Disneyland Dining Photo Ops – CM100

The last stop on our food tour photo ops is Disneyland! There are quite a few iconic Disneyland photo ops you must get. Plus we are talking about some of our favorite, photographable Disneyland restaurants and how to get great pics when you are there.


Steph (Capturingmagic_ on Twitter and Instagram) and ModernPhotoSolutions on Instagram and Facebook
Heather (I Love Characters. heatherw25 on Twitter and Instagram. ilovecharacters on FB)
Tanya (everymagicmoment.com. Tanyah666 on Twitter and Instagram)


Steph: Hey everyone, welcome to Capturing Magic. I am Steph and I am here today with Heather [Winfield [00:00:08] who can be found at HeatherW.com/character. Hi Heather.


Heather: Hi.


Steph: I'm here with Tanya [Hickman [00:00:16] who can be found at EveryMagicMoment.com. My mouth got ahead of my head there.


Today we are going to be talking about dining photo ops at Disneyland. Are you ready?


Tanya: Yep.


Steph: Okay, Tanya.


Tanya: I broke down my list into two sections. One is food that you need to take photos of, and the other is places. I'll start with the food people.


Disneyland definitely has some iconic food things like Mickey Beignets. You have to take a picture of Mickey Beignets, preferably with a mint julep like I did on my last trip. The Dole Whip … We mentioned this earlier. The Dole Whip, I notice … In case you've never been to Disneyland and seen the Dole Whip line there, it is … I don't know, an hour long at any given time. It is really crazy. I saw, and if you've ever been to California you would know that they do this at In-and-Out, they had somebody taking your order down the line so that your order was ready when you got up there. To make it a little bit faster, so that was nice. You need to take a picture with a Dole Whip.


Steph: You can also go on the backside. Go in the waiting area for …


Tanya: That's usually always my tip, but lately it's been just as long.


Steph: Oh, really?


Tanya: I don't know why. Probably because it's …


Steph: We've been sharing it.


Tanya: It's probably not-


Steph: It's all because of us sharing it, not anybody else.


Tanya: We did that. It's probably still not as long as the normal line, but now that the normal line has somebody taking your order ahead of time, it might be faster. I really don't know. I refuse. I will not wait in that line for a Dole Whip. I just won't do it. I like Dole Whips, but I don't love Dole Whips. I always end up sticky and then I get irritated. It never fails, because I wear sandals all the time, that some of that Dole Whip ends up on my toes. It never fails. Then I'm just a sticky mess and I'm having to wash my foot in the bathroom sink. I don't even really do it as much as I want a photo of it.


Steph: Funny.


Tanya: I will run up and be like, “Hey you random stranger, can I get a picture of your Dole Whip?”


Heather: I got one this trip and it was like five minutes before closing, so there was no line. I was able to get one and hang out in the waiting area.


Tanya: There's your other tip, get it right before it closes.


Steph: One other tip is to go in the winter because the lines are much shorter on cold days.


Tanya: True.


Steph: I think. From what I've seen.


Tanya: They've become such a huge thing. I don't even think … It's literally four photo ops, I think. I don't even think people …


Heather: They're good.


Tanya: They are good, but are they an hour wait good?


Steph: No.


Heather: Nothing is like an hour wait good.


Tanya: There's certain things where I feel like it's become increasingly popular because people want photos of it.


Steph: Yes, I agree. It's an Instagram thing.


Tanya: Very popular. Moving on to another highly photographed thing, the Matterhorn Macaroon. Heather, did you even eat your macaroon when you bought it?


Heather: I don't like coconut, so I tried it.


Tanya: Buy it to take the photo.


Heather: It was worth it because Disneyland reposted my thing. That picture of that. The important thing is when you take the picture of it, you have to take a picture of it with the Matterhorn behind it.


Tanya: Which is very easy to do because you get the macaroon right at Jolly Holiday, and walk out the door, the Matterhorn is in the background. My next one you can get at Disney World as well, and it's the Mickey Waffle. Anywhere that serves breakfast has that stinking Mickey Waffle. That is very easy to get pictures of the Mickey Waffle. Anything that is in Mickey form, people. The ice cream bars, the rice crispy treats, anything that's in Mickey form has to be taken a picture of.


