Category Archives: Disney California Adventure

Hotels of the Disneyland Resort: VIDEO

Whether you choose to indulge in the luxury of Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, surround yourself with magic at the Disneyland Hotel, or soak up the laid-back beach atmosphere of Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel, you’ll be treated to Disney’s legendary quality and service from the moment your arrive, including the Extra Magic Hour in the parks. The hardest thing you’ll need to do is decide which of these three amazing hotels to choose!

Disneyland Hotel
Disneyland Hotel
Paradise Pier Hotel
Paradise Pier Hotel
Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa
Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa

And don’t forget that you can save up to 20% on Premium rooms at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa or the Disneyland Hotel on select nights through March 31, 2016. Contact me for details.

Vintage Disney California Adventure photos

Since today, February 8, 2001, is the 15th anniversary of Disney California Adventure, I thought I’d post some of my old photos from when it first opened. It sure has evolved since then! Even the name used to have “Disney’s” instead of “Disney.” Bountiful Valley Farm became A Bug’s Land. The ABC Commissary Soap Opera Bistro became the Animation Academy, and Toy Story Midway Mania was not even a thought yet. The photos below might bring back a few more memories for you.

Disney's California Adventure Sunshine Plaza - Greeting from California
Disney’s California Adventure Sunshine Plaza – Greeting from California

Upon entering Disney’s California Adventure, you would find yourself in Sunshine Plaza, which included the “Greetings from California” shop. The music was themed to… (ready for it?) California!! You might hear the Al Jolson hit, “California, Here I Come,” “San Francisco Bay Blues” by Peter, Paul and Mary, or “Surfin’ USA” by the Beach Boys. Today, this is all Buena Vista Street, themed to 1920s Hollywood, when Walt Disney first came to California.

Disney's California Adventure Sunshine Plaza
Disney’s California Adventure Sunshine Plaza

At the end of Sunshine Plaza was the park’s icon, the “Sun Icon.”

Disney's California Adventure Orange Stinger
Disney’s California Adventure Orange Stinger

Where “Silly Symphony Swings” spin today, Guests originally got swinging in the “Orange Stinger.”

Disney's California Adventure Superstar Limo
Disney’s California Adventure Superstar Limo

Today, the Monsters, Inc. Mike & Sulley to the Rescue attraction transports Guests to Monstropolis, but when California Adventure opened, you could board a “limo” through Hollywood for the big premiere of your new movie.

Disney's California Adventure Superstar Limo
Disney’s California Adventure Superstar Limo

Inside Superstar Limo, Guests traveled through a stylized Hollywood, seeing the likes of Drew Carey, Cher, Tim Allen, Whoopie Goldberg and, as pictured above, Regis Philbin. This was, after all, the height of the “Who Wants to be a Millionaire” game show craze.

Disney's California Adventure Golden Dreams
Disney’s California Adventure Golden Dreams

Where the Little Mermaid resides today, was the Golden Dreams theater, offering Guests a short recreation of the history of California.

Disney's California Adventure Golden Dreams
Disney’s California Adventure Golden Dreams

Through projections, Whoopie Goldberg was seen as part of the theater’s decorations, and served as the host and narrator of the “Golden Dreams” film.

Disney's California Adventure Who Wants to be a Millionaire Play It!
Disney’s California Adventure Who Wants to be a Millionaire Play It!

As I mentioned before, when California Adventure opened, it was the height of the “Who Wants to be a Millionaire” craze, so at the Hollywood Studios Backlot, next to Superstar Limo, you could see a recreation of the popular game show, and Guests were chosen to be contestants.

Disney's California Adventure Eureka! A California Parade
Disney’s California Adventure Eureka! A California Parade

What would a Disney park be without a parade? Disney’s Eureka! The California Adventure Parade featured floats representing many of the cultures in the Golden State.

Disney's California Adventure Maliboomer
Disney’s California Adventure Maliboomer

Over in Paradise Pier Guests could board the Maliboomer, to be launched 180 feet high.

Disney's California Adventure Sun Wheel
Disney’s California Adventure Sun Wheel

While California Screamin’ has remained, the theming has changed a little, and Mickey is now found on Mickey’s Fun Wheel. The photo above displays that attraction when it was still the Sun Wheel.

