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A World of Characters A World of Characters
A World of Characters A World of Characters
A Photographic Tour of Pandora - The World of Avatar, at Disney's Animal Kingdom
DisneyDan  Tuesday, August 29, 2017 9:39:20 AM
Hello everyone,

Today I want to share with you a (rather large) selection of my photos from our recent adventures through Pandora - The World of Avatar, at Disney's Animal Kingdom at Walt Disney World.

I'll give a few thoughts along the way, but I thought that on this occasion I would let my photos do most of the talking, and let you form your own opinions about the new land.

Let's start with some of the initial sights you'll see when entering Pandora from its main entry point, over the bridge from Discovery Island.

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Walt Disney World Character Greetings - Adventurers Outpost
DisneyDan  Sunday, August 27, 2017 8:16:00 AM
Hello everyone,

Continuing our tour of the character greeting locations at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, today we are going to step inside the Adventurers Outpost on Discovery Island, at Disney's Animal Kingdom.

Let's start by taking a look around the outside of the building.

DDE May 2013 - Wandering around Discovery Island

Meeting Mickey and Minnie

Meeting Mickey and Minnie

Meeting Mickey and Minnie

Once inside you, before you reach Mickey and Minnie, you get to see some pictures and details of their adventures around the world.

Meeting Mickey and Minnie

Meeting Mickey and Minnie

Meeting Mickey and Minnie

Meeting Mickey and Minnie

Meeting Mickey and Minnie

Meeting Mickey and Minnie

Finally, you get to meet Mickey and Minnie themselves! They are dressed in their finest adventuring-wear, too!

Meeting Mickey and Minnie

Meeting Mickey and Minnie Mouse

At Christmas time you can even catch them sporting their cute Christmas sweaters, ready to ring in the holiday season.

Mickey and Minnie Mouse

Meeting Mickey and Minnie

Look out for more in-depth looks at Walt Disney World character greetings coming to the blog soon!

Have a great day everyone,

Dan.
Star Wars Dark Side Half Marathon Weekend, April 2017 - A Report
DisneyDan  Friday, May 19, 2017 2:31:39 PM
Hello everyone,

Last month (April 2017), Jon and I took part in our second runDisney weekend, the Star Wars Dark Side Half Marathon Weekend at Walt Disney World. Followers of my blog will know that in February we participated in our very first ever runDisney event at the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend. Well, here we were, two months later, ready to do it all over again for the Empire!

I won't repeat everything I said in my first Princess blog about our impressions of runDisney, training, organisation of the event, impressions, etc, as many of those aspects were very similar this time, but needless to say, we were exceptionally proud of ourselves for being able to achieve not just one half marathon weekend, but now two in the space of two months!

As per the usual setup with the runDisney events, we went along on the Thursday before the race weekend to collect our bibs and merchandise at the health expo, at ESPN. The setup was virtually identical to the Princess Half expo, down to the bib collection areas, the vendor booths and show area, and the official race store.

  [ Read More... ]
Walt Disney World December 2016 Trip Report, Part One - Animal Kingdom and the Resort Hotels
DisneyDan  Friday, February 17, 2017 4:08:15 PM
Hello everyone,

During the last week of December we visited Walt Disney World for Christmas and New Year. In this first part of my trip report I am going to share with you our adventures at Disney's Animal Kingdom and some of the resort hotels, including character dining and more.

Let's start with Animal Kingdom.

At the front of the park, the giant Christmas Tree was on display, looking exactly the same as it has for the past ten years! Despite its age, it is a nice tree.

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Walt Disney World July 2016 Trip Report
DisneyDan  Tuesday, November 29, 2016 10:47:42 AM
Hello everyone,

I realise that this is a little late, but better late than never, right?

Back in July we made one of our several trips for this year to the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. As always, we had an agenda for visiting at the time that we did, and filled our short trip with everything that was wondrous and new!

Let's start with our hotel, Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge Jambo House. We have previously stayed at Kidani Village several times, and of course have visited Jambo House (but up until this trip never stayed there), and while we have enjoyed our stays at Kidani Village, Jambo House is clearly the better of the two.   [ Read More... ]
Walt Disney World May 2016 Trip Report, Part One
DisneyDan  Monday, June 20, 2016 4:00:27 PM
Hello everyone,

At the end of May Jon and I spent a week at Walt Disney World. We hadn't been down there since February since we travelled to Australia in the spring instead. You can read my currently-ongoing Australia trip report here on my Two Lost Boys blog.

