Monthly Archives: September 2012

Disneyland Tips

As Northern California transplants, Jennifer and I have enjoyed hosting our friends and family in Southern California while they visit Disneyland, colleges, the beach or whatever. And being that we live just 8 miles away from the Happiest Place on Earth, we often get asked lots of questions about discount deals to dining preferences. So having just recently visited, I thought I would share some of my tips to make your visit to Disneyland even more enjoyable.

Best Practices: With the opening of Carsland, it’s best to visit California Adventure first and secure your FASTPASS for Radiator Springs Racers, the best ride in the resort! The FASTPASS line cues up around the Carthay Circle Restaurant. In addition, you can secure a FASTPASS for the World of Color near the Grizzly River Run. Once you secure both, head over to Disneyland or visit other parts of the park, as everyone is heading to Carsland first. In fact, I think Carsland is best experienced at night, when everything is all lit up! Remember, your FASTPASS is good for anytime that day, as long as it’s after your designated start time. I am also told, although I have never tested it out, that the FASTPASS rules applies to each park separately. So, if your plans take you to Disneyland first and then over to California Adventure, you’ll be able to get a second FASTPASS ticket there.

Affordable Dining Options: There are lots of places to grab a burger throughout the park, but if you’re in the mood for something more, we recommend Rancho del Zocalo in Adventureland. Entrees include citrus fire-grilled chicken, 4 cheese enchiladas, soft tacos, burritos and even a tostada salad. In addition, there is a fresh water fountain that you can use to refill your water bottles! We also enjoy dining in Cafe Orleans, where we often share a Monte Cristo sandwich and garlic fries. Also new to Carsland, is Flo’s V8 Cafe, which is good if you enjoy comfort food.

Fine Dining Options: It’s best to make reservations in advance through Disney Dining. Reservations can be made up to 60 days in advance at (714) 781-DINE. Some of our favorite dining options include the Blue Bayou, Napa Rose in the Grand Californian, and Wine Country Trattoria. To save money, we recommend going to the Blue Bayou for lunch. In addition, there is full-service prix fixe dinner options at Wine Country Trattoria that include tickets to a reserved viewing section of the World of Color! Overall, the best value for the money, is the Wine Country Trattoria!

Other Notable Food/Snack Options: An Ice Cream Sundae at Ghirardelli Soda Fountain and Chocolate Shop in California Adventure; Mickey-shaped Beignets at Cafe Orleans; and the Churro Bites in Carsland are the best we’ve ever tasted!

I would love to hear your tips and favorites as well, so take a minute to post some below…

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