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Ultimate Guide to Disneyland Los Angeles

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There is nowhere on earth quite as magical as Disneyland! The sights, the smells, the sounds… every moment in the Magic Kingdom will be a day straight out of a fairy tale. No matter your age, you will find wishes can come true at Disneyland. Here are some tips to make your trip as wonderful as it can possibly be!

How to get to Disneyland

It’s fairly easy to find Disneyland. The park is located in Anaheim, a short drive from Los Angeles, California. As you drive toward Disneyland, make sure you get in the right parking garage lane. You can also take a bus to the park.

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Parking in Disneyland

Parking costs $18. The parking garage is huge, but it is conveniently separated into different sections, named after classic Disney characters! From the parking lot, you walk to the tram loading area.

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The Tram

The tram shuttle visitors to the park from the parking lot and back. It’s free, but keep in mind that the lines are long, so you might have a wait. If you don’t want to wait, you can actually walk down the sidewalk to Disneyland’s entrance at Downtown Disney.

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Downtown Disney

Downtown Disney is a shopping and dining area outside Disneyland and California Adventure Park. You can pick up souvenirs at a slightly lower price than you can in the park, but don’t get distracted early in the day! Save it until you’re done with all the rides and adventures.

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Cost and entrance

There are a lot of different tickets you can purchase at the gate. A basic one-day, single-park pass is $95.

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What to expect

Magic! You might find yourself too overwhelmed to know where to start. A good place to begin is at the bigger rides, whose lines get longer and longer as the day goes on. Check out the Matterhorn, Splash Mountain, Indiana Jones, and Pirates of the Caribbean. Once you’ve experienced the big rides, there are so many more rides to try. Even if you don’t have kids, Make sure you do a thorough walk-though of all the princess castles and Toon Town houses! Sleeping Beauty’s castle is located inside the iconic Disneyland castle, and it is a definitely must-see. The Teacup Ride is a kid favorite, and if you have children, they’ll probably want to see it over and over again.

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The many different lands within Disneyland and like stepping into a myriad of mini worlds! Adventureland is a conglomerate of the American Southwest, the Australian outback, and Treasure Island. You can even take a ride through the lake on a small ship! Next door is New Orleans. If you’re trying to impress a date, book a dinner at the Blue Bayou, where you can dine on delicacies inside the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. Tomorrowland is a childhood dream of spacecraft and crazy gadgets. You can go on a virtual Star Wars ride here! At Toon Town, you can meet Mickey and Minnie, and even be guests in their exaggeratedly cartoony homes. Fantasyland, where Snow White and Cinderella lie, catch a live princess show or take picture with your favorite prince. Main Street USA is the characterization of a Midwest town, frozen in time to reflect the era of Walt Disney himself.

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There are several shows worth seeing at Disneyland, too. I already mentioned the princess show in Fantasyland. For a little fun and laughter, try the Laughing Stock Company. For something more serious, the Abraham Lincoln show in Main Street U.S.A. is absolutely phenomenal, especially considering the early date of the animatronics. The World of Colors show was my favorite; it was definitely worth seeing! Of course, you can’t miss Mickey’s Soundsational Parade, which runs from the park entrance all the way to Small World.

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Tips

It’s not too hard to downsize the cost of your food at Disneyland. If you have a travel buddy, split meals and snacks to cut down on waste and make the most of your dollars. Choose options that are healthy and not too expensive.

If you want to try a fancy place like Blue Bayou, you can book reservations up to two months in advance online.

Use Fast Passes and single rider lines to make your wait shorter. The extra money for a fast pass will make be well worth it, since you’ll get to do a lot more during the day.

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32 thoughts on “Ultimate Guide to Disneyland Los Angeles

  1. Fast passes are probably a good idea, because the lines can be excruciating! In fact, I’ve only been to Disneyland once when I was six and all I can remember are the lines. This is a great and comprehensive guide for anyone planning a Disneyland vacation!

  2. I have never heard anyone not be happy in Disneyland. Yes people complain about the long lines and getting on rides and losing kids(lol) – a hassle but all in all it is always an excellent experience with lots of pictures and smiles from happy families making happy memories. I am glad you had a great time too. These are great tips for anyone heading out there to better plan their time.and day. Love the picture with Mickey and I must say the Teacup rides are really fantastic!

  3. Karla,

    Holy cow! Disneyland Los Angeles! The one and only one I have been to was Disneyland Hong Kong. It is very small compared to the one in LA. Glad you had fun and I have to say, one of your photos, the rock formation at the back looks marvelous!

  4. This is a great and informative post. One of the the few Disney lands I haven’t been to. Love how you have shown how big kids can have fun too 🙂

  5. Thank you for touring us around Disneyland, the happiest place in the world. Been to Disneyland Singapore before and most of my friends would say nothing beats Los Angeles’.

  6. Since, I live on the East Coast, I have never made my way to Disneyland, but I would love to someday. It sounds like a lot of fun. I would love to check out the pirates of the caribbean ride, and you have a great tip about hitting the most popular attractions early 🙂

  7. It’s been forever since I’ve been to Disneyland in California but these are some great tips. Grabbing my mouse ears now!

  8. It looks like you had a ball at Disneyland 🙂 I’m so jealous that you had your photo taken with Minnie and Mickey Mouse!

  9. Thank you for bringing the magic! Your tips are totally awesome! Definitely one of the places I want to unravel the kid in me. I need time to plan and save for this trip.

  10. Disneyland is such a magical place! It’s been my dream ever since to be able to visit at least one disney park someday. My desire to set foot on a disney park was fuelled the other day when I watched the movie Walt before Mickey. It got me so inspired.

  11. This is so exciting!! Love love love this travel of yours and actually the whole blog! I really admired people who were able to travel like this. I hopeI can visit Disneyland too!
    beautyandcherries.com

  12. I just can’t imagine myself being there one day. Maybe that would be a little too far to happen for now. But Disney is oh sooooo interesting! I’ve been reading good experiences in the place and wishing I could be there pretty soon. 😀

  13. I have never been on a Disneyland, but my friends recommend it. Personally I have no patience waiting in line just to experience the rides but I think I will make an exception if I’m given a chance to go to Disneyland. Looks like the place is a lot of fun.

  14. I love Disneyland! I’ve been to Disneyland in Hong Kong and I understood when you say the place is really magical. I think that’s what they want us to feel, that we are in a magical place. I really really want to visit all of the Disneylands no matter what my age is!

  15. I’ve always wanted to go to Disney land and hug Mickey oh so tight! Hehhehe thanks for showing me some of their attractions

  16. Disney is synonymous with fun and frolic for the whole family. We enjoyed our Disney experience in Hong Kong last year. I am always amazed by the similarities and standardization across the Disneylands all over the world. Also great tips for planning a trip from you.

  17. Everyone should experience Disneyland at some point. But the best time to go is on a Tuesday or Wednesday in January. A lot shorter lines!

  18. Ahh I love Disney!! I spent my birthday at Disneyland Paris last year and it was awesome. I did go to Disneyland LA a few years ago but my real dream now is Disneyworld. So much bigger! So much more magic haha

  19. Been to Disneyland Paris…. but after reading this I think Disneyland LA is in order… hopefully sooner than later.

  20. Nice breakdown for first timers. just wondering why the pics of California adventure on a write up about Disney. First timers might go looking for these spots. (Eureka and the cars land)

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