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.
To find out how we got from Australia to Disneyland and our first day at the ‘Happiest Place on Earth’ check out this blog entry. To continue on with our adventures and read about our first day at California Adventure click here.
After a bit of a sleep in we arrived at Disneyland at 11 am and headed straight to Candy Palace and Candy Kitchen for a surprise treat – Mickey and Minnie Mouse cupcakes. They were delicious and so cute too!
Then we headed off to Tomorrowland and a ride on Star Tours. Star Tours was so much fun and had been updated to reflect the newest Star Wars movies. We all loved the ride and were lucky enough to get front row seats. After a look in The Star Trader for a certain Wookie soft toy (Max was deciding which Chewbacca he liked the best, the one at The Star Trader or the one in Galaxy’s Edge, a very tough decision) we made our way towards the train station for a ride on the Disneyland Railroad.
The Disneyland Railroad was really enjoyable, we stayed on board for a complete lap and a half, as we made our way to the closest station to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. The train ride was a nice break from walking and included a few surprises. The kid’s loved seeing the dinosaurs. Very cool!
We disembarked at New Orleans Square Station, stopping at the Haunted Mansion for fast passes. Our return time was for 4.15 pm so we headed off to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. This was our second visit to Batuu on this trip, we had already been there for a quick look around the day before.
As it was now lunch time our first stop was Docking Bay 7 Food and Cargo. Greg and I both chose the Fried Endorian Tip-yip, while Max and Zoë had the Fried Endorain Tip-yip Youngling Meal. The food was really nice and the atmosphere was awesome. It was very cool sitting amongst all the Star Wars theming.
After lunch we took a closer look at the Millennium Falcon before heading back to the Market Place for a spot of shopping and checking out all those weird and wonderful alien creatures. The spot of shopping of course included purchasing a very cute Chewbacca! We were also lucky enough to run into a few Stormtroopers. This made Max’s day… although he wasn’t really sure what to say to them.
Our next stop was the Milk Stand. Zoë absolutely loved the blue milk she had tried the day before and was begging for more. It was pretty refreshing on a hot day. While Zoë and Greg were lining up for the blue milk, Max and I took some photos with the First Order TIE echelon.
After the blue milk we started making our way back towards the Haunted Mansion stopping for a little break along the river. It must have been very relaxing, because Zoë fell fast asleep and napped for almost half an hour, before we woke her up for our ride on the Haunted Mansion.
The Haunted Mansion was set up for the holidays with The Nightmare Before Christmas overlay. It was a nice amount of both spooky and fun for Max and Zoë, with a little surprise treat at the end. They both loved the ride and loved looking for Zero and Jack Skellington.
We then headed back to Tomorrowland for the evening. Our first stop was the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage. Zoë especially loved this ride. It was lots of fun climbing down into the submarine, and looking for Nemo and his friends through the portholes. It really felt like you were sinking deeper into the ocean. So fun!
It was then time for one of Max’s favourite rides at Disneyland – Autopia. Since our first ride on Autopia, Max was dying to have another go. I personally found the cars a bit awkward to drive, so Zoë and I watched from the ramp leading up to the Disneyland Railroad. Max and Greg had a great time zooming around the track and Max got an Autopia Driver’s Licence at the end. A great keepsake!
As it was now dinner time we headed over to Pizza Planet, where we all chose pizza for dinner, except Zoë who got macaroni and cheese. The pizza slices were big and one slice each was enough for us. Pizza Planet was one of favourite restaurants at Disneyland.
After tea it was time for a go on the Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters. This was also a repeat visit for us, but it was still lots of fun. This time round we swapped partners and had a go at beating our previous scores. We loved it!
Before leaving the park for the day we stopped by the Emporium on Main Street U.S.A for a very important item. A Dumbo soft toy for Zoë. There were four Dumbo’s to choose from, so it was a very tough decision. In the end she chose one of the smaller ones. We headed back to the hotel, arriving at about 8.30 pm, with two new friends Chewbacca and Dumbo.
Before going to bed the night before Zoë declared quite strongly that she did not want to go to Disneyland the next day. So Day 6 of our holiday became a rest day.
Day 6 was one of the hottest days of our trip (36 C), so the rest day was good timing. After breakfast at the hotel we went across the street to Target, to get some more supplies and new bathers for Zoë. We then had a look at some of the outlet shops nearby, before heading back to the hotel for a swim.
There were two pools at our hotel to choose from, but we chose the pool in the South Tower as it was a bit shallower for the kids. They had so much fun in the pool and met a few friends to play with. The pool was the perfect temperature too!
We took it easy for the rest of the day with a nap in the afternoon, and a movie and dinner in our room, before an early night.
As it was going to be another hot day, we decided to stay at our hotel until the late afternoon before heading off to Disneyland. We spent early morning out on the games deck at our hotel. Since the day we arrived Max had been hanging out for this moment. The games deck was fantastic, with a bit of something for everyone. There were two tennis courts, basketball, bocce, and a huge connect 4 to name a few. The only problem with the area was the lack of shade. If they had some large potted trees or some shade sails it would have been a perfect spot.
We hibernated for the rest of the day, keeping out of the heat and at 4.30 pm we left for a night at Disneyland. On arriving at Disneyland we joined the short queue to meet Minnie Mouse. Zoë was so excited, she just loves Minnie. Then we made our way over to Critter Country for dinner at the Hungry Bear Restaurant. As it was a Saturday night with hot weather, Disneyland was packed. In contrast the Hungry Bear was so peaceful and calm, it felt as though you were miles away from anywhere. It had lovely views of the river and trees and was such fun when the train passed by. The kids loved waving to the passengers. We sat towards the back of the restaurant, it was pretty empty back there.
After a dinner of burgers and fries we headed off to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. We were yet to see it at night and when we arrived it didn’t fail to impress. It looked awesome. All the lanterns in the market place were lit, adding that extra touch of atmosphere you don’t quite get in the daytime. The Millennium Falcon and the surrounding mountains were also lit up and looked fantastic. And of course the lightsabers were just that bit more impressive at night!
The Mad Tea Party was our next stop, we had already been on this ride twice during our holiday and we just had to go on it at night. It was so much fun, and the lanterns really looked magical. We then headed towards It’s a Small World to discover that everyone was taking places along the street for the Main Street Electrical Parade. Although we were planning on going to the later parade, we decided as we were here we might as well join in the fun. So we took position and waited approximately 20 minutes for the parade to begin.
The parade was lots of fun and the kids got to see some of their favourite characters all lit up. The best floats of the night were Cinderella’s pumpkin coach and Captain Hook’s pirate ship, they looked amazing! Pete’s dragon was also very cool! After the parade we had to make a mad dash back to Sleeping Beauty’s Castle for the fireworks.
It was hard to find a good viewing spot to see both the fireworks and the projections on the castle. In the end we managed to slip into a spot, but we couldn’t really see the castle at all and there was an umbrella partially obstructing our view. Also Max and Zoë had never seen fireworks this close up before, and both of them aren’t really huge fans of loud noises. So they weren’t as impressed as we hoped they would be. It was a bit disappointing.
To cheer everyone up our next ride was Storybook Land Canal Boats. I had read online this ride is better at night, so we had to make sure we didn’t miss out. With all the fairy lights it really was a magical experience at night, and once again Max got a real kick out of the ‘giant’ ducks asleep in the tiny villages. We all really loved it.
Now everyone was feeling happy again, we had one final ride on the King Arthur Carrousel, before heading back to our hotel at 11.30 pm.
*All photos were taken by me please ask my permission before using.