Walt Disney World is not just a fun family vacation destination but also an amazing place to plan a romantic getaway. In fact, there are some experiences that you may not know existed which are perfect for couples. Disney is all about “happily ever after” and there is something for every taste and every budget. Here are some ideas to get you started!
1. Dinner for Two
There are seemingly endless options when it comes to finding a wonderful spot to have a romantic meal at Walt Disney World. You have choices that encompass nearly every type of cuisine and a huge array of settings. Live music, dancing, gourmet offerings and stunning scenery are just some of the options you can choose . For me, a Dole Whip float with two spoons will do it! But if you are looking for something really special that will show your special someone you think they are your Mickey (or Minnie), then here are some ideas:
The California Grill
Perched atop the iconic Contemporary Resort, the California Grill is an award-winning restaurant,
which has amazing views of the Magic Kingdom and the Seven Seas Lagoon. For the ultimate romantic experience, make reservations to have your meal during the fireworks. You will have beautiful views while listening to the show as it is broadcast into the restaurant. Enjoy a glass of wine with your gourmet meal. You have over 300 to choose from! The California Grill is definitely one of those special places that is an experience and not just a meal.
Victoria and Albert’s
For the ultimate in royal treatment, this is the place! Victoria and Albert’s is located in the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa and features all the elegance of the Victorian era in this award-winning restaurant. With over 700 wines to choose from and an exotic, chef prepared meal, it is certain to be a memorable experience.
Jiko- The Cooking Place
Looking for something more exotic? Jiko – The Cooking Place may be the spot to spend with your special someone. Located in the Animal Kingdom Lodge, this restaurant has a unique menu with flavours from Africa, the Mediterranean and India. After dinner you can stroll the Lodge and view the animals or sit by the fire after dark. It’s a wonderful place to really relax. It’s one of my favorites! For the animal lovers who want a unique experience, consider the Wanmaya Safari. You will set out with a guide in a special safari vehicle to see the wildlife up close and then be treated to a multi course meal at Jiko- The Cooking Place.
Cinderella’s Royal Table
Of course Cinderella’s Royal Table has to be included in any list of romantic settings in Disney World! Located inside Cinderella’s Castle in the Magic Kingdom, this is the iconic place where you can feel like you’re in a fairy tale romance. This is not just a fabulous meal but an experience. It’s also a popular place to propose and they love to help. Want Prince Charming to deliver a glass slipper with a ring in it? This is the spot! There is even a Magical Proposal Package. You can arrange for a Disney Photo Pass photographer to be there to capture your special moment. Make sure to plan well in advance!
These are just a few ideas to get you started. Check out the full listing of restaurants and learn more about them here.
2. Magical Engagements
I don’t think it’s possible to talk about romance without mentioning marriage proposals. If you are looking to pull off an epic, unique or just plain sweet proposal on Disney property, they have a team in place to help (if you need it)! If you are looking for something to really wow your special person, then reach out to Disney Weddings and Honeymoons . I won’t give too much away but I had no idea that you could even do some of these things! Maybe you’d like to propose in front of the castle before fireworks with a certain prince delivering the ring? They can make that happen. Take my word for it- they know how to make it a proposal to remember!
3. A little something special
Did you know that you can have gift baskets and flowers delivered to your
Disney resort? I think this is a great idea for many occasions, not just romantic ones. Disney Floral and Gifts can deliver something special to your room while you are in the parks so you can have a surprise waiting for your significant other. How amazing would it be to come back to find your room filled with rose petals, a bouquet, a princess themed gift or champagne? Maybe Star Wars is more your speed- they have that too! You can customize your gift and make your own in-room celebration. Even if you don’ t feel creative, there are ideas they have put together that will make you look like a pro. Prices vary greatly depending on what you choose.
In addition to resort delivery, they can also deliver some “enchanting extras” to a special meal at many of the Disney restaurants. Nothing is quite as memorable as having roses delivered to your special princess while dining at Cinderella’s Royal Table. You can even have your gift delivered to you at a special event like a carriage ride. Make sure to schedule your delivery in advance and talk to one of their “Dream Makers”.
The Fun is in the Journey
There are actually several unique romantic experiences on the water you may not even know existed!