In this part of my report I will be sharing with you our adventures at the Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, the resort hotels we stayed at and visited, the Boardwalk, and Disney Springs.

Let's start with the Magic Kingdom.   [ Read More... ]
Walt Disney World Photo Trip Report, May 2015 - Part 2: Character Fun at the Parks
DisneyDan  Thursday, June 11, 2015 10:17:24 AM
Hello everyone,

This is the second part of my Walt Disney World trip report for May 2015. Part one covered the Four Season character breakfast, the 24 hour event at the Magic Kingdom and Star Wars Weekends. In this part we'll be covering everything else from around the parks.

This report is very photo-heavy, so be sure to have a good connection before continuing.

  [ Read More... ]
Throwback Thursday - Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade
DisneyDan  Thursday, April 30, 2015 9:42:21 AM
Hello everyone,

Last week's Throwback Thursday was for the Enchanted Adventures Parade at the Magic Kingdom, so this week I thought we would take a look at another sorely missed Walt Disney World parade, Mickey's Jammin' Jungle.

Running for nearly 13 years, and one of Disney's most creative and fun parades, the Jammin' Jungle Parade celebrated the culture and music of the indigenous people of the jungles and outback areas of the world, from Africa to Australia. The beat of the drums, and the lively songs all made the Jammin' Jungle Parade a treasure to enjoy - accompanied of course by all your favourite Disney friends in their finest adventure clothing.

Let's take a look at the regular version of the parade, then the Christmas version.

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Happy Earth Day!
DisneyDan  Wednesday, April 22, 2015 10:18:46 AM
Today is the 45th annual Earth Day across the world, a day which aims to highlight to environmental challenges we face, and what can be done to preserve this fragile little blue planet we call home.

From deep under the sea, to bugs under the ground, many Disney friends rely on the delicate balance of the ecosystem in which they live. Disney's official ambassador of the Environmentality program is Jiminy cricket, but I thought it would be fair to also showcase some of Disney's other characters who embrace the environment and the world around them, and further down this post, some of the beautiful animals found at the Disney parks.

WDW Dec 2010 - Meeting Jiminy Cricket

Tokyo Aug 2010 - Jubilation!

WDW Sept 2008 - TinkerBell Movie Passholder Preview

WDW Oct 2011 - Meeting Thumper and Miss Bunny

DLP June 2011 - Disney's Dine with the PIXAR Stars

WDW April 2011 - Finding Nemo - The Musical

DDE May 2013 - Star Wars Weekends

DDE May 2013 - Star Wars Weekends

DDE May 2013 - On the Wild Side Event

One Man's Dream II - The Magic Lives On

DDE May 2013 - On the Wild Side Event

DDE May 2013 - On the Wild Side Event

Disney's Animal Kingdom is home to many animals from around the world, and are part of Disney's own conservation program. The Seas at Epcot features some oceanic creatures that are under Disney's care. Let's take a look inside some of the habitats at Animal Kingdom and Epcot at some of the beautiful animals who live there.

WDW Feb 2012 - Maharajah Jungle Trek

WDW Feb 2012 - Maharajah Jungle Trek

WDW April 2011 - Maharajah Jungle Trek

WDW Spring 2013 - Kilimanjaro Safaris

Heading out

Kilimanjaro Safaris

WDW Feb 2012 - Maharajah Jungle Trek

WDW Feb 2012 - Maharajah Jungle Trek

WDW April 2011 - Maharajah Jungle Trek

Kilimanjaro Safaris

WDW Dec 2014 - Kilimanjaro Safaris

WDW Sept 2012 - Kilimanjaro Safaris

WDW Feb 2012 - Kilimanjaro Safaris

WDW Feb 2012 - Kilimanjaro Safaris

Heading out

WDW April 2011 - Pangani Forest Exploration Trail

WDW Sept 2012 - Pangani Forest Exploration Trail

WDW 2008 June

WDW 2008 June

Dan.
Your Frequently Asked Character Questions Answered! - Walt Disney World Edition
DisneyDan  Thursday, March 19, 2015 11:59:40 AM
Hello everyone,

Here at Character Central we always strive to have good, reliable and up-to-date information, which is why I don't tend to use the blog to make these kinds of posts usually. Character locations and information are usually updated via the individual location and character profile pages on this site, as it is easier to control. However, recently we have received a lot more requests for information about how to find characters at the Walt Disney World theme parks. The reason I don't like to make blog posts about this is because things can change frequently, and I don't want to mislead anyone, especially when our location and character pages are updated often.

