Not all restaurants are created equal at Walt Disney World, and it turns out that even inside the most beloved restaurants, there are better and worse places to sit.
We’re gonna take a look at 12 restaurants in the Disney parks and Resorts where your seating choice is very important.
While we definitely have our preferences when it comes to seating in these restaurants, we also keep in mind that you can’t always choose where you sit. If a restaurant is really popular or just happens to be full at the time you visit, it’s possible that your first choice of seat won’t be available. So you can definitely request a certain area or table, but please be understanding that the Cast Members can’t always make the changes you ask for!
With that caveat out of the way, let’s take a look at the restaurants in Disney World where it matters where you sit.
Why you really go to Space 220, though, is for the experience. When you arrive at the restaurant, you’re taken up an elevator into “space”!
You then dine at the Centauri Space Station, which has views of Earth and other outer-space things.
While we were there, we even saw some astronauts having a lightsaber fight outside the windows.
Most of the seating here has pretty good views of the “windows,” since there are different levels of seating. People further back in the dining room are also higher up.
However, the best views are right by the windows so that you can see all the action up close. If you sit too far to the left in the dining room, it’s also much more difficult to see out the windows and enjoy the views.
Check with your host when you arrive to see if it’s possible to be close to the windows while you dine!
Be Our Guest
Be Our Guest in the Magic Kingdom is a fan favorite restaurant because — duh — you get to dine inside the Beast’s castle. Who doesn’t want to feel like royalty while they’re eating lunch?
There are three different dining rooms inside Be Our Guest, and they all have a different theme. The main room is the Ballroom, which has high ceilings, paintings on the ceiling, columns, polished floors…basically everything you need to feel super fancy and elegant.
Another option is the West Wing dining room, which is themed after the Beast’s forbidden room. This room is pretty dark, which might make it difficult to eat sometimes, but it makes up for it with incredible theming and fun props. You can see the enchanted rose and the Beast’s ripped-up portrait inside this room.
This room also has periodic “thunderstorms,” which are created with light and sound effects. When the last petal on the rose falls, take a look at the portrait in the room to see it change from a man to the Beast.
The least interesting room, in our opinion, is the Rose Gallery. It’s an art gallery with portraits from Beauty and the Beast, and in the center there’s a large music box with Belle and the Beast dancing. It’s a really pretty room, but we think the theming of the other two rooms is more interesting and closer to what you’ll see in the movie.
In general, we usually choose to dine in the Ballroom if that’s an option. And it’s usually possible to request it, since it’s the largest dining room at this restaurant.
Cinderella’s Royal Table
And speaking of restaurants inside fairytale castles, Cinderella’s Royal Table is another spot where your table’s location can make all the difference.
This restaurant is located inside the Cinderella Castle in Magic Kingdom, so it’s already the best location for dining. But what about your location inside the dining room?
We think the best place to sit in this restaurant is in the big throne area of the room, which has high ceilings, fancy pillars, and medieval art adorning the walls.
Sitting in this room makes you feel like royalty, which you really don’t get from the other dining areas. The best part of this restaurant is the experience itself (the food is really just OK usually), so to make the most of it, try to be in the fanciest space!
Another great spot to be in this restaurant is right by the windows, so that you can get views of the Magic Kingdom outside.
For big Disney fans, you’ve got to visit Cinderella’s Royal Table at least once so that you can say you’ve dined in Cinderella’s Castle. For the full experience, ask your sever if there’s space for you in the throne section.
’50s Prime Time Cafe
The ’50s Prime Time Cafe is located in Disney’s Hollywood Studios. It’s themed after a ’50s home kitchen, and the waitstaff here are notorious for acting like goofy (and stern) family members.
Inside the restaurant, there are lots of smaller “kitchens,” so that you feel like you’re eating around the family’s kitchen table.
Some of the areas have TVs set at the end of the table, which play old cartoons in black and white! We’ve seen shows like “Leave it to Beaver,” “Father Knows Best,” and the original “Mickey Mouse Club.”
Not all the tables have this feature, so check with your host to see if you can get a TV table so that you can enjoy some old shows while you eat.
Another Disney World restaurant with prime dining entertainment is Sanaa, although you won’t find any ’50s shows in here. Instead, there are big windows along one wall that look out onto a savanna.
Outside, animals like ankole cattle, zebras, giraffes, and crowned cranes can be seen exploring the savanna and enjoying some food of their own. Those crowned cranes are usually the most active right by the windows, since the glass is one-way and they like to see their reflections in it!