4. Ahoy Mate!
Photo Credit: Jill Molas
Rent a yacht!
You can rent a beautiful 52-foot yacht! It’s true! The Grand 1 yacht can be chartered by the hour and comes with a crew including a butler, for up to 18 people. You can just take your special someone out for a romantic meal, a cruise around the lake to watch the fireworks or invite some friends to witness your epic proposal or even a wedding. It can be chartered from one of the Magic Kingdom Resorts on Bay Lake and Seven Seas Lagoon or from the Yacht and Beach club for a trip around Crescent Lake. Reservations must be made in advance here or through your travel agent.
Not working with a yacht budget but love the water? There are a variety of watercraft including pontoon boats, 2 person Sea Racers and canoes that can be rented at several of the resorts including the campground. The waterways around the parks are lovely and can be a nice break to be able to slow down and spend time with your "first mate".
Photo Credit: Jill Molas
5. Fun and Exotic
For something unique, have a meal at the Boathouse restaurant at Disney Springs where you can enjoy your meal out on the deck if you like. After dinner you can take a romantic champagne cruise in a 40 foot Italian water taxi complete with chocolate covered strawberries. Looking for something fun and quirky? You can also take an Amphicar ride from the restaurant in one of the fun 50’s styled vehicles that drive into the water. They really are a lot of fun and piloted by your own personal captain.
6. Sail Away
For the absolute, ultimate Disney water experience, take a Disney Cruise! It is my favorite cruise line, hands down. Stay at a Disney Resort and then finish off with a relaxing cruise for a few days (you know how you need a vacation from your vacation sometimes? This is it!). You will be picked up from your resort and taken to Port Canaveral for your cruise and then returned back to your resort or the airport. It couldn’t be easier. Each ship has a beautiful spa, theatre, adults only areas and amazing dining experiences. If you think a Disney Cruise is just for kids, you couldn’t be more wrong. It is perfect for a romantic escape too!
7. Carriage Rides
A carriage ride with your sweetheart is a wonderful treat. I was able to experience this on a recent trip to Disney World. It was lovely! We took an evening ride and it was so peaceful and beautiful just listening to the clip clop of our beautiful horse as we wandered along the river and down the Rue D’Baga in the French Quarter. You meet your ride at either the Riverside Levee Marina at the Port Orleans Riverside Resort or at Crockett’s Tavern in the Fort Wilderness Resort. The Port Orleans ride takes you along the waterways of Riverside and down the streets of the French Quarter (trip may vary). At Fort Wilderness you meander through the trails to take in the beautiful forest scenery. Space is limited so reservations are recommended. To reserve your spot, call (407) WDW-PLAY or (407) 939-7529. More information is here.
8. Spa Treatments
There are several resorts that offer spa treatments and amenities on Disney property. You can book a massage for two, facials, a whirlpool and salon services to look extra spiffy for that special date. You can even pamper your honey with a spa package. To view spa locations and the variety of options available, check out the list here.
The fireworks shows at all of the parks are my favourite thing to do with the special people in my life. Every one is amazing and it doesn’t cost a thing to hold someone’s hand while you watch the show. For the most romantic one, make sure to see the Happily Ever After show at the Magic Kingdom. You can also take the monorail to one of the resorts and watch the fireworks from there (you won’t hear the music but it’s still amazing to watch). Find a hammock or beach chair and just sit and enjoy!
Photo Credit: Nedi Litteral
10. Dessert Cruise and Happily Ever After
For a really special way to watch the fireworks that is a bit more private, how about a dessert cruise to watch them from the Seven Seas Lagoon? Selections of desserts along with alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are served on the Ferrytale Cruise on certain nights. The music is piped on board so you can enjoy the whole show while you sit in comfort with your honey. Be sure to make reservations well in advance since space is limited.
Hopefully this helped to spark your imagination for ideas to kindle your own “happily ever after”. I would love to help you book it. See you at the castle!
Photo Credits not noted: Walt Disney World
Jill Molas is an independent agent with Fairytale Adventures Travel Agency. She specializes in vacations to Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Adventures by Disney and cruises. You can reach her at Jill@fairytaleadv.com , on her Facebook at Jill Molas Destination Specialist and at Jill's Jolly Holiday.