Taking Instagram-Worthy Pictures at Disney World

by Dom
May 23, 2023
Photography at Disney World

As one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, the Disney parks have naturally become the one of the most photographed places in the world—which of course is because it’s an amazing place to take beautiful pictures! Whether you’re trying to preserve memories of your trip or just looking for some excellent photo ops, Disney World is the perfect place to snap stunning shots. Here’s how to take better pictures at Disney World so that you can come away with magical photos that you’ll love for years to come.

Choose Your Gear Wisely

Contrary to what you may think, you don’t need an expensive camera or high-end lenses in order to take Instagram-worthy pictures at Disney World, but having quality gear certainly helps. If you’re planning on taking pictures during your visit, opt for a camera with good image quality and features like ISO control and autofocus. This will make it easier for you to take high-quality shots without having to fuss too much with the settings.

Photography Equipment
You don’t actually need all this photography equipment to take beautiful photos!

While not quite as good as their standalone counterparts, today’s smartphones feature multiple zoom lenses and great low light performance, so don’t be afraid to stick with just your smartphone! Just remember to be courteous to other guests and turn the flash off if you’re on a dark ride.

If you’re serious about getting the absolute best photos possible, especially at night where you need long exposure, you’ll want to bring some sort of tripod. Whether its a telescoping one, or one of those short flexible ones, having a tripod can drastically improve photo quality. Just don’t bring a selfie stick as Disney does not allow them inside the parks.

Know the Best times to Shoot

Timing is everything when it comes to taking good photos at Disney World. Try to avoid shooting during midday when the sun is directly overhead—this causes harsh shadows and blown-out highlights in your photos. You’ll want try instead either early in the morning or late in the afternoon when there are softer shadows available.

Sunset over the Imagination pavilion with Monorail Yellow passing through Epcot.
Golden Hour sunset over the Imagination pavilion with Monorail Yellow passing through Epcot.

We also strongly suggest shooting during Golden Hour: When the sun rises and sets, a window of opportunity opens up where daylight is more delicate than usual. It casts an ethereal glow over all its gaze touches as it bids us farewell for yet another day. Nighttime photography presents more interesting light sources to shoot but can be taxing on image quality due to the low light. If you’re shooting at night, make sure you’re using a lens that lets in plenty of light or choose a longer exposure time!

Make Use of Props

Adding props into your picture can really bring out your creative side and make for truly unique photos that are sure to stand out from the crowd! There are plenty of props that you can use in photos—think fun hats, funny poses, mickey ears, food items, etc.—that will add some extra flair and character into your shots. Just be sure not to overdo it so as not distract from your subject!

Magic Kingdom Balloons
Magic Kingdom Balloons

Don’t Forget Composition!

Last but not least, don’t lose your composure! As most photographers know, good photo composition is key to creating an eye-catching image. Arranging the right visual elements in just the right way can make all the difference between mediocrity and masterful artistry. This means many things; it means a good balance of ground, subject, and sky. It means good framing, not leaving anything important out of frame.

The Ultimate Guide to Taking Great Pictures at Disney World
The Ultimate Guide to Taking Instagram-Worthy Pictures at Disney World

One more photo composition tip: if the subject you are shooting is low to the ground or a short child, getting down on their level for the photo instead of shooting from head-height can make a world of a difference, try it yourself!

In Conclusion

With these tips in mind, you should have no problem taking amazing pictures while visiting Disney World! Be sure to keep an eye on time of day when shooting and always think about the right composition that can add an extra touch of magic into your shots. With a little practice and experimentation, you’ll come away with some incredible photos that will last a lifetime!

Written by Dom

Dom is fascinated with the magic and scale of Walt Disney World and visits the parks as often as he can.

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