The Truth About Wifi at Disneyland (Spoiler: It’s Awful!)

I first visited Disneyland in 2018. Up until then, the only US Disney park I’d visited was Walt Disney World. I expected the wifi at Disneyland to be just as strong and effective as the wifi at Disney World.

Boy was I wrong, and it really threw a wrench into my first Disneyland trip!

The wifi at Disneyland being awful probably isn’t a huge deal if you live in the US and have a cellphone data plan.

However, if you don’t live in the US (like me), then you need to know how to plan for the Disneyland wifi situation.

Because you can’t rely on the wifi in the parks to get you through the day (unfortunately).

You need a plan on how you’re going to access the internet at Disneyland outside of the wifi provided free to guests.

Don’t Think You Can Get by Without Accessing the Internet

The first thing you need to know about the wifi at Disneyland is you can’t live without it.

With the introduction of Genie+ and Lightening Lanes, it is more important now than ever before that you can access the internet while at Disneyland.

And reliably access the internet!

You do so much on your phone through the My Disney Experience app that you can’t do a Disneyland trip anymore without using the internet on a regular basis.

You can mobile order food, check wait times, get Lightening Lane passes, see food menus, when parades and shows are for the day, and so much more on your phone through the My Disney Experience app.

Not to mention you’ll probably want to share your photos on Instagram to make your friends and family jealous of your amazing trip!

So, if you’re on the fence and think you may not need to use the internet while at Disneyland, now you know you need to use the internet to have a full and efficient Disneyland trip.

Now, let’s talk about how to have reliable access to the internet and not solely rely on the wifi at Disneyland.

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Have a Plan Before You Go

Don’t be like me and not have a plan on how you’re going to access the internet at Disneyland.

And relying on the wifi at Disneyland isn’t the plan you think it is. 😉

Using Data on a US Phone Plan

If you live in the US and have a data plan, then your plan is pretty easy. Just use your phone’s data and be on your merry way.

This is by far the easiest way to reliably access the internet while in Disneyland without having to rely on the wifi at Disneyland.

Disney California Adventure (DCA)

Using Data on a Foreign Phone Plan

However, if you’re like me and aren’t from the US, things get a little trickier.

If your phone plan offers it, you can use your phone’s data and pay for the extra daily charge for using your data outside your home country.

For example, I’m Canadian, and my phone plan charges me an extra $8 per day to use my data while in the United States.

You have to set up this option on your phone before you use your data in a foreign country, but you can easily do it online in less than five minutes.

If you don’t set up this option on your account, you’ll be shocked at your phone bill when you get home because you’ll be charged a ridiculous amount per megabyte of data you used while at Disneyland.

You don’t want to be stuck paying that phone bill!

This is a great option if you’re travelling to Disneyland alone.

It is the most affordable, and you know you’ll get reliable access to the internet.

Using Pocket Wifi

Using your phone’s data plan is a good way to access the internet at Disneyland for solo travellers; however, there is a more cost effective way to access the internet if you’re travelling with a group of people.

And that is pocket wifi.

I always use pocket wifi when I’m at Disneyland with friends or family. You can rent one pocket wifi device and connect all your phones to it.

Most pocket wifi devices allow you to connect 6 to 10 different phones to a single device, and they often don’t cost more than $10 a day!

So, if you’re visiting Disneyland with a group of people, it is without a doubt more cost effective to rent one pocket wifi device and connect everybody to it rather than everybody paying to use their data for the day.

Of course, there are a few downsides to pocket wifi.

The main one being that you have to be within a certain distance of the device in order to access the internet.

Normally is isn’t more than a couple hundred of feet, so if you and your party are splitting up for a large portion of the day, you may not want to rely on pocket wifi to access the internet at Disneyland.

You can pick up a Sumo pocket wifi device at LAX and return it there when you leave as well. It is very convenient.

To be transparent, I’ve never used Sumo pocket wifi, so I can’t vouch for how good or bad their product is. It is the best one I could find when doing my research through.

5 secret places to meet characters at Disneyland

Solis Wifi

I personally use my Solis Wifi when I’m at Disneyland.

It is my own personal pocket wifi device that I purchased back in 2019 and use whenever I travel.

For me as a frequent traveller, owning a pocket wifi device and not having to rent pocket wifi everywhere I visit is a huge advantage.

I’ve used my Solis at Disneyland twice now and both times it has worked perfectly.

I’m able to quickly access the internet, do what I need to do on the My Disney Experience app, and stay in touch with family and friends.

I don’t recommend Solis Wifi for people who don’t travel all that often. It is an investment.

Actually, I think the base price of buying a Solis is very fair. It is the cost of accessing the internet that I wish were a little more affordable.

But, the easy way around the cost of the daily wifi passes is purchasing a monthly wifi pass. It ends up being much more affordable as long as you use your Solis to access the internet at least seven days a month.

