Nine Days at the Happiest Place on Earth
We have just come back from the most amazing trip to Disneyland, California! My family and I spent 11 days in Anaheim with 9 days at Disneyland and California Adventure. Here is how we spent each day, the rides we went on, shows we watched and the Disney food we ate.
The first day of our holiday was a travel day. We spent our day travelling from Melbourne, Australia to LA, facing all the “fun” things about overseas travel such as flight delays, passport problems and the mad dash across the airport to catch our flight.
The second day of our trip was much more exciting, as it was our first day in Disneyland as a family. And we loved every minute of it! Check out my previous post for more details about the first 2 days of our trip here.
Find out all about our planning here, including flights and our hotel of choice.
Day Three | California Adventure
California Adventure was the chosen destination for day 3 of our Disneyland holiday. We arrived at the park around 10.30 in the morning, an impressive feat after the kids were up way past their bedtimes the night before.
The first stop of the day was Elias & Co. to buy some caps. The day before we had bought our kids matching Mickey ears but really needed something to keep the sun off their faces. Our son Max (7) and daughter Zoë (5) chose Mickey and Minnie caps with ears and I picked one of the Disneyland castle. We also grabbed a pressed penny book so we could start collecting. Now our heads were protected we made our way outside, stopping to have our photo taken with the Headless Horseman.
By this time we were feeling a little peckish, so our next goal to was buy a Mickey Mouse pretzel. The pretzels were big! So the kids shared one, while my husband and I enjoyed our own.
While my husband Greg stood in the pretzel line with Zoë, Max and I went and checked out the end of Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Dance Party. Unfortunately we pretty much missed the whole thing, but Max was lucky enough to meet Star Lord and Gamora. He absolutely loves Star Lord, so this was a dream come true moment for him. The only thing that could have made it better was if Groot had been there too.
After our pretzels we headed over to Cars Land. Cars Land was all decked out in it’s Halloween finest, with spooky cobwebs, and scary gas can spiders. It looked awesome! Even the cars were wearing costumes. We even got to have a chat with the yellow Dinoco car.
While in Cars Land we went on Mater’s Graveyard JamBOOree which was lots of fun. Mater tells a pretty good Halloween joke too.
After the ride we made a beeline straight for the Radiator Springs Racers fastpasses. Considering it was getting towards lunchtime now, we were happy to get fastpasses for 4.25 that afternoon. These were the first fastpasses of our trip, so far our longest wait time had been 20 minutes on Gadget’s Go Coaster in Toon Town, so we were doing pretty well.
With fastpasses taken care of we set out to explore Pixar Pier, with a stop along the way at The Little Mermaid – Ariel’s Undersea Adventure. Such a cute ride, Zoë loved it! And only a 5 minute wait. Perfect!
With the Incredicoaster and Pixar Pal-A-Round just across the lake, it was the perfect time to get a few quick photos.
Next stop on our tour of Pixar Pier was Jessie’s Critter Carosel, a short but very sweet ride on some playful looking creatures. And then it was time for a spin on the Pixar Pal-A-Round.
Greg and I had previously been on the Pixar Pal-A-Round several years ago, and it almost didn’t end well for one of our friends, who got a bad case of motion sickness. So this time round we stuck with non swinging side, which for us was a lot more fun and we really enjoyed spotting all the different Disneyland rides and landmarks from up there.
Then we kept heading round the pier stopping for another short but sweet ride, the Jumpin’ Jellyfish. It was lots of fun and kind of relaxing, would have been nicer if it went a little longer. And then deciding it was time for a treat we made a full lap of the lake and ended up at Adorable Snowman Frosted Treats, where we all chose a yummy soft serve ice cream. It was nice to have a little rest in the shade too.
After our break we started heading back to Cars Land via off Grizzly Peak where we ran into the one and only Pluto! By this time Zoë was starting to feel a bit tired, so Max and I joined the small queue to meet him. So fun!
We still had a bit of time to kill before we could use our fastpasses, so we had a look at some of the brilliantly themed shops in Cars Land and collected some pressed pennies. The kids absolutely loved collecting those pennies. Such a cheap and fun souvenier and a great way to use up some spare change.
We then had a go on Luigi’s Honkin’ Haul-O-Ween. This was a very cool little ride with cars that danced in time. So cute! And then finally it was time to join the fastpass line for Radiator Spring Racers! It was 100% worth the wait, we all loved it. The perfect mix of storytelling with a bit of a thrill. Unfortunately it was our one and only ride on this ride, as when we returned a few days later we missed out on fastpasses, and then the ride required maintenance which made the line crazy long when it reopened. Ahh well… there’s always next time.
