Orlando is the family fun capital of the world thanks to amazing theme parks and attractions across the area, but the fun needn’t stop at meal times!

Our guide to fun dining picks out some of the unusual and bizarre places to eat, with some others that are just really interesting atmospheres.

The Rainforest Café (Animal Kingdom & Downtown Disney)

Great food and a truly ‘wild’ atmosphere make the Rainforest Café a firm favorite for diners that love a fun atmosphere.
Both Orlando locations for this worldwide chain are beautifully themed, with large fish reefs, jungle landscaping and crazy animatronics (animated robotics) that burst into a jungle frenzy regularly throughout your meal.
Tiny kids might get a bit anxious when the animals strike up, otherwise this is a crazy fun place to eat some great food!
This restaurant tends to be quite cold at times so always take a light cardigan or fleece.

The California Grille – Disney’s Contemporary Resort

If you love fine food at its very best, Disney’s Signature California Grille has always taken some beating.
Opened in September of 2013 after a 7 month closure, the fully refitted restaurant is definitely one of our most recommended spots for a great meal.
With an amazing wine collection, seafood menu and delicious gourmet grille items to choose from, you are never going to be disappointed.
Towards the end of the evening, the fun part is just a glance away, thanks to the amazing views of the Magic Kingdom Firework display right outside the restaurant’s panoramic windows!

T Rex Cafe (Downtown Disney)

Very much in a similar theme to the Rainforest Cafe, the T Rex Cafe has a dense Juarassic landscape that bursts into life as LED meteor showers brighten up the ceilings and awaken the animatronic animals.
The food is great here and the T Rex works well for guests that have tried the Rainforest Cafe already!
This restaurant tends to be quite cold at times so always take a light cardigan or fleece.

Disney Character Dining

Families with younger kids (under 10s) will absolutely love Disney’s Character Dining restaurants.
With plenty to choose from, each with a different style, make sure that you research the one that matches your family’s favorite Disney characters as Mickey does not for example appear at theme all.
The Disney Dining experiences are quite pricey, but the ‘all you can eat’ buffet food is really quite good.
Always bear in mind that character dining kind of carries an extra $15 per person built into the price just because of what it is.
Our personal favorite is the Crystal Palace and Mickey’s Backyard BBQ, mainly because of the classic characters!
All Character Dining venues are great for photos, except Cinderella’s Royal Table (the Princesses won’t sing autographs or pose for pictures)

Teppan Edo (Japan Epcot)

With a waiter cooking by your table side, Teppan cuisine is an authentic and pleasurable way to enjoy some fine food over at Epcot’s World Showcase.
As your fellow guests sit around your chunky Teppan table, the chef cooks your meal on the built in cooking surface, right there in front of you.
Teppan Edo‘s Chefs not only expertly prepare fantastic food at your table, they also entertain you along the way in a classy and fun spirited style!
The food is pricey here, but the atmosphere and authentic setting makes it worth it!

Cafe Tu Tu Tango (International Drive)

Lunch or Dinner at Café Tu Tu Tango will be a lively and colorful event thanks to one of the quirkiest restaurants in Orlando!
The small plates food options are simply perfectly prepared and as fresh as you could dream of.
The high quality dishes make this place worth visiting in its own right, but when you add in the eclectic and colorful artworks that adorn every wall, you begin to realise that the owners had always intended Café Tu Tu Tango to be something special.
Throughout the entire day, expect varied impromptu performances from talented entertainers!

Hard Rock Cafe – Universal’s CityWalk

The Hard Rock Café in Orlando enjoys a prime setting by the lively area of Universal’s CityWalk lagoon.
Inside the Hard Rock Café, diners enjoy the coolest rock tracks of all time played continually over the house speakers.
The music isn’t harsh, nor is it loud, and for most rock fans and family members, it’s just perfect!
Add into the mix, hundreds of amazing items of rock memorabilia, and the Hard Rock Cafe becomes a wall to wall treasure trove of rock star collectables!
Great for families, night and day.

Manny’s Chop House (Haines City)

Manny’s Steak House shows up regularly in our favorite lists, mainly because of the perfect steaks, endless side salad, hot bread rolls and cinnamon butter!
The reason it’s also on our fun list, is simple: this is the very best authentic American Steakhouse that we’ve ever found in Orlando.
The lively buzz, cool ‘island bar’, fabulous staff and amazing atmosphere make this one of those unique experiences that help make a vacation so memorable!