Disneyland app offers access to Disney PhotoPass service

The Disneyland App is a great tool to enhance your Disneyland Resort visit.
The Disneyland App is a great tool to enhance your Disneyland Resort visit.

 

Last year, I told you about the official Disneyland App. Today new updates have been released.

With access to wait times, Disney FASTPASS return times and where to find favorite Disney characters, the Disneyland App is a great tool to enhance your Disneyland Resort visit. And now, this great app allows you to experience Disney PhotoPass Service in a whole new way.

Link Photos

Instead of collecting Disney PhotoPass Cards during your visit, you can now link cards to your account by entering the 16-character PhotoPass ID or by using the QR code scanner available in the app. You can also link attractions by entering the 8-character ID found on the preview monitor at the exit of a participating attraction.

View and Purchase Photos

You can also view your memories and purchase them in the Disneyland App! You can purchase an individual photo, or download all your photos captured during a one-day visit to Disneyland Resort, and link to your account, for $39 with Disney PhotoPass+ One Day.

Disney PhotoPass+ One Day includes all your Disney PhotoPass photos including select attraction and dining photos and NEW Animated Magic Shots.

Download and Share

Once you have purchased your photos, you can download and share them with family and friends via text, email and some of your favorite social media sites.

If you have an Annual Passport that includes Disney PhotoPass downloads, you can link your pass to your account so you can download and share your photos using the Disneyland App, too!

 

Disney PhotoPass Service and Disney PhotoPass+ are subject to the Disney PhotoPass and Disney PhotoPass+ terms. Online registration required. Disney PhotoPass Photos in your account will expire pursuant to the expiration policy. Photos linked to a qualifying Annual Passport will expire 365 days from the date of capture and are subject to the Annual Passport Terms and Conditions. Downloads are restricted to personal use only. Not responsible for missing, lost or damaged photos. Subject to restrictions and change without notice.

Preview of scenes from Disney’s “Zootopia” coming soon to Disney Parks

 

 

Beginning January 21, 2016, you can catch a preview of scenes from Walt Disney Animation Studios’ “Zootopia” in sneak peeks at Disney California Adventure Park and Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

At Disney California Adventure Park at Disneyland Resort, the preview will be presented at the Bug’s Life Theater with special in-theater effects. And, at Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort, you can see this advance preview as part of the One Man’s Dream attraction on Mickey Avenue.

Nick Wild and Officer Judy Hopps at the DMV.
Nick Wild and Officer Judy Hopps at the DMV.

 

“Zootopia,” which opens in theaters on March 4 in 3D, features a modern mammal metropolis populated by animals, living together in habitat neighborhoods like ritzy Sahara Square and frigid Tundratown. Enjoy the trailer!

Disney Vacation Tips #17

Shani's Disney Vacation Tips #17

 

Disney parks Baby Care Centers have complimentary toddler sized toilets.
Disney parks Baby Care Centers have complimentary toddler sized toilets.

All the Disney parks have special amenities for their youngest guests, making it easier for adults! The Baby Center is there for your infant and toddler needs, from complimentary nursing and feeding areas to toddler-sized toilets. 

The Baby Care Centers are a must for anyone traveling with infants in diapers or for toddlers learning how to use a toilet. Take care of your little ones in a comfortable and calm environment available for diaper changing, nursing and feeding, and more.

About the Facilities
Offering more than just privacy, Baby Care Centers are fully staffed and feature a host of helpful amenities for those visiting with infants and toddlers.

Each full-service facility is complimentary to use and includes:

  • Nursing room with chairs
  • Changing room with tables
  • Feeding area with highchairs
  • Kitchen with microwave and sink
  • Main room with television, table, and chairs
  • On-site shop offering formula, baby food, juice, diapers, wipes, sunscreen, over-the-counter medications and pacifiers for purchase

Take a look at this photo when you visit the Baby Center in Disneyland Park. It’s a young Walt Disney!

Walt Disney's baby picture at Disneyland's Baby Care Center.
Walt Disney’s baby picture at Disneyland’s Baby Care Center

Experience holidays at the Disneyland Resort starting November 13, 2015

Christmas and holidays at the Disneyland Resort begins November 13 through January 6, 2016.