Another one of my favorites is Starbucks because they have Disney cups. You can take it somewhere and take a picture with the Castle in the background, or they put special names on them. They'll put Disney character names on them if you ask them to. Heather and I, I went and got Starbucks for us, and I had them put Pain and Panic on the cups because it was fitting. I think that one's always fun. I'm trying to think of what other food items. Gibson Girl ice cream with a picture of Main Street in the background is always nice, as is this ice cream. I'm trying to think if there's any other snack.


Steph: Corn dog.


Tanya: Corn dog with corn dog cart in the background.


Heather: Churros.


Tanya: Churros. You can never go wrong with churros. Nobody say turkey leg, please, because that's disgusting.


Heather: I agree.


Tanya: I always like Bengal Barbecue too, because you can have the little area there. That's my snack …


Steph: Where do you do photos for Bengal Barbecue though? That's not easy.


Tanya: It's not easy but I love the sign for Bengal Barbecue, so I would always use the sign. Since it's up higher, you don't anybody in the background.


Steph: Good idea.


Tanya: I think might be it for my snack food stuff. Any snack foods before I move onto restaurants?


Steph: No. You have mine.


Heather: I have a quick service, does that count?


Tanya: Yes, go ahead.


Steph: Look at you Tanya, taking charge. Owning the show.


Tanya: This isn't my show, what?


Steph: So funny, I love it.


Heather: If it's kind of where it is, you want it in that section or do you want it in this section?


Tanya: We're transitioning into the next section.


Heather: I think at a Flo's in Cars Land. Doesn't really matter what you get but it's especially good when you get the french toast there with the Radiator Springs in the background.


Tanya: That is on my list of places for sure. I'm usually an indoor seating sort of person because I like the themeing in Disney restaurants, but that is one restaurant where I will always sit outside. You always have to sit on the side of Radiator Springs racers so you can see the cars going by. That's one of my favorite. I personally, I like the breakfast at Flo's but I hate the rest of their food. I don't like Flo's food at all. It's not my type of food, but I love Flo's. I just like the actual place. I don't like their menu, but their breakfast is good. I like their breakfast.


Heather: I had dinner there this trip, it was good. It was really fun inside, too.


Steph: I love the inside too. I'm going to say, I love their breakfast. Love it. You have to eat at … I don't love the rest of the menu, but my family does. Oh my goodness. That's where they always want to eat. I do love their apple cheddar pie, it's good.


Tanya: I've never had the apple cheddar pie.


Steph: It's good.


Tanya: Is it?


Steph: Yeah, it is.


Tanya: That sounds iffy to me for some reason.


Steph: It's good. Go ahead.


Tanya: Photogenic restaurants. Alfresco Dining Terrace is …


Steph: Let's go back to Flo's for one second. I think Flo's is probably the most photogenic restaurant at all of Disneyland. That and probably Blue Bayou.


Tanya: Daytime and nighttime, you can hit up Flo's and it's beautiful.


Heather: It's so fun. It's a lot of fun photo taking.


Tanya: The themeing on the inside of that restaurant is insane.


Heather: When they decorate it for Christmas too. The thing when they have records on the tree.


Tanya: Getting a picture of yourself in the giant rear view mirror that's inside the restaurant. I love that restaurant.


Steph: Go ahead.


Tanya: Sorry. Wine Country Trattoria, above it is Alfresco Dining Terrace. It's wine and appetizers, but it gives you a gorgeous view of Cars Land, like straight down the middle of Cars Land. That's a really good photo op if you're standing up there. Carnation Café because you have to get a picture with Oscar. If you have breakfast at Carnation Café, you can get … Which we've done at least once, right?


Heather: Yeah.


Tanya: You go to Carnation Café, you have breakfast there, and Oscar the Chef is always walking around. I've actually gotten him a couple times where he's hanging out outside. I'll run up and I'll take a picture with him. He loves to talk to you. I think that's a photo op that everybody needs at some point, is to get your picture with Oscar. Let's see what else. Speaking of right across from Flo's, the Cozy Cone Motel is a really good one. Is Steph still here?


Heather: I guess not.


Tanya: Is it just me and you hanging out? I was like, “Where'd she go?”