Hoop Dee Doo Music Revue (Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort)

If you love the idea of a good old Wild West vaudeville show, the Hoop Dee Doo Music Revue is perfect to let your hair down, stomp your feet and clap your hands ‘cowboy style’.
The all you can eat menu provides easy going dining.   The show is ok for all ages, but will appeal to adults most of all!
Perfect for show fans and nostalgia seekers!

Sci-Fi Dine In Theater (Disney’s Hollywood Studios)

If you ever wanted to step back into the 50s and take your Chevvy to an old fashioned drive-in movie, the ‘Sci-Fi Dine in Theater‘ at Hollywood Studios is just the place for you!
The menu is fairly typical of a Sports Bar offering, but the mocked up convertables and movie screen make this a crazy place to eat.
For once, you will find the kids in the front seats as light hearted sci-fi movie clips run on the large screen ahead, just like those old fashioned Drive-in’s!
Don’t worry about bugs, this indoor Drive-in theater is all fully air conditioned!

Jiko – The Cooking Place (Animal Kingdom Lodge)

Located at the Animal Kingdom Lodge Resort area, Disney’s fine dining restaurant offers some of the very best cuisine at Walt Disney World.
At round $80+ per head for a 3 course meal and a few drinks, the upscale menu is very pricey but the food is remarkably good.
The entertainment is completely wild, courtesy of the stunning grounds of the African wildlife roaming the ‘natural’ habitats that surround the Animal Kingdom Lodge.
If you think the meals are expensive, it is worth it; a sunset here will last in your memories forever!

Sharks Underwater Grill (SeaWorld)

As SeaWorld Orlando’s signature restaurant, the Shark’s Underwater Grill takes diners face to face with the ocean, thanks to a huge line of thick clear windows looking into the Sharks vast aquarium!
From the safety of a dry, comfortable seat inside this stylish restaurant, guests enjoy some great American favorite dishes, as the world literally swims by.

Coral Reef Restaurant (Epcot)

Much like SeaWorld’s ‘Sharks Underwater Grill’, the Coral Reef Restaurant ironically offers some great Seafood dishes with a view of Epcot’s beautiful Sea Aquarium.
The food is good, particularly so for seafood fans, but reservations are recommended during busy seasons.

Eleven (Reunion Resort)

One of the hidden secrets of Orlando is Reunion Resort, a beautiful oasis, sprawling around 3 championship golf courses, just 6 miles to the south of Disney.
On the eleventh floor, guests dine at the aptly named ‘Eleven’ restaurant with unbroken views of Walt Disney World to the north.
The food and cocktails at the family friendly Eleven Restaurant are perfect for a lovely evening meal, offering perfect views of sunsets as you turn towards the Gulf Coast of Florida.
The setting sun means that it’s time of course, for the greatest free firework display on earth, courtesy of course by the Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios and Epcot!

Cracker Barrel (Formosa Gardens and more)

Just a few miles to the north of Reunion Resort lies a very different kind of restaurant, the Cracker Barrel.
Excellent traditional cooking, made from fresh ingredients to order, makes this charismatic restaurant stand out from the rest in terms of quality and charm.
Complete with a ‘village store’, long porch and rocking chairs, the Cracker Barrel offers a real chance to ‘escape in time’ while enjoying some traditional American comfort food!
The nostalgic and slow paced Cracker Barrel is a ‘must do’ for your next vacation!

Orlando Dinner Shows – Various

Dinner shows are a huge part of the Orlando night scene and there are many to choose from.
Our recommendations for families are the Arabian Knights and the Medieval Times, both of which offer lots of action and thrills along the way.
For would be detectives, the Sleuths Dinner Show works out really well, as guests attempt to solve the crime over dinner, but stay off the wine if you really want to work out whodunnit!

Top 10 Fun Places to Dine in Orlando

Our selection of Fun Places to Dine in Orlando is far from a complete list of options, but it should provide you with at least a few great choices to try next vacation!
Of course, please feel free to visit our Orlando Facebook page and post any suggestions for additions to our small but rather fun list!

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