Dining with Princesses at Epcot: Akershus Royal Banquet Hall at Walt Disney World

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If you're looking for storybook, princess dining at Walt Disney World, Akershus Royal Banquet Hall might be for you
Photo: Deposit Photos

Calling all princess lovers. Disney character dining is a great way to have some extended time to meet with some of your favorite Disney characters, as well as get a great meal. Akershus Royal Banquet Hall, located in the Norway Pavilion at Epcot, is a great place for a character meal  at Walt Disney World. If you’re interested dining with princesses on your next visit, here is the scoop!

Everyone will love the character dining at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall in the Norway Pavilion. Photo: Kathy Penney

There’s just something magical about meeting those Disney princesses, isn’t there? Character dining is a big part of the way my family experiences Walt Disney World. Like most things at Disney World, character dining requires some research and planning. If you have your eye on Akershus Royal Banquet Hall, this is for you.

Akershus Royal Banquet Hall, Disney Princess Dining at Epcot

We like to do at least one special character dining experience every time we visit Walt Disney World. Yes, it’s a splurge, but I think is worth budgeting for. Part of the magic and wonder of Disney for kids is meeting the characters…okay, it’s part of the magic and wonder for me, too. Lines to meet your favorite characters are usually long in the parks. You’re often standing in the hot sun (and it is nearly always hot in Central Florida) just to get a couple of minutes and a quick photo. While you can use one of your three FastPass+ choices for certain character meets, we like to save those for the newest or most popular rides. Our big three choices at Epcot are Test Track, Soarin’ Around the World, and of course, Frozen Ever After.

If your kids are like my kids, they love the movie Frozen. And it’s not just little girls that love this movie. My two boys have been belting out the tunes and giving Anna and Elsa a run for their kroner since they were three-years-old. But don’t tell them I said so.

Wondering where to stay at Walt Disney World? Check out our tips for staying off property at Disney

Where is Akershus Royal Banquet Hall?

In Epcot! Akershus is located right outside of the Frozen Ever After attraction and near the Stave Church Gallery, where you can learn about how the filmmakers of Frozen were inspired by the culture and beauty of Norway. But, back to the grub because that’s why you’re here, right?

This is everything you need to know about Disney Storybook Princess Dining at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall at EPCOT, located in the Norway Pavilion.
The exterior of Akershus Royal Banquet Hall. Photo credit: Jill Robbins

How to Get and Manage Reservations…

…and yes, you need them, not just for Akershus Royal Banquet Hall but for any Disney Character Dining, inside or outside the parks. If you’re staying at a Walt Disney World Resort Hotel, you can book your dining up to 180 days in advance of your visit. I know you might not be thinking about where you’re going to eat at Disney World six months from now, but trust me: you need to plan ahead for this or you’re unlikely to get the dining reservation you want.

If you can’t get the dining reservation you want at the time you want, keep checking the app…and yes, you need the app for lots of reasons. If you like to really push the envelope, you can check right up until the time you want to eat. While I always advise planning as far in advance as you can, you can often get lucky because other guests will cancel. If all else fails, you can walk up and ask if there is space available. We actually did this the first time we ate at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall and we were walked right in. Not only that, but the place was only half full…so sometimes the app isn’t 100 percent accurate. Just be prepared for a polite “no,” so if your little ones are going to be crushed to be turned away,  the walk-in route might not work so well for you.

But Whatever You Do…

…make sure you are not late. If you are lucky enough to get a reservation, arrive on time. Better yet, arrive 15 minutes early, just to be on the safe side. Disney can charge you for your meal if you don’t show, so make sure you’re really fitting your dining into your plans at Disney that day. If you’ve got FastPasses scheduled, you probably need to coordinate those with your dining reservations. 

If you are really lucky, you might see Mulan at Disney Storybook Princess Dining at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall at EPCOT
Mulan is not a regular but she has been known to appear. Photo credit: Kathy Penney

Which Disney Characters Will You Meet?

When you begin your dining experience, you’ll  be directed to a special meet and greet area set up for pictures with a princess. You won’t be able to see WHO until you step behind the wall. It was Belle on both of our visits and other guests have reported this as well, so I feel safe in saying it’s always Belle. My kids asked her, “Where’s the Beast?” and she was very quick on her feet in answering that he was over at his castle in the Magic Kingdom. You should not expect to see Beast at Akershus, although you really never know. Disney has a way of surprising us.