Heather: She can hear us. She's having the issue that I've been talking about. Now we can just take over.


Tanya: Yeah, it's our show now. Sorry Steph. I'm going to keep talking then.


The Cozy Cone Motel because you can get good little snacks there. I guess you don't have to eat there to get the pictures of the cones.


Heather: You can take your pictures of your food with the cones.


Tanya: With the cones in the background. That's always fun.


Heather: Inside where the character meets, what is that called? You know what I'm talking about.


Tanya: I guess the lobby of the motel. Is it the lobby?


Heather: Yeah, it's opposite where you eat. If you look inside there, there's a lot of hidden Easter egg things.


Tanya: I wish that was open, at some point, so you can go in there and not have to be a crazy stalker taking pictures from the outside only.


Heather: It's a lot harder to get pictures during the day because of …


Tanya: The glare.


Heather: There's Buzz underneath one of the cones just like in the movies.


Tanya: I know that's really fun.


Steph: Can you hear me now?


Tanya: Yes.


Heather: Yeah.


Steph: Very good.


Tanya: I was like, “It got really quiet.”


Steph: I was talking to you the whole time.


Tanya: Do we need to back up?


Steph: No. The only thing I was going to say about Oscar is that I've seen him … Usually that's how I catch him, he's walking around visiting with people. It's a really good … I think everyone needs that photo because he's getting older. He's been there since … We probably need to give a little bit of history. He's been there since Disneyland opened. He worked there when Walt was there.


Tanya: He loves to talk to people.


Steph: He does love it. Loves it.


Tanya: He'll hold your hand and he'll ask you about your day, and where you're from, and what you're doing. I ran up to get a selfie with him one time and he's just like cheek to cheek selfie. I love it. I love him so much. He's a really cool guy. He's always willing to talk.


Cozy Cone Motel. The Golden Horseshoe I feel is a fun little place. Even if there's not a show going on because you can get up to the stage, and there's a second level. The whole saloon bar looking thing.


Heather: I don't think I've ever been in there.


Tanya: Not even just in it?


Heather: No, I don't think so.


Steph: I hadn't either, Heather, until one of my recent trips with one of my friends. It was really fun because I went with one friend who is a huge Disney fan like me, and then another friend who is not at all- Wasn't at all, is now. She's a convert. I'm very proud of that fact. My friend had things that she does with her family every trip that I had never done like the Golden Horseshoe. It was really fun to be able to go in there and finally … It was something that I had been wanting to do and hadn't ever done it.


Tanya: We always did it when I was younger. When it was the Golden Horseshoe Review, when they had the actual review show there. That was one of the things we … The park opened, we ran to get reservations for that. That was something we did every single trip. I definitely haven't been in there nearly as much since they stopped doing that show. I think my mom and I went in there not that long ago because they had chili fries or something like that. I forget the reason why we went in there. The little show they have there now was going on. It was cute. It is really nice inside of there. It's cool. Heather, you have been inside there? No wait, hold on.


Steph: She hasn't.


Tanya: No, she hasn't. I'm thinking of the Disney World one where we went to the dance party. That wasn't Disneyland, it was Disney World. It has that same look. Doesn't it have that same look as the one at Disney World?


Heather: I don't know.


Tanya: I feel like it …


Steph: I feel like it does.


Heather: I thought it wasn't open. I didn't even know.


Tanya: It's definitely … You can get food in there. They serve food. I'm trying to think if there's anything specific that you can get there that you can't get anywhere else. They used to serve chili in a bread bowl and I don't know if they still do.


Steph: I think they do.


Tanya: Do they?


Steph: Yeah.


Tanya: You can get ice cream sundaes and stuff there. It's fun.


Steph: Yes, and all kinds of brownies and all kinds of yummy stuff.


Heather: We're putting that on the list for next time.


Tanya: At least go in.


Heather: I feel like I … I don't know. Did I go in one time when they were doing that Frontier Land game? I feel like I may have popped in there once. I'm trying to remember.


Steph: I pulled up the menu. Yes, they have chili in a bread bowl and yes, they have chili cheese fries.


Tanya: Woohoo. Chili all the chili. When we go and watch the show, we always got chili in a bread bowl and they used to give you a side of Lays potato chips that we would put in the chili. It was always delicious. That was a definitely family memory.