With that said, and I realise that was quite a detailed reasoning, I thought that it wouldn't hurt to answer some of the questions we get asked. Please remember that these are the most frequently asked questions that we get for Walt Disney World only.

Where can I find Mickey Mouse?


Meeting Mickey Mouse

Mickey Mouse appears at set locations at all four of the Walt Disney World theme parks. His appearances are daily, and usually hold long hours (often, though not guaranteed, from around opening to just before closing. Check on the day of your visit). At the Magic Kingdom, you can meet magician Mickey near the park entrance, where talks and interacts with guests at Town Square Theater (on Main Street USA). At Epcot, he wears his classic outfit at the Epcot Character Spot in Future World. At Disney's Hollywood Studios, Mickey dons his Sorcerer's Apprentice robes to greet budding sorcerers. At Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park, Mickey wears his safari outfit at the Adventurer's Outpost on Discovery Island. The Magic Kingdom, Epcot and Animal Kingdom locations all offer Disney's Fastpass+ service, which allow you to make your greeting reservation in advance of your visit.

Who else appears besides Mickey Mouse? Can I meet the Disney Princesses, for example?


Ariel

Across all four Walt Disney World theme parks, you can nearly always meet Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Donald Duck, Chip, Dale and Pluto. All six of those have regular locations at all four parks, but times and availability may change depending on the day of your visit. The Disney Princesses appear at the Magic Kingdom at various locations, such as Princess Fairytale Hall, Ariel's Grotto, around the Fantasyland walls, the Fairytale Garden and, schedule depending, in the garden next to City Hall on Main Street USA. Princess Fairytale Hall is the current home of Cinderella, Rapunzel, Anna and Elsa, although of course Disney could change this at any time. Princess Fairytale Hall accepts Disney's FastPass+ reservations. You can either reserve Cinderella and Rapunzel OR Anna and Elsa. If you want to meet all four, you need to make separate reservations. Other characters, such as Peter Pan, Mary Poppins, Winnie the Pooh, and many more, all appear throughout the theme parks. You should check the schedules for the day of your visit (see further below for more information).

Do the Disney characters appear randomly at the Disney Parks?


Merida

Most of the character appearances at the Disney theme parks are on the published schedule, which can be picked up upon entering the theme parks. There are some that are not always listed though, depending on whether there are other events happening, and how much space is dedicated to the characters on that schedule. If a character does appear that is not on that day's schedule, chances are they nearly always out in the parks anyway. Infrequently, characters may appear at other locations around the parks, and these are not scheduled. For example, when we were a recent trip, Peter Pan, Merida and Ariel all appeared at the International Gateway at Epcot's World Showcase. These greetings are not scheduled, and are not repeated regularly.

Do the Disney characters walk freely around the Disney Parks?


WDW Dec 2010 - Meeting Tiana and Naveen

The short answer to this, really, is no. The Disney characters at the Walt Disney World theme parks nearly always have set locations that have a queue line in order to meet them, even the randomly appearing ones that I described above. Sometimes, however, you may be walking around and suddenly a character will appear, and they may not form a line. This is fairly unusual, but it can happen. Experiences like this can actually be fun, as sometimes the characters will take the opportunity to roam and explore the park. Like I said though, for Walt Disney World, this is pretty unusual.

Do the Disney characters visit the Disney Resort Hotels?


Meeting Mr Easter Bunny

The Disney characters do not regularly make appearances at the Disney Hotels. In the past, Easter Sunday has seen the Easter Bunnies and some other characters appear at the deluxe resorts (such as Mr Easter Bunny and Chip 'n' Dale at the Contemporary). Around the week of Halloween and the week of Christmas you may also find characters in themed outfits at any number of the resort hotels, deluxe or otherwise. None of these appearances are ever guaranteed and you should not expect to find them during your stay.

Do rare characters appear at the Disney theme parks?


Characters come out to play at the American Adventure!

