Your Couples Retreat to Disney World Over the Top
- Restaurants with a View Cheat Sheet (available in my free resource library – password is at the end of the post)
- The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World
Best Atmosphere: Be Our Guest
Be Our Guest is one of those restaurants that you either love or hate. I personally think there is much better food on Disney World property. That is, unless you order nothing but the famous French Onion Soup. On the other hand, the atmosphere is unbeatable. Eating in a real-life Disney castle is a very “fairytales do come true” experience. If you were an ardent Disney fan as a kid and grew up to be an ardent Disney fan as an adult, you’ll love this place. I’ll be honest though, as beautiful as the main ballroom is, it’s also incredibly noisy, which you may or may not care for.
If the noise bothers you, ask to sit in the West Wing. This room is darker and smaller than the main ballroom, so guests eating in this room are naturally quieter in this intimate space. It’s also the coolest themed dining room in Disney World! Jungle Navigation Co., Ltd. Skipper Canteen is an awesome alternative if you can’t snag a reservation at Be Our Guest or you want better menu options. The restaurant is hardly ever busy and there are some amazing Jungle Cruise “Easter eggs” scattered throughout each of the dining rooms. It’s an underrated restaurant with a lot to offer!
Best Food: Liberty Tree Tavern
As far as the atmosphere, Liberty Tree Tavern is more “adult-like” (see: boring) because of the understated theming. The restaurant gives subtle nods to late 1700s American decor and political references. The real star of Liberty Tree Tavern is the comfort food. Think of this place as a year-long Thanksgiving dinner. Juicy turkey with cranberry sauce and mashed potatoes is a reputable main course and you can start it all off with a bowl of New England Clam Chowder. And don’t skip the rolls! We were stuffed and still managed to cram in some delicious bread and butter.
Best Food: Chefs de France
My mom and I shared the three-course prix fixe meal here one time and we’ve been chasing dreams about this meal ever since. Everything from the decadent French Onion Soup to the Boeuf Bourguignon Linguine to the Crème Brûlée was absolute perfection. The food is also pretty hardy so take note if you’ve just spent the day drinking around World Showcase. You get a little best of both worlds at this restaurant too! The dining rooms are romantic with warm lighting and the food is really, really good. You can kick up the romance and choose to dine at their sister restaurant on the second floor, Monsieur Paul. With a higher price range, the food and atmosphere are tenfold here. By the way, if you’re worried about Disney restaurant dress codes, head over to my post, Disney World Dress Code Tips. I go over which restaurants enforce clothing restrictions and what you might wear to adhere to them.
Best Atmosphere: San Angel Inn Restaurante
There are two San Angel restaurants and both have a really nice ambiance. My favorite is San Angel Inn Restaurante because it’s located inside Mexico Pavilion’s Aztec pyramid. The inside of the pyramid has a simulated nighttime atmosphere and is set alongside the moving river that transports guests aboard the Three Caballeros attraction. Disneyland buffs may be reminded of the Blue Bayou when entering the pyramid. The food is very good with a menu featuring standard Mexican-American cuisine, but the real star is the cocktails. The bar serves up yummy concoctions like the Blood Orange Margaritas, Horchata made with Fireball, and a procured Tequila Flight. San Angel Inn is quiet, moody, and you get to drink fresh margaritas with your loved one under the night sky. What’s more romantic than that?
Best Atmosphere: Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater
Much like the quiet atmosphere of the West Wing in Be Our Guest, the same effect happens at the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theatre at Hollywood Studios. Guests feel like they’re dining in an actual movie theatre, so they’re naturally more soft-spoken. It’s kind of a fascinating thing. You’re at this theme park with large families and children, yet the restaurant is calm because the lights are turned down. The food is very good too. It’s not an upscale menu, but who can turn down fried pickles, cheeseburgers, and milkshakes? For dessert, the house-made Sci-Fi Candy Bar is a crowd-favorite. It’s also the perfect “theme parks for grown-ups” treat. This made with cookies and cream mousse, chocolate ganache, and chocolate sauce. It’s basically a grown-up candy bar!
Best Food: Hollywood Brown Derby
You may argue that Brown Derby has the most “adult-like atmosphere” and not the most “adult-like food.” I can’t really get on board with this. Mostly because the theming is way too subtle. Yes, it has that old Hollywood vibe with tile flooring and caricatures of famous people lining the walls. The rest of the restaurant is just, kind of…ok. I don’t really get a sense of romance inside, but I do like the outdoor lounge if it’s a nice and warm evening. That said, I really like the food here. The Grapefruit Cake is legendary and the Vegetarian Pho is an innovative and light meal that doesn’t make you want to throw up after riding Tower of Terror. I’d argue this place is more a “dessert and coffee” or “appetizer and cocktail” restaurant though.
