The Many Ice Cream Treats at Disneylandby Megan Walker, contributing writer
One of my all-time favorite things to do when I visit the park is to indulge in some ice cream. I don't know if it's the "old-timey" feel, the warm weather, or just the overwhelming feeling of happiness that does it to me, but every time I'm in the parks, I really want some delicious ice cream! Luckily, the entire resort is full of many different options for your morning, midday, or evening (I won't judge!) treat, especially at Disneyland Park (note that the list below does not include Disney California Adventure or the Downtown Disney District).
Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor
Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor. Photo by Megan Walker.
Right off the bat, before you get too far down Main Street, you'll find the Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor. Nestled in between the Carnation Café and the Candy Palace is an old-time ice cream parlor with a menu full of single scoop ice cream options, or a nice selection of ice cream sundae variations. My favorite time to visit Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor is during the holidays when they have their peppermint ice cream flavor, and the special peppermint bark waffle cone…you just can't beat that combination! The best part of Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor however is it's location; as it's so conveniently located near where the majority of guests watch both the parade and the fireworks show at night, it makes it incredibly easy to grab some ice cream before sitting down for either of these…after all, what would a nightly firework show be without a big scoop of ice cream?
Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor Menu. Photo by Megan Walker.
Tiki Juice Bar
Now some of you might not really consider the all-mighty, world-famous Dole Pineapple Whip to be ice cream, but it's definitely in the same realm, and perfect for a hot, SoCal day in the parks. Easily one of the most popular treats in the entire Disneyland Resort, the beloved Dole Pineapple Whip is light, tart, refreshing, and delicious, making the perfect "ice cream" treat any time during the day. Lines here are almost guaranteed to get long as the day goes on, so either grab your whip early or be prepared to be patient.
The Golden Horseshoe
The Golden Horseshoe. Photo by Megan Walker.
One place I never used to think of to stop for ice cream was The Golden Horseshoe, but it's since become one of my favorite places to visit while I'm at Disneyland. Tucked away in Frontierland, this is a really fun place to sit and relax for a little while, especially while enjoying one of their delicious ice cream sundaes, ice cream floats, or (for an unspecified limited amount of time) ice cream nachos! The ambience inside is still the old, Western-style saloon it's always been and makes for a nice place to kick back and escape the hustle and bustle of the parks for a little bit.
I'm including Carnation Café on here because while you do have to go in and sit down (sometimes only if you have a reservation) to get ice cream here, once upon a time this place was known for their ice cream sundaes and while they don't have all of the options that they used to have, they still have some pretty great ice cream options. Carnation Café also has delicious ice cream floats, milkshakes, and malts. If you're already dining here, you happen to walk by and they are taking walk-ins, or even make a reservation, especially for ice cream, it's a perfect place to sit down and enjoy a sundae with the best view of Main Street.
Clarabelle's. Photo by Megan Walker.
If you're looking for a different type of "ice cream" dessert, try Clarabelle's, located in Toontown. Clarabelle's menu features the standard Mickey's ice cream bar and sandwich, strawberry fruit bars, and Dannon Soft-Serve Frozen Yogurt. Offered in vanilla, chocolate, or swirl, you can get your froyo in a cup or a cone and finished off with your favorite toppings, like sprinkles or chocolate chips. The froyo is pretty tasty here, and the soft-serve texture makes it more similar to ice cream then the sometimes-grainy texture of other frozen yogurts.
Clarabelle's Menu. Photo by Megan Walker.
Ice Cream Carts
Ice Cream Vending Cart. Photo by Megan Walker.
Ah, the good old ice cream carts. You can find these things scattered throughout the park, so you should never have to go too long, or wander too far to find ice cream if you're in desperate need. Almost every cart will include: a Frozen Lemonade Strawberry Bar, a Mickey ice cream bar, a cookie sandwich, a strawberry fruit bar, a frozen banana, and a Mickey ice cream sandwich (ice cream presented by Nestle). Disney, being the sales geniuses they are, have these carts located just about any place you could ever feel the need for some ice cream: parade routes, fireworks viewing, outside of long attraction lines—you name it, and there's probably an ice cream cart near by, convenient for all-day snacking!
Ice Cream Vending Cart Choices. Photo by Megan Walker.
Next time you're in Disneyland Park and you're looking for a sweet, frozen treat, you won't have to look far, there are lots of different options to satisfy your sweet tooth. Among all of these choices, what's your favorite ice cream treat at Disneyland Park?
If the line to get a Dole Whip is too long, try going into the pre-show area for the Tiki Room. There is a purchase window on both sides of the attraction.
I really really like this article. As a WDW vet, I'm used to lots of big meals. But what I like about DL is having a really big lunch and then doing ice cream for dinner. I know it sounds weird, but we've done it quite a bit. A double scoop of cookies&cream in a waffle cone tastes so much better at DL than when I buy Dreyers at home. I also love the orange soda/vanilla ice cream float - that really cools you off and doesn't leave you thirsty like ice cream does. I've also had the Chocolate Chip Cookie Sundae, and that's a really good dinner replacement.
As for the Dole Whips, I really wish they had what WDW has and that's the Dole Float. It's pineapple juice with vanilla soft serve in the middle....and IT. IS. AWESOOOOOOOME.
My first experience with Ice Cream at DL is the cookie sandwich from one of the carts. My dad bought it for me and I loved it. I think I need to get one of those more often.
And I'm definitely going to need to try the yogurt at Clarabelle's in Toon Town. I usually do the Clarabelle's at DCA where you can create your own ice cream pop. That's a big hit with my kids.
A Dole float is Dole Whip with pineapple juice, and you can get them at the Tiki Room stand.
We went to D-land 2 years ago and my now 5-year-old daughter still asks when we can go back to the park for "Tiki Room icecream". Watching the Tiki Room show while slurping a Dole Whip was the most memorable part for her.