If you like the sound of Solis Wifi but aren’t a frequent traveller or want to try it out before committing to buying it, you can rent a Solis Wifi device for your trip.

It is super easy to rent Solis pocket wifi, and they mail it directly to your home.

You don’t have to worry about wasting your time at the airport trying to find the pocket wifi rental place and then dropping it off when you’re done with it.

It certainly isn’t the option for everybody, it is a really good option for frequent travellers.

I know my Solis has elevated my travel experience ever since I started using it!

Complete Solis Wifi review

Know Where You Can and Can’t (Theoretically) Access Wifi

If you do decide to risk it and want to rely on the wifi at Disneyland, you need to know where you can and cannot access the wifi.

You theoretically should be able to access the wifi at Disneyland in both Disneyland and Disney California Adventure.

Again, your luck may vary because the internet is so weak.

You can also access free wifi at Disneyland hotels even if you’re not staying at one.

You cannot access the free wifi at Disneyland when exploring Downtown Disney, which is very unfortunate.

Some table service restaurants offer their own complimentary wifi, but not all of them do.

And you won’t be able to access the internet while wandering around the stores and street of Downtown Disney.

Fingers crossed one day they expand the complimentary wifi to the Downtown Disney area. (and make the wifi signal good enough that everybody can easily connect and use the internet).

Toon Town Disneyland

Be Internet Safe

It is essential that you’re safe when you use the wifi at Disneyland.

It is an open wifi network without a password that thousands of people use per day, so it puts you at high risk of having your online data and information stolen.

Most people who access the free wifi at Disneyland are using it for the same reason you are: to use the My Disney Experience app and social media.

However, it only takes one person with the wrong intentions to have all your online information stolen.

You don’t want to go through the trouble of having to cancel bank accounts and credit cards because somebody stolen your banking information while you were trying to have a fun day at Disney!

The only way you can protect your online information while travelling is by installing a VPN on your devices.

A VPN essentially puts a forcefield around your phone that prevents prying eyes from seeing your online information.

It makes using a public wifi network just as safe as using your personal home wifi where you’re the only person who knows the password.

You may not think it is worth the effort to install a VPN on your devices, but it only takes a few minutes and can save you a huge headache down the road.

My Favourite VPN

I’ve used a lot of different VPNs over my years of travel and hated most of them.

VPNs are notorious for slowing your phone down to the point where using the internet is frustrating because you can’t get anything done.

My frustrations with VPNs changed when I discovered NordVPN. I’ve been using them for years and years now and have no plans to ever change to a different VPN company.

The reason I like them so much (and why I recommend them to my fellow travel lovers) is because NordVPN is the fastest VPN on the market.

I’ve never noticed it slowing my phone or laptop down, and I’m able to use the internet exactly as I do at home without a VPN on.

This is especially important for a trip to Disneyland. The wifi at Disneyland is already slow enough, and you don’t need a VPN slowing down your phone even more!

You can connect up to six different devices to a single NordVPN subscription, so you can easily protect your entire family for one low price.

It costs less than the price of a single latte per month for a NordVPN subscription, so you have no excuse not to protect your online data and privacy.

My philosophy is that if you can afford to travel (especially to Disneyland), you can afford to protect your online privacy and information with a VPN subscription.

Just Get a Photopass Card and Worry About Downloading Them at the End of Your Trip

If you choose to splurge and get Disney Photopass (or purchase Disney Genie+ where Photopass is included), save yourself the headache and just use a Photopass card rather than trying to scan the code on your phone.

It takes a lot of your phone’s battery to open the My Disney Experience app, open the Photopass section, and have the Photopass photographer scan your barcode.

It is a thousand times easier and faster to just get a physical Photopass card from the first photographer you take photos with an use it for the entirety of your trip.

You can scan the barcode of the Photopass card and download the images onto your phone quickly and easily anytime you want and as often as you want.

I know this isn’t really a tip about using the wifi at Disneyland, but it is an essential phone tip, so I thought I would include it!

Star Wars Galaxy's Edge Disneyland

Screenshot Any Lightening Lane Reservations

If you purchase Disney Genie+ or any individual attraction Lightening Lane reservations, take a screen shot of your reservation as soon as it is confirmed.

This is especially important if you’re only relying on the wifi at Disneyland rather than data or pocket wifi.

I cannot tell you how frustrating it was the first time I was at Disneyland using MaxPass trying to access my Fastpass (may it rest it peace) barcode through the My Disney Experience app and not being able to because the internet was so bad.

So. Frustrating!

Taking a screen shot of your reservation totally eliminates the possibility of getting to the attraction and not being able to get into the Lightening Lane because you can’t access your reservation through the app.

You can just pull up the screen shot and be on your merry way!

Where to find the best ice cream at Disneyland

Need to Prove Disney Genie+ Purchase for Photos at Hotels

This is an interesting little tip and thing to consider when using the wifi at Disneyland.