To see the animals better, you’ll want to ask for a table by the windows. Although the windows are large and you can see outside from most places in the dining room, you definitely get the best view if you’re closer to the action.
And who doesn’t want to get close to those cute feathery friends?
Also, while you’re here — make sure you try out the bread service. It’s one of our favorites!
This next restaurant isn’t in the Disney World parks or hotels. It’s over in Disney Springs!
Raglan Road is an Irish-style pub (with furniture that was shipped over from the Emerald Isle itself). You’ll find classic Irish food here like Bangers and Mash, Shepherd’s Pie, and Sticky Toffee Pudding.
In true Irish fashion, there’s also fun entertainment, including music and Irish dancing.
But there are several dining rooms inside the pub, and not all of them have views of the entertainment. So while you can hear the music throughout the restaurant, you’ll miss the dancing and other shows unless you’re at one of the tables near the stage.
We’ve eaten here in the other rooms before as well, and honestly the food is good enough to justify a trip even if you can’t see the entertainment. But it’s made that much better if you can watch the amazing dancers on the stage.
Coral Reef Restaurant
The Coral Reef Restaurant is not one of our most favorite restaurants in Disney World. One of the biggest problems with it is that it’s in EPCOT, which has a lot of other delicious food in World Showcase. But if you’re a huge seafood fan, you’ll find some decent dishes here, and the dining room might be one of the best on property.
What makes the dining room so great? Some of the walls are clear windows into a giant aquarium (one of the largest in the world, in fact!).
How much do we love this view? So much. We want to watch fish, sharks, and rays swim around an aquarium even without the food, so making it a part of the dining experiences is genius.
You’ll get the best views of the aquatic action if you’re right by the windows. Some of the tables are literally touching the aquarium walls, and we think those are the best seats in the house.
Check with your host to see if there are tables available close to the fish!
Several restaurants in Disney World get great views of the fireworks shows in the Magic Kingdom and EPCOT. Some that stand out are ‘Ohana at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort, California Grill at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, La Hacienda de San Angel in the Mexico Pavilion in EPCOT, and Rose & Crown in the UK Pavilion in EPCOT.
At all of these restaurants, the best place to be will be near the windows facing the fireworks. Most of them have big windows, and a couple of them even offer outside dining, which is ideal for the best views.
‘Ohana has big windows all along one side of the dining room, and you’ll want to be right next to them to get the best Magic Kingdom fireworks views.
Most of this restaurant is just one big dining room, so odds are good that you’ll at least be able to see some of the fireworks show, but the closer you are to the windows, the better.
There’s also usually more entertainment inside ‘Ohana itself, like live ukelele music! The ukelele player usually walks around the room, though, so you’ll probably get to see them no matter where you sit.
When the fireworks are going off, you’ll get a unique view from above them, and you should be able to see the whole show (although not the projections on the castle or Main Street, U.S.A.).
For the best views, you’ll want to be right by a window. Even if the fireworks show isn’t happening during your reservation, the view of Magic Kingdom is worth the experience. Check with a server to see if any window-side tables are available when you get there!
There’s also the Celebration at the Top Fireworks Party at California Grill, which serves snacks, treats, and drinks for guests while they enjoy the fireworks views. This event is $129 per person.
But if you’d rather not pay for the party, you can still make normal dining reservations and even head outside on the balcony to watch the fireworks.
La Hacienda de San Angel
You’ll find La Hacienda de San Angel in the Mexico Pavilion in EPCOT. This restaurant has tasty Mexican food and big windows along one side so you can enjoy views of EPCOT’s new fireworks show, Harmonious.
Like the other fireworks restaurants on this list, the best place to be here is right by the windows. Ask a host when you arrive if it’s possible to sit close to a window so that you can enjoy all the magic close-up.
Rose & Crown
Rose & Crown is in the UK Pavilion in EPCOT, serving up classic British food and drinks.
This restaurant has a fireworks dining experience out on the patio, which you can reserve for $89 per adult and $39 per child.
Or if you’d rather not do that experience, you can just make regular dining reservations inside the restaurant itself. If you’re in the dining room, you could still get great fireworks views, especially if you’re sitting right by the windows.
The fireworks dining experience definitely gets better views of the two options, plus you’ll get to be out in the action. But there’s a prix fixe menu, and it’s not a super cheap dining option. If you want more menu options or to save a little cash, we’d recommend making normal reservations and then asking to sit as close to the windows as possible.
That wraps up our list of some of the Disney World restaurants where your table’s location really matters! Keep following AllEars for more updates and tips as you plan your Disney World trip.
What’s your favorite restaurant dining room in Disney World? Let us know in the comments!