This one is a tricky one to answer, but overall the answer is, "no, not nearly as often as we'd like!" Of course, the definition of "rare" can change considerably from one year to the next, but generally speaking, if a character has not appeared in over a year, and show no signs of returning, then they are pretty "rare". Characters at the Christmas and Halloween parties, although not appearing daily, aren't so much rare as they are seasonal or event specific. We would not consider Scrooge McDuck to be rare, since he appears almost nightly for two months at the Christmas parties, but he definitely is not a regular. Mr Walrus from Alice in Wonderland however, who hasn't appeared in around seven years, is considered rare.

Do you have any tips for a better experience when meeting the characters? Do the characters sign autographs, for example?


Character Autograph

This one is pretty open ended, but I would say that if you're going to meet a character, be sure to know who they are! Before your trip, if you think there is a chance you may meet one particular character, watch their movie before you visit. When you visit them, you can ask them about their adventures, their friends and families, etc. For example, if you are going to meet Aladdin, ask him how Abu is and if he has gotten into any more trouble lately. You could ask Mickey - when he's feeling talkative at the Magic Kingdom's Town Square Theater - to perhaps send a special message to your friends back home; be sure to have your camera recording, because you never know what he might say! Characters also love seeing themselves on clothing and accessories, bags, pins and lanyards, etc. Be sure to have your cameras ready to capture any cute moments, and buy an autograph book and a pen that works, so they characters can sign their names. Something which we have taken to doing recently, which both us and the characters really enjoy, is taking along our Disney Tsum Tsums to meet the characters. If we know we are going to meet a specific character on any given day, we try to take with us the Tsum Tsum of them, or someone related to them. They’ll often (though not always) pose with the Tsum Tsums, making for super-cute photos!

Do the characters appear in shows and parades?


Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade

The Disney characters appear in many shows and parades across the Walt Disney World theme parks. Currently, and always subject to change, the most popular ones include: Disney Fantasy of Festival Parade, the Main Street Electrical Parade, and Dream Along with Mickey at the Magic Kingdom, Festival of the Lion King and Finding Nemo - The Musical at Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park, and Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage, Voyage of the Little Mermaid and For the First Time in Forever - A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

Can I dine with the Disney characters?


Play N Dine at Hollywood and Vine

Yes! You most certainly can! Character dining is a fun way to meet the Disney characters while enjoying a great meal at one of Disney's fabulous themed restaurants. Currently, and again, always subject to change, the most popular ones include: Chef Mickey's at the Contemporary (Mickey and friends), Ohana at the Polynesian Village (Stitch, Mickey and friends), 1900 Park Fare at the Grand Floridian (time of day depending, Cinderella and friends or Pooh, Alice and friends), Cape May Cafe at the Beach Club Resort (Minnie and friends), Cinderella's Royal Table at the Magic Kingdom (princesses), Garden Grill (Mickey and friends) and Akershus Royal Banquet Hall (princesses) at Epcot, Hollywood and Vine at Disney's Hollywood Studios (Disney Jr) and Donald’s Dining Safari at Breakfast and Lunch (Donald and friends) at Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park. What's fun about these meals is that at many of them, the characters wear special themed outfits for the occasion, for example Hawaiian shirts at Ohana, chef outfits at Chef Mickey's and safari gear at the Tusker House. Reservations are essential, and should be made well in advance of your visit (nearly all Walt Disney World Resort dining locations open their availability 180 days in advance).

Where can I find more information?


WDW Oct 2011 - Spaceship Earth

Here are some of my suggestions for finding out more about how and where to meet the Disney characters. Words highlighted in blue take you to that specific link.

  • The official Walt Disney World Resort website has some limited character greeting information, however, I personally have found this to sometimes not have all the information I want.
  • Here at Character Central we have a vast guidebook for all the Disney parks, locations and characters. A good start for a good general overview would be what we call our "cheat sheet" for finding characters at the parks. On this cheat sheet we list the characters we have seen at Walt Disney World, rate the chances of you finding them, and the general location you might spot them.
  • I cannot endorse the accuracy of this next one, but it has not failed me yet, but take note I have no control over it. WDWEnt is a good source for all current Walt Disney World theme park schedules, and at the time of writing the person who runs it seems to update it frequently.

Those last two links are of course only my recommendations, and should be used as a guide for planning only. Anything can change at any time, without notice from Disney.

If you have any further questions, you can join our friendly forum, and us or our members will happily help you out!

Have a great day everyone,

Dan.
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