• Welcome to the WDWMAGIC.COM Forums!
    Please take a look around, and feel free to sign up and join the community.You can use your Twitter or Facebook account to sign up, or register directly.

Trip Report The “lets count the ways Land is greater than World” as seen through the eyes of the #noobsfromgeorgia.

lostpro9het

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Whelp, this may be a record start of a TR for me. I’m sitting in LAX right now waiting to board and doing my best to put off grading the 30 term papers I need to have done by Monday so why not start this report! There is no true PTR to reference for this trip other than the breadcrumbs I dropped over in the Deja Vu TR. The lowdown is as follows:
The crew: DW, DD, and Myself
IMG_5365.JPG

Lodging: 1 night at Paradise Pier and 4 nights at The Grand Californian.
The plan: 2 days at Disneyland and 2 days at California Adventure in the following order CS/DL/CA/DL

Despite the title, I promise this wont be a dump on WDW TR but it was hard to ignore the things that DL does so dang well. That said, lets do this.

This journey starts with a night at the Holiday Inn & Suites Atlanta Airport-North. We’ve stayed here once before for a Disney trip and had a great experience. What is nice about this place is you get to park your car for the length of the trip just for staying the night at the hotel and they shuttle you to and from the airport. This is especially nice when you have an early flight, which we did. The accommodations are nice enough and serve the purpose.
IMG_4359.JPG

We let yelp help us find dinner and found a fantastic taco stand located in a hole-in-the-wall in the bad side of town. Worth it!
IMG_4361.JPG

As I said before we had to fly out at 06:13 which meant we had to get up early. Andrew W.K woke us up at 04:10 so we could get down to the lobby for the 4:40 shuttle. This was still better than the 3:00 wakeup call we would have had to do if we drove straight from home!
IMG_4362.PNG

My naive mind had me thinking we would be the only folks at Atlanta’s Hartsfield–Action-Jackson- Atlanta International Airport and Spaceport. Yeah, it was hopping!
IMG_4364.JPG

We had a mild wait to get through security and were soon enjoying some bagels at our gate with 30ish minutes to spare.
IMG_4365.JPG

This was our first time flying American and I would absolutely fly them again! The complementary in-flight movies/TV on demand for laptops and iDevices was appreciated and every row had charges to plug your devise in! We got seated and I immediately had to embarrass the kid before watching The Avengers: Half Ya’ll Gonna Die.
IMG_4366.JPG
IMG_4367.JPG
IMG_4369.JPG
 

lostpro9het

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Advertisement
The flight was pretty good! The in-flight entertainment made it pass quickly and I don't recall any bad bumps or rocks. We had some great views during the trip. I think we even got to see the new LA Rams stadium construction as we started our landing approach. One thing I'm glad we didn't notice, until we landed, was the ice on the wing. I'm pretty sure this would have freaked out the DW even though I'm sure it was perfectly safe. Really the only hiccup I can recall is they had trouble opening the door when we landed. This delayed us getting off the plane by only a few minutes, though.
IMG_4374.JPG
IMG_4376.JPG
IMG_4377.JPG
IMG_4378.JPG
IMG_4379.JPG
IMG_4380.JPG

Before the trip we had booked a private Super shuttle. Our driver had already arrived at the airport when we landed and called us as we waited to disembark the plane. I'll be honest, LAX was a breeze to navigate and get out of compared to ATL. We were quickly off the plan and waiting on our driver at the stand.
IMG_4381.JPG
 

imahistorygeek

Well-Known Member
I'm just popping in quick (we just got in to ATL) to say that this was such a great trip and if you're on the fence abt DL, just do it. We were really missing out by not visiting sooner. It's just a completely different experience. Crowds were no where near the level of insane like WDW which made for nice park touring.
 

lostpro9het

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Another naïve notion we had was sitting in LA traffic for hours on end trying to get from LAX to Paradise Pier: false. We met our SS driver and were out of LAX and pulling into PP in roughly 40 minutes! When we asked our driver about the traffic he admitted that today’s lack of traffic was quite rare and said we were pretty fortunate to have such an easy trip to the hotel, I’ll take it.

It really seemed like no time and we saw the DTD sign before coming up on PP.
IMG_4382.JPG
IMG_4383.JPG

The lobby was smaller than I was expecting and they didn’t have many folks manning the desk despite the number of guests in the lobby. You are immediately greeted by a nice sea themed Christmas tree. Since the DW booked this room she went to the counter to check us in. Our room wasn’t ready but they assured us we would get the text when it was. They provided us with a map and direction for navigating our way to DTD and the parks.
IMG_4384.JPG
IMG_4386.JPG


Prior to the trip we had ordered our tickets from aRestravel but all you get is a code to redeem when you arrive at the hotel/parks. We redeemed those codes for our passes to use this week. It was weird holding actual tickets again. We probably hadn't held actual tickets since Fall 2012, Fall 2013 was our first MagicBand IIRC.
IMG_4387.JPG

While all this was going on I grabbed a few lobby pics while dropping our gear off at bell services.
IMG_4388.JPG
IMG_4389.JPG
IMG_4390.JPG

With that, we made for DTD!
IMG_4391.JPG
 
Last edited:

lostpro9het

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
So we continued our way into DTD. Here was our first "DL>WDW" moment. As you enter DTD you pass trough security/bag check. This checkpoint is essentially "the" checkpoint for the whole DL bubble. We could now go into DL and or CA and back into DTD without going through another security checkpoint. There were four such checkpoints into the bubble that we noted: Here at Disneyland Hotel, the one at the other end of the bubble where offsite hotel buses drop off, and two entry points from the Grand Californian Hotel. I'll talk more about those wonderful GC checkpoints later.
IMG_4392.JPG
IMG_4393.JPG
IMG_4394.JPG
IMG_4395.JPG
IMG_4396.JPG

As we made our way down DTD we had a little sticker shock when we saw the price of their Churro Ice Cream sammy, about $3 more than WDW! Thankfully this wouldn't be a trend.
IMG_4397.JPG
IMG_4398.JPG
IMG_4399.JPG
IMG_4400.JPG
 
Last edited:

Songbird76

Well-Known Member
Nice! They had the same security checkpoint set up in Disneyland Paris. It was so nice to be able to go shopping in Disney Village, park hop, etc, and it was all just steps from each other. So much easier to get around. Our resort there had a security checkpoint too...that's one I'd never encountered. Some guy got stopped just before us because when they scanned his bags, he apparently had a bunch of huge knives. My small pocket knife did not register at the hotel, which is good because I completely forgot I had it.

Hope you have a great time! It's neat to read about Disneyland and the differences.
 

lostpro9het

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
We continued down the marketplace taking in the decorations and "new to us" shops.
IMG_4401.JPG
IMG_4402.JPG
IMG_4403.JPG

We ended up grabbing a few sweets that we would snack on throughout the trip. We actually made the peppermint bark last 3 days!
IMG_4404.JPG

This was a new shop to us and terribly popular with the guests. On black Friday there was a line at least 50 deep waiting to get in.
IMG_4405.JPG
IMG_4406.JPG

Of course there is a Disney store stocked with all the goodies. The DD even picked up a Disney themed Rubik's Cube
IMG_4407.JPG
IMG_4408.JPG
IMG_4409.JPG
 

StarBurst

Well-Known Member
We continued down the marketplace taking in the decorations and "new to us" shops.
View attachment 327945
View attachment 327946
View attachment 327947

We ended up grabbing a few sweets that we would snack on throughout the trip. We actually made the peppermint bark last 3 days!
View attachment 327948

This was a new shop to us and terribly popular with the guests. On black Friday there was a line at least 50 deep waiting to get in.
View attachment 327949
View attachment 327951

Of course there is a Disney store stocked with all the goodies. The DD even picked up a Disney themed Rubik's Cube
View attachment 327952
View attachment 327953
View attachment 327954
the land disney store looks really nice compared to the one in the springs
 

lostpro9het

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
I can't wait to hear more! I'm glad your flight was smooth. Super Shuttle is really the way to go when flying in to LAX (or SNA) their app is super easy to use, and it's a great way for them to communicate with you as well. We will be using them in a couple of weeks when we fly down ourselves. :cat:
Super Shuttle was so nice! I wasn't expecting the personal attention like getting a call from our driver while we were on the tarmac checking on us. I'd highly recommend the service to any traveler.
Nice! They had the same security checkpoint set up in Disneyland Paris. It was so nice to be able to go shopping in Disney Village, park hop, etc, and it was all just steps from each other. So much easier to get around.
It really is so much easier and VGC had a private entrance into CA as well as DTD which was very nice.

the land disney store looks really nice compared to the one in the springs
It is very nice and spacious compared to WDW. What I liked about it is it was just one long store, no turning corners and changing directions.
 

lostpro9het

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
We continued on through DTD and soon found ourselves standing between the entrance to CA and DL. We arrived a little sooner than I was expecting. I had it in my head that DTD was a little bigger than it was. Its much smaller than at WDW but fits the DL mold perfectly. We looked around a bit and grabbed a couple selfies before heading back into DTD for some lunch. We'd been up for 10 hours and only had some bagels before we left the ATL.
IMG_4410.JPG
IMG_4411.JPG
IMG_4412.JPG
IMG_4413.JPG
IMG_4414.JPG
IMG_4415.JPG
IMG_4416.JPG
IMG_4417.JPG
 

captnblue

Member
It's funny that you mentioned the price difference of the churro ice cream sandwich, as I was shocked to see it was quite a bit cheaper at WDW in your earlier report. I'm a DL local, but still haven't bitten the bullet and paid $10 for it out here, so when I saw it was $7 there I immediately put it on my list of snacks to get on my upcoming trip!

Can't wait to see how the rest of the trip goes.
 

lostpro9het

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Again, 10 hours since we last ate so we were on a mission. Since we had tacos last night and pizza the night before this ruled out Naples and Jo’s. We were teetering on Earl when we came up on Jazz Kitchen. I had never heard of this place before today but I do like some creole style food. They were busy but still had plenty of seating and tabled us in the courtyard
IMG_4422.JPG
IMG_4421.JPG
IMG_4424.JPG

They were currently serving brunch but had plenty of non-brunch food as well.
IMG_4423.JPG

We were greeted by our service team, one vet and one trainee, and talked about the menu and options. The menu was pretty big with many good options which made picking one thing difficult. The DD ended up going with the Pasta Jambalaya, this was excellent and the sauce they serve it with could have been a meal itself or a condiment on just about anything!
IMG_4425.JPG

DW went with the Red Beans & Rice, also a great dish.
IMG_4426.JPG

I had the Cajun Omelet with potatoes, this plate was massive and full of andouille sausage, and even the potatoes had them. So good!
IMG_4427.JPG

I went with a Karl Strauss Windasea Wheat; a textbook Hef with some good flavor 3.75/5. Karl Strauss beer was everywhere in the bubble so we will be experiencing this brewery a lot more this trip.
IMG_4428.JPG

DW went with the mint julep
IMG_4429.JPG

Everything we had was fantastic. Despite forgetting to bring the DD her Sprite, which she didn’t need anyway, our server in training did a fine job. Leading up to this trip the DW and I had been watching many vlogs on DL and learned to, no matter where you go, ask about discounts. This advice would serve to save us on almost every purchase this trip! I whipped out the DVC card and, BOOM, discount! We settled our tab and decided to get some dessert and explore more.
 

lostpro9het

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
For dessert the DD wanted some ice cream from Salt & Straw. For those not familiar with S&S they are pretty much a custom ice cream shop that creates blends as mundane as Double Fold Vanilla to the flat out ridiculous like Black Olive Brittle & Goat Cheese, yes you just read that right…black olive ice cream :hungover:.
IMG_4430.JPG
IMG_4431.JPG
IMG_4432.JPG

The DD had plans of getting the Lucky Charms based Pots of Gold & Rainbows blend but decided against it after tasting it. I tried the Roasted Peach & Sage Cornbread Stuffing just for the thrill and, I gotta say, it was actually good!
IMG_4433.JPG

Ultimately the ladies each went with a scoop of the Chocolate Gooey Brownie which was excellent. Again, DVC Discount!
IMG_4434.JPG

We continued checking out the stores and the ladies decided they need to make purchases at Pandora. While they shopped I noticed there was an artist, Robert Griggs, featured there today for Mickey’s 90th. He was doing drawings of your favorite fab five member. I pleaded with him for an original Pete’s Dragon but he conceded that his memory of Pete wasn’t strong enough to draw so I requested Goofy as my backup. He was a pleasant fellow and easy to chat with. He invited me back during his break if I really wanted a Pete so he could have time to research him. I thanked him for his time and caught back up with the ladies to continue our exploration.
IMG_4435.JPG
IMG_4436.JPG
IMG_4437.JPG
IMG_4438.JPG
IMG_4439.JPG
 
Last edited:

lostpro9het

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
The DD had picked up a Mickey ring from Pandora and we continued on towards the Disneyland Hotel. We stopped in at the Lego store along the way where I saw the third most beautiful thing I had ever laid eyes on. If ya’ll are curious as to what to get me for Christmas this year I give you the third most beautiful thing in the world:
IMG_4441.JPG
IMG_4442.JPG

I could not believe how seeing this guy immediately thrusted me back to the 3rd grade, plopping myself down after school in front of the TV, and watching some of the best cartons ever. I thought about this set the entire trip and debated on how I could safely get it on the plane back home. The struggle was real! As my DW sees me ogling this beauty she comes up and asks: “ What Transformer is that?”


I couldn’t even answer her. I just shook my head and we moved on. As we left I grabbed a pic of The Falcon too as I lamented not getting Voltron #sigh
IMG_4443.JPG

We continued on to the Disneyland Hotel to explore some more since our room text had not come through yet. The hotel wasn’t as busy as I thought it would be but I figured with the 90th going on most folks were at the parks. The pool area was beautiful. We explored the gift shop a bit too. The DD even accidentally set off the alarm as they had some tagged toys too close to the exit. As she picked up the plush it triggered the alarm. The CMs, apparently, had been dealing with this all day.
IMG_4444.JPG
IMG_4445.JPG
IMG_4446.JPG
IMG_4447.JPG
IMG_4448.JPG
 

Ariel1986

Well-Known Member
Ahh be still my beating heart Disneyland! It’s so awesome. It really has it’s own magic. We’ve stayed in PP and the Disneyland Hotel, but not the Grand Californian yet. I want to try it, but it will be hard to resist the Disneyland Hotel’s pool & ambiance!

I’m enjoying reading from inside WDW!
 

lostpro9het

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
It's funny that you mentioned the price difference of the churro ice cream sandwich, as I was shocked to see it was quite a bit cheaper at WDW in your earlier report. I'm a DL local, but still haven't bitten the bullet and paid $10 for it out here, so when I saw it was $7 there I immediately put it on my list of snacks to get on my upcoming trip!

Can't wait to see how the rest of the trip goes.
Since the price of the sandwich has jumped $.50 in just a year I'm curious how much longer before we see the $10 ice cream sandwich in WDW. They are darn good, though!

Ahh be still my beating heart Disneyland! It’s so awesome. It really has it’s own magic. We’ve stayed in PP and the Disneyland Hotel, but not the Grand Californian yet. I want to try it, but it will be hard to resist the Disneyland Hotel’s pool & ambiance!

I’m enjoying reading from inside WDW!
Thanks for following along!
Having done PP and VGC I'm not sure how we could do DLH on future trip as we liked VGC so much. I enjoy having a balcony and really appreciated the private entrance into CA.
 
Top Bottom