These date night ideas will take Disney from the most magical place to the most passionate place on earth.
Disney parks are probably most well known as family-friendly vacation spots where you can get virtually any food in the shape of Mickey’s head, but they can be pretty romantic too. When you enter Disney’s gates, you leave the real world for one of make-believe and fantasy. It’s a world where two dogs can fall in love over a plate of spaghetti, and ladies lose their shoe at the end of the night for reasons other than having one too many drinks. We can’t promise you’ll find your one true love, but we can promise you’ll have a great time on these magical Disney date nights.
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Disney's Boardwalk and AbracadaBar
WHERE: Walt Disney World, Lake Buena Vista, FL
If you close your eyes and imagine the Atlantic City portrayed in HBO’s Boardwalk Empire, you’ll have a pretty good picture in your head of Disney’s BoardWalk area. Luckily, the Disney version has far fewer gangsters and prohibition has long since been ratified. What’s left are colorful buildings, a waterfront promenade illuminated with hundreds of string lights, and spots to fulfill your cravings for food and drink. One of those is the mysterious-yet-alluring AbracadaBar. From its vintage magic props and sophisticated drink offerings to the cushioned seating and mahogany furnishings, you’ll feel the magic in the air when you visit this offbeat cocktail lounge.
The Na’Vi River Journey in Animal Kingdom's Pandora
WHERE: Disney Animal Kingdom, Lake Buena Vista, FL
You don’t need to be a fan of James Cameron’s 2009 film, Avatar, to appreciate the otherworldly beauty of Pandora at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Pandora’s peculiar flora and fauna—including floating mountains, waterfalls, and lush plant life—are on full display when you enter this Avatar-inspired land. At night, the landscape transforms into a colorful and glowing wonderland of bioluminescent plants and illuminated walkways, with even the waterfalls bathed in light. Just walking through this exotic land is romantic, but a journey through Pandora’s rainforest on the slow-moving Na’Vi River Journey boat ride will get the sparks flying.
Dine Around the World at EPCOT’s World Showcase
WHERE: EPCOT, Lake Buena Vista, FL
Enjoy a Picnic and Concert at Disney Springs
WHERE: Disney Springs, Lake Buena Vista, FL
Split a Mickey and Minnie Sink Sundae at Beaches & Cream Soda Shop
WHERE: Disney World, Lake Buena Vista, FL
You can’t walk ten feet at Disney World without happening upon a chance to buy ice cream, but some ice cream treats are more date-friendly than others. In this case, we’re referring to the shareable Mickey and Minnie Sink Sundae at Beaches & Cream Soda Shop inside Disney’s Beach Club Resort (there is an even larger Kitchen Sink Sundae that serves four). This made-for-two dessert has scoops of vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry ice cream topped with pineapple, strawberry, hot fudge, peanut butter, whipped cream, Oreo cookies, a brownie, sprinkles, chocolate chips, and cherries. Each sundae is served in an adorable “sink” shaped like Mickey’s red pants or Minnie’s red and white polka dot skirt that you can take home as a souvenir.
Have a Competition at Winter Summerland Miniature Golf
WHERE: Winter Summerland Miniature Golf, Lake Buena Vista, FL
If your date is up for a bit of competition, head for Winter Summerland Miniature Golf, located next door to Disney’s Blizzard Beach Water Park. There are two courses to choose from at this Christmas-in-Florida-themed miniature golf complex, and tickets for each are less than $15 per person. Like everything at Disney, Winter Summerland has a backstory. According to Disney, Winter Summerland was built as a summertime vacation destination for off-duty elves. Every good vacation spot needs a golf course, so half the elves work on a snow course named Winter and the other half on a sand course called Summer. Both have loads of fun Disney touches, and if you’re confident in your golfing skills, maybe you can place a friendly wager before you tee off.
Creole Fare at the Blue Bayou
WHERE: Disneyland Park, Anaheim, CA
Both for its romantic atmosphere and its unique location inside Pirates of the Caribbean, Blue Bayou is a classic Disneyland dining experience. Though it is an indoor restaurant, with its moss-draped trees, hanging lanterns, and critters chirping in the background, you’ll feel as if you’re dining on the edge of the bayou. Blue Bayou’s proximity to Pirates of the Caribbean means you can watch the ride’s boats float by in between bites of authentic New Orleans fare like jambalaya and gumbo (and maybe a Hurricane to wash it all down with). After your meal, get in line for the Pirates of the Caribbean ride to round out your Big Easy-themed evening. Advance reservations are highly recommended and can be made online.
Get Romantic on Disneyland's Top Make-Out Ride
WHERE: Disneyland Park, Anaheim, CA
When you’re in love (or lust), any ride can be a make-out ride, but there is one Disneyland attraction that has been awarded the scientifically-proven title of “Best Make-Out Ride at Disneyland.” According to a 2009 poll, Haunted Mansion was named “the most popular make-out location in the park.” It’s dark, the ride vehicles are perfectly-sized for two, and, really, who isn’t turned on by ghosts? Just be sure to keep it PG because there are cameras everywhere, and no make-out session is worth being banned from Disneyland.
Cocktails in a Galaxy Far, Far Away
WHERE: Disneyland Park, Anaheim, CA
Unlike its counterpart in Orlando, FL, there are very few spots to grab a cocktail in Disneyland. Your best bet is to visit a galaxy far, far away. You’ll be relieved to learn that said galaxy is located just beyond Fantasyland in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. Oga’s Cantina is the local watering hole on the planet of Batuu, serving up creative cocktails like Jet Juice and Coruscant Coolers. While you imbibe, you can jam out to the musical stylings of DJ R-3X, a droid with truly impressive DJ skills. Advance reservations are highly recommended and can be made online.
Hollywood Glitz and Glam at Carthay Circle Lounge
WHERE: Disney California Adventure Park, Anaheim, CA
The historic Carthay Circle Theatre hosted the premiere of such classic films as Gone With the Wind, Romeo and Juliet, and Walt Disney’s first animated feature, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Sadly, the theatre was demolished in 1969, but its soul lives on at Disney’s California Adventure Park. The now-defunct theatre directly inspired the architecture and decor of the park’s Carthay Circle Lounge, and it evokes all the Hollywood glitz and glam the theatre’s storied history implies. Indoor and outdoor seating is available, and advance reservations are highly recommended.
Date Night at the Retro Disneyland Hotel
WHERE: Disneyland Hotel, Anaheim, CA
Disneyland Hotel has been operating just outside Disneyland’s gates since October 1955, only a few months after the park’s July 1955 grand opening. The hotel has changed over the years, but the retro vibes are still present. Walking hand-in-hand while exploring the hotel grounds is romantic enough, but a visit to Trader Sam’s Enchanted Tiki Bar will make it a night to remember. Yes, this is partly due to the bar’s cozy capacity and delicious menu offerings, but also because Trader Sam’s holds a few “enchanted” surprises. Order the Uh Oa, and you’ll find out exactly what that means.
Have a Competitive Game Night With Toy Story, Buzz Lightyear, and Spider-Man
WHERE: Disneyland, Anaheim, CA
It’s hard not to get just a teensy bit competitive when you’re on an attraction that pits riders against each other. Toy Story Midway Mania! and WEB SLINGERS: A Spider-Man Adventure in Disney’s California Adventure and Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters at Disneyland Park keep score for you so you can find out who you is the sharpest shooter in the galaxy. Make a game of it and go best two out of three. Loser buys the drinks or the Mickey Premium Ice Cream Bars (or both!)—winner’s choice.