Theme Park of the Day: Islands of Adventure

Dinner Show

I need Dinner Show reviews and recommendations for my upcoming trip to Orlando in two weeks.

From Json Son
Posted August 26, 2012 at 12:59 PM
I'm looking to do a dinner show with my girlfriend. From what I've heard most of the independent shows are "traps" with poor service and bad food.

I'm considering doing:
Pirates Adventure Dinner Show
Arabian Nights (heard terrible things, but looks cool)
Medieval Times (looks good for the price)

I've done Hoop-dee-do before, but I want to try something new.

Also, I'm considering shelling out the extra money to see La Nouba then having dinner somewhere on DD. Same thing with BlueMan and CityWalk. What's the better show and is it really worth it?

From Anthony Murphy
Posted August 26, 2012 at 7:44 PM
How about the Luau at the Polynesian? I was greatly impressed the last time around!

As for La Nouba, I highly recommend Bongos! The food and music are great!

From Dominick D
Posted August 27, 2012 at 8:41 AM
I went to Arabian Nights 2 years ago, but I didn't care for it. You're better off listening to the song from Aladdin. I hear Medieval Times, Capone's, and Sleuth's are pretty good, so they might be worth checking out. Or, you can always do Hoop De Doo again.

As for La Nouba and BMG, I hear La Nouba is the better show, as it costs less and is more eye dazzling.

From Amy Smith
Posted August 27, 2012 at 12:17 AM
Medieval Times is a lot of fun with good food. Whatever you do, DON'T eat at Arabian Nights - seriously, my whole group got food poisoning and it was not a fun experience. :(

From Dominick D
Posted August 27, 2012 at 7:36 AM
Yes, the food at Arabian Nights SUCKS. I only ate one of my chicken tenders, in fact, not even 1 considering how bad it was. The show isn't that good either. As I said before, watch the opening from Aladdin instead. In fact, watch Aladdin instead of wasting your money there.

From Mike Gallagher
Posted August 27, 2012 at 8:15 AM
One of the worst nights I've ever had was at Medieval Times here in Jersey. There were extenuating circumstances (I was sick as a dog)..but the food was awful, the show was boring (although I'm not into that kind of entertainment,) the atmosphere was annoying and the environment was noisy and dim.

So that would not be my choice.

But if one likes that kind of thing...

From Carrie Hood
Posted August 27, 2012 at 9:24 AM
Pirates is good, the food is decent and while the show might be a little childish it's still pretty fun.

Sleuths will ALWAYS get my vote, the show changes seasonally so you've never stuck into the same boring show. The food is also decent and I found it to be enjoyable.

Medieval Times is decent, the food isn't the best and the show hasn't changed much but it can be a good time if you enjoy the renaissance/medieval thing.

Arabian Nights isn't very good unless you very big into horses. The show isn't that good an the food is junk quality.

I've never been to Capone's but I've heard people say good things about it.

From Charles Frizzell
Posted August 29, 2012 at 12:04 PM
As a concierge here in Orlando, I regularly answer these types of questions…

For starters, between Blue Man and Cirque, both are great shows that each provides an overall different experience. As far as Cirque being less expensive then Blue Man; this is not true in the Orlando venue. Tickets typically can be purchased for much cheaper for BMG than Cirque (after factoring in the seating categories). If you enjoy circus-type performances and watching performers do things you though were impossible, then Cirque is a good choice. On the other hand, if you enjoy high-energy concert-type shows, Blue Man is a safe bet.

There are other dinner shows you are leaving out of the equation:

Treasure Tavern is a fun show, having the distinction of being the only dinner show designed with adults in mind.

SeaWorld's Makahiki Luau is a great show, and also gets you admission into the park after 5pm. Unfortunately, they are planning on closing the show after Sept 30th, so catch it soon before it ends!

Outta Control Magic Comedy Dinner Show is located at Wonderworks and features all-you-can-eat pizza, pasta, and salad. The show is surprisingly a lot of fun, and the food isn't bad either.

As far as the other options you listed, I will start with Capone's. I do not recommend this show to guests, as I have personally seen the show and did not enjoy it enough to justify selling it.

Arabian Nights is a fun show, and the children (especially girls) love to see the horses. I haven’t tried their new menu, but I’ve heard it is a significant improvement over their older selection.

Pirate's is often a hit with boys, particularly younger ones. They will likely enjoy the sword fighting and swinging from ropes and such. They do change the show a bit around Christmas, giving it a holiday theme, and they did do an overall revamp the show not too long ago. As for the food, it has gotten mixed reviews.

Sleuth’s can be hit or miss, just depends which of their plays they are performing that evening and the particular actors on duty (there is a rotating cast and some are better than others). There are over a half-dozen unique shows and different show performed each night. If you want to see a particular one, you can find the schedule on their website. The food is not bad at all compared to some of the other shows and has gotten generally good reviews. I usually recommend this show to older adults who might enjoy murder-mysteries, plays, or something closer to a traditional dinner-theatre.

Medieval Times is my personal favorite, but I may be partial because it is the one dinner show I remember my parents taking me to on vacation, loving that I could eat with my fingers. They recently just revamped the show and I really enjoyed it, the battles between the knights are quite realistic and they do a great job performing the stunts.

The moral of this story: Do not expect great food from dinner shows, they are not in the business of providing a culinary experience. Would you expect a gourmet meal at a movie theater? What you have to ask yourself is, do I want to go eat dinner at Olive Garden and be bored, or do I want to enjoy a show with my meal and do something a bit extraordinary?

If anyone has any questions or would want to purchase tickets to any of these attractions, I can assist with that and also maybe provide discounts depending on the show. Feel free to email me at or call me at 407-770-1953.

From Anthony Murphy
Posted August 29, 2012 at 4:29 PM
I don't trust the pizza of FL...Sorry

From Seth Kubersky
Posted August 29, 2012 at 7:43 PM
Sleuths, hands down.
Treasure Tavern is fun too.
Those are the only 2 shows with edible food that are entertaining for an adult audience.

From Seth Kubersky
Posted August 29, 2012 at 7:51 PM
BMG and Cirque are both first rate shows but very different.
BMG is rock-oriented and pop-culture aware, and more intimate, better for a young adult audience.
Cirque is quirky in a more European style, a huge abstract spectacle good for kids and older adults.
I give the slight edge to La Nouba after many viewings of both...

From Json Son
Posted August 30, 2012 at 10:12 AM
Thank you everyone! All of this information was awesome. I'm still undecided like a crazy person, but my decision will be based off which discounts I could get and our mood that evening.

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