The rest of the princesses – Princess Aurora, Cinderella, Snow White, Ariel, and Jasmine – made their way around each table to take pictures and sign autographs. All the princesses were amazingly in character and, since the restaurant wasn’t too busy, they spent a great amount of time chatting with my kids. It was super cute. There was also a Princess Processional around the restaurant that the kids were encouraged to join in on. That was a nice touch and the kids were loving it. Not gonna lie…I wanted to join in the Princess Processional, too.

Which Disney Characters Will You NOT Meet?

Anna and Elsa. If you want to meet these famous sisters in person, they have a separate area for character meet and greets in the Norway Pavilion. And it’s popular, so expect a wait. As far as what Disney characters are there, it has historically been pretty predictable.

The princesses listed above appear pretty consistently, although things do change. Mulan may sometimes appear but she has historically not been one of the regulars. If your child has her heart set on a particular character, you may want to prepare them for that character not being present.

No way to get around it: Character meals are expensive. Check out our tips on ways to save money at Disney

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What Kind of Food Will You Eat at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall?

Akershus Royal Banquet Hall offers breakfast, lunch and dinner, depending on what time you visit. This dining venue is a combination of buffet and table service. The appetizer buffet features Scandinavian seafood, imported cheeses and cured and sliced meats, salads, and fresh fruit. Your lunch and dinner buffet offerings will look different than your breakfast offerings.

at Disney Storybook Princess Dining at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall at EPCOT part of the meal is served buffet style and part of it is served at the table
You’ll find a variety of salads on the buffet during lunch and dinner. Photo credit: Jill Robbins

The lunch and dinner buffet offers various salads and breads, while the breakfast buffet features fruit and yogurt. You’ll find traditional Scandinavian hot entrees in your main course, such as Norwegian meatballs, mashed potatoes and Lingonberry sauce, plus a few more American choices like oven-roasted chicken or grilled pork chop with a Norwegian twist. I’ve heard the house-made butternut squash ravioli is a must-try. You will not go hungry at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall.

Swedish Meatballs with mashed potatoes and gravy are popular at Disney Storybook Princess Dining at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall at EPCOT
Swedish Meatballs and mash. Photo credit: Kathy Penney

If you eat at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall during breakfast, prepare for a hearty meal. Your main dish will be sausages, scrambled eggs, bacon and potato casserole served family style. You can get more detail on the current menu option here, as things are subject to change.

The breakfast platter at Disney Storybook Princess Dining at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall at EPCOT
Bacon, sausages,eggs, and potato casserole for the table to share. Nothing fancy but good. Photo credit: Jill Robbins

Our family doesn’t have to worry about any dietary restrictions but Disney is famously awesome when it comes to accommodating allergies and special diets. If this applies to you, please ask.

The dessert trio at Disney Storybook Princess Dining at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall at EPCOT
Who can resist desserts? Photo credit: Kathy Penney

Desserts are served family-style. Specialty drinks and cocktails are available for an additional charge.

What Does It Cost to Eat at Akershush Royal Banquet Hall?

You will probably be disappointed if you are looking for exceptional value. It is expensive to eat here. Adult meals will run at least $60. Some dining plans are accepted, so tell your server when you’re seating if you’ll be using the Disney Dining Plan. The atmosphere is fun, the character interactions cannot be beat and the food is good. In my opinion, it is not $60.00 good, but when you roll it in to one experience…well, that’s your call on whether it is worth the spend. When you factor in tax, gratuity, and any specialty drinks, you’re looking at well over $200 for a family of four.

Do I regret our experience at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall? Not one bit. It is a very memorable dining experience, as all Disney Character Dining is, and if your kiddos crave that extended interaction with the princesses, then this might be a great splurge for you. We had  fun and made great family memories, which is what’s really important. 

If you’re looking for quick service dining options versus a table service meal, check out this resource.

Bottom line: Go for the experience, to meet some princesses and to fill your bellies in a fun, festive atmosphere. To read more about my very favorite Disney Character Dining Experience, The Bon Voyage Adventure Breakfast at Trattoria al Forno, click here.

One response

  1. This looks great! I’m staring to plan my families trip and need some pointers! Are the princesses there Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner? and is the breakfast the same price as dinner? Thanks for your help!

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