Walt Disney World Resort in Florida is a shoppers paradise. You can’t turn a corner in any of the theme parks without seeing some form of merchandise shop, be it for snacks or souvenirs. While some people find this in-your-face approach to marketing Disney World memorabilia annoying, I personally love the amount of shops dotted around the parks. Theres nothing better than taking a leisurely stroll through them, discovering something that may not be sold elsewhere, or simply just enjoying the A/C on a hot day. Here are my 5 favourite Walt Disney World Shops; place where I could spend hours enjoying
Goofy’s Candy Company
Located at Downtown Disney (Springs), Goofy’s Candy Company is a kids paradise, selling all Disney World sweet merchandise. The jellybean wall is a fantastic, with guests being able to fill a bag of their own personal favourite flavours, with offerings like Popcorn, Key Lime Pie and Pina Colada. However, I love spending time in this shop watching the ‘make your own’ bar; you choose your ‘sweet’ (Krispy, fruit, apple..), covering (toffee, chocolate….) and topping (marshmallow, sprinkles…) It’s a lot of fun watching all these delicious treats getting created.
The largest gift shop in Epcot, Mouse Gear is located on the left hand side as you walk from park entrance through Future World. There’s always a large stock of items here, and I generally find it has the best range of women’s apparel (World of Disney excluded of course!) Theres also a great section of books and CDs, something not seen in every shop across Walt Disney World. In particular, I love a walk through this shop in the evening, after the Fireworks as park is closing. It’s generally busy and I don’t tend to buy at this time, but the atmosphere is great (particularly if its an Extra Magic Hours evening). Plus, on a cold evening its a nice respite in the heat!
Mitsukoshi Department Store
This large shop in the Japan section of World Showcase is certainly worth at least one explore during your holiday.This shop is always a must for me, and partly because I love Japanese culture. From the pick your own pearl station to the kimono area, there are tons of hidden treats inside this store; I particularly love the area at the very back housing the tea and dinner sets – and all the imported Japanese foodstuffs! Mitsukoshi Department Store is nearly always busy, so I recommend hitting here early in the day to give the the best chance of seeing around it properly – particularly if you are interested in picking your own pearl.
My particular favourite shop, Mickey’s Pantry at Downtown Disney (Springs) sells mouse-shaped kitchen ware. I love to cook and bake almost as much as I love Disney, so combing the two and then creating a shop full of these items is just perfect for me! The picnic ware in particular is a regular purchase on my souvenir list, particularly as they frequently change the design and I just must have the new items. I also love the measuring cups and spoons sets; these are also a handy purchase if you have bought any Walt Disney World cookbooks, as all measurements tend to be in cups, which is a little different from the units we’re used to in our cookbooks from home.
Ye Olde Christmas Shoppe
Last, but certainly not least, is the most festive shop in Magic Kingdom. Filled with christmas baubles and decorations all year round, it is the perfect place to pick up a set of Mickey Mouse baubles to take home for your tree! The Disney-Themed stockings are all stunning too – and my boys love their themed stocking we bring out each year. In this shop you can also personalise christmas baubles with names etc… which are the perfect gift to bring home for family and friends. On the trips we’ve done in the Autumn, I always pick up a few decorations to give to people are christmas gifts as well – such a unique and different present.
With hundreds of shops dotted around the Resorts and Theme Parks, each offering something different, you are sure to find your own favourites – or simply fall in love with them all!