If you have a meal at a hotel that includes a Photopass photo, you need to prove your purchase of Disney Genie+ that includes Photopass to get the photo for free.

When I dined at Goofy’s Kitchen (highly recommend!), I had to prove to the person who came around with the photos I took with Mickey before the meal that I had Photopass included in my MaxPass purchase.

That was back in the good ol’ days before MaxPass died. May it rest in peace as well.

To do this, I had to open the My Disney Experience app and make a Fastpass reservation (know known as Lightening Lanes).

To access the My Disney Experience app, you need access to the internet. Even in the restaurant inside the Disneyland Hotel, I wasn’t able to properly connect to the complimentary Disneyland wifi and had to use my phone’s data.

Now, I haven’t been to a hotel character meal with a Photopass photo opportunity since the introduction of Genie+.

I’m not sure if the process is still the same or not, but it is something to keep in mind when you’re coming up with a strategy on how to access the internet at Disneyland.

Take a Deep Breath and Don’t Get Too Frustrated

Okay. Admittedly, I need to take my own advice here, but try not to get too frustrated if you have troubles connecting to the internet at Disneyland.

You’re on an epic vacation in one of the most fantastic places. If you can’t connect to the wifi at Disneyland, try to take a deep breath and stay calm.

Eventually, you’ll find a solution or wander to a lonely corner of the park and be able to access the wifi.

I know it is easier said than done.

Especially if you’re trying to get a Lightening Lane reservation, but there is not sense getting worked up and ruining your Disneyland vacation over the wifi at Disneyland.

Disneyland California Pixar Sulley About Travels with Erica


I sincerely hope you don’t have any issues accessing the wifi at Disneyland. I hope your trip goes smoothly, and there are no bumps in the road.

However, that probably won’t be the case, and it is in your best interest to have a plan on how to access the internet while at Disneyland.

If you have a US phone plan, you’ve got it easy! You can just use your phone’s data and easily fix the problem.

It is a bit trickier for people who don’t have a US phone plan.

You either need to pay to use your phone’s data in a foreign country, rent pocket wifi, or bring your own wifi device.

All three options work, but you need to figure out what option you’re going to use before you arrive at Disneyland.

Have a magical trip!

Oh! Please say hi to Mickey for me when you’re at Disneyland!

The Best Disneyland Ice Cream (Don’t Miss Out!)

Disneyland is full of delicious treats. From high-end to classic treats, Disneyland has everything and anything you could want to snack on! But one of the best treats is Disneyland ice cream.

There are countless places to get ice cream and a variety of different types of Disneyland ice cream. You can get the famous Mickey ears ice cream bar or artisanal ice cream in flavours you’ve never heard of before. And everything in between.

There is no shortage of Disneyland ice cream you can try.

Trust me. The first time I went to Disneyland, I was there for four days and tried to eat every ice cream snack out there. I didn’t go very well and ended with me having a stomach ache.

So if you’re like me and want to try the best ice cream in all of Disneyland, this post if for you!

This list contains only the very best Disneyland ice cream on offer. You’ll know you’re getting the best of the best when you try eat an ice cream from any of the places on this list!

I’ve only included the more unique Disneyland ice cream on this list.

There is nothing wrong with the classic ice cream you can get at the various ice cream carts around the park. I’m a sucker for the Mickey ice cream sandwiches myself, but this list focuses on the top Disneyland ice cream.

Before we get on with the list of the best and most delicious Disneyland ice cream, I’ll let you in on a little secret: I’ve saved the best ice cream of all until the very end.

So make sure you read until the end, so you don’t miss out on my favourite Disneyland ice cream.

Other than leaving the best ’till last, there is no particular order to the list.

PS- If you want to keep your hands free, so you can enjoy your Disneyland ice cream easily, make sure you get yourself an adorable Disney fanny pack.

Stylish and practical!

The Tropical Hideaway

The Tropical Hideaway is one of the newest additions to world of Disneyland ice cream. It opened in December of 2018 and quickly became a crowd favourite.

It is located in Adventureland right next to the Jungle Cruise exit.

The Tropical Hideaway has an amazing atmosphere with tiki torches and umbrellas serving as the decor. It has a large seating area, so it is the perfect place to take an afternoon break and indulge in a tasty snack.

The seating is all outdoors so that is something to be aware of when choosing where to grab a snack. It can get pretty hot in the summer and a bit chilly in the colder months or in the evening.

The restaurant has a number of different food options. They include bao buns, sweet and traditional lumpia (similar to the pineapple lumpia in Animal Kingdom), and mochi.

But the star of the show is the DOLE whip.

Not just any old Dole whip but DOLE whip in flavours you can’t find anywhere else!

DOLE whip is a Disney cult favourite and has traditionally only been served flavoured as pineapple, but Disney has been stepping up their DOLE whip game the past few years.