As the holidays draw near, Disneyland Park comes alive with fanciful decorations and enchanting attractions. Experience this magical time at the Disneyland Resort, November 13 through January 6 during the Diamond Celebration!

And new this year, two different World of Color shows at Disney California Adventure: World of Color – Winter Dreams and World of Color – Celebrate!

The Christmas Fantasy Parade at Disneyland
The Christmas Fantasy Parade at Disneyland

Disneyland Park highlights include: 

  • A Christmas Fantasy Parade – Gather ‘round to watch some of your favorite Disney Characters—including Disney Princesses—join Santa and his reindeer for a merry, musical holiday salute.
  • Jingle Cruise – We’re decking the hulls… and decks, as the iconic tropical excurson gets a fun and festive twist with lights, decorations and special Christmas-themed experiences.
  • “it’s a small world” holiday – Marvel at the brightly decorated façade. Then sail through a world of joyous yuletide traditions and messages of goodwill from around the globe.
  • Haunted Mansion Holiday – Tour the delightful, frightful mansion featuring a Christmas makeover courtesy of Jack Skellington from Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas.
  • Paint the Night Parade – A million glowing lights, dazzling special effects and a host of Disney friends make spirits bright in a wondrous spectacle that will take your breath away.
  • Disneyland Forever Fireworks – Get ready for an incredible immersive experience as Disneyland Park becomes the backdrop for spectacular sights and sounds. Watch in amazement as favorite Disney stories come alive all around you!
  • Meet Santa Claus at Pooh’s Thotful Spot in Critter Country – at various times throughout the day.

 

And there is more holiday fun at Disney California Adventure:

  • For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration
    For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration

    For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration and Olaf’s Snow Fest – Enjoy way-cool fun as you join Elsa and Anna for a musical celebration. Then have an Arctic blast frolicking in our snow-sational winter wonderland!

  •  Final Performances of Disney’s Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular – Treat the family to this hilarious song-filled magic carpet ride before it takes off for good on January 10, 2016.
  • World of Color – Winter Dreams – In a separate full-length presentation, the incredible World of Color experience celebrates the joyous spirit of the holidays with delightful Disney magic.
  • World of Color – Celebrate! – Dazzling lights, soaring music and spectacular water and pyrotechnic effects light up the night with scenes and songs from some favorite Disney and Disney•Pixar movies.
  • Disney ¡Viva Navidad! – Check out this lively street fiesta and celebrate the season in traditional style—with dancing to live music, story-telling, crafts, face-painting and tasty Mexican specialties.
  • Cars Land Holiday Décor – Cruise by Radiator Springs to see how we’ve “geared up” for a glorious holiday season with decorations and colorful lights—red, green and everything in between!
  • Three Kings Day (Día de los Reyes Magos) – Enjoy a festive farewell to the Christmas season with a host of special activities and events—from January 2 to January 6, 2016.
  • Meet Santa Claus at Elias & Co. – at various times throughout the day.

Click here for Disneyland Resort special offers this season. Questions? Contact me and I’ll be happy to help! Happy Holidays!

Disney/Pixar’s The Good Dinosaur at Disney Parks starting October 16

See a sneek peek of Disney/Pixar's next movie, The Good Dinosaur at selected Disney Parks this month
See a sneak peek of Disney/Pixar’s next movie, The Good Dinosaur at selected Disney Parks this month

The upcoming Disney-Pixar film, “The Good Dinosaur,” which opens in theaters on November 25, 2015, will take audiences on an epic journey into the world of dinosaurs, and you can get an advance sneak peek of this exciting adventure at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, as part of the One Man’s Dream attraction on Mickey Avenue, and at Disneyland Resort in California, at Disney California Adventure in the “It’s Tough to be a Bug!” Theater, complete with special in-theater effects.

“The Good Dinosaur” preview will run through December 4, 2015 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The regular One Man’s Dream finale film will return on December 5, 2015 – just in time for Walt Disney’s birthday. And, in California, the sneak peek will run through December 13, 2015 at Disney California Adventure Park. “It’s Tough to be a Bug” is expected to reopen once the preview is done.

In the meantime, below is an official trailer for “The Good Dinosaur!”

Disney Vacation Tips #12

Shani's Disney Vacation Tips #12

DISNEY VACATION TIPS #12

Main Street Welcome Show at the Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World
Main Street Welcome Show at the Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World

Take advantage of the Extra Magic Hours and enjoy extra time in the Disney parks. 

