Walt Disney World is a place which promises fun and excitement in every park you visit. There really is something for everyone, with plenty of rides for thrill seekers to enjoy and lots of beautiful sites to be seen such as the parades and the night shows. But one thing that really completes the whole Disney experience are the character meet and greets. There are so many different characters to meet around the parks and no matter what age you are, interacting with your favourite characters is a really fun experience, which to us is a must if you’re planning on visiting any Disney park around the world!
Our recent trip to Disney World was our first time in any Disney park, so meeting our favourite characters was high up on the agenda for us! We aimed to meet as many characters as possible and we’ve ended up with a huge collection of autographs in our autograph books as a result. Although we met lots of characters, there are a few who were really fun and memorable. These guys really stood out to us and gave us an experience we will never forget and we think everybody should meet them too, so we’ve compiled a list of a few of the best characters you need to meet in Disney World and where to find them!
He’s a great character to meet, although it’s not exactly the best location for lighting!
Rafiki – Animal Kingdom
The Lion King has always been one of our favourite films, so meeting any character from it would have been an absolute dream. Rafiki is located in Animal Kingdom. It’s super cool because you have to get on a train to Rafiki’s Planet Watch to see him and Doc Mcstuffins (obviously we met her too, why wouldn’t we?!). Our meet with Rafiki was one of the best throughout the whole two weeks we had in Florida. Before we even realised that he was coming back out, Rafiki snuck up on Joe in an attempt to scare him which had us all laughing! He was fun and playful and even got Lauren to do some yoga! Since he is in his own little area we found it wasn’t very busy and it meant we got to spend a lot of time with him which we loved. He definitely is our number one character to meet!
Goofy – All Parks
If we’re being honest, we never even thought we’d care about meeting Goofy as he wasn’t really one of our favourites, but we’re so glad we did! Goofy is such a fun and lovable character and we met him 3 times in total. Every time we met him we had great interaction and he always had us giggling! Our favourite park to meet him in is Magic Kingdom inside Pete’s Silly Sideshow, which is located at the Storybook Circus in Fantasyland. Here you can meet him dressed as The Great Goofini! If you’re looking to meet someone who is energetic, makes your cheeks hurt from smiling and gives great hugs you definitely need to meet Goofy! We’ll also admit, he’s now one of our favourite Disney characters!
Joy & Sadness – Epcot
Inside Out is one of our favourite Disney Pixar films, so when we were planning our trip to Disney we knew that we had to meet Joy and Sadness. After queuing for around 40 minutes to see these two we can honestly tell you that they didn’t disappoint one bit! Joy was her usual happy and enthusiastic self, so much so that we didn’t even get into their area properly before she came galloping over to give us all a group hug (which you may have seen in our vlog!). She also made us all laugh by touching Lauren’s and our cousin Connor’s ginger hair and pretending that she’d burnt her finger! Sadness on the other hand, well she was a little… sad! It took a while for her to come out of her shell and join in, just as you would expect from her really. We got to spend just the right amount of time with these two, allowing us to interact with them and take a tonne of photos. Joy and Sadness were as great as we thought they would be so if you’re in Epcot make sure you head over to the Character Spot in Future World and you can even meet Baymax there too (he gives great hugs by the way!).
Ariel – Magic Kingdom
We managed to meet Ariel on our 1st day in Disney and we were so happy! We’d used all our fast passes for that day but managed to get a meet with Ariel on fast pass, which was great timing because it meant we could escape the rain which had started. We’d definitely recommended fast passing some characters when in Magic Kingdom as the wait really is minimal, otherwise you could find yourself queuing for while. Ariel’s location is beautiful, she has her own grotto in Fantasyland which is so nicely decorated and she even sits in a clam shell! We found Ariel to be super talkative and because she had her own grotto, we felt we actually got more time with her compared to other meet and greets where the location is shared or outside. She showered us with compliments and showed a real interest in us, it wasn’t awkward one bit and she loved both of our Disney inspired nail art! Obviously with the ‘face’ characters it depends on which one you see at the time, but the Ariel we met was so lovely and we even saw her in the Festival of Fantasy Parade!
Baloo & King Louie – Animal Kingdom
The Jungle Book is a classic film, so of course you have to meet Baloo and King Louie whilst you’re visiting Asia in Animal Kingdom! We really enjoyed this meet and greet and the characters were so fun to be around. For us personally, we found it more enjoyable meeting the ‘fur’ characters as you don’t have to make awkward conversation like we found with the ‘face’ characters (we found some to be very awkward, while conversation with characters like Ariel just flowed!). Baloo and King Louie gave us amazing hugs and King Louie spent ages with our cousin Connor, making out how they must be related because they have the same hair colour!
So there are the 5 meet and greets that stood out to us the most! We think this really shows how sometimes even the characters who aren’t your absolute favourites can be the most fun to meet. Of course we couldn’t leave our favourite princesses out of this post though! We wouldn’t say they’re an absolute must meet for everybody but you can’t go to Disney and not meet your favourite character, can you?! We really enjoyed meeting these two and they were so pretty and kind! Can we both be princesses too please?!
Who are your favourite characters to meet at Disney? We’re hoping to go to Disneyland Paris in the next few years so let us know if there’s a character there that we can’t miss! We’re hoping to have part 2 of our Disney World vlog up very soon so keep looking out for that. We know it’s late but Rachel edits our videos and she’s been super busy with uni work getting in the way!