In addition to pineapple DOLE whip, you can find the following flavours at The Tropical Hideaway:

  • Raspberry
  • Mango
  • Lemon
  • Chile-mango float
  • Raspberry-lemon float

You can even swirl two of the main flavours together! The raspberry-mango swirl is my favourite, but is far more common for people to swirl pineapple with one of the other flavours.

The Tropical Hideaway is a game changer when it comes to DOLE whip.

Plus it is a lighter ice cream, so it doesn’t fill you up as much as the other Disneyland ice cream choices on this list.

The Tropical Hideaway DOLE Whip


I think Schmoozies! is a hidden gem. It is so underrated yet has some of the best ice cream on Disneyland property!

Well not exactly ice cream. They’re shakes, but that’s basically the same thing, so I’m counting it. Schmoozies! is just too good to miss out on!

Schmoozies! is located in Hollywood Land on halfway down the main street right right you wold turn right to go to the Monsters Inc. ride. It is right next door to Fairfax Market.

The walk-up counter has two permanent milkshakes on the menu: Classic Mickey Shake and Churro Shake. The Mickey shake is a cookies and cream base, and the churro shake is brown-sugar cinnamon ice cream and tastes just like a churro!

Both of the permanent shakes are great options, but the seasonal specialty shake is always what I order!

I’ve never had a bad seasonal milkshake from Schmoozies!, and they’re always over-the-top and delicious.

My personal favourite was the mint chip shake that was available during Pixar Fest in 2018. It was incredible! One of the best shakes I’ve ever had.

The milkshakes at Schmoozies! are fairly big and filling, so I don’t recommend you downing one right before you have a dinner reservation!

Clarabelle’s Hand-Scooped Ice Cream

Clarabelle’s Hand-Scooped Ice Cream is my favourite spot to grab some Disneyland ice cream!

It is located in Disney California Adventure on the right-hand side of Buena Vista Street. It is connected to the confectionary shop and right next door to Starbucks.

Calarabelle’s is a little tucked away and isn’t as popular as some of the other Disneyland ice cream shops on this list, but it is well worth stopping in and having a snack.

The ice cream shop serves up classic ice cream sundaes, waffle bowls and cones, and floats. In a lot of ways, it is a generic ice cream shop that you can find in just about any city in the world.

But they have one stand-out item, and that is why it made my list!

The hand-dipped ice cream bar!

You start with a base ice cream bar of either vanilla, chocolate, or mixed berry sorbet, and then get to customize it to your taste! You choose between dark, milk, and white chocolate coating then move onto choosing your topping.

Toppings include sprinkles (both standard shape and Mickey shaped), chocolate chips, and raspberry bursts. You can even get “the whole herd” and get all the toppings on your ice cream bar!

It is a really fun way to get the perfect, customized ice cream treat you were craving! I love that I’m able to create exactly what I want and don’t have to order off a set menu.

The only downside to Clarabelle’s Hand-Scooped Ice Cream is the seating situation. They’re aren’t any seats inside the ice cream shop, so you either have to walk with your treat or sit outside.

It isn’t a big deal, but it is something to keep in mind. Clarabelle’s probably isn’t the place to go if you’re looking to cool down with some AC.

Clarabells's Hand-Scooped Ice Cream (Disneyland)

Ghiradelli Soda Fountain & Ice Cream Shop

Ghiradelli Soda Fountain & Ice Cream Shop is a fan favourite spot to indulge in ice cream and maybe buy some chocolates to bring home with you.

I would argue that Ghiradelli is home to the best and most unique ice cream sundaes in all of Disneyland. Yes, it is a chain ice cream shop, and you can get the same ice cream at every Ghiradelli, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t worth eating while at Disneyland!

Nowhere else on property will you find ice cream sundaes as good as at Ghiradelli!

My personal favourite is the Ocean Beach Sea Salt Caramel Sundae. Try saying that ten times fast, eh.

The sundaes at Ghiradelli are more expensive than the other ice cream sundaes on property, but they are worth the additional price. The ice cream is smoother, and the toppings are higher end.

They are well worth the price in my mind.

Ghiradelli Soda Fountain & Ice Cream Shop is located in the Pacific Wharf area of Disney California. It is right next door to the sourdough bread bakery tour.

Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor

We’re heading back to Disneyland for this next ice cream shop!

Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor is located on Main Street USA. It is about halfway down Main Street USA on the left-hand side of the street when walking towards the castle with the entrance at your back.

It is the perfect place to grab some Disneyland ice cream before the parade or after meeting Disneyland characters hanging out on Main Street USA.

Gibson Girl specializes in sundaes but is also the perfect place to go if you’re looking for a single scoop of ice cream.

My personal favourite sundae is the Firehouse Dalmatian Mint Sundae. The mint ice cream is perfectly flavoured. Not too minty and not too bland. Just right. Then add on the fudge topping and whipped cream, and you can’t go wrong!

I’m drooling thinking of it!

