Downtown Disney with a 4 year old

Discussion in 'Disneyland (California)' started by Kianasmom, Jan 9, 2012.

  1. Kianasmom

    Kianasmom Earning My Ears

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    We arrive at 1:30 and are looking for idea's on what to do with our daughter. We have the 3 day hopper that starts the next day.

    We have dinner scheduled at Goofy's Kitchen. I already have an appointment at BBB in the park. We've also seen Alvin and the Chipmunks. Not sure if the other two PG movies are suitable for her.

    I feel bad that she might be dissapointed that we're nit going right to the park. We are staying at Fairfield.

    Thanks for any suggestions.
     
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  3. VallCopen

    VallCopen VGC Lover

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    Our 4 year old loves downtown Disney...We just walk through the World of Disney store and admire everything and start thinking of what she would like for her souveiner (?) when we leave Disney. We also love to walk through Build a Bear, and Disney 365. The hotels are fun to walk through and we also enjoy getting a Jamba Juice or Haagen Dazs cone, for daughter, and then take it back to the Grand Californian Foyer (entrance across from H.Dazs) where we let her watch the Disney Cartoons while sitting in the kids rocking chairs, then one of us heads to the bar (back in the corner) to get a couple drinks for us to enjoy as we sit near in the grown up chairs and visit or listen to the pianist (if he is playing), many times they are handing out balloons too. If it is around 8:00-8:30pm they usually have a storyteller at the fireplace for the kids. I am sure she will enjoy the atmosphere of Downtown Disney alone....Have fun.
     
  4. mellers

    mellers DIS Veteran

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    I think dinner at Goofy's Kitchen ought to take care of any "out of park" disappointment.

    My suggestion? Go to Downtown Disney:

    If you want to, go to lunch at the Rainforest Cafe. That's always fun, and since you won't have to rush off to the parks, you can take your time.

    If it's too late for lunch, just go to the Rainforest Cafe and get everyone a Volcano! to share! Complete with announcement and mini-parade.

    Make a rule--that first day is the one and only day to shop for souvenirs, and spend loads of time picking out just that perfect thing on which to spend the souvenir money at World of Disney. If you plan to buy "mouse ears" or a costume, or anything like that, buy it here and now--preferably with your Disney Visa, saving 10%, and giving you more time to spend in the park.

    Build a bear at Build-a-Bear

    Ask your daughter if she'd prefer Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique or a Studio Star Makeover at Disney 365--that might be a good way to fill up that time, and not take park time away for Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique. If however, BBB is a must, scrap this idea.

    Pick out a special Disney book at Compass Books. Go back to the room and read it together.

    Go swim in the hotel pool

    Go on a Hidden Mickey hunt through Downtown Disney

    Get a Lego or Duplo set (not sure of your daughter's age) from the Lego store and take it back to the room. Have everyone in the family try to build a Lego or Duplo city all around the room.

    Buy a Disney family game from World of Disney, and have a major game tournament back at the room.

    There's no shortage of things to do.
     
  5. mellers

    mellers DIS Veteran

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    The Disney cartoons and the rocking chairs in the Grand Californian Lobby is a GREAT idea.
     
  6. tink2dw

    tink2dw Pixie Dust or Bust!!

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  7. tink2dw

    tink2dw Pixie Dust or Bust!!

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  8. andee2000

    andee2000 Mouseketeer

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    Not sure what amenities the fairfield has, but we are not scheduled to be in the park our first day either. We are going to let the kids play in the hotel pool and tehn we will go to dinner at goofys. Then we will shop a little and go back to the hotel. I am sure she will be fine not going the first day.
     
  9. starshine514

    starshine514 DIS Veteran

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    I don't know if I would bother with this; I've been twice (May and November of last year) and I don't feel the need to go back. They have a ton of non-parks stuff and a decent amount of non-Disney stuff. It just seemed like a lot of junk.

    My girls love the DTD BAB!
     
  10. Kianasmom

    Kianasmom Earning My Ears

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    Thank you for your suggestions. Hotel has a heated pool so we should be busy with both the pool and Downtown Disney.
     
  11. gabsandalex

    gabsandalex Mouseketeer

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    We spent our first day at Downtown Disney last October too - we surprised our 7 year-old and 4 year-old with a Disneyland trip, but arrived early afternoon Saturday, but weren't going to DL until the next day. Downtown Disney and the hotel pool helped kill quite a bit of time, without disappointing the kids. We did Build-a-Bear and also let each kid pick a small lego set at the Lego Store (which they loved!). We also ate that the Rainforest Cafe (which really didn't impress any of us all that much to be honest). The kids spent the rest of the evening building their legos at the hotel. I wish I had thought of the ice cream/rocking chairs at the Grand California! What a great idea!
     
  12. tink2dw

    tink2dw Pixie Dust or Bust!!

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    I must be uber lucky then!! I love Tink and I have Always found lots of Disneyland Park Tink stuff. From hats, to pens, to Tink Pins and Tink Shirts, and I'm an akward size to find.

    Last trip I found Tink T Shirt $9.99 and matching Tink Sweatshirt $18.99!!!
     
  13. bumbershoot

    bumbershoot DIS Veteran

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    For us, we'd add a day onto that ticket and hit DCA! Nothing better to start a Disneyland trip than bug's land (but NOT "it's tough to be a bug") when you have a little kid with you.
     

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