First time DL trip

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
First time DL trip
7
Thu, 09-04-2003 - 11:49am
We are moving from Washington state to Arizona in October. On the way we are stopping at Disneyland. We have never been there and only have about 2.5 days to spend there. Our boys are 11 and 13. We are looking for suggestions on what we should not miss seeing there. The park seems so overwhelming..so many things to do and see. But with our boys being older, we can pass up the attractions geared for the younger crowd, right?

Any suggestions will be great!!! Thanks.

Janet

Avatar for denedu
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-17-2003
Thu, 09-04-2003 - 12:48pm
With 2.5days to spend there you should have no trouble at all seeing all the sites. I would suggest though, if your boys like wild rides, to go on Indiana Jones as well as the rollercoaster at California Adventure. They are great rides! Space Mountain is also great, but is scheduled to be closed until 2005. I'd just get a map at the entrance and make your way around the outskirts of the park, and then if they want to go to Fantasyland(which has rides such as "Peter Pan's Flight" and Mr. "Toad's Wild Ride") Then hit that and Toontown last.

As far as California Adventure goes...Paradise Pier has great rides for older kids. But again...I'd get a map and just make your way around the park, and if something catches their eye...go for it! :) After the parks close Downtown Disney is usually open. They have some great food there and some really cool shops for kids! Don't worry...you should have plenty of time to see all the great sites. When we go we usually only stay about the same length of time, and get to do all that we want. I love Disneyland...It's a great family vacation spot! :)

Hope that helps. :)
Avatar for dsnylndmom
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Thu, 09-04-2003 - 2:37pm
How fun for you guys!!

Okay with 2.5 days in October you should be able to do it all! Let's start with dining

I don't know what your budget is but if you can fit it in, make a PS for Blue Bayou. At the boys ages they should love this! Do it for lunch(cheaper and make it as early as possbile for lunch to get a waterside table. The restaurant ambiance is outstanding and the boats from the Pirates of the Caribbean float past your table. It's located next to the exit of Pirates of the Caribbean.

With they ages of your boys I assume they're big eaters(I have a 4.5 year old, 9 year old, 12.5 year old little brother and 17.5 year old cousin that travel with me often)Good places for them to eat are

Plaza Inn in DL on Main STreet

Riverbelle Terrace(esp for breakfast)rignt on the Rives of America

Rancho De Zocalo in Frontierland for mexican and bbq(nice sized portions!!!)

Taste Pilots Grill in DCA next to Soarin'

Ariel's Grotto on the PIer in DCA, even thought they are a little old for a character meal it's great ambiance and you can eat outside on the water looking over a the pier.

White Water Snacks in Grand Californian Hotel(walk right through the DCA/hotel entrance exit and go to the left and it's right there cheap good food with lotsa choices)

ESPN Zone in DTD-Video Games, Sports and food what more could preteen boys want!

House of Blues DTD-good food and fun atmosphere

Disneyland HOtel-Goofy's Kitchen, it's a character meal but it's buffet and it's GOOD! Could probably fill the boys up for hours ;)

Call disneyland reservations (714)781-DINE to make any priority seating arrangements you decide on. Also at laughingplace.com & mouseplanet.com there are reveiws of TONS of the restaurants. There is also a dessert buffet for Fantasmic! which gives you an awesome view of the show and endless desserts(you can reserve this through the same #)it's $47 per person.

On to the Parks

We'll start with DCA since it's smaller and there's less to do. Basically, with your boys ages if they are into thrill rides they want to hit California Screamin', Soarin' over California and Grizzly River Run first off. Other must do's are

Aladdin(the show)

Animation Building(you can do allll kinds of fun little things, make sure to go to Beast's LIbrary)

Muppet's 3D

It's Tough to Be a Bug

Redwood Creek Challenge

those are tops. There is also some rides on the pier they might enjoy. Also, on the pier there is a wonderful photo shop where you can have your family's picture taken and added into the Electrical Parade, certain disney attractions etc etc. It's really cute and well done. Lastly, make sure that you see the Electrical Parade. Sitting down by the beginning of the pier is a good spot and tell your boys to yell and make lotsa noise and the characters will come up to them.

