Anyone who’s been to Disneyland knows that the park is as exhausting as it is fun, and it’s A LOT of fun.
If you find yourself going to Disney anytime soon or really anytime at all, these tips might save you some time, energy, money, and won’t cut into your fun! KCRA put together a list:
1. Take advantage of the mornings: It’s well known that people like to sleep in while they are on vacation. However, this is not one of those relaxing trips. Use the mornings to your advantage because there are fewer crowds in the mornings and you are often one of the first few people on some of the more crowded rides that don’t have Fastpasses, like Peter Pan and Toy Story Midway Mania
2. Use your Fastpasses wisely: Fastpasses are often underused by many people who visit Disneyland, but are a very valuable — and free — ticket for speedy ride access. Only a certain number of the major attractions have Fastpass machines installed. All you have to do is insert your ticket into the machine, and it gives you a 1-hour time slot to return to the ride. When you return, you then jump in a separate line and bypass everyone else who may have been waiting in line for up to an hour.
3. Single-rider is fun too: If you’re not overly worried about sitting with your friends or family, the single-rider line is always a great option. Some of the rides with longer lines, like Radiator Springs Racers and California Screamin’, have single-rider lines. Ride operators use the single riders to fill in the gaps, and it gets you on the ride and on to your next destination much quicker.
4. World of Color is a must: If you haven’t see World of Color yet, you definitely need to add the nighttime lights/water/fire/laser show to your list. The original show, which debuted in 2010, cost $75 million to design and build and is shown in the lagoon in front of Mickey’s Fun Wheel, near Paradise Pier. For a good viewing spot, make sure to get a ticket on the morning of the show you plan on attending. Head to the entrance of Grizzly River Run (on the west side of California Adventure) and pick a showtime, but still make sure you get to the viewing area at least an hour before the show so you can pick out a good spot to watch (it also serves as a little rest time at the end of the night).
5. Save your shopping: Instead of hauling your souvenirs around all day, wait until the end of the day to buy all the great Disney swag. Don’t worry, the mugs, T-shirts and stuffed animals will still be there, and you won’t have to worry about losing them or lugging them around during the day.
6. Don’t wear yourself out: Disneyland can be an exhausting place, especially if you start early. Don’t be afraid to take a time out during the day to head back to the hotel for a couple of hours for a nap or to spend some time by the pool. It is especially nice because as you leave the park at about 2 p.m., that’s when it’s really getting crowded. Then by dinner time, you’re ready to finish out the night with some more fun!
7. Wear comfortable shoes: All too often you see women walking around the theme park in heels or guys in flip flops. Now, we all have our reasons, but when you are on your feet from 8 in the morning until 11 at night, your feet will need all the help they can get. Tennis shoes and thick socks are definitely recommended.
8. Reserve your spot at a Disney restaurant: A couple of highly recommended restaurants include the Blue Bayou, which is inside the Pirates of the Caribbean ride, and Goofy’s Kitchen, located inside the Disneyland Hotel. Blue Bayou is a one-of-a-kind experience where you feel like you are eating on the banks of the bayou as you watch riders go floating by on their way to sail with pirates. At Goofy’s Kitchen, your children will love dining with all their favorite characters like Goofy, Pluto, Belle and Cinderella. Reservations can — and should — be made for both places ahead of time, as many as 60 days in advance.
9. Know when to travel on Main Street: You’re walking right down the middle of Main Street U.S.A. — but not so fast, a parade is coming your way! Be aware of the parade and fireworks show times. People start lining up for those events at least an hour ahead of time. However, about 30 minutes before the shows start, be prepared to add a good chunk of time to your walking commute if you are planning on using Main Street to get into or out of the park. It becomes a zoo as park employees attempt to direct foot traffic and baby strollers. Another tip — any time parades, fireworks or other shows cause lots of people to gather provides an opportune time to hit some of the other main attractions when the lines go down slightly.
10. End your night right: The fireworks show is always a great way to close out the night at the Happiest Place on Earth. There are a few prime locations to watch the show if you want to get the full effect. The best spot is in front of Sleeping Beauty’s castle where you have no trees or buildings obstructing your view because there are displays on the castle itself and fireworks that sprout out from the castle. However, farther down Main Street still provides great viewing opportunities. Another fun spot is in front of It’s a Small World.
Using these tips you’ll have a much easier experience!