One of J’s favourite aspects of our holiday to Florida was our Disney World character meet and greets. Before we booked our Disney holiday, J didn’t really know any Disney characters, except maybe for Lightning McQueen and Olaf. I recorded lots of Mickey’s Clubhouse episodes and played them in the build up to our holiday. By the time we left, J couldn’t wait to meet Mickey and friends. Even then though, I was uncertain as to how our three year old would respond to a giant mouse in clothing stood in front of him. I had nothing to worry about. The very first thing we did on our first day was visit Mickey at Magic Kingdom and Disney World character meet and greets became the main focus of our park visits after that because J loved meeting his favourite characters.
Below are J’s top 10 Disney World character meet and greets. It will be of no surprise reading the above that the majority of J’s top 10 choices involve characters from Mickey’s Clubhouse. There is not a princess in sight for J as he simply doesn’t know who they are. He did love seeing them in the Magic Kingdom parade though, especially the Little Mermaid. The list is in the order that we met the characters, rather than J’s preference.
Daisy Duck at Epcot was, in my opinion, the kindest of all the characters that J met and she was definitely the best at meeting younger children. When Daisy saw a rather nervous J (we were only on day 2 of our holiday and he was still unsure at this point) she knelt down and put her hand out towards him in a very friendly greeting. He relaxed and held out his Daisy race car to show her very proudly. She was all excited and J was very chuffed. He loved having photos taken with her and was very happy when we left, waving enthusiastically to her as we wondered off.
Mickey’s loyal companion was a major hit and this was J’s absolute favourite Disney World character meet and greet. We had seen Pluto on the Disney streets at Magic Kingdom the day before, but J hadn’t been fussed about meeting him. However, when I was a child I met Pluto at Epcot and was very excited as he has always been my favourite of the main Disney characters, so when we returned to Epcot and saw Pluto I was determined to have another photo with him. Thankfully a short queue meant that J didn’t argue and as we got closer to the front J became increasingly fascinated with Pluto. The pup was spending far longer with each family than most of the other characters did and he was doing lots of silly things to make the children laugh. When it was J’s turn to meet Pluto he was very excited and within seconds he was giggling as Pluto wiggled around and pretended to hide behind his ear. J still hasn’t stopped talking about Pluto and how funny he was. What a hit!
We were keen as a family to meet Mexican Donald as hubby is a big Donald fan and Donald looks great in his sombrero and poncho. We met a few Donalds at Disney World in fact, but Mexican Donald was definitely the best. He was relaxed, funny, friendly and spent the most time with each family. J loved his outfit, which was so colourful, but mostly he loved that Donald was silly and made him laugh.
We meet Goofy a couple of times, but it was after this visit with Goofy in Dinoland USA that J talked non stop about Goofy for the rest of the evening and declared Goofy his new favourite character. Sadly for Goofy this only lasted until J returned to the hotel to see Mickey sat on his bed, but clearly Dino Goofy had made an impression on J.
When I found out that Mickey was in his sorcerer outfit at Hollywood Studios I knew I had to meet him. Mickey is J’s favourite character, so I knew he would be a hit anyway, but this Mickey was the best out of the bunch with little ones. Like Daisy Duck, this Mickey bent down to greet J and gave him a huge hug. He was very friendly and made J feel very relaxed despite being slightly nervous about Mickey’s hat. When we left, J was very excited and insisted we went on a Disney World character meet and greet splurge, visiting every character we could find. Definitely a favourite Mickey meeting.
J met Minnie a few times across our holiday, but she was often the character who rushed us the most and we didn’t feel like we had properly enjoyed a Minnie meet and greet. However, Minnie Mouse at Hollywood Studios couldn’t have been more different. She had so much time for J and made him laugh a few times; he was pretty smitten with her when we left. On top of this she was absolutely fabulously dressed – yes I was jealous of a Mouse’s style!
On the back of our successful visit to Mickey Mouse we headed straight to meet Olaf. This was the first Disney character that J had watched in a short film and he loves the friendly snowman. I could hardly believe it when J strode forth to meet Olaf with great confidence and shook his hand. The photos are fabulous and Olaf was always going to make the top 10 Disney World character meet and greets for J.
Chip and Dale
These cheeky chipmunks have appeared on our TV a few times with Mickey and friends and when J saw them he was keen to go and say hello. They, like Pluto, were fabulous at entertaining the children and had J laughing at their silly actions and surprisingly good dance moves. One of the duo, I can’t now remember which, was fabulous when meeting J and spent lots of time making him laugh and dancing with him. The second chipmunk was a little standoffish but they were still a great hit with J.
For a Star Wars fan meeting BB8 is a must do Disney World character meet and greet. J is most definitely NOT a Star Wars fan. However, there is something irresistible about this friendly little droid and in the second week of our Disney holiday, J asked several times to go and meet BB8, so we obliged and J was very happy.
Our first meeting with Mickey Mouse at Magic Kingdom would probably still make it onto J’s top 10 list because although he was busy crying after the staff member upset him, he was still over the moon to have met Mickey and after we left the meet and greet he jumped all around the shop in excitement with a huge smile on his face. However, it wouldn’t have made mine as I was pretty disappointed that the shine and enthusiasm had been wiped off J’s face. We decided to go back at the end of our holiday for a second meeting with this Mickey so that our memories could be happy ones instead.
Magic Kingdom Mickey has to be the ultimate Disney World character meet and greet as this Mickey Mouse talks to you. J was completely captivated and loved that Mickey was talking to him. We had some lovely photos taken and we weren’t rushed at all. This really made up for the first visit and J left with a huge smile on his face happily waving goodbye to Mickey.
Meeting the characters was J’s favourite part of our holiday and it is what he talks about most now that we are home. I think they are also what I will remember the most from our holiday as they provided me with so many heart flutter moments as I watched my little boy light up with excitement. They were definitely unmissable moments for me.
If you would like to know more about our trip or any of the parks please pop over to read our blog posts about each park.
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