Monday, January 16, 2012

In Love With: Columbia Harbour House.

   Nestled right in the heart of Liberty Square is a wonderful counter service restaurant.  No, not Sleepy Hollow Refreshments....though the thought of a waffle sandwich makes me very excited.  No sir.  When I'm in the Magic Kingdom for lunch it's straight to Columbia Harbour House.
   CHH often gets a bad wrap.  Be it the bad fish smell often associated with the restaurant, the somewhat cramped interior, or the strange bottleneck created going into Fantasyland.  Poor Harbour House always takes the blame.  Well, I'm here to stick up for the little guy.  These are a few reasons why CHH is my favorite WDW counter service restaurant.

more after the jump...

   First and foremost, this place has phenomenal themeing.  Everywhere you look you can find wonderful artifacts relating to the sea, ships, and other nautical nonsense.     There is also a loose theme woven throughout related to whaling.  For what its worth, this is the only time that killing whales should be used as a decor theme. :/
   From the wonderful mermaid mastheads located above the counter, to the shadowboxes displaying various knots, this place is a virtual goldmine of extensive Disney themeing.  If a restaurant doesn't have great  themeing what is it good for?  oh...

Big reason why we visit the Harbour House. 
 One of my favorite paintings in the restaurant...or in the Magic Kingdom for that matter.
   A restaurant cannot survive on looks alone.  Luckily for us CHH has plenty of wonderful things to eat.  Both being vegetarians, Adam and I have no trouble at all here.  Though it's well known as a fish restaurant...evident by the smell, (think of the smell as more themeing.)  there are many other options.     
   We both LOVE LOVE LOVE the lighthouse sandwich!  This sandwich is a delightful concoction of hummus, broccoli slaw, and tomato on fantastically rough multigrain bread.  Though it usually comes with a side of Disney branded potato chips, you can indeed get a side of steamed fresh broccoli.  This option allows you to have a splendid, relatively guilt free lunch. (in the Magic Kingdom!!!!!!)  
   We often split the sandwich and a bowl of vegetarian chili.  The chili is filled with  the usual vegetables and beans....but someone had the inspired idea to add mushrooms, corn, and olives.  Brilliant. 

the magical lighthouse sandwich. 
   In addition to the great themeing and great food, the Columbia Harbour House also has a fantastic location.  Directly across from the Haunted Mansion, and bordering Fantasyland CHH has the ideal location for your fun to full ratio.  I suggest dodging in here just before your spin around the mansion, or visit It's A Small World and let the food settle in your stomach for a bit. 
   If you find yourself hungry in the Magic Kingdom  and you're tired of all the plastic cheese, bad hamburgers, and turkey legs (god forbid) you might want to try this place.  Though it's developed  a bad reputation over the years, I don't think it's deserved.   Bonus points if you get a seat upstairs overlooking Fantasyland...where you will undoubtedly have the most magical lunch ever.  


  1. Whenever I'm in MK for lunch with the usual Disney crew, we always end up here. Occasionally, we'll have less experienced friends with us who try to eat somewhere in Tomorrowland (or worse, as you mentioned, grab a turkey leg), but we can usually convince them that CHH is the way to go. Thanks for summing up the reasons why! I couldn't agree more!

  2. We used to go often, love the intimate 2nd floor seating. But since daughter #2 came around with shellfish allergy my wife is petrified of stepping foot in here now.

  3. A Lighthouse Sandwich and apple crisp is also a perfect meal to take away for parade-waiting. I can close my eyes and taste it now!

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  5. Glad to find other veg Disney lovers out there! And who also share my love for CHH! That chili saved my and my boyfriend's vegan lives this past September every time our bellies started rumbling in MK! I'd love to hear more about what other meatless staples you and Adam rely on in WDW!