Need help planning a Disneyland trip
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    91

    Need help planning a Disneyland trip

    While I'm not an expert, I like to think of myself as VERY knowledgeable about WDW. I plan extensive trips there for my family and help a lot friends. We've always stayed on-site and the meal plan is a must for us.

    My problem is I want to go to Disneyland; I've never been. What are some basics I need to know? How long would you suggest going? Is the meal plan the same as the one at WDW? Would you recommend staying at a Disney hotel or is a neighbor hotel okay?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.
    SAHM to 3 wonderful kiddos (7, 6, and almost 1)
    WDW-POFQ Sept '09
    WDW-POFQ Sept '11

    Future Trips:
    WDW-Dec '13
    Disneyland-Hopefully one of these days!

  2. #2
    Save your money and stay at another hotel they are all in walking distance u may only need 3 days max its a lot smaller and if u are a Disney fan u maybe a little disappointed on how well the place is layed out but it's fun cause heck your still in Disney

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Elgin, IL (a suburb about 40 miles outside Chicago)
    Posts
    1,360
    We were at Disneyland a little over a year ago (we were there last Valentine's Day). Was with my DH and our DD3 and my sister-in-law (she lives in CA). We checked in on a Sunday and checked out on a Thursday (had 6 day park passes). Due to there being 3adults and of course a 3 year old who still took naps, we built in nap and rest time. For us it was the perfect amount of time, we were not rushed, and we did everything we wanted to do. We stayed at the Grand Californian, just for the great location (entry to California Adventure and Downtown Disney right from the hotel! Making nap time a whole lot easier.) I love WDW and Yes Disneyland is much smaller, but it has it's own charm! It was Walt's baby, and it still has Mickey toontown, Mr. Toads wild ride, Snow White's scary adventure and coming soon Cars Land.....As the old saying goes... "good things come in small packages!". Have a magical trip!

    Quote Originally Posted by inumom2
    We were at Disneyland a little over a year ago (we were there last Valentine's Day). Was with my DH and our DD3 and my sister-in-law (she lives in CA). We checked in on a Sunday and checked out on a Thursday (had 6 day park passes). Due to there being 3adults and of course a 3 year old who still took naps, we built in nap and rest time. For us it was the perfect amount of time, we were not rushed, and we did everything we wanted to do. We stayed at the Grand Californian, just for the great location (entry to California Adventure and Downtown Disney right from the hotel! Making nap time a whole lot easier.) I love WDW and Yes Disneyland is much smaller, but it has it's own charm! It was Walt's baby, and it still has Mickey toontown, Mr. Toads wild ride, Snow White's scary adventure and coming soon Cars Land.....As the old saying goes... "good things come in small packages!". Have a magical trip!
    ps... Just some helpful info from one JULIE to another!
    Last edited by inumom2; 02-28-2012 at 07:01 AM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
    ** If you can DREAM it, you can DO it. - Walt Disney **

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Pewaukee WI.
    Posts
    17,845

    Re: Need help planning a Disneyland trip

    Hello and welcome to Talk Disney.

    I see that you posted this in the WDW forum, but your questions are about Disneyland. Therefore I am going to move this thread to the proper forum.
    I do hope you get your answers.

    Hold on to all loose items, we are moving this thread to the Disneyland forum.
    Rick
    "Our greatest natural resource is the minds of our childen"
    Walt Disney
    Talk Disney Administrator

  5. #5
    Hey
    So I always tell people three tips I always use well at the park.
    1. Take advantage of the fast pass system. Try to watch a video on it on YouTube because from watching the video I also learned a few secrets to. The fast pass.
    2. Do busy rides as soon as you get to the park. When ever I get there I go straight to space mountain and star tours.
    3. Go to the candy shop!!!!!
    Anymore questions feel free to send me a message

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Posts
    178

    Re: Need help planning a Disneyland trip

    Quote Originally Posted by sammytonice View Post
    Save your money and stay at another hotel they are all in walking distance u may only need 3 days max its a lot smaller and if u are a Disney fan u maybe a little disappointed on how well the place is layed out but it's fun cause heck your still in Disney
    I agree, if you want to save some money, stay at one of the Good Neighbor Hotels that outline the whole resort area. You can stay somewhere a lot cheaper and a lot of these Good Neighbors have deals similar to what you would get staying at an official Disney hotel. Most are maybe 5-10 min walking from the front gates. But if not, the Disney resorts are pretty good from what I hear (never stayed there as I lived 5 minutes away most of my life).

    I don't understand how any Disney fan would be disappointed. It's not huge, spread over the size of a large city with 4 parks and such. But in saying that, you won't spend as much time traveling between the different parks cause they are far apart from each other. You can check-in at your hotel and never need any kind of transport cause you can walk everywhere. It's all easy and closeby to each other. Downtown Disney, both parks, the Disney resorts and Good Neighbor hotels. I think it's laid out pretty well. You can find and do just about anything (lots of restaurants included) within a 20 minute walk in any direction.

    Now for me, if you put up the original Disneyland next to the WDW Magic Kingdom, the original wins every time. The "details" seem to be a lot better done. I remember thinking, wow, you can see a lot more of backstage here than in Anaheim. It just wasn't up to par with the original to me. There was the "magic" and all there, but it felt like it was rushed to be built. We liked it, but still consider the original the better. I've always liked how the park has been laid out. But that's just me.

    Meal plans. Now I'm not an expert on this and have never done these before, but I think they don't offer these at Cal Disney. Is there someone who knows for sure? I don't remember ever using such nor seeing that it was even offered.

    If you really want to see everything you could do it all in about 3-4 days, two if you want to rush it. Keep in mind, with Carsland opening, the parks are bound to get busier. Not sure when you were planning on going. But as I said above you really only need to get to your hotel, and once there you don't need any transpo if you're just doing Disney and stuff close by. That's another reason it's not as long to do compared to WDW, you don't have to find a way to get everywhere. :-)

    It could be easier to fly into Santa Ana airport or even Long Beach. They are both smaller airports, much nicer to go through than LAX, and in the case of Santa Ana (Orange County or John Wayne airport) they are closer to Disney. Long Beach is only a little bit closer than LAX. Sometimes you can find good deals flying into these smaller places.

    I'm not sure what else you want to know at the moment, but if you are wondering about anything else, just ask.

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