Gibson Girl doesn’t have the most exciting or unique ice cream, but it is a classic. There is nothing that makes me feel like I’m in Disneyland more than sitting on Main Street USA with an ice cream sundae watching people walk by. It doesn’t get any better than that.

Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor Disneyland

The Adorable Snowman Frosted Treats

Just like Tropical Hideaway, The Adorable Snowman Frosted Treats opened in 2018. It opened when the newly designed Pixar Pier debuted and has been a hit with guests ever since!

It is located in Disney California Adventures park along the curve of Pixar Pier after you pass Lamplight Lounge but before you get to the Incredicoaster. The Adorable Snowman is the only building in that area, so it is impossible to miss!

You can indulge in vanilla soft-serve, chocolate soft-serve, or lemon non-dairy soft-serve. Each individual flavour is served in a cup or cone, or you can get two of the flavours swirled together!

The swirl is definitely the way to go! Especially the chocolate and lemon swirl. It is such a good combination!

They also serve two specialty items. The Pixar Pier Frosty Parfait and It’s Snow-Capped Lemon!

The Pixar Pier Frosty Parfait is made up of the lemon soft-serve and a blue raspberry slushy. And It’s Snow-Capped Lemon! is the lemon soft-serve capped with white chocolate.

Everything at The Adorable Snowman is delicious!

All the treats are light and refreshing. The ice cream isn’t too heavy, so you won’t feel weighed down after eating it like at some of the other places on this list. It is the perfect light snack!

Salt & Straw

I’ve saved the best for last! This is my absolute favourite place to get ice cream in Disneyland.

The ice cream at Salt & Straw is incredible, and I crave it all the time!

It is a specialty ice cream shop that serves up a number of unique and classic flavours.

Flavours range from Chocolate Gooey Brownie to Black Olive Brittle & Humboldt Fog. From Roasted Strawberry Coconut to Dandelion Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies & Cream. And everything inbetween.

There is truly something there for everybody. It doesn’t matter if you’re a plain Jane when it comes to ice cream or are super adventurous, you’ll fall in with Salt & Straw.

My personal favourite flavours are Honey Lavender and Salted Malted Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough.

They also have seasonal flavours that rotate in and out. Every seasonal flavour I’ve tried has been delicious, and they tend to be less out there than some of the regular flavours.

Salt & Straw is the only Disneyland ice cream shop on this list located in Downtown Disney. It is on the right-hand side of Downtown Disney when you’re walking with the parks to your back. It is basically right next door to Naples Ristorante e Bar.

I highly recommend you take the time to explore Downtown Disney and stop in at Salt & Straw for an ice cream treat!

It is normally quiet busy and often has a line, but if you time it right, you can grab an ice cream with no line! Salt & Straw tends to be quietist in the late morning while everybody is in the parks. And busiest in the evening after dinnertime.

Salt & Straw Disneyland Ice Cream

But What About Black Tap Craft Burgers and Shakes?!

If you’ve done any research about Disneyland ice cream, you’ve probably heard about Black Top.

It serves over-the-top extreme shakes. One even has an entire piece of chocolate cake on top of the shake.

They’re honesty a bit ridiculous. They’re quite difficult to eat because they melt so quickly. There is so much stuff piled on the top and sides of the shakes that your hands will inevitably get super dirty and sticky. And they’re so large that you won’t have room to eat anything else.

The shakes are great for an Instagram picture but that is about it. That’s my opinion at least.

There are so many other places you can get ice cream at Disneyland, and they’re all better than the crazy shakes at Black Top Craft Burgers and Shakes.

I say save your money and get a more delicious ice cream at one of the other places on this list!


You really can’t go wrong wherever you choose to indulge in ice cream. Nearly every place you can get ice cream has a great selection of treats.

These are just my favourite places to get Disneyland ice cream. I always prioritize getting ice cream at these seven places, and I think you should too!

Each of the places on this list serve up delicious treats that are unique to their shop. Whether it be raspberry DOLE whip, a custom ice cream bar, or a seasonal shake at Schmoozies!, you simply can’t go wrong.

The only downside to Disneyland ice cream is that a lot of the places that sell it don’t have indoor seating. And if they do, it is very limited.

Good luck trying to find a seat indoors at Gibson Girl!

But sitting outside is a small price to pay to enjoy one of the most delicious treats on Disney property.

Just make sure to finish your ice cream before it melts!

Now I want to hear from you! I’m sure I’ve missed one of your favourite spots to get ice cream at Disneyland, and you’re fuming that it isn’t on the list.

Drop me a comment below and tell me what you’re favourite Disneyland ice cream is!

5 Secret Places to Meet Disneyland Characters

There are countless things to do in Disneyland, and it can feel a bit overwhelming to plan the perfect Disneyland itinerary. Choosing between rides and restaurants can take up a lot of your planning time, but you shouldn’t forget about meeting Disneyland characters!