After Golden Horseshoe, Harbour Galley. For those that don't know where this is, it's the tiny little shack that serves soup right across from Haunted Mansion and Splash Mountain. After you get your soup in a bread bowl, a lot of the times the Columbia's parked there or the Mark Twain's parked there, and you can walk around where the boats are docked. There's a little back seating area. It's also where you can walk over a little bridge that goes over where the Splash Mountain log flumes come around. I like that whole little back area. You can get a good photo op if the boats are docked there. If one of the boats is docked there. I like that area.


In the same kind of area, the Hungry Bear Restaurant.


Steph: It's cute, so cute.


Tanya: Which is kind of not so good right now because they have the entire thing blocked off because they're working on Star Wars. Normally you can get some really good photos because it overlooks the whole Rivers of America and whatnot.


Steph: They had some cute wood carved bears, cute stuff like that.


Tanya: Cute stuff in there. I like that little … You got to walk all the way back there.


Heather: Even the signs for the bathrooms.


Tanya: Country Bears and stuff. It's really cute.


Trader Sam's because come on. Trader Sam's is always … If you don't drink, I guess you wouldn't go there but they have really good food. You should go there even if you don't drink because they have really … How many times did we eat there this trip? At least twice, maybe three times.


Heather: Yeah.


Tanya: They have really good food. If you get to eat inside, they do the show. There's all kinds of stuff to take pictures of. Every time somebody orders a drink, there's something special that happens for that specific drink. Even the outside, they have music playing at night. Tiki torches, and I love Trader Sam's.


Heather: You don't have to get a drink. They even have the non-alcoholic drinks if you want that.


Steph: They do have good food.


Tanya: The food is really good.


Heather: I really wish they had those green beans at the Disney World one. For some reason they didn't bring them over. That makes me sad.


Tanya: The green beans are really good. My last one for my list is Cove Bar in California Adventure. Mainly because if you're there at the right time, you could watch World of Color from there. It's a really good view of World of Color.


Steph: I bet.


Tanya: Really good view.


Heather: That was like the best view I've ever had.


Tanya: We got really good seats in there. I've heard their food is pretty good too. I have never eaten anything from there.


Heather: Those lobster nachos are famous.


Tanya: It has a good view of Paradise Pier anyway that you can get in the background of any photo.


Steph: There was one photo that you guys posted on your Instagram. It was a different of view of Paradise Pier than what is the standard one. I thought, “How in the world did they get that?” You must have been up there.


Tanya: Possibly.


Heather: That wasn't this trip.


Tanya: That was a couple trips ago.


Steph: Another trip?


Heather: That was a couple trips ago. Somebody else was eating there. That's one of the things you have to wait in a really long line.


Tanya: There's no reservations there. You wait in line.


Heather: People who were there already, we just joined them. This trip, if that's the one you meant, we went in the back of the …


Tanya: While World of Color was going on, we went back by California Screamin'.


Steph: That's cool.


Tanya: There was nobody over there because the lights were off and stuff. It was kind of nice.


Heather: You could see the fountains. You can't see the projections, but the fountains perfect.


Tanya: That was fun. That's it for my list if anybody else has anything.


Heather: I think Steph mentioned the Blue Bayou.


Tanya: I was going to put that, but it's so dark in that restaurant.


Steph: It is.


Tanya: It's really dark in there. The couple pictures I have of me and Heather there that actually turned out really good were taken with my QX100.


Steph: I've done some photos in there of my friends and stuff when we went with a QX100, it turned out perfect. Really great photos. It's not a flash, it's just the regular photo, it still shows all of the lights in the background and everything really well. I'm betting that with the iPhone 7+, it would be the same because they actually have the same aperture as the QX100.


Tanya: They do? Interesting.


Steph: The iPhone 7+. It might be the end of me using a QX100. Might be the end of me using my QX100. Sadly I love that thing. I didn't need it.


Tanya: All this last trip.


Steph: What are the other ones I was thinking of. I was going through the list.


Heather: Did you say Carthay?


Steph: No, only because …


Tanya: No, I didn't.


