Is Rainforest Café Worth Your Time and Money at Disney World?

If you’ve visited Walt Disney World, you probably have walked by the Rainforest Café at some point or another. After all, there are two on the property! This fun jungle-themed chain restaurant can be found at Animal Kingdom and Disney Springs. You don’t need a parking ticket to visit either location (the Animal Kingdom location is technically outside the park). The restaurant has a fun vibe, but is it worth taking time out of your Disney day to visit?

Volcano at Disney Spring's Rainforest Cafe

Is Rainforest Café worth visiting?

When visiting Rainforest Café, I have seen convincing arguments that go both ways. After all, it is a chain restaurant (there are 27 locations, mainly in the USA), and Walt Disney World does boast some great, more unique dining options. Nevertheless, my family has always pegged Rainforest Café as a fun dining location that we visit on most of our trips to Walt Disney World.


If you’re unfamiliar, Rainforest Café is a rainforest-themed (no kidding!) table service restaurant. From the second you walk in, you’re immersed in the sounds and sights of the jungle. From wall-sized tanks of real tropical fish to animatronic jungle animals like snakes, gorillas, and elephants, you will feel like you’re in the rainforest. 

Every fifteen minutes, the lights flicker, the animatronic animals go wild, and a “rainstorm” bursts to life in the restaurant. It can get a little loud, so if you have a little one scared of loud noises, consider this. However, the noisy rainstorm lasts less than a minute, and you’re back to reality (as much as possible while sitting next to a life-size animatronic gorilla).

Indoor Theming at Rainforest Cafe

Gift Shop

Connected to the restaurant is a large gift shop housing various Rainforest Café themed souvenirs, from t-shirts to stuffed animals to keychains and housewares. Even if you’re not into gimmicky souvenirs, you’ll have difficulty walking in without wanting at least a few fun rainforest-themed goodies.

The Food at Rainforest Café

But what about the food? Is it worth skipping out on a more unique offering somewhere else on Disney property?

Here’s the thing: Rainforest Café is a chain restaurant with chain restaurant food. You know what I’m talking about – some of their menu is made up of the kind of things that you can order at your local Applebees or Chilis. However, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. 

Volcano Dessert at Disney Springs

And honestly, I think Rainforest Café is delicious compared to some chain restaurants. They have various options, from seafood to pasta to Tex-Mex (their nachos are one of my go-to orders). I can honestly say I’ve never had anything there that I didn’t enjoy. Yes, it’s chain restaurant food, so, no, it’s nothing fancy or particularly unique, but it has a solid menu.

Rainforest Café is a restaurant to appeal to the less adventurous eaters at your party. You won’t find a large variety of ethnic cuisine like you would at Epcot. You won’t find high-end selections or character dining. But you will find a varied menu guaranteed to have something even your pickiest eater will enjoy.

But this still begs the question: Is Rainforest Café worth visiting on your trip to Walt Disney World? Personally, my vote is… Yes!

The Rainforest Café is fun. It’s a themed restaurant with a menu that everyone can eat from. Is it gimmicky? Yes. Is it a chain restaurant? Yes. Is it the best food you’ll find on Disney property? No. However, is the food still pretty good? Yes! Is it a fun, unique experience? Yes! Will you enjoy your experience? Yes, I really believe you will!

Rainforest Café Reservations

Since there are two locations on the property, reservations at the Rainforest Café are generally pretty easy to come by if booked in advance, especially if you have a smaller group. I’d recommend booking one as early as possible to be safe, so you don’t miss out on the fun. You can also sign up for a Landry’s Select Membership (the owners of Rainforest Café) to receive priority seating, reward points, and retail benefits! Another perk, Landry also owns the T-Rex Café at Disney Springs and Yak and Yeti at Animal Kingdom, so you can take advantage of those benefits more than once on your Disney vacation!

Dessert Tips

Also, a pro tip: Want one of the tastiest and most sharable desserts on the property? Order the Volcano while you’re at Rainforest Café! Mounds of vanilla ice cream, rich chocolate cake brownies, and heaps of whipped cream with chocolate and caramel sauce. Easily one of the best desserts I’ve ever had. We get one every time we visit Rainforest Café, and even with a few of us attacking the Volcano, it’s tough to finish!

Overall Thoughts Rainforest Café

The Rainforest Café is a fun, thematic dining experience that everyone at your party can enjoy. Between the fun jungle environment, the tasty food, and the expansive gift shop, the restaurant provides a unique experience that you can’t do every day, though it is a chain. I recommend you add it to your list of restaurants to visit on your trip to Walt Disney World! You’ll have a “wild” time!

Author: Ashly Hunt

Ashley co-founded The Midwest Mouse, a Disney Instagram account and blog she started with her husband, Braden. Ashley lives in Indiana with her husband and their two daughters. They are Walt Disney World annual pass holders and visit Disney parks as often as possible. They look forward to crossing more things off their Disney bucket list while continuing to share their adventures on their Instagram (@the_midwest_mouse) and website.

Whether you’re traveling with young children, teens, or adults, we’ve got you covered. From the whimsical fun of Disney’s Art of Animation Resort to the luxurious elegance of Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, we’ve got something for everyone. So look at our resort reviews and start planning your dream Disney vacation today!

Leave a Reply

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: