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Guide to DLR for WDW Veterans!

Discussion in 'Disneyland Resort' started by GiveMeTheMusic, Oct 18, 2013.

  1. Martin T.

    Martin T. Active Member

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    I'm a Disneylander. I went to WDW the first time in 2016. We spent a week with at least 1 day a park, and we still did not see or do everything that is to be done. When I plan a Southern Californian adventure it is just that. We usually spend two or three days at Disney, and for cheaper in a non-Disney hotel. The biggest difference is that it is a Californian adventure. We would have a day at Knotts's Berry Farm, a Day at Universal, A beach day. Now My wife is a fly down and usually stay at a DLR area hotel and drive to the other places. In my youth, my family would road trip from Seattle. So, it would be the parks as Icing after going to Reno or Vegas, Yosimite, Redwood, San Juaquim Valley, San Fran, Deigo.
    When you do go to DLR for 2-3 days you pretty much can see everything in that time. Character Dining vouchers are good, but meal vouchers is a loose. Many of the passes ans attractions are first come first served the day of. Blue Bayou is a must, it was first come first served for reservations, but I am told that has changed. It has been some time since my last DLR trip. I have not been to DCA yet, so you might need to go 4 days. Even if you have a similar ride at WDW, you still need to ride the west cost version.
     
  2. phruby

    phruby Well-Known Member

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    A note for WDW veterans, when referring to going to Disneyland, never refer to it as going to 'Disney'.

    "They're tourists. What do they know." - Rizzo
     
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  3. PiratesMansion

    PiratesMansion Active Member

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    ^Even worse than that are the people that call it "Walt Disneyland." Makes me cringe.
     
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  4. mickEblu

    mickEblu Well-Known Member

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    To me it will always be... The Park.
     
  5. phruby

    phruby Well-Known Member

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    Right and they are in the Magic Kingdom when they say it.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2017
  6. Witchy Chick

    Witchy Chick Well-Known Member

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    WDW vet here, working on our CA itinerary for July. Our family is me (super uber planner :cautious:), DH, DD8, and DS7.

    For our CA trip, we have four days in San Francisco (DH is a marathoner and running the marathon to cross CA off of his 50 states goal/list) and then four days in Anaheim. We fly from SFO -> SNA on a Monday, arriving at SNA around 11am. I'm figuring with getting luggage and shuttling to our hotel, we only have the afternoon/evening for DLR that first day, then three full days Tues - Thurs after, checking out/flying home Fri morning (no park time that day). Sounds like our total of 3.5 days in the parks is enough time to get most everything done.

    Day 1 Monday
    • mid-dayish arrival to Anaheim, head to DCA for afternoon/evening, possible dinner/WoC package (I'm back and forth on this, or just getting regular old FP for WoC), just hang around Paradise Pier area

    Day 2 Tuesday
    • MM at DL, trying to hit as much as we can before regular park opening
    • Breakfast approx 10am at Minnie and Friends at The Plaza Inn for the kiddos (who are just about outgrowing the "character thing"). We just purchased 4-day PH tickets from aRes that include character meal vouchers for the kiddos; since this character meal is inside the park, we thought this was a good option for this day.

    Day 3 Wednesday
    • DCA? Park hopping to both parks?

    Day 4 Thursday
    • DisneyLand park? (This is another MM but not for us since we're using ours on Tuesday. Thought we could get there at park opening, though, and head to Frontierland/Adventureland for an early start.)

    Questions:
    1. Did ToT/Does GotG: MB have a single rider line (or rider swap)? The kiddos were not big fans of ToT at WDW, so DH and I may tag off on riding this one without the kids.
    2. Summer of Heroes (sorry, locals): Will the Avengers Initiative and the Jedi Training Academy both be available? Our kids have done JTA at WDW, and I think it would be neat to do it at DLR as well. They might also want to do Avengers Initiative (since they and DH are huge comic book dorks). Would we be wasting too much time doing both training things for the kids?
    3. MaxPass -- any word yet on when this goes live?
    4. Aside from WoC (possibly) on our first night, I have not even thought about other nighttime entertainment. Rumor is Fantasmic!! might still be down (our trip is late July)? My kids had not seen MSEP at WDW yet, so that might be nice to see at DLR. And fireworks one night. Any recommendations for parade/fireworks viewing? I've read staying for the second parade is probably a better option, but I don't know if my kiddos can hang that late.
    5. Anything else I should know?

    Thank you!!!
     
  7. GiveMeTheMusic

    GiveMeTheMusic Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    1. No single rider, yes child swap
    2. Both shows will be available all summer, and I'm not hearing great things about ATI vs JTA. JTA may be a better use of your time.
    3. Nope
    4. Fireworks are best with a view of the castle, 2nd parade i always better than the 1st. Fantasmic does not have an opening date set as of yet
     
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  8. Reggie Colorado

    Reggie Colorado New Member

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    Witchy Chick, on the days you do not have MM, consider visiting the park that does not have early opening, as it will be relatively less crowded. For example, if DCA has early opening, Radiator Springs Racers or Toy Story will already have long lines even if you are there at rope drop for the regular opening. On your MM day, also consider park hopping mid-day for the same reason. And given that the parks are right next to each other, aggressively use your PH tickets by monitoring the wait times in each park and walking over to the other park if you see better wait times.
     
  9. Witchy Chick

    Witchy Chick Well-Known Member

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    Thanks!! I'll check back in a month or so (if you don't mind) for feedback/improvements (hopefully?) re: ATI. And if the Black Widow meet and greet is worth it (DD8 loooooooves BW). I think the nighttime entertainment I will have to play by ear as we are East Coasters. Not sure how my kiddos will do adjusting to the time change (although we do have the four days in SF first so they might be on PDT by the Anaheim portion of the trip). Thank you again!

    Thanks!! I added that bit of advice to my notes. I'm not sure how much bouncing around park-to-park we'll be doing throughout each day. I was thinking more midday (depending on wait times, crowds, etc) as the "hey let's hit the other park" break point. And/or maybe hit a different park in the evenings after dinner (ex. DL for morning, DCA for afternoon, dinner break, DL for evening). If I were solo without DH and the kids, I'd be bouncing back and forth like a ping pong ball. LOL
     
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  10. disneygeek90

    disneygeek90 Well-Known Member

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    I love hearing people call WDW "Disneyland"
     
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  11. InsideDisney

    InsideDisney Active Member

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    Few years ago fox news in california called Disneyland walt disney world I was done :hilarious:
     
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  12. Kira Nerys

    Kira Nerys Well-Known Member

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    I call Disneyland the Magic Kingdom.
     
  13. Astrotrain

    Astrotrain New Member

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    This thread is great, thanks so much for all the info. :) We just got back from our first trip to WDW and are planning a trip to DL in February (much closer to us since we live in Seattle).

    It's interesting to see all the differences, but I think my kids will enjoy it just as much.
     
  14. hayzer11

    hayzer11 Energy, you make the world go round!

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    This the funniest most accurate guide ever.

    Double LOL
     
  15. 75disney

    75disney Well-Known Member

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    I am so excited! We finally booked our flights last night so we are going to Disneyland from 8/20-8/26. I plan on getting a four day park ticket and we are doing a Hollywood tour one of the days. We are staying at the Howard Johnson's. Any tips for where to eat (either in the parks or Disney hotels) or outside the parks? I have 2 teenagers with relatively picky palates. Also, any recommendations on a tour company to do Hollywood since we will not have a car?
     
  16. thomas998

    thomas998 Well-Known Member

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    Well the only place in Disneyland I would recommend is Blue Bayou (its pricey and you need reservation so if you do it be on the phone 30 days in advance)... The other sit down places in DL are just not that good. Counter service is what you would expect in a WDW park so no surprises there.... In CA most places are decent so take your pick based on what you like... The one place to avoid at all cost as far as Disney goes is Goofy's Kitchen which has the absolute worst service I've ever encounter at any Disney park anywhere... food is what you would get in a cafeteria but when you can't get a drink to wash anything down it wouldn't matter if it was great food or bad food you're still going to choke to death before you'll find any waiter, and did I mention you get hit with an automatic gratuity and pay upfront? I think its the reason the service is so worthless they already have your money so they don't care anymore about you the customer.

    Now outside the park with no car your going to be stuck with things in walking distance. Between your hotel and the park gates you have a Panera, McDonalds and Ihop... There is a place called Captain Kidds right across from the park entrance DO NOT GO THERE, bad service and nasty food. If you keep walking past the park entrance on Harbor Blvd you'll see a Cold Stone Creamery which has decent ice cream.. and a Tony Romas which has decent barbecue and steaks (barbecue is better than the steaks)... I wouldn't bother going further on Harbor than the Tony Romas as there is nothing else worth it in walking distance.... Now if you want to get overpriced Disney Springs type food just go through the park entrance plaza and you'll be in downtown Disney with the same types of places you would find in Disney Springs but don't go there if you're looking for reasonable prices because you won't find anything reasonable there it will be things at Disney prices even the chains that would be reasonable at any of their other locations in California will be suffer Disney price inflation at the downtown Disney location so if your watching your budget don't think you'll find a better deal hear than in one of the parks.
     
  17. JediMasterMatt

    JediMasterMatt Well-Known Member

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    Congratulations on your upcoming trip. That week is the last heavy full week of the summer season, so you should have the full entertainment offerings. Crowds will be high; but, manageable as it's that week that it usually starts tapering off.

    Usually, the following week is one of hidden gems on Disneyland's operational calendar as the crowds are typically much reduced during the week and they still offer most of the summer line up (nightly Fantasmic's are the only thing missing on the weekdays). This year I'm predicting it will be significantly busier though as Fantasmic will just be coming back and annual pass restrictions are lifted. While I don't know for sure... my hunch is there will be some extra Fantasmic offerings that week in the form of passholder events at least.

    As far as food, Blue Bayou is good (not great) in terms of the food quality; but, it makes up for in in ambience and the Fantasmic dinning package is a great way to get a good view of the show. Carthay Circle is always excellent (I've never had a bad meal there). Outside the parks, the great news is the Pizza Press has relocated and is open. It's always a good spot to grab a bite to eat and maybe even make some new Cast Member friends.
     
  18. JediMasterMatt

    JediMasterMatt Well-Known Member

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    Oh... and I almost forgot to add my usual message about DLR visits compared to WDW. Relax and don't over plan things. The real joy of Disneyland Resort is that you can treat it just the way you use to a visit to WDW many decades ago. Just let each day serve as an adventure and let the surprises unfold around every corner. At most, plan where you want to start the day and where you want to end up and in the middle make sure you grab a FP when available before you cash in the one you have (as long as you don't have to back track too much).
     
  19. djlaosc

    djlaosc Well-Known Member

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    We just started booking our first Disneyland trip last week, having been to WDW 6 times and DLP 2 times, staying in studios at the Villas at Grand Californian - April 23rd-April 30th 2018.

    The trip has been booked for a 60th Birthday (someone who originally saw Disneyland on one of the old Disney programs [I'm guessing Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color but not sure if this would be the right program to be shown in the UK at that time] and always wanted to go, but never has). Two other members of the party will be celebrating their 2nd Wedding Anniversary - the actual dates of these events are not while we are at Disneyland, but they are one of the reasons for booking the trip for next year.

    We are looking for any ideas of what to expect - we are looking at booking a 5 day ticket (may seem like a lot to some people but we normally go to Florida for 3 weeks [obviously doing other things beside WDW], and are looking to do 5 park days (including at least one day at the weekend as they will probably be the only days for fireworks while we are there) and will probably fill the other two days with a pool/look around the 3 hotels/Downtown Disney day, and a day doing a Hollywood Tour.

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2017
  20. Kira Nerys

    Kira Nerys Well-Known Member

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    A week at the Grand Californian? Jesus, can I come?
     
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