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Opening Magic Kingdom

Opening Magic Kingdom

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Dining at Coral Reef in EPCOT



Most guests at EPCOT think of World Showcase when they consider the variety of dining opportunities that are available.  But even before World Showcase, there’s an excellent restaurant almost hidden from view in Future World, specifically in the Living Seas Pavilion and that is Coral Reef.

We dined at Coral Reef on our very first visit to Walt Disney World and have dined there repeatedly.  We had an ADR for Coral Reef during our trip in July.


The first goal is to find Coral Reef.  Getting to the Living Seas with Nemo and Friends is the easy part.  Just look for the pelicans!

Then, instead of going into the Pavilion using the Nemo and Friends entrance, turn right and go around the building.  You will see the sign and entrance for Coral Reef.

As soon as you see the doors, you will know you have entered a new world;  the world under the sea.

The check in counter is to the left.  Restrooms to the right.  Look up and see the shell inspired light fixtures.

When your party is called, you will be taken into the large dining room that is on levels—think stadium.  The lowest level is next to the aquarium and has aquarium side seating.  We’ve eaten next to the aquarium three times, including our most recent trip.

The levels go up to the back ensuring that each table and the guests at the tables have a great view of the “show” during their meal.  And, what a show it is!  Sea turtles, sharks, stingrays, etc.  Ask the server for a sheet that helps guests identify the variety of marine life that will be swimming by you as you dine.

The menu offers a variety of seafood, salad, and pasta selections.  The boy’s favorite is the lobster bisque.  He calls it lobster soup.  The bread that is brought to your table is also very good.  Coral Reef is a pricier restaurant and makes for a great bargain if you are using the Dining Plan—as it is only 1 table service credit.

And, even though Coral Reef is a more expensive restaurant, the atmosphere is still very casual and children are welcome.  As guests oh and ah about the marine life, it can be noisy.  Not boisterous, but noisy.

We enjoy dining at Coral Reef for lunch, as our EPCOT touring plan typically has us on that side of Future World at that time of day.  Coral Reef serves both lunch and dinner.

On a hot, sunny day, the cool, dim, undersea ambiance of Coral Reef can be a great respite from park touring.  We leave nourished and refreshed and ready to take on the rest of our day.

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