An Enchanting Encounter With Belle: THE WDW ESCAPE PODCAST (EPISODE 18)

Leah SikesBlog, podcast

An enchanting encounter with belle

This week on WDW ESCAPE, we’re remembering meeting a favorite character, and a truly enchanting experience with Princess Belle!

Follow along!

For more info on WDW Escape, click here—or listen to all our episodes. Listen to today’s An Enchanting Encounter With Belle episode while following along with the transcript and photos below!

An Enchanting Encounter With Belle

Belle parade

The beautiful Belle. Photo by Laurie Sapp

I was five years old when I saw Beauty and the Beast in movie theaters.

It was then that I was introduced to my favorite character of all time. Belle. As that five-year-old little girl, I was captivated by the newest Disney princess. She looked like me with the same brown hair and brown eyes.

As I got older, I loved that she’s different. Everyone in town is telling her that she’s a little strange, but she’s OK with that.

She sees it, she hears them, but she’s not going to change who she is.

She loves to read, and everyone’s kinda looking at her like, “That’s kind of weird.” But I just love that she was confident enough in herself to be true to herself, and she wasn’t going to change who she was for anybody.

When you’re little and you’re trying to find your place, I always felt like I related to her in that way and tried to have some of that confidence in myself. It’s good to be different and not always try to fit into the crowd.

Disney World 2016

We went to Walt Disney World in 2016, and we were there with our family. This was my second trip. Beauty and the Beast is my all-time favorite Disney movie.

We even ate at Be Our Guest. Unfortunately, we didn’t get a reservation for dinner, so we didn’t get to meet the Beast, which was a bummer, but I enjoyed eating there just the same.

be our guest restaurant sign

Eat at Be Our Guest Restaurant inside the Magic Kingdom. Photo by Judd Helms

It was toward the end of our trip, and I had been looking all over for Belle.

I didn’t really know how the character meet-and-greets went, so we were going to every princess meet-and-greet to see if she was there. We went to see Enchanted Tales With Belle thinking, “Maybe I can meet her there!”

The show was great! My niece was picked to be part of the show and my husband was picked to be a part of the show, too. I wasn’t picked. I thought, “Man, I was SO close!” But it was OK.

My husband is much better at using the My Disney Experience app than I am.

He made it his mission to find her for me, which was really special. He saw that she was supposed to be showing up in the France pavilion in Epcot. I was trying to stay cool. He was telling me where the line was going to be, and I kept asking him, “Are you sure? Are you sure?”

Meeting Belle

Belle Magic Kingdom Cliff Wang

Belle consults with Lumiere in the library. Photo by Cliff Wang

Then, here she comes. She’s walking over, and I’m shaking.

What am I going to say? I want to be cool. I walk up to her and I tell her, “You are my all-time favorite. You are my favorite princess.” She graciously thanked me in response. She was so sweet.

She asked me if I liked to read. I told her, “I love to read! When I was little, your love for books inspired me to read.” Then, she asked what my favorite book was.

In my star-struck moment, every title of any book I’ve read went out of my head and I responded with, “You know, a little of everything.”

She told me she also loved to read a little of everything, and she invited me to come back to the castle to go to the library and have tea made by Mrs. Potts.

At that moment I was living my best life. Belle wants to hang out with me! It was a dream come true moment in the meet-and-greet with Belle.

I was shaking as I was talking to her and truly enjoying that moment. We took our picture and she gave me a hug.

Then, my husband and I walked away, and I started crying from pure joy. I met Belle. She’s been a part of my life since I was five, and I finally met her at thirty years old.

It was perfect.

She really took the time to have a conversation with me instead of just a quick hug and a photo. As an adult fan, it was really special. Some characters really take their time and try to have conversations with younger kids, but it was really amazing to be an adult fan and have that experience.

I think all girls want to go to Disney, and we all have a little princess in us. It’s just so fun to get to go and to live that fantasy of being right there with your favorite princess talking to her. It’s definitely an experience you never forget.

About the Author

Leah Sikes

Leah Sikes is a graphic designer and contributing writer for WDW Magazine and Dad's Guide to WDW. When she's lucky enough to visit the Happiest Place on Earth, you catch her hanging out with the 999 Happy Haunts. She also loves running in the parks (when it's allowed at the marathons).