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princess lovers mom 01-21-2010 02:03 PM

who has done Christmas at WDW and DL
We are looking to do a Christmas trip (week after) this year and want to go to WDW or DL (never been)...wondering for those who have been to both - could you help me compare?

When I look at the DL info it sounds fun, but I keep thinking about missing Osborne Lights; CP; resorts all decorated and the gingerbread displays....

is DL less crowded at all during the holidays than the horrible WDW crowds?

in California we are thinking of adding on the Rose Bowl Parade too...that is the only plus I can see for California over WDW

outlander 01-21-2010 02:07 PM

I have not done DL at Christmas but with more options in WDW, that would be my pick. Of course, if you want to catch the parade....that may be the way (route?? :lmao:) to go.

Have fun deciding!

gatordoc 01-21-2010 02:23 PM

There certainly are more offerings at WDW, but IMO seeing the Haunted Mansion Holiday overlay at least once in your lifetime may be worth it. I tend to go out to DL every few years at that time of year pretty much just for that. Oh, and the Small World holiday overlay is pretty cool, too.

mousireid 01-21-2010 02:41 PM

I think both parks are packed! I will say that there are some things offered at each park that the other does not have holiday wise and you would have to decide which you would prefer. Haunted Mansion Holiday, the special Christmas Tour (VIP seats for parade, walk onto HM, Small World, three hours tour, free candy, free pin etc - recommended)! Small World decorated for Holidays, Santas Reindeer Roundup at the West Pole (MTMRR). But there's plenty to do between two parks and downtown disney is right next to it. Less trains/trams/travelling everything is within walking distance (especially if you stay onsite) and even if you stay offsite it is usually SO cheap to stay 10/15 minutes walk away outside the Resort.
However, you have more parks at DW. You have already spoken of the Osbourne lights and the vastness that is DW. In saying that I do Magic Kingdom always. DCA and DHS are comparable in some ways but those Osbourne lights are somethings else. Dining - check. DEcor - Check. Parade - Check. Fireworks - check.
I guess it depends how long you are going for and who is going with you. With little ones I found DL easier, but much more selections park wise at DW. I liked the coziness of DL, like an old friend with fun! DW was so much larger like a big adventure!

indimom3 01-21-2010 02:47 PM

I think they are very different experiences. You're much more immersed at DW, and you need at least 4 days to really do Christmas there, IMO. But you can be in and out of DL within 2 days and see it pretty thoroughly.
We were at WDW just this last Christmas, and I really enjoyed it. My last time at DL for Christmas was 6 years ago. I think the decorations were better at DL. Toontown and Fantasyland are better at DL.
It's really a toss up for me.

Giselle22 01-21-2010 03:00 PM

I thought WDW seemed a little less crowded than DL on the week after Christmas, but DH and I have done both and have managed to ride the rides we wanted and see the things we wanted to see at both places, despite crowds. WDW certainly has a lot more to see and do, but I think DL is just a little more magical. I may be biased because I'm a California girl and DL was my first love :laughing: If you're spending a full week, I would probably pick WDW because there is more to do. However, if you go to DL, you could also spend some time checking out other Southern California things, like Hollywood and Beverly Hills, and there is always a lot going on in Los Angeles!

CrazyDisneyMommy1 01-21-2010 04:05 PM

We have done both, twice. We were lucky this past xmas, as we decided to go to DL and it was much, much warmer. But we went for 9 nights and there was not enough for us to do. I did enjoy Haunted Mansion and SW with the Christmas stuff, but I think it would depend on how long you want to stay and your budget. Either way, Disney (land) or (World) at Christmas is great. When we went to DL this past Christmas DL closed down for awhile twice (Dec 27th -Jan 5th). When we went to WDW at xmas 2008 no parked closed amd 2007 Epcot and MK both reached capacity on Dec. 25th. only. I think if you are going for 6 or 7 days, then go to DL any longer I would go to WDW.
HAVE FUN!!!!:banana:

princess lovers mom 01-21-2010 04:08 PM

thanks for the replies - you are not making it easy!!

the problem is I want it to be a surprise for the WHOLE family - so I can't ask them their preference!!

I will keep deliberating!

bbangel 01-21-2010 05:53 PM

Honestly I would choose DL (I've done both)
The treats that are available at DL are amazing! The IASW overlay and the HM overlay are worth the trip. The parade is great as well. Between that and some of the great things at DL that WDW doesn't have (like the Indy ride!) I would choose DL for a special trip.

It is a more compact park so it can feel more crowded but is still manageable.

princess lovers mom 01-22-2010 09:13 AM

does DL do special Christmas parade, fireworks, snow on Main street too

KarenC 01-22-2010 09:17 AM

I've been to both parks the week between Christmas and New Years. I've actually spent New Years Eve in both parks, come to think of it...The last time I was at WDW during that week (2003) it was so crazy I vowed NEVER to go back again during that time. DL in 2005 was somewhat more manageable.

indimom3 01-22-2010 09:50 AM

They do the parade at DL, but I am honestly not sure about the snow.

bbangel 01-22-2010 11:53 AM

Yes they do the snow and a sort of light show with the castle and the lights on main street just before the snow.

princess lovers mom 01-22-2010 12:17 PM

thanks everyone - I have done mucho research now and I am pretty sure I am going to go through with it and go to DL for 3 days then move up to Pasedena for 4 days and do the Rose Parade !!!

it is so much more work than just going to Disney for the week - all transportation, food, entertainment in one place

but the Rose Parade is on my DH bucket list - so we can check that off and experience the "other Disney" at the same time !!!

off to the Disneyland boards :thumbsup2

bbangel 01-22-2010 01:01 PM


Originally Posted by princess lovers mom (Post 35115117)

but the Rose Parade is on my DH bucket list - so we can check that off and experience the "other Disney" at the same time !!!

This is on my mom's list too! I'm trying to make it happen this coming year. Just hope I can pull it off and completely surprise her.

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