What do you do when the parks close? Disney Village is there to keep you entertained throughout the rest of your evening before you retire back to your hotel. It is a shopping destination with a range of restaurants to suit all tastes. It is open all day but truly comes alive at night.
The Village is looking dated and is due for refurbishment in the coming years. Hopefully this investment will add the touch of Disney magic that is seemingly missing from the Village. In the meantime, it is worth taking time to explore this area especially after the parks have closed as many of the shops and restaurants stay open late, allowing you to milk a few more hours of Disney out of each day.
Annette’s Diner – (Plus Meal Plan) American style restaurant where the staff serve you food on roller skates (so best not to order hot coffee just in case!). Serves big plates of food so make sure you are hungry before you enter. Queues here can get very long especially straight after the parks close.
Billy Bob’s Country Western Saloon – (Standard Meal Plan) There is a bar downstairs which hosts live music and various dance classes throughout the week. Upstairs is home of a Tex-Mex all you can eat buffet which is good value for money.
Café Mickey – (Premium Meal Plan) . The price tag here will put many off but others are willing to pay extra to have the characters come to them rather than waiting in long lines in the parks. Mickey and friends will stop at your table, pose for pictures and at times may even play with your food. Donald loves a pudding so be warned!
Earl of Sandwich® – Disneyland veterans will always quote this to be the hidden gem of the Disney Village. Reasonable prices and a tasty hot sandwich make this a must do at least once on your trip. What is so exciting about a sandwich you say? Well don’t blame us if you try it and become addicted, we did try to warn you!
Five Guys® – Five Guys is a growing brand in the UK and those who have discovered it often claim there is no burger like a Five Guys burger. However, its main claim to fame is the Coke Freestyle machine, allowing you to formulate any Coke based drinks you like with the syrup of your choosing. Anyone up for a Cherry Sprite Zero?
King Ludwig’s Castle – (not included in the Dining Plan) This is a wonderfully themed restaurant, serving German inspired meals. The menu has had a recent update and the presentation of the food has greatly improved perfect for that Instagram photo. Unfortunately this is not owned by Disney so meal plans are not accepted in here.
McDonald’s® – Quaint French restaurant, many may not have heard of this chain but I believe it is growing in popularity. In all seriousness, many dislike the presence of McDonalds at a Disney park but the theming inside is unlike any outlet in the UK. For the fussy eater in your party this may prove to be a blessing but would not be on the top of many peoples favourite dining locations.
New York Style Sandwiches – The poor cousin of the Earl of Sandwich, this was the original Sandwich location in the Village but has now been eclipsed by the Earl. It does serve proper chips so stop by if you are getting bored of fries. The interior is rather depressing making it hard to justify sitting in to dine. Smaller queues during peak times may be the only reason you visit here.
Planet Hollywood® – (not included in the Dining Plan) Part restaurant, part celebrity museum. It serves American classics which will satisfy most families. After you have finished your meal you will want to explore the walls for film memorabilia. However, the films are now very dated so you may be exposing your age if you claim to remember seeing any of these films in the cinema.
Rainforest Cafe® – (not included in the Dining Plan) The theming inside this restaurant is spectacular, making you feel like you are deep in the middle of the Rainforest. However, being surrounded by animals may put some people off eating so this place can spilt opinions. The theming also comes with a high price tag that isn’t always reflected in the quality of the food they serve.
Sports Bar – This has indoor seating and a large covered outdoor seating area. Big screens display sporting events, which can draw a big crowd depending on what is on show. A good place for you to chill while others in your party shop till they drop. Bar snacks include hot dogs and fries.
Starbucks Coffee – The Starbucks empire has expanded to include Disney Village. For those of you who can’t go without a morning pick me up, this opens early and closes late in the day to ensure you can get your coffee fix. Their choice of cakes and sandwiches is very different to the UK so why not try something new with your favourite brew.
The Steakhouse – (Plus Meal Plan) The look of this restaurant inside is much better than the exterior. Serving top quality steaks, this is not a cheap option but it makes an excellent way to relax after a busy day in the parks. Given the prices, this is good value if you are using the Disney Dining Plan.
Vapiano® – One of the newest additions to the Village this offers guests the chance to sample fresh pasta giving a very different alternative to the American Style restaurants that dominate the parks. Who says that Disney food is just burgers and chips?
Disney Fashion – A shop full of clothing inspired by Disney films. Clothing can be a great souvenir as you can wear it again and again. Or save it until your next trip back to Disneyland. This has some unique items so it is worth checking out if you are passing by.
The Disney Gallery – Originally this store was full of unique items that could not be seen anywhere else in the park. Given the price tags, this was more like a museum and as time has gone on, this shop has become more commercial. It now offers the same stock that can be found all over the Disney parks. However, it can be useful for that last minute purchase, especially for fragile items.
Disney Store – This is a large store selling all the classic Disney souvenirs. It has an impressive collection of soft toys including the infamous Giant Stitch. You may need to bring an extra suitcase if you want to take him home!
The LEGO® Store – The Lego craze continue to gather momentum and Disney is not immune to its growing appeal. If Lego is not your thing, it is still worth a visit to see your favourite characters recreated via plastic bricks. The Fantasia Mickey is stunning and the Toy Story characters make a great photo opportunity.
World of Disney – Confused by all the different stores at Disney. Wish there was one giant store that just sold everything? Well Disney makes all your wishes come true. The danger here is reaching your credit limit. This is a beautiful store which makes it hard to resist those impulse purchases. Don’t forget to look up when inside and spot the mural for your favourite Disney Classic film.
World of Toys – This is a place which contains all the toys sold across the Disney parks. For budding Jedi they can make their own Lightsaber and Toy Story fans will enjoy making their own Mr Potato Head. Worth giving the kids a spending limit otherwise they may pick up everything!
Village Stalls – During the different seasons of the year, Disney sets up stalls selling a range of food and gifts. Prepare to resist the smell of fresh crepes, candy floss, mulled wine and cakes as you make your way through the Village back to your hotel.
Restaurant Boutiques – The Rainforest Café, Planet Hollywood and Ludwigs all have their own shops, selling non-Disney merchandise. You may find these shops refreshing after being exposed to Disney merchandise throughout your visit.
Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show…with Mickey & Friends! – Dinner Show which always draws a crowd. Your admission fee covers the price of a Cowboy hat, a 3 course meal and an entertaining show. The price is steep but there is nothing else like this on property…. Ye-Ha!
Gaumont Cinemas – There is an IMAX cinema on site which sounds like a good option to take a break from the parks. Until you find out it only plays films in French. Good for brushing up on your accent though?
PanoraMagique – A magical tethered-balloon ride that brings you up in the sky high above the Village offering views of both parks. On a clear day you can see all the way to Paris and even spot the Eiffel Tower. Reasonably priced but is often closed due to the windy weather conditions.