Steph: It's dark. You can get good photos …


Heather: I think the ceiling, especially if you're in the main room, that ceiling is gorgeous. On the tables, if you take a tour, they have a free tour which every time I say I'm going to do it and I never do. It's like a 15, 20 minute tour at [10:00] or [10:30] in the morning. My mom took it and she said on the tables, and then she pointed it out to me the next time, there's the evil queen. There's her silhouette or something in some of the tables.


Steph: If you eat there, I think you can get great photos in the lobby. It's lighter in the lobby than it is upstairs sometimes.


Tanya: I love all the photos throughout the whole place too.


Steph: You have to do a photo out front of Carthay Circle, if you eat there. Absolutely.


Tanya: I was going to say, “A photo of yourself in the mirror by the bathrooms,” because everybody does that too. A wall to wall, floor length mirror.


Steph: I have not ever done that.


Tanya: It's by the bathroom.


Steph: Jolly Holiday, did you talk about that? I know we talked about it in a different …


Tanya: I didn't.


Heather: How could you not mention that?


Tanya: I love other people, sorry.


Steph: I love photos of Jolly Holiday. There's so many great photo ops inside and outside. For sure. I'm cruising through all of the list. Plaza Inn, I think the best photo op is under the sign outside.


Tanya: I like the indoor seating in there too because you're in a sun room sort of thing. You actually have good lighting when you're sitting inside there.


Steph: Steakhouse 55, I love photos in Steakhouse 55. That's at the Disneyland hotel. It's one of my favorite restaurants.


Heather: I'll give you a tip, if you want to go there for breakfast make a reservation an hour before you want to eat there. That's always …


Tanya: They're 45 minutes late seating us every time we go through.


Steph: Really?


Heather: That's a go-to place to eat for after the 10k. I like eating the breakfast and then having something for the next day because I'm doing the half usually. We always go there and every time we go, I'm rushing and the whole thing. We get there and they're like, “Oh. We're 45 minutes behind. I'm sorry. Is that okay?”


Tanya: Every single time.


Steph: I've always been seated immediately when I've gone. There have been times when … When I went with my friends on this last trip in January, when I went with them, I got the opening time wrong. I thought it was an early opening day and it wasn't. We went over there at seven or some crazy time like that, eight, something like that. Couldn't get in of course, so I was like, “Let's go eat breakfast at Steakhouse 55.” They got us right in. They seated us immediately and I guess maybe it …


Heather: That's early.


Steph: It was really early. Not doing Tanya's breakfast at 11, when she just gets up.


Tanya: I don't even eat breakfast. That's the reason why. I go straight for lunch. I don't even bother with breakfast. If I'm up really … I'm not a morning eater. It takes me awhile to get going.


Steph: I think that's all for me.


Tanya: I purposely didn't talk about any character dining sets. We could do that at a later date because Goofy's Kitchen has that really cute giant plate, and knife and fork sign outside of the restaurant. That's really cute.


Steph: We'll save those.


Heather: There's the … I don't know if that's exactly what we're talking about, the popcorn stands. They all have those little people in it turning the thing.


Tanya: Popcorn turner guys.


Heather: That's technically food related.


Tanya: They're all themed to the land that they're in.


Heather: Every time I say I'm going to go and take better pictures of them, because I haven't really taken pictures since my first trip or something, then I always forget.


Tanya: It's kind of hard.


Heather: Put that on the list.


Steph: You guys are really good at noticing and photographing the little details like that. There are a lot of little details that you share. I didn't know there were different themed popcorn guys.


Tanya: They're different to each land.


Steph: That's really cool. Then I think we're good.


Heather: Okay.


Steph: Tanya, remind everyone where to find you.


Tanya: You can find me at EveryMagicMoment.com and TanyaH666 on all social media.


Steph: Heather?


Heather: My character site is HeatherW.com/Character, and on Twitter and Instagram I'm HeatherW25, and on Facebook it's ILoveCharacters.


Steph: You can find Capturing Magic on Instagram, CapturingMagic_. We're also on Facebook and Pinterest. You can also find me at ModernPhotoSolutions.com where I have a free course all about Google Photos to help you automate all of your photos and memories, and organization. Never be able to not find a photo again, and have everything automatically backed up as well. Then there's a Podcast over there too.


We will see you next time on Capturing Magic.