Nothing kicks off the holiday season like a trip to Disneyland. Disneyland is decked out from top to bottom for the holidays and it truly takes Disney Magic to a whole new level! So what should you make sure you do at the Disney Parks this holiday season? This is my can’t-miss list for visiting the Disney parks during the holidays.
10 Things for your Disneyland holiday checklist
1. Arrive at the park as soon as it opens
After talking to a Disney staff member, we learned that it is fairly normal to only have 5-minute wait lines on Saturday and Sunday mornings before 10 a.m. Yes, please! Getting to the park early is definitely worth it!
2. Take a photo with the Disneyland Christmas tree
Do it as soon as you get there. It won’t be long before there are crowds of people taking photos… and it will be impossible to get your kids to make the stop after you’ve hit some rides.
3. Make time for A Small World
A Small World takes holiday festivities to an unimaginable level. It is all lit up, festive holiday music replaces the typical songs and it is like riding through a childhood holiday dream. Now the pictures don’t so it justice, but it is simply beautiful and a must-do.
Don’t miss Veena’s Facebook Live coverage of holidays at Disneyland!
4. Ride the Jingle Cruise
You should definitely take a fun ride to see how the jungle celebrates their first Noel. This is a perfect ride for all ages, too.
5. Festival of Holidays in California Adventure
Happening now through January 8, 2017, this festival is inspired by cultural traditions around the world. There are craft tables for Hanukkah and Diwali, as well as specialty foods and beverages from around the world in the Festive Foods Marketplace. Not to mention cool performances by different cultures that makes the trip special and memorable.
6. Take a family photo at the entrance of Cars Land
We waited in line for the amazing photo opp, but had to jump out because our Fast Passes for Radiator Springs Racers was expiring (priorities!), so we missed out, but I am definitely coming back for a holiday card moment.
7. Disney ¡Viva Navidad!
This is one of my favorite holiday festivities at Disney. Between one of our many rides at Goofy’s Sky School at California Adventure, we always stop and dance to the Latin beat of this festive performance. All the classic Disney characters are out on floats, people are dancing in the streets and the music will make your hips shake.
8. Visit Santa at Redwood Challenge Trail
This is a great place for kids to run around and challenge themselves to rock climbing, slides, zip lines and more, but during the holidays, they can also get a picture with Santa (before December 25th) or Santa Goofy (between December 26th and January 8th) at the Ahwahnee Camp Circle. Sign Santa’s “nice” list and you will get your secret elf name!
9. Stay up late for the World of Color’s Season of Lights
It’s the most beautiful choreography of lights, Christmas music, fire and animation. It is truly unrivaled and a must-do. Make sure your kids stay up late enough to catch it!
10. Last, but not least, the Christmas Fantasy Parade
The top of the list for a Disneyland holiday must. All the characters, princesses and more come out in full holiday spirit.
There is no more magical way to celebrate the holidays than at Disneyland and California Adventure Park. This will definitely become an annual holiday excursion for us and we hope your family will make it part of your holiday traditions, too. Make sure you visit the park for all these fun festivities by January 8th, 2017!
This post was contributed by Veena Crownholm. Veena was Miss California 2004 and forth runner-up to Miss America. Since then, she has worked extensively in the non-profit industry specializing in special event fundraising and program development. After giving birth to her son in late 2010, Veena began contributing to lifestyle media outlets. She has made appearances on national television programs including HLN, Raising America, Inside Edition, The Insider, CBS/KCAL9 and Huffington Post Live, as well as being featured in the Los Angeles Times, Kids in the House and Randi Zuckerberg’s Dot Complicated. You can find more from Veena Instagram and Twitter.