Now the biggie! Disneyland!

First off the must do's are

Haunted Mansion

Pirates of the Caribbean

Indiana Jones

Splash Mountain

Matterhorn

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad

Next make sure to do the Jungle Cruise, Tiki Room, Autopia, Peter Pan(even though it's a kids ride they should like it 'cause it's so different)Alice in Wonderland, the Tea Cups and the Disneyland Railroad. Those are all classic rides! Then don't forget to ride Roger Rabbit's in Toon Town! The boys will probably enjoy Innoventions and Star Tours(all that's left in Tomorrowland)and make sure to take the monorail once or twice! Sit in the back(you can't sit with the driver anymore)it's fun back there!

Take the boys to Tom Sawyers Island, show them the evil witch in a cage in the Pirates of the Caribbean Store. Look for the door to Club 33 near Blue Bayou, it's an exclusive club open to members(and their guests)only and it's fun to find the door. Dont forget to have a Mint Julep and make sure and get Pineapple whips or spears for the boys.

Before you go get online and get a list of hidden mickeys one for each boy and race to see who finds the most first!

Most of all have a wonderful time and soak up all the magic disneyland has to offer!

(oh and enter Main STreet under the left tunnel, less traffic)

If you have any other questions at all feel free to ask!

Oh and I have one, where are you staying???

Tina

Tina

Mom to Kyler~9-94 and Shawn~11-98 and Disneyland Addict!

htt

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Thu, 09-04-2003 - 4:21pm
Wow, so much information!!! Thank you. We are staying the the Howard Johnson. Budget is a little tight but not too bad. We are a military family going to our new home in Arizona. Oh, and sonething else....the boys do NOT know about Disneyland!!!! I guess they will figure it out when we pull into the parking lot!

Janet

Avatar for dsnylndmom
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Thu, 09-04-2003 - 4:35pm
The Hojo's is great! It's within walking distance, 7 minute walk, but you can take the ART shuttle also(you pay a little for this)This will make it easy for you if you want to go back to the hotel for lunch or swimming.

Also, right near the Hojo's is Mimi's Cafe and Millie's. I'm not a fan of Mimi's but a TON of people like them alot(over at mp and lp)Millie's has a kids eat free program for each meal and we REALLY enjoyed our meal there. IHOP has one too(across from the parks)but their prices are higher than normal and to be honest it's not the cleanest IHOP in the world! LOL

If you are on a tight budget I'd do Millie's, White Water Snacks and Plaza Inn(huge portions) and maybe Rancho. If you have a little $ to blow try Rainforest in DTD if you've never been to a Rainforest.

Oh btw, if you have AAA you can get quite a few discounts on meals. Go to Mary's site, www.mousesavers.com and click on Disneyland then the discount section. It shows what AAA discounts you can get.

One last thing, if you are interested there is a Character Warehouse Outlet down Harbor(go over the freeway and straight down Harbor for around 15 minutes or so and the Outlet is on the right, slightly hidden, in a strip mall with a big Circuit City. They tend to have ALOT of good stuff REALLY cheap!

Your welcome!

Tina

Tina

Mom to Kyler~9-94 and Shawn~11-98 and Disneyland Addict!

htt

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Thu, 09-04-2003 - 9:36pm
Be SURE to look into the military discounts that will be available during your visit (if you have not already).

Have a great trip!

Alysha


iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Thu, 09-04-2003 - 10:05pm
Thanks for that suggestion!! That is the ONLY way we can afford to go right now, with moving and everything. Hubby gets in free and the boys and I are $39(each person)for a 3-day vist!

Janet

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 09-05-2003 - 10:48am
I just wanted to thank everyone again for all your suggestions! You don't know how much this has helped!

Janet