Radiator Springs Racers was our last ride of the day and we started making our way back out of the park. Before we left Zoë and Max each chose a Mickey Mouse balloon. We got back to our hotel just in time for dinner.
Day Four | Disneyland
Day Four is one of the most memorable days of our holiday. Sixty days before we left, I made a reservation for Max and Zoë at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique. And while I did have a few doubts about the experience, I am so pleased we did it!
From the moment Zoë arrived at Disneyland in her Cinderella dress she was made to feel special. Every cast member greeted her as a “Princess” and many had conversations with her about being a “Princess.” It was an amazing day. We even met a ‘real’ princess on our way into the park!
Max started the day as himself and although they both knew there was going to be a treat, and we had to be there early for an appointment, neither of them knew what was going to happen, Max felt a bit a left out. That of course all changed when we arrived at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique for a Knight and Princess makeover. While Zoë was able to choose her hairstyle, Max was also able to choose from a knight t-shirt or full costume. He chose the t-shirt.
The whole experience was magical from start to finish and they had the most beautiful Fairy Godmother. We were so happy with the final results, they both looked gorgeous, it was worth every penny. They both received so much attention that day, from both cast members and visitors, that they really did feel very special. It was lovely.
The first stop after their makeover was of course to get some photos beside Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, and then as we were in the neighbourhood we went to the Royal Theatre to watch a performance of Rapunzel. It was very funny.
As Zoë and Max were dressed as royalty for the day, we decided to focus on Fantasyland for most of the day. Our first ride of the day was King Arthur’s Carrousel. The carrousel is beautiful and Zoë loved riding on the horses. Our next stop was of course Dumbo the Flying Elephant. Zoë had been looking forward to this ride for months and it didn’t disappoint. There is something very magical about riding a flying elephant.
From the Dumbo ride we spied the Casey Jr. Circus Train and as they are from the same movie, this was of course our next stop. Both Max and Zoë loved it when we got to a hill and the train started spluttering “I think I can.” It was such a cute ride.
For lunch we went to the Red Rose Tavern and had a pepperoni flatbread, a slow cooked beef poutine and two kids meals (one cheeseburger, one turkey sandwich). The tables outside the restaurant were a lovely place to sit and eat our lunch, it was quite shady there on a hot day.
After lunch we headed off to It’s a Small World. The kids loved this ride. It was fun trying to spot all the Disney characters and guess which countries were which. It was also a nice place to take photos, such an amazing backdrop.
On our way to the Mad Tea Party, we ran into Geppeto, and Max and Zoë had their photos taken with him, just before Peter Pan and Captain Hook started playing hide and seek. Peter Pan hid behind Geppeto’s back. The kids loved it!
Next stop was another spin on the teacups (one of my personal favourites) and then we joined a slightly longer than we would normally choose, line for Alice in Wonderland. It was a cute little ride, with cute little caterpillar carriages. Zoë and I got a pink one.
Then we were off to the Storybook Land Canal Boats. Max and Zoë were chosen to be whale watchers and got to sit on the very front of the boat. So fun! We loved looking at all the tiny scenes from our favourite fairytales and Max loved seeing the “giant” ducks sitting in among the tiny buildings.
Once we came ashore it was time for something a bit faster, so we went on Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. Zoë really loved “driving” crazily through the town, she thought it was great fun. Snow White’s Scary Adventures was our last and spookiest stop in Fantasyland for the day, before we headed over to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. We had all been waiting for this moment.
We entered Star Wars: Galaxies Edge via Critter Country. We loved how the two areas merged seamlessly into each other, the only hint of our arrival were the futuristic lamp posts standing amongst the foliage. These gradually made way for a more desert like environment, even the temperature seemed to rise as we entered the land.
Where to Max’s absolute delight we met Chewbacca! Both Max and Zoë were so thrilled to meet him! It was one of the highlights of our trip. They are still talking about it.
From there we wandered through the land marvelling at all the details, from the beautiful lamps adorning the market place to the curious animals in the creature stall. We appreciated each and every detail. Including the eye watching us as we drank from the water fountain.
This drink was only to be topped by the blue milk! Despite the mixed reviews of the blue milk, we all enjoyed it, especially Zoë who asked for a cup each time we visited. Another must have beverage we (Greg and myself) enjoyed while in Galaxies Edge was Coca-Cola from one of the very unique bottles on offer in Batuu. They just look impressive and make a great souvenir.
We were loving Galaxies Edge, but after an early morning and a busy day, we decided to start making our way back towards the gate. We did make one stop along the way, at Pixie Hollow and got some adorable photos at Tinkerbelle’s house.
Oh and I absolutely love this photo of our little Cinderella. So cute!
I really loved this day at Disneyland, it was a dream come true, with truly happy kids, who just beamed smiles all day long.