About 48 million people visit Walt Disney World Resorts annually and while most stick to the tried-and-true attractions, there are plenty of experiences only the most savvy Mickey fan has tried.
Take your family on a behind the scenes tour; have a seat at Cinderella’s Royal table and enjoy a meal with Cinderella herself; and get up close and personal with real wild animals a on a safari at Animal Kingdom.
Don't overlook these hidden gems in Walt Disney World.
1. Enjoy gourmet cakes at the Cheshire Café
Mickey Waffles and ice cream pops are great but you shouldn't leave Magic Kingdom’s Fantasyland without trying the Gourmet Cake Cups at Cheshire Café. Along with their delicious cake cups, they also serve fruit, muffins, cereal and plenty of drinks.
2. A behind the scenes tour
Think only Disney characters and actors can go behind the scenes? There are actually plenty of tours designed just for curious guests. Go on a Backstage Magic tour for behind-the-scenes access to Walt Disney World attractions or take Disney’s The Magic Behind Our Steam Trains Tour to explore the world of steam trains.
3. Lunch at Be Our Guest Restaurant
Disney dining isn't just about grab and go quick bites any more. One of Magic Kingdom's newest eateries, the Beauty and the Beast themed eatery offers delicious food, with an incredible ambience. Next time you're there, ask your waiter or waitress for “the grey stuff.” They will bring you the secret item on the menu. It's delicious!
4. Have a character meal
Visit Cinderella’s Royal Table-- it’s home to three Character Meals. Cinderella will greet and take photos with you upon arrival, then you will join her for your meal. Your kids will never forget such a magical dining experience.
5. Dine on global cuisine at the International Food and Wine Festival
Make your way over to Epcot for an incredible celebration at the International Food and Wine Festival. Sample foods from dozens of foreign countries without ever leaving the U.S. This festival is geared towards adults but it's a great opportunities to get the little ones interested in new foods. This year the festival is taking place from Sept. 14 through Nov. 14.
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6. Watch Fantasmic! in Disney Hollywood Studios
Don’t leave the park too early, or you'll miss Fantasmic! – one of the coolest shows featured in all of the Disney parks. This is the magical world of Mickey Mouse at its best, full of exciting music, glowing items, fireworks and awesome effects.
7. Ride the monorail all the way through
If you have been to Disney you may have used the monorail solely as a means to get from one side of the park to the other. However, it is also an incredible way to see the park. The monorail does a full figure-8 loop around the park and offers incredible views of the attractions.
8. The safari at Animal Kingdom
Lions and tigers and bears...oh my! And so, so much more. If you haven’t ridden off on a real Kilimanjaro Safari, trye Disney's version the next time you're in Orlando. Hop in an open-air vehicle and explore the African savannah-Animal Kingdom style. This is a slow ride and great for children of all ages.
9. See the Three Mountains in Magic Kingdom
Think mountain climbing is just for nature lovers? Magic Kingdom is home to three different mountain-themed attractions – Space Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and Splash Mountain. Space Mountain is a space-themed indoor roller coaster. It takes place in the dark. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is a train-themed roller coaster. And Splash Mountain is a log flume ride that features three drops.