Getting ready for Disneyland is an exciting experience for many but knowing how to prepare, what to pack and how to plan your trip can be a challenge. These tips will help you plan your trip to Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California.
Disneyland Resort California
The Disneyland resort is home to the first-ever Disneyland, opening in 1955. It is the only Disney park that Walt Disney stepped foot in – it is the park where it all began.
In addition to Disneyland, Disney California Adventure Park has grown in popularity over the years, with new areas such as Cars Land, this park now draws visitors to the resort as well. The resort also includes a Downtown Disney area and three Disney hotels; Disneyland Hotel, Paradise Pier Hotel and Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel.
How to prepare for Disneyland Resort
Download the app – Download the resort app, browse the restaurant menus, look at the different rides available and choose which rides, shows and restaurants you want to visit before your visit. Plan your day out using the timings on the app and stick to them once you are in the park.
Get walking – No matter whether you are visiting for one day or 5, you will want to make the most of your time. Disneyland is exhausting so make sure you start walking way before your trip to get your feet used to walking for long periods of time.
Study the maps – those apps you downloaded, they and the website have detailed, interactive maps of both parks. Take time to look at rides which are near one another so you have an idea of how long it will take you to get from one ride to another.
Start checking wait times – On the lead up to your visit, start checking the wait times for rides on your app. Check throughout the day to get an idea of which rides are busier in the morning and which seem busier in the afternoon.
Choose your MUST DOs – Choose the rides, shows and parades that are on your MUST list. These are the rides you are going to head to as soon as you get into the park! It is worth noting that 40 inches is the height requirement for many of the rides.
Watch Disney movies – Before your visit, remind yourself of your favourite Disney moments by watching Disney movies! It is worth watching old and new movies as rides are based on both.
Choose your hotel – There are three on-site hotels but also lots of hotels around the area. It is worth spending a little more to get a nicer, more modern hotel, as some hotels and motels have been there since the park opened and are in desperate need of a renovation.
Make a budget – After looking at prices, make sure you decide on what your budget for your trip is and begin to plan how you will spend it. Using the Disney app and the guides below, work out where you are going to eat each day, depending on your budget.
When to go to Disneyland Resort
Disneyland is on many California bucket lists so you will want to avoid the crowds. The best time to visit will, of course, depend on when you can have time off but there are a few things to factor in before booking.
Firstly – check the Disneyland Refurbishment Calendar. There are big changes being made at the moment and you don’t want to miss your favourite new land or attraction because of the dates.
Best months – There are some great months to visit Disneyland and some bad months to avoid.
Great choice :
- May, September and November – these are the best months to visit if you want to avoid the crowds, there are no major events or holidays and children are all at school across the world.
- January – Unless a new area has opened (as it did in 2020), January is often a great time to plan a trip. Children are back at school after Christmas and few tourists are visiting California at this time of the year.
- December – The first few weeks of December is an ideal time to visit and enjoy the festivities but check the blockout days for annual pass holders; often the few days after these dates are quieter.
- June – (pass holders are trying to visit before they are blocked out for July and August)
- October – (Halloween celebrations draw in crowds from the US and the world)
- April – (the Easter holidays sees locals and tourists enjoying their spring break in California, meaning big crowds)
- February – (with the Super Bowl and President’s Day, expect a peak in crowds during this month)
What day? Generally, a weekday will always be better. We like this Disney Crowd Calendar so make sure you check the dates whilst you are there too and avoid the busier days – the calendar even compares the crowds to Universal Studios Hollywood too.
What to pack for Disneyland Resort
- A reusable bottle – free water is available all over the park, either from the water dispensers or you can ask the servers in the restaurants.
- Disney Merchandise – Whether you want a Disney top or Mickey ears, save money by buying them before your visit. You can get a selection online or in the local target stores.
- Food – Bring in snacks for your visit to keep your energy up and save money on food at the park.
- Comfortable shoes – Always important but a good pair of comfortable shoes help for those long days around the park.
- Driving license – If you are staying in LA, you will find it easier to get around via a car. Rent a car for your trip to avoid expensive cab fares.
- A cooler – you can bring in coolers to the park, so take advantage of this and bring in plenty of food to see you through the whole day at the park.
- Poncho – It is worth bringing a small, foldable poncho to help you keep dry if the heavens do open. No one wants to walk around Disneyland soaking wet!
