If thinking about amusement park food conjures images of endless peddle carts with greasy, fried foods and jumbo sugary snacks, well, you're missing part of the picture. Sure, most theme parks offer those options — and isn't that part of the fun? — but at the same time, many parks also have choices that aren't so run-of-the-mill… if you know where to look, that is.
What makes for good amusement park fare might be subjective, but we’ve ranked our list based on variety of offerings, value, quality of food, and reflection of the park and/or associated ride’s theme.
Some people like casual, down-home fun and raucous rides. Some like a country vibe and family-oriented activities. Some like a bit of culture thrown into the experience. The same goes for food; while some flock to enjoy a longtime-favorite treat that their trip to a park wouldn't be complete without, others decide to splurge on a unique food experience.
Luckily, choices abound at these amusement parks. Some eateries have been around a really long time and enable people to experience and share a certain childhood nostalgia, while other spots are newer and starting their own traditions. Some have won awards from industry magazines, and others have been more quietly dishing out favorite treats and meals for generations. And some even deserve recognition for the options available across the entire park!
So whether' you're craving African, Mexican, French, or Italian cuisine, you can find it all. Or you can always go the safe route and grab a hot dog at Coney Island — about as American as it gets. If you’re up for it, you can also feel like a character in a Harry Potter novel, or eat eye-to-eye with a shark.
Whatever you choose, the food should only enhance the sights, sounds, rides, and your total amusement park experience! Check out our slideshow for our top picks.