We have been to Disneyland several times in the past several years, and I am writing this blog post for YOU, all of my homies, who want to have a magical time at the most magical place on earth! These are Disneyland secrets and tips that I’m also writing down for myself so that I don’t forget them for our future Disneyland trips. You can see our other trip when the kids were 2 HERE!
10 Top disneyland SECRETS AND TIPS for the whole family!
- Even though it sucks getting up early, do it!! Get there right when the park opens! The lines are way shorter and the tickets are so expensive that you want to make it worth it! Also, if you want to get onto the Star Wars ride, you literally have to get there at like 6:30 or 7 😬 Not worth it for us but worth it for some people!
- Download the Disneyland app before you go, then sync your tickets together through the app. I would recommend buying the Disney MaxPass for each of you so that you can get in waiting lines for each ride through the app (it’s called fast passes) and you can get in like virtually for 2 rides at a time. Then when you are done with 1 ride, book another. If all of your tickets are linked through the app, one person can create a fast pass party for all of your tickets!
- MaxPass lets you have all the professional photographer photos synced to your phone so you get great photos that you can download! When you see a photographer, have them take your photo then scan your MaxPass on your phone and they will go to your phone! If you want a photo with a character in it, ask for it! They had us point to the sky and had Peter Pan flying in our picture. SO fun!
- 1 park per day – don’t do park hopper!! It’s WAY too hard to bounce back and forth between parks so I would go for 2 days at least and do one park per day! Then you don’t feel stressed hitting so much in one day. We did this last year and loved it and didn’t this last time and it was way too crazy!
- Ride switch – if one of your kids is too short, you can do ride switch! Talk to the worker in the line and they will give you a ride switch pass. Wait in line with the people who CAN ride, and then have one parent stay with that one child who can’t, then they will let you go in the fast past line when you switch so the other parent can stay with the shorter child.
- Eat somewhere fast OR make a reservation!! Don’t try to choose a nice restaurant last minute Choose somewhere that you want to eat dinner beforehand and get the reservation because it’s sooo busy everywhere. Also, on the Disneyland app, you can preorder food and pick it up. I thought this sounded dumb at first but it actually saves a ton of time! You can do this for corn dogs, etc or better meals! I love the Mickey raspberry macaroons at Jolly Holiday bakery and if you want a quick and easy meal, get their tomato soup and grilled cheese. The kabobs are also pretty good at the place by the jungle cruise and that’s a fast meal. I also brought TONS OF SNACKS!! Like a full bag worth. We ate those in the lines and no one got hangry!
- Plan out what you don’t want to miss BEFORE you go + look at what shows are available!! I’m so sad I didn’t know you could meet Elsa and Anna until after we left because I didn’t look it up. The Frozen show in CA Adventire is amazing!
- CA Adventure – World of Color (the night show) is SO cool! We used a fast pass to get close seats BUT I actually think standing further away against the buildings is better because you can see more and you don’t have to use a fast pass. Win/win and something we didn’t notice until we were walking out! It’s actually SUPER cool and your kids will love it!
- Make a list of food you want to eat! We love: Turkey legs, corn dogs, raspberry macaron at the Jolly Holiday cafe in Disneyland (OMG!), doll whips, and SO many of you recommended the churro toffee. I wish we would have gotten it so I’m writing down to get it next time!
- Put your phone on low battery mode or your phone will run out! This will stop the apps from running in the background. You’ll be on your phone all day with the MaxPass/booking rides/ordering food and taking photos. My phone was saved because my mom told me to do this when we got there! It had died the two previous times we went and she was a genius who solved the problem without having to bring an portable charger. Yay!
disneyland SECRETS AND TIPS FOR FAMILIES q&A:
I asked you guys on Instagram what questions you wanted me to answer, so here goes! I LOVED your questions and think everyone can benefit from these.
- Best time of year to go to Disneyland? January and February are historically the lowest traffic times to go to Disneyland. You can check blockout dates HERE for each pass. The days with the most blackouts are going to be the most crowded!
- Is one day enough with little kids? I would dedicate one day to each park, so if you’re going to Disneyland and not California Adventure, I think one day is fine! I wouldn’t recommend a park hopper pass if you’re only going one day because it’s too much to do in one day and you’ll probably leave disappointed that you didn’t get to see as many attractions as you wanted to. I would recommend going for at least 2 days and doing one park on each day.
- Where to stay at Disneyland? I love the Disneyland hotels, especially if you have super young kids that need to nap! If they don’t need to nap, I would recommend staying a little further away. It really depends on your budget, though! Obviously the hotels are close and it’s a fun experience so it depends on where you want to invest. I want to stay at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa because they have an entrance from the hotel into California Adventure! How amazing would that be?
- How do you keep your kids from getting lost? We had 3 adults to 2 kids and we communicated clearly on who was in charge of what child at what times. I would also recommend getting really bright shirts that are all the same! That way you can keep track of your humans better. I also think a backpack with a leash is super awesome for kids that are really young and susceptible to just running off.
- What was worth it and what was worth skipping at Disneyland? Worth it – Frozen show, meeting Mickey the FIRST time last year (this year my kids weren’t as excited so I would say do that once), eating lots of food. Not worth it – I wish we would have skipped Toon Town this time and gone to see the new Star Wars area. We didn’t plan our day well enough. So I would say skip things you have done in the past and try new things if you only have a limited time! AND PLAN YOUR DAY BEFORE!!!
- What to bring? Our stroller was SO NICE to have because my kids got tired and we could push them a lot faster than they could walk. We would have died without our stroller! We could also store our coats and extra gear in the holders. We brought a ton of snacks, my kid’s water, coats for the night show, sunglasses, sunscreen and a good attitude!
- Was your stroller ever annoying? NO!! We LOVED having it!! We were able to park it places when we wanted to go on rides and my kids could rest and we could walk fast between the rides. If I didn’t bring one, I would have for sure rented one. BUT I’m glad I brought it because we walked from the parking garage to the resort which is pretty far! Also, I needed it for the airport so it was a no brainer.
what to wear to disneyland
BONUS Disneyland tip: WEAR A FANNY PACK!!! This is the first time I did and the GAME IS CHANGED, people. Hands free and all of my money, cards and phone were safe?! Hello!!
what to wear to disneyland
favorite fanny packs for disneyland
what to wear to disneyland
A great way to book your Disney vacation is through Get Away Today! You can book park tickets, hotels, and cruises all through their website! It’s super convenient and a great way to get a good deal. Check it out here!