Just like rides and restaurants, you should take some time to plan out which Disneyland characters you want to meet and put together a plan on meeting them.

It would be a shame to go all the way to Disneyland and not meet your favourite character!

There are a number of obvious places you can meet your favourite Disneyland characters. They include Toontown, Main Street USA, and Royal Hall in Fantasyland.

But there are also a number of secret places to meet Disneyland characters.

This post will help you learn about the secret places to meet Disneyland characters, so you can track down some of the more rare characters and meet them while in Disneyland.

I’ll also cover a few tips and tricks to meeting Disneyland characters, so you can get the most out of every character interaction.

But that won’t be the majority of the article because, let’s face it, you’re here for the insider secrets!

1. The Plaza Inn Character Breakfast

In my opinion, the Plaza Inn character breakfast is one of the most underrated experiences in Disneyland!

It is normally pretty quiet, but it is packed with unique characters to meet.

In my experience, the breakfast at Plaza Inn is the place to go if you want to meet rare characters.

The last time I had breakfast at Plaza Inn I met Max (Goofy’s son), Rafiki, Fairy God Mother, Captain Hook, Chip, Dale, Tigger, Eeyore, and Minnie! It is incredible to be able to meet such a cast of characters at a character meal!

Normally you get a handful of characters that are friends. Like Pooh and gang or Mickey and friends. But not at Plaza Inn! You get to meet a wide selection of characters. Most of which you won’t be able to meet elsewhere in Disneyland!

The best part about Plaza Inn is that it is often so quiet that you get to interact with the characters more than once!

I hung out with all the characters twice last time I had breakfast at Plaza Inn, and Dale came over a third time to say bye before I left. I don’t think you’ll get that much character interaction at any other character meal in Disneyland or Disney World!

If Plaza Inn has such good characters, why isn’t it more popular?

That’s a great question, and one I’ve pondered quite a few times.

My guess is that most people don’t realize how many Disneyland characters they’ll get to meet at Plaza Inn. I sure didn’t the first time I ate there!

The website markets the breakfast as “Minnie & Friends- Breakfast in the Park”. It is reasonable to conclude from that description that you’ll be dining with the Fab Five.

With that description, the character breakfast at Plaza Inn doesn’t stand out against the other character breakfasts offered on Disneyland property. It is difficult for Minnie & Friends to compete with:

  • Princesses at the Grand Californian Hotel
  • Donald and friends in beach outfits at the Paradise Pier Hotel
  • Mickey’s Tale of Adventure Breakfast at the Grand Californian Hotel (which is known to have unique and fun characters you can’t meet anywhere else)
  • The classic Goofy’s Kitchen character meal that is similar in popularity and nostalgia as Chef Mickey’s in Disney World

Based off all the descriptions of the available Disneyland character breakfasts, Plaza Inn sounds the least exciting. If you only have the means to have one character breakfast, Plaza Inn doesn’t jump off the page as a top contender at first glance.

But you now know better!

You know that Plaza Inn is a top secret place to meet some of the most elusive of all Disneyland characters. So book that character breakfast and enjoy meeting tons of Disneyland characters with no waiting in line and great food.

Plus Plaza Inn is hardly ever booked full, so you don’t feel rushed or have to fight the crowds. That’s one of the most attractive features of the Plaza Inn character breakfast other than the characters.

It is so nice to be able to spend as much time as you want at a character breakfast without feeling like you’re being rushed out!

The Plaza Inn Disneyland

2. The Wishing Well

The wishing well is one of my all-time favourite places to meet Disneyland characters.

A lot of the Disneyland characters that hang out at the wishing well are more difficult to find but still very popular characters. You’ll be ahead of the game if you know where to keep an eye out for these characters!

The wishing well is located just off to the right of the castle when you’re walking down Main Street USA from the park entrance.

There is a small pathway just off the main walkway through the castle. Just follow that, and you’ll come across the wishing well.

Don’t forget to make a wish while you’re there!

Some of the characters that are known to pop up to meet guests near the wishing well are:

  • Snow White
  • Evil Queen
  • Princess Jasmine
  • Aladdin
  • Princess Aurora

That’s a pretty good list of characters you can meet! Where else are you going to run into the Evil Queen?!

An extra tip on finding some of these Disneyland characters (especially the Evil Queen) is to walk a bit beyond the wishing well into Fantasyland.

Follow the path behind the wishing well into Fantasyland, and that is where you’re most likely going to find the Evil Queen. She tends to hang out by the wall opposite the Alice in Wonderland washrooms.

She hardly ever has a line because most people don’t know to look for her there!

Take advantage of this opportunity to grab a picture with one of Disney’s most famous villains. Just don’t eat any apples she offers you!

The Wishing Well Disneyland

3. At the Front of the Park

I’m not referring to meeting characters on Main Street USA when I say that the front of the park is a secret place to meet Disneyland characters.

