Wednesday, 12 October 2011

The Happiest Place on Earth

My name is Belinda and I am a Disneyholic. It has been 145 days since I last visited a Disney park.

I have a confession to make. I entered a Disney park today with no touring plan. My theme park strategist would have been ashamed of me. I have an apology to make. The word awesome will be used repeatedly in this post.

So let's recap what was the best day ever...

The best day ever!
It was a 7am start. As guests of the Grand Californian, we were entitled to Magic Mornings, select days where we were allowed to enter Disneyland an hour before opening time. Walking down Main Street was so magical, as was walking through the castle with "When You Wish Upon A Star" playing in the background. Our morning in Disneyland whizzed past. One disappointment was that Jonah was not tall enough to go on Star Tours or the Indiana Jones ride. The other was that Pirates of The Caribbean was closed. However, I don't think the children cared!

We enjoyed the Enchanted Tiki Room. It was quite special to see Jonah sing along to the opening number. He was mesmerised by the show! The show was much better than the one we saw at Walt Disney World in December 2010 which has since been overhauled. The other ride I also wanted to mention was The Haunted Mansion. They have put on a holiday overlay based on Tim Burton's Nightmare Before Christmas, whereby two holidays collide. It was fascinating to see how clever the imagineers were. Some sections were awesome. However, I felt that others changed the whole feel of the ride too much with too much bright fluoro greens and oranges.

We had to leave Disneyland for the Hyperion Theatre in Disney's California Adventure so that we could watch Aladdin, the stage show. Today was the only day that it was showing during our stay here. Tired feet called for the help of the Disney Railroad. We hitched a ride from the New Orleans Square back to Main Street and across into the neighbouring theme park. We were glad we made the effort. The show was awesome. In true Disney style, the performers, costumes, sets and the music were superb. This was especially so for the genie. He was hilarious! We briefly left the theme parks for lunch at Downtown Disney. The Rainforest Cafe looked appealing and so we headed in. We opted to eat at the bar to avoid a 45 minute wait! The food was plentiful and delicious. It was nice to eat light food with lots of greens.

The Albanys have been let through the gates and they're off

Halloween decorations are up

Reading this plaque always gives me goosebumps

Just awesome

Ready for our day in the house of the mouse

Our first destination. To Star Tours and beyond!

Another awesome moment

The beautiful Hyperion Theatre

Next time (I'm sure there will be a next time...) we will have to sit at the mezzanine to  see Aladdin

Lunch stop

We had to sit at the bar

The kids didn't mind as they got to sit on funky bar stools yet again

Ahi tuna salad
We re-entered the park with the Disney monorail straight into Tomorrowland. We hopped on as many rides as we could before picking a spot in preparation for the 5pm parade, a wonderful session of great music and perky dancing. This was accompanied by the obligatory pineapple dole whip and churros. The parade was awesome! I just love how Disney did the score arrangements, and how seamless the transitions were between floats.

We went to get our tags for Mickey's Halloween Party. The children were excited to be able to go trick or treating. The lines for candy were incredibly long, so much so that many of the rides had only very short lines or were walk ons. We discarded the candy collecting and went on as many rides as we could. By the end of the evening, we had gone on most of the attractions and were quite proud of ourselves. We chanced on a short-ish trick or treat line and pounced on it. The Cast Member saw that our bags were empty and felt so sorry for us that he put it 3 handfuls of candy so we could "catch up". Awesome!

We feel so fortunate to have been able to visit our 3rd Disney Park in 10 months. We also enjoyed the fact that we have been able to see the parks (albeit different ones) decked out in both Christmas and Halloween fineries. I must admit though, as Christmas means a lot more to me personally, that I just find it that much more magical....By the end of the evening, we had been at the park for 15 hours and little feet were starting to get very tired. We trudged back home feeling content and oh so very happy.

Finding Nemo

Are you sure this is low season?

Pineapple dole whip


Getting tagged

Bands on!

Ready to go with our trick or treat bags

Our first trick or treat station

An OCD child arranging all his candy and the candy of the rest of the family before evenly re-distributing them

More Halloween decorations

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