The title alone to this article made me happy all on its own. If I could make a career of shopping for people on Disney trips…I totally would. I love to shop all things Disney and I would like to share some of our favorite places to shop with you. Some of these places are in the parks and others are Disney resorts or in Downtown Disney. Read, plan and save some money to SHOP!
#7 The Contemporary Resort Stores – The Contemporary has two great stores that we love to stop in while dining at Chef Mickey’s. They are usually not very crowded and always have a great selection of different things. We have found some great pillows and dishes there along with some very cute bags and jewelry. They usually have a huge selection of pins you can trade as well as a nice selection of ones to buy. One of the great things about shopping here (as with any Disney shop), is that if you stay at a Disney resort, they will hold it and deliver it to your hotel later.
#6 Island Merchantile and Disney Outfitters – These two stores in Animal Kingdom are always on the must visit for our family. Both of these stores will carry items you can only find in Animal Kingdom and that’s what we love. You can find many different kinds of apparel with a certain “jungle” theme also. If you like to buy unusual souvenirs, you can find wind chimes, art work and figurines. Don’t forget to pick up a pair of tiger or giraffe themed Mickey ears too.
#5 World Showcase Stores – If you are in Epcot traveling through the countries, make sure to stop in at the stores that are unique to their country. We love to stop by the Crown and Crest in England. Here you can find your favorite soccer team jersey, beer stein or family crest. If you love reading, make sure to stop by the Puffin’s Roost in Norway for a selection of books from Hans Christian Anderson, books about trolls and some great cook books. The list of special things that can be found in the World Showcase can go on and on because each store is so genuine to the country it belongs in. They are worth a stop while visiting EPCOT.
#4 Days of Christmas – Downtown Disney – A fun tradition we have is to buy an ornament for every trip to Disney. The great thing about this tradition is we don’t have to visit in the winter to be able to snag a great ornament. This store is Christmas all year long. They have ornaments for other holidays also. You can find many collectibles like Disney trains and villages. If you need holiday table toppers or stockings, this is the stop for you. Again, these purchases can be wrapped up and sent to your Disney hotel and you won’t have to worry about breaking them. They packaged ours so well, they made it through luggage carousels without a scratch.
#3 Main Street Emporium – Magic Kingdom – No article about shopping at Disney would be complete without a mention of the Emporium. The Emporium is both a blessing and a curse. What I love about it is the location and cuteness of the store. I love that it is so big and you can easily shop from one department to another by just walking thru an open archway. I love the selection of almost everything you could need from the simple t-shirt and stuffed animal to the Dooney and Burke and Vera Bradley bags. You can even grab a treat to eat and enjoy while finishing up your shopping. What I hate about this store is that it is usually so crowded, you almost have to plan this shopping stop like any other attraction at Disney. Some of the best times to shop here are at the end of the day as people are making their way out of the parks and during parades, when people are holding a space on the sidewalk and can’t be bothered to shop.
#2 World of Disney – Downtown Disney – This one-stop shopping mecca is in Downtown Disney and you can’t miss it. We love walking by it just for the window displays and entertaining doorways. This is a huge store that has a million options. You can find housewares, pajamas, toys, movies and even backpacks and snacks. If you decide to stop here, make sure to plan at least an hour to make your way around the entire store. It is divided into sections and it does make getting around easier. We like to go on the last day of our vacation to buy that one thing we each can’t live without. However, you won’t find any park specific items here, so make sure to grab those at the parks. There is also a great selection of cast members and pin boards for any pin traders in your party.
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#1 Mouse Gear – Epcot – I figured I would save one of the largest and best for last. This giant store is located in Future World in Epcot and it is home to any and everything you could need. As the saying goes, “if you can’t find it here, you don’t need it”. There is a huge selection of t-shirts both new and vintage. They have several collectibles like the popular vinylmations. There is an assortment of hats, bags, posters, pins and lanyards. You may find that you spend your whole shopping budget here, so make sure to walk around the whole store first before committing or you may find yourself in line more than once and I speak from experience on this.
So if you weren’t excited already, it’s time to map out your shopping stops also. There is so many more than are on this list and just like your time in Disney, your shopping trips will also go by way to fast. Take the time to stroll through one of these or any other store if something catches your eye, you will be sad to leave there without that one or two perfect Disney souvenir.