At Walt Disney World, if you stay at a Disney Resort, you can get one or two extra hours in a Disney park! The predetermined park offering the Extra Magic Hours changes each day, along with whether you’ll get an extra hour in the morning or a two extra hours after park closing!

If you stay at the Disneyland Resort you can enjoy Disneyland Park or Disney California Adventure Park for one full hour before opening.

Restrictions apply, but be sure to learn about this before your vacation so you can take advantage of the extra magic fun during the Extra Magic Hours!

I love helping people plan their vacations and letting them know about all the opportunies available, like Extra Magic Hours. Contact me  if I can help you!

As a former Disney Cast Member and current travel consultant specializing in Disney destinations, I have learned many vacation and travel tips over the years. I’m excited to share some of those tips with you here on our blog. Each week, I will post a new Disney Vacation Tip. Sign up for my Email Updates and never miss one. Also, email me if you have any questions about Disney vacations. I’m happy to help!!!

About Oswald the Lucky Rabbit (and learn to draw him!)

On this day, September 5, in 1927, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit first hopped onto movie screens.

Oswald the Lucky Rabbit at Disney California Adventure
Oswald the Lucky Rabbit at Disney California Adventure

Before there was Mickey & Minnie Mouse, Walt Disney had created Oswald, the Lucky Rabbit who appeared in a total of 26 cartoons between 1927 and 1928. The films were made for Charles Mintz who contracted with Universal for the distribution. Walt lost the rights to his rabbit character, and while it was a terrible loss, it led to his next success, a little mouse named Mickey. More than three quarters of a century after Oswald’s departure from Disney, the company reacquired him in 2006, upon which Disney CEO, Bob Iger, said, “As the forerunner to Mickey Mouse and an important part of Walt Disney’s creative legacy, the fun and mischievous Oswald is back where he belongs, at the home of his creator and among the stable of beloved characters created by Walt himself.”

If you want to visit Oswald in person, he can be found at Disney California Adventure park on Buena Vista Street.

For more information about planning a Disney vacation, please contact me. I’m happy to help you!

As a former Disney Cast Member and current travel consultant specializing in Disney destinations, I can help make your vacation dreams come true. Sign up for my Email Updates and never miss a special. Also, email me if you have any questions about Disney vacations. I’m happy to help!!!

 

 

Special Deals on Vacation Packages for Halloween Time at Disneyland Resort

Halloween at Disneyland Resort

There may not be tricks but there are lots of treats during Halloween time at the Disneyland Resort, which starts September 11 and runs until November 1, 2015.

Haunted Mansion Holiday, Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy, and Dia de los Muertos Celebration are just a few of the Halloween traditions that Guests look forward to each year.

Here’s a deal that’s extra sweet when you book a Good Neighbor Resort Vacation Package:

Enjoy a 2-night/3-day Good Neighbor Resort Vacation Package starting at $99* per person, per day for a family of 4. This includes 3-day, 1-Park per day Disneyland Resort Tickets.

Booking Window:
Now – Nov. 20, 2015
Travel Window:
Aug. 30, 2015 – Nov. 23, 2015

*Some restrictions apply 

For arrivals most nights 8/30 – 10/1/15 and 11/1-11/23/15. Total package price: $1,185.

Vacation Package Includes:

  • Accommodations at a nearby Good Neighbor Hotel
  • Disneyland Resort 1 Park Per Day Souvenir Ticket
  • Exclusive! Walt Disney Travel Company collectible pin, lanyard & luggage tag (Pins, lanyards and luggage tags may vary. One per person in package.)
  • New 2015 Walt Disney Travel Company Savings Card** — A Special card offering savings and values at many participating dining and merchandise locations throughout the Disneyland Resort and on Disneyland Park Tours (one per card)

Also, tickets are still available for Mickey’s Halloween Party!

For more information about planning a Disney vacation, please contact me. I’m happy to help you!

As a former Disney Cast Member and current travel consultant specializing in Disney destinations, I can help make your vacation dreams come true. Sign up for my Email Updates and never miss a special. Also, email me if you have any questions about Disney vacations. I’m happy to help!!!

Be sure to visit my Disneyland Resort Packages page.