Harambe Market Review at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Harambe Market is located in the Africa section.
See this page for all of the Disney’s Animal Kingdom quick service reviews.
Location: Behind Mombasa Marketplace and Tamu Tamu Refreshments in Africa. You’ll see it down to the right of the walkway to the Wildlife Express Train to Rafiki’s Planet Watch.
If you’re walking from Asia, take a right before you arrive at Tamu Tamu Refreshments in Africa. Harambe Market is relatively new construction, so it may not have been there during your last visit.
Food Type: African-inspired gyros, bowls, and drinks.
Dining Plan: Yes, quick service.
There are four separate ordering windows that make up Harambe Market. Initially, each offered its own menu, much like a “real” market. Logistically, that worked out very poorly, with some windows proving more popular with guests. Cast members working at other windows also typically worked slower due to the difficulty in preparing the dishes. Imagine if half of your group had their food in five minutes, while the other half was still waiting for their food after twenty minutes.
Eventually, Disney condensed the menu to just one offering. Depending on the time of your visit, don’t be surprised if only two windows are staffed. The drink window on the far left doubles as mobile order. The far right window is only open when it’s incredibly busy. Mobile order is your quickest and easiest bet here.
Even back when each window supposedly served its own dishes, several windows actually shared menus. We won’t focus too much on the past.
Unique Items: Almost everything, from the South African wines and sodas to the entrees and dessert.
- Some of the most unique, high quality food and drink you’ll find at any Disney theme park, consistently executed.
- Great wine lineup. Strawberry Sparletta and Bibo soda from South Africa are available for the same price as other fountain drinks. Watermelon Lemonade is refreshing and reasonably priced.
- Fun, colorful seating area with the Wildlife Express train periodically passing b. The details and thematic elements are second to none.
- Seating and ordering areas are all outdoors and sometimes uncovered, which can be uncomfortable in the heat and rain. Seating is also at a minimum during the day. Consider walking your food over to the semi-hidden seating behind Tamu Tamu Refreshments.
- Not everyone in the group may see something they like.
- It usually only operates from 11am to 4pm, even on busier days. Double check the Times Guide if you’re planning on having dinner here.
Value: Very good. Quality is high and portions are reasonably large.
Reputation: Harambe Market opened in 2015 to mixed reviews. Many of the negative reactions seemed to stem from the fact that it operated like a slower, more-confusing Cosmic Ray’s, back when each of its three Bays served different menus. Disney has also changed the menu several times since Harambe Market opened. That probably points to the fact that it initially missed a mainstream audience. We think what’s currently offered works well, and the Bowls have been around for a while.
Harambe Market Menu:
Six main entrees now comprise the menu:
Three of those are bowls, two are gyros, and one is basically a gyro. You can pull up the current version of the menu on DisneyWorld.com here.
Harambe Market Entrees
$14.29 Ribs Bowl – Bowl of Ribs , Cilantro Rice, and Greens Salad Base topped with Salsa.
This certainly looks good, but the ribs were impressively bland and almost entirely devoid of flavor, while still somehow being both fatty and tough. There’s barbecue sauce packets that help a little with the dryness of the meat, but that seems to defeat the purpose of serving the ribs over rice. On the other hand, it seems a little odd to serve bone-in ribs as part of a rice bowl. You basically have to eat the parts separately unless you’re going to try to use a plastic fork and knife to pry the meat off the bone. It’s probably not worth the effort.
Flame Tree’s Ribs will set you back a couple more dollars, but the quality is significantly better over there.
$11.79 Chicken Bowl – Bowl of Grilled Chicken, Cilantro Rice, and Greens Salad Base topped with Salsa
This version was better, in addition to coming in at less money, which you can put towards those price increases. The portion of chicken is hearty, nicely blackened, and seasoned appropriately. The Cilantro Rice underneath is only okay in my estimation. It was too easy on the lime juice and cilantro to be much different than your standard white rice. Those who don’t like cilantro might be pleased; but I also feel like someone who doesn’t like cilantro isn’t going to be ordering cilantro rice on the off-chance that it’s bland and boring enough to be inoffensive.
The “Greens Salad Base” also seems a little out of place with its fruity, tangy salad dressing smooshed to the side of the bowl furthest from the chicken. You’ve then got a chunky salsa that’s probably a little too off-puttingly brown separating the chicken and salad. Combine the ingredients and you basically just have a salad with rice kind of hanging out to the side. Anyway, this does the trick for the most part, and would be a welcome addition to a Hollywood Studios quick service, but it probably doesn’t do enough to demand seeking out.
The $10 Roasted Vegetable Bowl – Bowl of Roasted Vegetables, Cilantro Rice and Greens Salad Base topped with Salsa
Somewhat surprisingly, this was the best-tasting of the bunch. It’s a mixture of Roasted Cauliflower, Sweet Potato, Chickpeas, Zucchini, and Onion topped with a creamy, refreshing, unadvertised Yogurt Raita. The vegetables arrived piping hot with a nice toasted quality to them. There was plenty of rice underneath to add some heft to each bite. There’s also a nice mixture of vegetables. You’ve got sweet potato adding a nice sugary quality and the yogurt sauce cooling everything down appropriately, leaving a refreshing, lingering flavor of cucumber, cilantro, and cumin. It’s one of the more filling vegetarian entrees available for the money, and a nice take on what was already a very good vegetarian entree.
$12 Chicken Gyro served with African Slaw
It consists of grilled, chopped chicken on top of a fresh piece of pillow-y naan that’s topped with a lot of shredded lettuce and tzatziki sauce and very little cucumber and tomato.
