The Best Character Dining at Disney- Akershus Royal Banquet Hall Review
Character dining is such a big thing at the Disney parks. Not only is it one of the most popular experiences, but it is also the highlight of many a vacation. When we head to the Disney parks we always ensure we enjoy at least one character dining experience. Some characters exclusively appear at meals making it the only chance to get an autograph, a photograph, and overall memory from the trip. There are only a couple character dining experiences at Epcot in Walt Disney World resort in Florida. And from the choices of venue, we loved heading to Norway in the World Showcase to dine with the princesses in the Akershus Royal Banquet Hall. We booked lunch here and certainly had a marvelous time and we hope you do as well. We hope our Akershus Royal Banquet Hall review will encourage you to reserve your meal too.
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Epcot Norway in the World Showcase…
So first of all, this upscale Disney restaurant is located in the Norway area of the Epcot World Showcase. One of my favourite areas in Epcot, the World Showcase is an incredible place to delve into 11 different cultures throughout the day.
Norway is one of the most popular areas in Epcot thanks to the newly updated theming with the blockbuster film Frozen brought to life, enchanting millions of visitors yearly. Not only is the best bakery in the park located here to nab Anna’s Birthday Cupcake (my FAVE), but also the most sought Fast Pass attraction, Frozen Ever After, and the awesome meet and greet experience with Anna and Elsa. So it is only fitting to put one of the most popular restaurants i the entire Walt Disney World Resort in the same vicinity.
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Now, Our Akershus Royal Banquet Hall Review
This wonderful regal restaurant was named after its sister castle in Oslo. A setting only fitting for royalty, it is no wonder that the princesses from various Disney Kingdoms stop by to visit with guests during meal time. Enjoy visits from four princesses while you eat, and upon arrival, have your photo taken with the lovely Belle herself.
What I love about the Walt Disney World dining plan (tips coming soon) is that you don’t have to worry about the bill at the end or stressing. And trust me, seeing the bill sometimes can be overwhelming… If you chose the Deluxe meal plan, you get two quick service, 1 table service, and 2 snacks daily. With the table service restaurants, adults are entitled to one alcoholic beverage each per meal. Hubby decided to have a light-up cocktail while I opted for a specialty coffee. No need to describe the light up cocktail… you can tell right from hubby’s expression how good it was. For me, the specialty coffee featuring one of my favourite liquors – Baily’s Irish Cream went smoothly on the palate. I love these. I must confess that I drink them quickly as the whipped cream melts, but truth be told, I enjoy them so much. The alcoholic beverage inclusion is a great extra for adults giving them an extra bit of pixie dust on their magical holiday. It started in 2018 and has truly been received positively already this year.
The meals here at Akershus to us were some of the better mains we have eaten on property. Choose from a variety of different entrees, both traditional Norwegian or American cuisine. We both chose the delightful Norwegian meatballs with mashed potatoes and vegetables. And it doesn’t stop there! Each entree is served with a visit to the antipasto bar of cheeses, savouries, and traditional Norwegian dishes. I actually tried the herring. After watching The Golden Girls for all 7 seasons, and hearing Rose speak of herring, I just had to try it. It definitely was interesting! But here’s a tip: if you’re not the biggest fan of salty foods, it may not be for you.
The meatballs on the other hand were the perfect lunch in Walt Disney World. They were the perfect size, satisfying, and the combination of gravy and berry sauce makes them the penultimate in comfort food. The mashed potatoes were great combined with the meatballs and sauce, and the veggies were cooked perfectly with that necessary crunch still present in every bite. I highly recommend this traditional dish when dining at Akershus.
The dessert here is exceptional. At Akershus Royal Banquet Hall you get to try three different desserts! They each were a different flavour, a different experience, and quite honestly an indulgent treat; the perfect ending to a royal meal. The three desserts you will enjoy include a rich chocolate mousse cake, a carrot and walnut cake, and traditional rice pudding with raspberry compote. My favourite by far was the rice pudding. It brought back memories of the rice pudding my grandmother made years ago for me as a child. So enjoying this traditional and iconic dessert was very comforting. My hubby enjoyed the chocolate mousse cake the most. It was rich, smooth, and silky to the palate. Completely satisfying especially for a sweet tooth. The carrot loaf was tasty as well. Nothing beats a moist and fragrant carrot loaf.
What makes Akershus Royal Banquet Hall extra special is the storybook character dining. Couples and families love this part of the experience as the Princesses are just such a joy to meet and post for photos with. Appearances are not guaranteed, but for the most part you will have a great chance at meeting Cinderella, Ariel, Aurora, and Snow White.
The pictures with the princesses are such a lovely experience and being there on my birthday made it even more special. If you are convinced to enjoy a meal here after reading our Akershus Royal Banquet Hall review, than you I cannot stress enough that you MUST make reservations. It is one of the most difficult restaurants to nab a reservation so do it as soon as you book your trip. You can book reservations up to 6 months in advance.
So there you have our Akershus Royal Banquet Hall review for you to consider dining here while enjoying the Epcot World Showcase. I highly recommend booking lunch as I found it to be less busy than over dinner. Remember, photos with Belle happen before your meal and are taken near the entrance. Enjoy!
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We do not work for and are not affiliated with Disney in any way. All our opinions are our own and based on our own experience and/or extensive research.