April 26, 2012

What Is Your Favorite Disneyland Memory?

What is your favorite Disneyland memory?

My favorite Disneyland memory is from Christmas Eve 2011. First we had dinner at Club 33 and the food, holiday decorations and company was all very lovely. Then, as we were leaving the park, suddenly over fifty characters came to say "Good Night" and "Happy Holidays" to the guests as we left the park. Some characters were even already in their pajamas. They appeared to all be having fun as they danced, waved, joked around with guests and each other and generally had a good time. This was all an unexpected treat for us so it all seemed so magical.

Christmastime is my favorite time of all to visit the Disneyland Resort. From mid-November through the beginning of January, the entire Resort transforms into a wondrous winter-ish wonderland. The decorations cannot be beat and I have never seen a bigger Christmas tree than the 60ft+ tree located at Town Square at the end of Main Street U.S.A. Sleeping Beauty's Castle is decorated with snow-capped roofs, thousands of LED lights and countless icicles. The Haunted Mansion transforms into Haunted Mansion Holiday and features Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas. The classic attraction it's a small world becomes it's a small world holiday and features over 300,000 dazzling light and Christmas decorations from around the globe all set to a very special Christmas medley written by the legendary Sherman Brothers. The parade offered is A Christmas Fantasy Parade and the nighttime firework entertainment presented is Believe... In Holiday Magic Fireworks Spectacular. After each firework show, snow falls from the sky in select areas, much to the delight of children and adults alike. There are many other reasons to visit during Christmastime - Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus, Santa's Reindeer Roundup, the Candlelight Processional, seasonal drinks, yule logs, special holiday menus, amazing gingerbread houses, fresh candy canes and more.

If you are interested in learning more about Christmastime at the Disneyland Resort, I wholeheartedly suggest taking the Holiday Time at Disneyland tour which is offered each year. When you take the holiday tour you are each given a few seasonal treats (like hot chocolate and gingerbread cookies), a very cool tour pin, a tour ornament and you get priority seating for Haunted Mansion Holiday, it's a small world holiday and the A Christmas Fantasy Parade. I fully encourage anyone who really loves Christmas to consider visiting the Disneyland Resort during the holiday season in order to experience all these many merry pleasures.

Christmas Eve Dinner at Club 33

The Disneyland Resort : My Laughing Place

For my first post I wanted to explain why I love the Disneyland Resort and why I think you might too. There are many reasons to love Disneyland. For some people, it is about the food. For other people, it is all about the attractions. There isn't any one reason I love the Disneyland Resort. To me, Disneyland reminds me of everything good about being a child and that I don’t have to stop being a kid just because I am growing older. It reminds me to seek adventure and new frontiers, to remember the value of friendship and fantasy, to learn from the past and from history and yet to always look to tomorrow. I love that people from all over the World come to Disneyland and can learn so much about America and California.

My Disneyland trips are even more magical now that I can take my son there and see it again through his fresh young eyes. While we have some family rituals, we try to do new things on each of our visits. Our Disneyland rituals include passing out Disney Dollars to random strangers (wearing official birthday buttons of course) in honor of their birthdays and glowsticks to children for nighttime entertainment. We like to take funny pictures with the characters, regardless of our age. We take tours to learn more about the resort and always look up to see the light in the window of Walt’s Apartment when entering Main Street U.S.A. During one of our last trips, we made the "Grand Circle Tour" of the park on Disneyland's Presidential Parlor Car, the Lilly Belle, which was affectionately named after Walt Disney's wife, Lillian. My then 4-year-old son “drove” the Mark Twain Riverboat from the wheelhouse and had a blast sounding the loud horns that were then heard throughout the park. On a recent trip, we spent Christmas Eve and Christmas Day at Disneyland and were even able to have our holiday dinner on Christmas Eve at the exclusive Club 33 which was decorated beautifully for the holidays. While visiting the Disneyland Resort, we always prefer to stay onsite in order to feel completely immersed in the Disney magic throughout our entire stay and we consider the Grand Californian Hotel & Spa to be our "home away from home". In short, we ALL have a lot of fun together at Disneyland as a family, just as Walt Disney had first envisioned it so many years ago.


About Beth Thorpe:

My family and I are currently living in California's beautiful Napa Valley. After attending University of the Pacific and studying English and Film Studies, I worked in construction administration for several years before becoming a stay-at-home parent and freelance travel writer. I discovered my love for travel planning and exploration in 2004 while planning my honeymoon. The nearly month-long trip took us to New York City for Christmas followed by Amsterdam, Brussels, London, Paris for New Years Eve and then numerous locations throughout Germany. My favorite place to explore is the Disneyland Resort and, if I'm not there, I am planning my next Disneyland trip. While I have always loved all things Disney, my passion for Disneyland peaked when we brought our son there for the first time on his birthday. Over the last few years, I have helped numerous friends and family members make the very most of their Disney Parks vacations as well as visits to California and beyond. I'm currently planning upcoming trips to both the Disneyland Resort in California and Walt Disney World in Florida and I look forward to connecting with my readers about their own travels and adventures.