It ended up being a little unwieldy to pick up with the giant mound of lettuce on top. Even after I pushed two-thirds of it to the side about half way through the meal, I still felt like I was drowning in leaf vegetable. On the plus side, and it may just be luck (or lack thereof), the chicken here was more flavorful than what we received in the bowl. The tzatziki did a nice job of adding a cool vibe to each bite, while also helping reduce any dryness in the chicken. I’d still put it down as “good, not great.” That puts it behind better options at Flame Tree and Satu’li.
The African Coleslaw is just a little cup of shredded cabbage and carrot tossed in a tangy, mildly spicy sauce with a pungent, lingering spice. Whether or you love it or hate it is potentially of little consequence as there’s only a couple of bites available.
$11.29 Beef and Lamb Gyro – Thin-sliced Gyro Meats served open-faced on Naan topped with Cucumber and Tomato Salad and Tzatziki Sauce and served with African Coleslaw
The Beef Kabob Flatbread comes in two pieces. Each of the two slices is filled with mildly spiced beef. That’s mixed with tomato, cucumber, and lettuce with a yogurt-y sauce inside of the soft pita-like flatbread.
The beef was a lot tenderer and more flavorful than it probably looks like in this lousy picture. Overall, it was one of the better executed quick service dishes that I’ve enjoyed in recent memory. And with two pieces, it makes for a surprisingly filling meal. It would be easy to share if you wanted to go that route.
I am not really a tomato person, which is what my portion of the side salad consisted almost entirely of, in addition to a few slices of red onion and a single broccoli floret. A chef tosses the vegetables in a vinaigrette, which adds some acidity, and livens up the flavors a bit. Disney cast members make everything else to order. I’m just not sure this is the way I would have gone with it – the red onion flavor is going to linger if you go to town on the salad before eating the flatbread and I’m not sure how many people enjoy popping a dozen grape tomatoes into their mouths. But it’s what you may get.
$10.29 Pork Sausage
On the other hand, the sausage here “appears” to be a little out there from the look of it, but tastes surprisingly like a Ball Park Hot Dog. The naan only sort of works as a bun – my sausage went slip slidin’ around town as I tried to angle it up towards my mouth, but you may find yourself with more control over the situation.
The curried onion relish didn’t carry as much flavor as I would have liked either, and the slices were a little slimier and more slippery than I would have liked, which complicated things even further. When folded, the naan also has a tendency to tear a little bit. Overall, I’m not sure who is supposed to find this most appealing. The Casey’s Corner crowd probably isn’t going to be into the thought of curried onion relish and those looking for some intriguing flavors aren’t going to find them with such a common hot dog flavor. But ten bucks is on the inexpensive side of things, at least, and it is filling.
Overall, I’d rank everything here as above-average for Animal Kingdom, and well above-average for Walt Disney World quick service as a whole.
Harambe Market Desserts
Harambe Market officially carries four desserts, but only only one is typically available from the ordering windows.
The name of the dessert comes from a piece of art at Harambe Market, where it says “You Are Most Beautiful.”
The cake is pretty with the vine and flower motif from the mural topping the light and airy cake with a vanilla-forward icing with a nice burst of coconut. The pineapple center is sweet and fruity and does a nice job of bringing a tropical vibe to the dessert with the coconut crisps adding a little bit of a crunch and more of a roasted coconut flavor.
$5 Shave Ice
I wouldn’t recommend the Shave Ice, which you’ll usually need to pick up from a separate, roving vendor that’s either outside of the Marketplace itself or at Harambe Fruit Market. Sometimes, it’s not there at all.
It’s crushed ice. And very gritty, hard ice at that. It probably goes without saying that ice is cold, but about half of your “shaved ice” is going to melt away instantly, while an incredibly dense, impenetrable, rock hard glacier swims around the impossibly sweet, viscous syrup for the remainder of the day.
Things have not gotten any better, to the point where this approaches the worst way you could probably spend five dollars in the Park. It’s a shame because Disney could very easily invest in the proper equipment to serve legitimate snowy shave ice. The Snowie Cube Pro, a great machine, is “only” three thousand dollars. We threw at least half of this away after sitting there with it for at least 20 minutes. It’s probably sitting in some landfill somewhere, still frozen solid.
Only about half of these may be available depending on the time of your visit. Many are served at the far left window, which is typically open during peak lunchtime, from 11am through about 2pm.
Watermelon Lemonade Featuring Odwalla:
The Watermelon Lemonade is cold, sweet, and refreshing. I appreciated it lacking the carbonation of the soft drinks that will just end up dehydrating you more. This and a complimentary cup of water would be my drink choices here.
$11 Serengeti Sangria with Van der Hum Tangerine Liqueur
The Tangerine Liqueur lends a slight citrus flavor to your typical Beso del Sol Sangria. I wouldn’t go out of my way to order it, but if you’re adding a drink to a Dining Plan Meal, and nothing else jumps out, then you might grab one. It is refreshing without being too weighty in the tum-tum.
The Shave Ice options don’t get much easier to consume when a cast member pours an ounce of vodka over the top. I’d skip the boozy sno-cones in favor of something else here or at nearby Dawa Bar.
While outside, a variety of roofs and umbrellas cover most areas. It’s still less comfortable than Restaurantosaurus or Pizzafari, but it may be worth making do for the more unique food.
Umbrellas partially cover the ordering area and there are a couple fans, but this isn’t the place you want to be when it rains. There’s also conspicuously little seating available. You may find yourself walking your meal over to the seating area behind Tamu Tamu Refreshments or all the way over to the waiting area for Tusker House next to Dawa Bar, anyway.