How much is a trip to Disneyland Resort
This all depends on what you are looking for but here are some average prices to help you plan your trip:
Price of Disneyland Tickets:
We browse many websites for the cheapest tickets and always find Undercover tourist offers great deals, consistently across the Disney parks. These prices are their average ticket prices:
|2-day park hopper||$281.56|
|3-day park hopper||$342.24|
|2-day, 1 park ticket||$228.55|
|2-day, 1 park ticket with Maxpass||$268.24|
- All-Star Movies (Walt Disney World) – $120
- Paradise Pier Hotel (Disneyland) – $400
- BoardWalk Inn (Walt Disney World) – $450
- Disneyland Hotel (Disneyland) – $455
- Contemporary Resort (Walt Disney World) – $500
- Grand Californian Hotel & Spa (Disneyland) – $700
- Courtyard by Marriott Anaheim Theme Park Entrance – $400
Disneyland offers different options for different budgets when it comes to dining. Here is a rough guide to the expected price range of some of our favourite restaurants – it is fair to say there are cheaper quick service options than table service.
$ – $14.99 $$ – $15 – $34.99 $$$ – $35 – $59.99 $$$$ – Over $60
|Restaurant name||Type of service||Where?||Price|
|Alfresco Tasting Terrace||Table Service||Disneyland California Adventure Park (Pacific Wharf)||$$|
|Oga’s Cantina||Table Service||Disneyland Park (Star Wars: Galaxy Edge)||$$|
|Alien Pizza Planet||Quick Service||Disneyland Park (Tomorrowland)||$|
|Award Wieners||Quick service||Disney California Adventure Park (Hollywood Land)||$|
|Cafe Orleans||Table Service||Disneyland Park (New Orleans Square)||$$|
|Carthay Circle Restaurant||Table Service||Disney California Adventure Park (Buena Vista Street)||$$$|
|Disney Princess Breakfast Adventures||Table Service||Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa||$$$$|
|Docking Bay 7||Quick Service||Disneyland Park (Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge)||$|
|Flo’s V8 Cafe||Quick Service||Disney California Adventure Park (Cars Land)||$|
|Frozen Dining Package||Dining events||Disney California Adventure Park (Buena Vista Street)||$$$$|
|Galactic Grill||Quick Service||Disneyland Park (Tomorrowland)||$|
|Goofy’s Kitchen||Table Service||Disneyland Hotel||$$$|
|Hungry Bear Restaurant||Quick Service||Disneyland Park (Critter Country)||$|
|Pacific Wharf Cafe||Quick Service||Disney California Adventure Park (Pacific Wharf)||$|
Have a great time at Disneyland California, we hope this post has helped you to get ready for Disneyland! Let us know what your favourite thing to do in Disneyland is, in the comments below!
Awesome tips and advice! It’s Ana I gotta that this is the original one! Would absolutely love to take my kids one day!
I visited Disney Land and Disney World as a child and this brought back so many memories.
Such helpful information. I went to Disneyland for the first time a couple years ago and could have used a guide like this as it was rather overwhelming at first. We went in February and it wasn’t bad. It was a weekday so kind of quiet (for Disneyland) although that early in the year there were still some rides not open so that’s something to watch out for with the “off-season”
I’m yet to visit a Disneyland but this makes me want to go now more than ever!
This looks like a ton of fun! Thanks for the info!
Disneyland is an amazing place,we visited the one in Hongkong.but would love to visit all of them😊
Disneyland is our absolute favorite theme park and I cannot wait to go back. These are some great tips! Having a solid plan is definitely key to making sure everyone has a good time at the parks!
I am hoping to go here this summer (fingers crossed). Am even more excited now! Thanks for all the useful information. Will have this post at the ready when we get there!
It has always been my childhood dream to visit Disneyland!
The “get walking” tip is no lie! My family and I had the sorest feet when we went to visit since we didn’t break in our shoes and sandals! Luckily, our hotel was less than a mile from the main entrance gate, but after a long day, anything seemed to be a little much! haha. Thank you for the tips!
Ahh this looks so fun and these are all such great tips! I’ve had two Disney trips cancelled (Tokyo and Shanghai) because of the current situation so I can’t wait to be able to go again! I used to live in Florida and went to the Disney in Orlando all the time! Surprisingly I’ve never been to the one in California but I’ll definitely save this post for whenever I get the chance to go 😁
Aww yeah our Tokyo trip was cancelled because of this situation so fingers crossed we can go once this is all over!
I love Disneyland! Great tips and the perfect packing list. Thanks for the tips!