The Best Restaurants at Disney World that Don’t Require a Reservation

One of my favourite parts about the Disney Parks is the spontaneity of a vacation day.

At times, you may feel like everything has to be structured, until you find a piece of information like this, which will give you the alternative.

You have to plan a lot of a trip, but there are times when you can just walk up to a restaurant and get an amazing meal.

The Polite Pig at Disney Springs

Chicken Sandwich at The Polite Pig at Disney Springs (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

When you get off the plane on your arrival day and realize that you haven’t had lunch and you don’t want to burn a park ticket just for half a day…what do you do?

We tend to UBER to Disney Springs, grab lunch and then resort hop.

But what’s the lunch destination? You don’t want to do an advanced dining reservation because things can come up at the airport and maybe traffic is bad when you’re getting to your hotel. You can just walk up to Polite Pig, place an order, find a table and await the amazing BBQ that’s on its way.

There’s nothing better than it.

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Regal Eagle at EPCOT

Regal Eagle BBQ at EPCOT (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)

I promise this list won’t be exclusively BBQ spots, but here we are again.

Storytime: we like sitting down for meals, but when you’re at EPCOT, the food options can be sparce if you don’t know where you’re going.

I’ve started walking around the World Showcase, starting in Mexico, and realized that you can go hungry really quickly if you don’t have a destination.

Well Regal Eagle Smokehouse is that destination.

If you don’t find anything in Mexico, Norway, China, Africa, Germany, Italy…there’s always a muppet-themed restaurant waiting to give you air conditioning and refillable drinks.

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The Magic Kingdom

Skipper Canteen at the Magic Kingdom (Image: Dustin Fuhs)

From past experiences, the dining opportunities at the Magic Kingdom can be hit or miss – with a leaning towards the misses.

If you are thinking about finding food in the Kingdom, then don’t be afraid to walk up to most table service restaurants and see if they have availability.

I’ve found success at Skipper Canteen and The Plaza, with a nod to Steakhouse 71 across the street at the Contemporary for being a great option if you don’t mind sitting at the bar.

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Additional Options

Bread Service at Tiffins in Disney’s Animal Kingdom (Image: Dustin Fuhs / StepstoMagic)
  • If you are walking past Tiffins at Disney’s Animal Kingdom and want to enjoy a great bread service, they often have walk-up availability.
  • Hollywood Studios is all about the quick service, so don’t worry too much about table service and advanced dining reservations. In fact, most times I’ve been able to score walk-ups at The Hollywood Brown Derby for its patio. Although a limited menu, the food is still awesome.
  • Kona Cafe at The Polynesian Village Resort is really good for walk-ups, but if it’s busy…don’t be afraid to ask if there’s availability for Ohana.

Long story short: The best dining comes when you’re not afraid to walk up and ask for availability. Sometimes you’ll be rewarded with a table and other times you’ll strike out and have to settle with another meal…but it’s still better than anything you have at home because you’re at WALT DISNEY WORLD!

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