You can meet some really fun characters on Main Street USA (like Cruella De Vil and Mickey and friends), but it is hardly a secret place to meet Disneyland characters!

I’m talking about the very front of the park near the entrance before you cross under the train station.

I often forget that Disneyland characters meet at the front of the park and am happily surprised to see characters meeting guests when I leave the park!

Characters aren’t always meeting at the front of the park, so you’re not guaranteed to meet any there. They most often show up to meet with guests in the afternoon and early evening when the park is busiest.

The most common character I’ve seen meeting at the front of the park is Ariel. She wears the most beautiful turquoise ballroom dress, so it is a great photo opportunity to meet her in a less common outfit.

The Disneyland characters that meet guests at the front of the park tend to have a longer line than at the other locations on this list.

The longer line makes sense though. Guests who are entering Disneyland see the characters when they enter and hop in line to meet them before heading deeper into the park.

The lines are still relatively short- especially compared to the lines you’ll stand in the meet Disneyland characters at the most popular locations.

Cruella De Vil Disneyland Character

4. Roaming Around the Park

The best secret (but not really secret) places to meet Disneyland characters is roaming around the park.

The most common place to find characters roaming around is in Fantasyland, but you can find them just about anywhere in Disneyland.

It isn’t uncommon to stumble across Peter Pan hiding from and taunting Captain Hook in Fantasyland. Or see Dr. Facilier walking through New Orleans Square.

Alice, Queen of Hearts, Mary Poppins & Bert, Woody, Chewbacca, and Prince Naveen have all been known to wander through different areas of the park meeting with guests.

It is so much fun to be walking through the park, turn a corner, and see a character you weren’t expecting to see! One of my favourite parks of the characters the roam around Disneyland is that they tend to be more rare characters, and you normally have some of the most fun interactions.

You might think that the Disneyland characters that roam through the park have long lines. It would make sense considering they tend to be rare, but they don’t!

Most people are so focussed on getting from one place to another that they don’t bother to stop and meet the roaming characters.

They look at the roaming characters but very rarely stop what they’re doing to take the time to meet them. Which is good news for you!

You can quickly jump in line, meet a character, and then continue on with what you were doing before without interrupting your plan too much. I’ve never had to wait more than 10 minutes to meet a roaming character, and that is very uncommon.

Most of the time, there are only two or three people in line in front of me, and it takes less than 5 minutes to meet a roaming character and get my photo with them!

Princess Belle (Beauty and the Beast)


This is another odd one but hear me out! I’m not just running out of secret places to meet Disneyland characters. Trust me.

Adventureland isn’t a land people normally associate meeting characters. And for good reason seeing as basically no Disneyland characters meet there and characters tend not to roam around Adventureland.

So why is it even on my list then?! There is one very good reason Adventureland is on this list:


Moana is such a rare character to meet, but she is an extremely popular character to meet. You can meet her at Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom, in Hong Kong Disneyland, and in Adventureland in Disneyland.

That’s it. She doesn’t meet anywhere else.

The wild this is that most people don’t know that Moana meets guests in Adventureland!

For such a popular character, it is a fairly well hidden gem.

Where exactly you can meet Moana

Moana meets with guests near Tarzan’s Treehouse. She doesn’t meet everyday, and when she does meet with guests, it often isn’t for a long time.

So if you see her out and about meeting guests, jump in line right away or else you might miss your only chance!

If you’re wondering if Moana is meeting on a particular day and it isn’t listed in the times guide, I recommend asking a cast member at the Royal Hall in Fantasyland. These cast members are really knowledgable on what characters are scheduled to meet that day.

I’ve overheard the cast members at Royal Hall on more than one occasion help guests figure out when Moana is meeting next.

If you’re not interested in meeting Moana, Adventureland isn’t the place for you. No other character really meets in that area, and you’ll have more success heading over to New Orleans Square. A number of characters hang out there.

But if you love Moana and thought you couldn’t meet her in Disneyland, this may be the secret Disneyland character meeting place that makes your entire trip!

PS- While you’re in Adventureland, be sure to stop by the Tropical Hideaway to try some of the best ice cream in Disneylan!

The Tropical Hideaway Disneyland Dole Whip

Bonus: Mickey Mouse

The most obvious and common place to meet Mickey is at his house in Toontown, but it isn’t necessarily the best place to meet him! The line to meet Mickey at his house is normally 30-60 minutes, and that is a heck of a long time to wait to meet a character!

Lucky for you, there is a better and lesser known way to meet Mickey with little to no line!

In the afternoons, Mickey meets with guests just off of Main Street USA. He meets guests on the right-hand side of Main Street USA when you’re walking towards the castle.

He doesn’t meet in the centre of Main Street USA but off the side and often back by the door the characters come in and out it. It can be easy to miss him, and a lot of people do!

This is the perfect place to meet Mickey if you don’t want to stand in a long queue to meet him in his house.

