Florida Guide > Dining
There are 2 Rainforest cafes in Orlando, both in Disney. Of course in the interests of research we had to try both to confirm they are of equal quality.
The first and probably best known one is at Downtown Disney. Situated to the left of the main Marketplace entrance, this place is busy from opening time. If you have already decided you would like to eat here I would suggest you head there first to make a reservation. The evenings are typically the busiest and if you arrive after 8pm you could face an hour’s wait. So by making a reservation as soon as you arrive you can then go for walk to work up an appetite for the forthcoming feast.
The other Rainforest Cafe is at Disney's Animal Kingdom. This one is right outside the main entrance and is quite easy to miss if you’re not looking. We have always found this one slightly quieter and a tip if you want a meal here when visiting Animal Kingdom is to leave the park a little early and you will usually get seated straight away. Or alternatively leave the park at lunchtime for your meal and return later to the park, at least that way you will be able to walk off your lunch.
There is a shop attached to the restaurant and they sell some nice souvenirs. There is also a bar where you can have a drink before your meal. My personal favourite is the Raspberry rainfall cocktail; they also do a good selection of non alcoholic cocktails. The bar stools are shaped like animals and it looks quite odd seeing people sat on them from behind with Zebra stripe legs and a tail below the normal attire.
The whole rainforest theme is very well done and the giant aquarium that extends from the shop into the restaurant will keep kids big and small amused for ages.
You will be called to approach the purple elephant when your table is ready. The food is delicious but like everywhere else the portions are huge, so don't be afraid to ask for a doggy bag if you can't finish it. We are slowly working our way through the menu and so far my favourite entree is the coconut shrimp mmmmm. They do something for every taste from steaks, to seafood to vegetarian, and also a children’s menu, just as varied. We have yet to manage a dessert there and have vowed to just order an appetizer followed by dessert one time.....
Whilst enjoying your dinner you will find the thunder begins, the "animals" get restless and before you know it, you’re in rainy season, but don't worry you won't get wet!! The whole spectacle is good fun and children particularly enjoy it. At other times you will experience nightfall and the lights dim and the stars come out.
If you are celebrating a birthday or anniversary mention it to your server and they will make sure the whole place knows about it :-) and make a big fuss if it's for a child.
We try and get a meal here once every holiday. All in all I would highly recommend a meal here, not exactly Sizzler prices but still good value.
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Page added on: 12 November 2004
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