Wondering how Tusker House stacks up against the other Animal Kingdom Table Service Restaurants? Check out The Best Animal Kingdom Sit Down Restaurants for a comparison of the three Animal Kingdom restaurants in a variety of categories including Most Unique Menu, Best Value on the Disney Dining Plan, Best Value Out of Pocket, Best Atmosphere, Best Food, and Best Overall Restaurant.
Food Type: Buffet
Dining Plan: 1 Table Service
Breakfast: $19.99 for adults and $10.99 for children
Lunch: $19.99 for adults and $10.99 for children
Dinner: $26.99 for adults and $12.99 for children
Setting: Tusker House used to be a counter service, but has recently (2008) been converted to a buffet. Breakfast is a character meal with Donald, Daisy, Goofy, and Mickey dressed up for an African Safari. Be aware that Donald poses for pictures before you are seated and may not come to the table until the final breakfast guests have arrived, if at all. Only breakfast is a character meal, so no characters will be present at lunch or dinner. The restaurant is not housed in a particularly exciting building, but there are African artifacts and paintings on the walls.
Advantages: Food and service are excellent for a Disney buffet. Wide variety of food, including traditional favorites and African specialties. Characters at breakfast are fun and interaction shouldn’t be rushed. Juices are great. A few dollars cheaper than other buffets. If you have an early breakfast reservation (before 9am) you can enter the Park early and get some great pictures with no one else around.
Disadvantages: That professional picture taken with Donald costs $30, but you can take your own too. The restaurant is at the back of the Park, which can mean a long walk if you’re going straight there early in the morning. Not the most kid-friendly buffet as far as food is concerned, but there should be plenty to eat even for the most unadventurous.
Value: Above average. Tusker House is a little less expensive than many of the other buffets on property and the food and service are generally better. It’s similar in its offerings to the popular Boma buffet at the Animal Kingdom Lodge and more convenient for those who aren’t staying there.
Reputation: Tusker House isn’t particularly popular, probably because it’s still sort of new and the name doesn’t exactly scream excitement. Had they named this “Chef Mickey’s at Animal Kingdom,” it would probably be sold out just like Chef Mickey’s at the Contemporary Resort. You can take advantage of this though, because the food and service at Tusker are among the best of any buffet at Disney. It’s also a bit quieter and there’s more space at the buffet lines and around the tables than at some of the other buffets. Getting an 8AM reservation is fun because it will allow you to enter the park early and take some photographs without anyone else around. Be aware though that there is a path you must follow and you can’t just walk around the Park freely. Nonetheless, you’ll walk by some great spots including the Tree of Life and if you can finish up around 9AM you’re in a great location to get on the safari ride and then make your way to Expedition Everest. Overall, Tusker House is a great buffet at any time of day and you should be able to get a reservation without much trouble.
Overall Rank on The Best Animal Kingdom Sit Down Restaurants: 2nd out of 3