Best Atmosphere: Tiffins
Again, Tiffins hits the nail on the head for adult-friendly food and atmosphere. The restaurant acts as an art gallery with original sketches, maps, and photographs taken by Imagineers during their initial research for Animal Kingdom. In the Safari Room, there are some sketches and photographs taken of the animals within Animal Kingdom too. The fun part is figuring out which photographs were taken in the theme park and which were taken in the wild. The menu is inspired by the cuisine of Africa, South America, and Asia and pretty much anything you order here is good. This restaurant is upscale with incredible theming that most adults can really appreciate!
Best Food: Yak and Yeti
The environment of Yak and Yeti is anything but subtle. Huge ornate statues and overly rich decorations are placed in every dining room. Everything is so lush and velvety! The food is Pan-Asian with things like curry chicken, teriyaki, and pot stickers. The real star is the Chicken Fried Rice which you can also find at the quick-service restaurant outside the sit-down restaurant. We were honestly surprised about how good that fried rice was! Animal Kingdom only has 4 table-service restaurants to choose from, but Yak and Yeti and Tiffins are definitely the most adult-centric!
Best Atmosphere: Morimoto Asia
Disney Springs has 63 dining options to choose from. That can be insanely overwhelming for someone visiting Disney World for the first time. The two I chose are opposite in terms of atmosphere and food. If you’re into upscale romance, go with Morimoto Asia. If you love decadent Southern cooking, Homecomin’ is your place. Coincidentally, they sit opposite of each other in Disney Springs too. Morimoto Asia is dark and moody with a dash of chic Vegas vibes. And the food. It’s incredible. The Pan-Asian inspired dishes are creative and delicious. Do yourself a favor and order the Pork Dumplings and Morimoto Spare Ribs.
Best Food: Homecomin’
If I wasn’t worried about my waistline and overall health, I would eat at Homecomin’ every day. They took fried chicken and turned it up ten notches then paired it with the richest and most delicious mac n’ cheese you’ll ever find. The story of the restaurant is pretty fun too. The Chef was actually a Disney College Program student back in the 80s! 40 something years later he’s opened a restaurant that is so rich with butter and Southern culture, your heart will explode from all the yummy calories. Everything is so good here, so you won’t be disappointed with what you order!
Bonus Choice: Raglan Road for an awesome dinner and an awesome show!
Disney Resort Hotels
Best Food: Jiko – Animal Kingdom Lodge
Jiko is a Signature Restaurant so it’s a bit pricier than other options at Disney World. It also happens to be my favorite restaurant on property. It holds a special place in my heart because the menu is unique in combining South African cuisine with the American pallet. The dishes are prepared in such a way that exposes you to South African food and cultures. It’s also inside the most beautiful Disney World Resort. After dinner, walk outside to admire the giraffes and grab a glass of South African wine from Victoria Falls. Many people prefer Sanaa which is also located inside Animal Kingdom Lodge. The preference is due to their famous bread service and views of the safari. Either one is a good choice for a fanciful date night!
Best Atmosphere: California Grill – Contemporary Resort
Despite popular opinion, I think the Contemporary is anything but contemporary and needs a serious overhaul. (Minus the lovely floor-to-ceiling lobby mural produced by Mary Blair, of course!) Unless we’re talking about California Grill located on the top floor then I take back my previous statement entirely. Here you can get the most spectacular view available in Walt Disney World. There are two walkways that allow a view of Magic Kingdom on one side and Epcot in the distance on the other side. During the fireworks at Magic Kingdom, you’ll get an incredible view of the show. It’s a perfect place to shower your loved one with affection and decadent chocolate cake.
Whether you spend hundreds of dollars on a full-service meal or share a Dole Whip inside the Tiki Room together, I’m sure your experience will be equally romantic. I’ve said this before in my previous posts and I’ll say it again: Disney World is not just for kids. Despite Disney World having the reputation for being a kids-only vacation spot, that wasn’t Walt Disney’s original intention. He wanted a place where both kids and adults can enjoy themselves. Take in the fireworks, relive your childhood nostalgia with some of your favorite Disney films and characters, then dance to a live band with a chocolate martini in hand.
As promised, I also created a cheat sheet that lists every restaurant with an awesome view of something on Disney World property. This includes fireworks or general beauty. When planning a Disney vacation, it’s hard to keep all your plans and guides in one place, so I put the cheat sheet inside my free resource library which keeps all my planning guides in one place. I suggest downloading the cheat sheet and other resources for future reference!
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