Tuesday, June 03, 2014

6 Tips for Surviving Disneyland

I'm sore. Very sore. I groan when I get up, I groan when I sit down. I groan if I have to move too much. What caused this? Disneyland.

Even though I practically live down the street from Disneyland Resort, I rarely ever go. I wanted to make the most of my trip so I got the park hopper tickets and spent 16 hours going between California Adventure and Disneyland. My day felt a lot like the Lord of the Rings, there was a lot of walking, some eating, and I managed to squeeze in a lot of attractions along the way.

Here are 6 of my personal tips to make your trip to the Disneyland Resort more enjoyable:

1. Go on a week day.
It's just less crowded

2. Get the park hopper ticket.
Personally, I like California Adventure more than Disneyland. It's not as crowded, I like the rides more, and of course, they serve alcohol. I wouldn't recommend doing both parks if you only have one day because there's so much to see and do at each park. For someone who's been there a few times, I really recommend park hopper tickets so you have more options.

3. Download a ride app
There are a ton of free and paid apps out there that can tell you wait times for various attractions. This can help you plan your visit in real time. It even lets you know if rides close down for some reason. Lines for rides are shorter during dinner time and as people start gather for the parades, Fantasmic, and the fireworks show. These are probably the better times to go on the rides with longer wait times.

Use the FASTPASS system. It will save you hours of waiting in line. HOURS. Passes do run out so pick one up as soon as you can, then do other stuff in the mean time.

5. Make reservations before you go
If you're planning on dinning at a popular restaurant, make reservations online before you go. Even if you get there early, some places book up very quickly.

6. Get the Photo Pass+
You know I love taking pictures, but I didn't want to spend valuable time doing it, so I got the Photo Pass+. These can be used for pictures from rides and for the photographers located all around both parks. You can hand them your Photo Pass card and any photos taken can be viewed online, edited with fun boarders, and then you can either order a CD or download them. You can save almost $30 by ordering the Photo Pass+ at least 14 days before your visit or pay about $100 for it once you're there. Also make sure to ask for magic shots which will add a little surprise to your photos after they're taken.

Anyway, these are the attractions I managed to squeeze in in 16 hours.

California Adventure
Silly Symphony Swings
Redwood Creek Challenge Tail
California Screamin'
Sonoma Terrace (had some wine)
The Bakery Tour
Corn Dog Castle (had a hot-link corn dog combo)
It's Tough to be a Bug - Maleficent
The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
Soarin' Over California

Jungle Cruise
Pirates of the Caribbean
Blue Bayou (had the jambalaya and rack of lamb)
Haunted Mansion
Enchanted Tiki Room
Disneyland Railroad
It's a Small World
Indiana Jones Adventure
Splash Mountain
Winnie the Pooh
Star Tours - The Adventure Continues
Captain EO - Tribute

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