Lets talk souvenirs. When you think Disney souvenirs, you probably picture mouse ears, t-shirts, and antenna toppers. While these are quintessential mementos all guests should have, I also like to find something unique to help remind me of my vacation memories. One of my favorite things to do is "Pick a Pearl."
At Walt Disney World, there are three
locations to experience this- Downtown Disney, Beach Club, and inside the
Japan Pavilion at Epcot. My favorite is the Japan location, which can be found inside the
Mitsukoshi store. You'll know where to go if you follow the banging drum
The first thing you do is pay for an oyster - about
$17. You will be given a number that will be called when it is your
turn. I've found that going early in the day when it first opens is
easiest- it can get pretty busy later in the day.
wait, scour the tanks for the oyster you'd like to pick. I've been told
to find an ugly, hairy oyster, as they hold the large and pretty pearls.
I'm not sure if this is true, but I've loved the pearls I've received,
and have been told that my colors are rare. Many pearls will be white or
cream, but there are also a variety of colors hidden in the oysters- such as
pink, gray, blue, gold, and black. Most oysters have a single pearl,
but some have two, or twins. The excitement is that you have no idea
what your oyster will hold!
When it is your turn, show the cast
member which oyster you have selected, and she will make a grand
presentation of fishing out and opening it to reveal your pearl,
counting down in Japanese. Then it is rubbed in salt and measured-
pearls normally range from 6-9mm. If yours is large or rare, they
announce it to the crowd and bang the drum. The entire process is fun
and celebratory, and all the cast members are full of energy.
you can choose a setting for your pearl. There are a variety of
options- rings, earrings, and necklaces- at a wide range of prices. I've
seen options as low as $20. You can choose and pay for your setting,
and pick it up within a few hours. If you would rather bring it to a
jeweler at home, you may do that as well. The pearl comes with a
cardboard box, or you can purchase one more secure for traveling for a
This is one of my favorite souvenirs to bring home
from Walt Disney World. Since pearl jewelry is a little more subtle than
Mickey ears, it is something I can wear everyday and be reminded of my
favorite vacation memories. Give it a try on your next trip!