He often meets at the same time as Minnie and Pluto, so if it shows on the time guide that those two are meeting on Main Street USA, there is a good chance that Mickey will be meeting guests as well.

Mickey Mouse is a very popular character to meet, so he will most likely have a longer line than any other character on this list, but the line on Main Street USA will be a lot shorter than the line at his house.

So if you want to meet Mickey while on your Disneyland vacation but don’t want to wait in an hour-long line, this is the solution for you!

Mickey Mouse Toontown Disneyland

General Tips for Meeting Disneyland Characters

Now that you know all the secret places to meet Disneyland characters, it is time to go over a few general tips and tricks for having the best possible interactions with all the characters.

These tips are perfect for people who are new to meeting Disneyland characters or people who are awkward like me and like to have a firm plan before embarking on a socialization journey.

You can use these general tips whenever you’re meeting Disney characters. Not just at Disneyland but at every Disney park around the world!

I wrote an entire post on meeting Magic Kingdom characters if you want to check it out. It is primarily focused on meeting characters at Magic Kingdom, but you can apply a lot of the information to meeting Disneyland characters as well!

Pick Up a Times Guide when You Enter the Park

A times guide will come in very handy when you’re planning your day. It lists when all the characters are meeting and the time of the shows and parades.

You can get a times guide as you’re entering the park or at guest services.

Be sure to refer to your times guide when you’re planning your day! It’ll help you decide what time of day you should dedicate to meeting Disneyland characters and when you should prioritize rides.

Monitor the App

The Disneyland app is the best place to look for real-time updates!

It lists how long the wait time for each ride is, where characters are meeting, and how long the line to meet the characters is. They only estimate the wait time to meet characters with a dedicated meeting spot like Mickey and the princesses.

The app will tell you when characters are meeting on Main Street USA and other lands, but it won’t tell you how long the wait is.

It doesn’t impact your planning that much, but it is a good thing to keep in mind!

Pluto Disneyland Main Street USA

Don’t be Shy

This is a difficult one for me as introvert, but it really helps.

All the Disneyland characters are trained to lead the conversation with guests who don’t take hold of the conversation themselves.

Face characters will ask you questions, and fur characters will carry on the conversation by pointing and gesturing (and the help of their character attendant).

I know it can be intimidating to meet the characters at Disneyland, but it isn’t as scary as you’re building it up in your head. You get used to it after meeting with a few characters, and it gets less awkward.

Or maybe it is only awkward for me because I’m so bad in social situations. So if I can do it, so can you!

Have Your Stuff Ready

I think this is one of the most important tips I can give you for meeting Disneyland characters.

Try to have all your stuff ready before you get to the front of the line and meet the character. This means having your autograph book out, your pen lid off, and your camera ready.

It saves so much time, and the people behind you in line will appreciate it.

It also gives you the potential of having a longer interaction with the characters. The less time you spend fumbling to get your stuff in order, the more time you had to chat with the character!

I know it can be difficult to have everything ready when you have small children, but it is worth it! Have a dedicated pocket in your bag that you can easily reach that has your autograph book and pen. Even that small action will save you a lot of time!

Not All Characters have Photopass with Them

If you frequent Walt Disney World, you’re used to characters always having a Photopass cast member with them to snap a professional photo for you. But that isn’t always the case in Disneyland.

A lot of Disneyland characters have a Photopass cast member with them, but it isn’t as common (yet) as it is in Disney World. And this doesn’t just go for the roaming characters.

Some of the most common and popular Disneyland characters don’t always have a Photopass photographer with them.

I’ve had many experiences where I had to use my personal camera when meeting Mickey in Toontown or the princess at Royal Hall. It was very surprising to me the first time this happened because I’m so used to the robust Photopass system in Disney World.

The good news is that the character attendants are happy to take a photo for you.

There are normally character attendants with each character, and they’ll happily use your camera to snap a picture for you! The only time I’ve met characters without there being a character attendant was at Royal Hall.

I highly recommend you have a personal camera (or phone) ready to go if there isn’t a character attendant with the character you’re meeting.

In fact, I suggest you regularly ask character attendants to take a photo for you with your personal camera even if there is a Photopass cast member there!

You never know which person will take the best photo and capture the best memories!

Entrance to Disneyland


Meeting Disneyland characters is so much fun. No matter what age you are!

I personally don’t think any Disneyland trip is complete without meeting a couple of characters.

You’ll be able to track down and meet some amazing Disneyland characters now that you know these secret places characters tend to hang out. You’ll be checking characters off your “to meet” list in no time!

Plus you’ll meet some rather rare characters, so that is a huge bonus! Who doesn’t want to get a picture with a character who hardly ever meets guests? I know I sure do.

I go to Disney World a lot more frequently than Disneyland. I’m curious to know if you have any secret places you love meeting Disneyland characters.

If you do, drop them in the comment section. If you’re willing to share your secrets that is.