Taking a trip to Disneyland is on everyone’s bucket list and it is easy to see why. As soon as you step in the park, you can’t help but feel the magic! Bunches of balloons hang on the corners of Main Street, the smells of popcorn and candy waft through the doorway of the bakery, and there are Disney characters all around. Sounds pretty fantastic, doesn’t it? There is an inexplicable energy that exists at Disney and every time I go, I can’t help but soak it in.
If this is your first trip to Disneyland, there are somethings you will want to know that will help you make the most out of your trip. First thing you need to know is that you should purchase your Disneyland Ticket(s) in advance from a reputable Disney Ticket Seller. You don’t want to waste time standing in a ticket line at the park. Our ticket broker is Undercover Tourist and they have the best deals on Disney Park Tickets!
You also should be sure that once you have your ticket that you take a photo of the back of your ticket with your phone. If you were to lose your ticket, this is the only way to be able to trace it. Guest Relations can replace any lost ticket if they have the right information.
The best way to save money is by bringing your own drinks & snacks. Disneyland allows you to bring food and drinks into the park (no glass and no alcohol). We love to pack a small cooler of water bottles and a backpack with individual snacks. This will save you a ton of money and allow you to spend your vacation fund on things you really want.
Speaking of buying things you really want. If you know you will be buying souvenirs, know that you don’t have to carry them with you throughout your time in Disneyland. Just ask the shop if they can hold the item until you are ready to pick it up. The only thing you might want to buy and actually keep with you are the Made with Magic items (like Made with Magic Mickey & Minnie Ears) that you can wear and use at the night shows and fireworks display!
Now, that you have some of the prep work done, let’s talk about the things you must do at Disneyland. I’m talking about the things you might not know about, but will be so glad to know because it is going to really improve your trip. Here they are!
10 Things You Must Do at Disneyland
- Get your FREE Button. If you are celebrating a special occasion or if it is your first time at the park, you will want to make sure that you get your FREE Disneyland Button that commemorates the occasion. Wear it with pride all day long and take advantage of the extra attention it gets you.
- Use the FastPass system at Disneyland. For those unfamiliar with the Fastpass system, this is a way for you to “Jump the line” so to speak. Look for a Fastpass distribution area kiosk where you can get a Fastpass ticket for whichever ride you choose (you can find a list of Fastpass rides on your Disneyland Park Map). You will need your park ticket to be able to get the Fastpass ticket. Once you scan your ticket, your FastPass ticket will print. It will tell you the time window you have to actually ride your chosen ride and all you have to do is show up with your Fastpass during the time frame given.
- Trade Disney Pins with Castmembers. Disney Castmembers (that’s what Disney calls their employees) will trade their Disney pins with you. These Disney pins make great park souvenirs! While you can buy them in the park, you can usually get a huge set of them fairly cheap on Amazon or eBay. Our theory is to buy cheap pins so that you can trade for the ones you really want to collect!
- Walk through Sleeping Beauty Castle. There is a reason that this castle is so iconic and it all goes back to Aurora and the classic tale of her life. As you walk through her castle, you will see her story unfold in a way that is totally unexpected. You will find dioramas depicting scenes from the classic film, animation, and special effects that bring the story to life!
- Disney Parks are the ONLY place you can get a Dole Whip. This magical pineapple soft serve (dairy free) dessert has a cult following for a reason. It is amazing. Grab one at the Tiki Juice Bar in Adventureland and then enjoy eating it in the air conditioned Enchanted Tiki Room during the show.
- One of the things you MUST do at Disneyland is ride It’s a Small World. It may sound hokey or boring, but it is iconic and finding the Disney characters hidden among the figures is fun too!
- Meet characters. You will find the most characters in one place along the wall when the park opens. The lines are about 30 minutes for each character. If you are counting on meeting a Disney Princess (or three), go to the Royal Hall. Each Princess meets her guests in her own special area that is perfect for capturing that special photo.
- Bring change for Pressed Penny machines. By far the cheapest souvenir you can buy at Disneyland are Disney Pressed Pennies. These pennies feature popular Disney Characters, rides and attractions. Each is .51 so be sure to have both Quarters and Pennies for the machines.
- Look for Hidden Mickeys. The Disney Imagineers have done a great job of placing small Hidden Mickey’s in not so obvious places throughout Disneyland. If you want to add a little extra magic to your vacation, purchase the Hidden Mickey book so you can spot them a little easier.
- The Main Street Electrical Parade is one of the things you must do at Disneyland because it is a one-of-a-kind experience and is only here until the end of summer (August 2018). This parade is different from all the others because it is filled with floats that are illuminated in dazzling LED lights. There are usually two parade times. If you can do the latter one, you will often find that it is less crowded. The best viewing spot is of course the most crowded (right on Main Street), but if you don’t mind not having the best view of the castle, go by It’s a Small World instead!
We hope you found this list of things you must do at Disneyland helpful! Do you have anything you think we should add?