Planning 1st trip to Disneyland

Discussion in 'Disneyland (California)' started by bmalina, Sep 2, 2012.

  1. bmalina

    bmalina Earning My Ears

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    Hello,

    I learned of this board through a family we met while in Disney World in August. Seems to be lots of great info here.
    We have traveled to Disney World very often, just about every year, but have never made the trip to Disneyland.
    We're thinking about visiting for the 1st time during the summer of 2013. I'm wondering how many days we should plan to spend at the Disney parks and how many days we should schedule other activities. Beach, other parks, etc. (We would be in California for a week)
    Disney would be the primary reason for the trip. I'm thinking 4 days in Disney but wanted to get some input from those who have already been there.

    Thanks!

    Brian
     
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  3. HydroGuy

    HydroGuy DIS Veteran

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  4. abdgeek

    abdgeek DIS Veteran

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    I usually spend 3 days seeing DL(1 DCA and 2 DL) when I go. Now that DCA has Cars Land, you may need another half day. I then sightsee for the rest of the time. Just remember that DL is not as big as WDW. It also has rides that WDW doesn't have and some of the rides that both have are designed differently for DL.

    You will need a car to do anything outside of DL. If you're staying on property, you can walk to the parks. If not, try to stay at a hotel on the ART(anaheim resort transportation) trolley route. There is an Alamo car rental place in DTD and you can check out which tours Grayline does. Good luck.
     
  5. Mackie Mouse

    Mackie Mouse Even my dog loves Disney

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    We are first-time visitors going for Spring Break (when it will definitely be crowded) and we went for four-day passes. We grownups are are OK with taking things commando-style, so we may wind up using our time differently than some, but we figured three full days plus a fourth day during which we'll do the "Walk in Walt's Footsteps" tour will be lots of time. We'll also be arriving late afternoon on our first day to give us time to check out DTD and have a nice kick-off dinner. We gave ourselves a little more thime than we thought was necessary so we could see and do more than we usually do in WDW. (We usually skip most of the Fantasyland dark rides at WDW...but I'll want to do them all at DLR!)

    For comparison's sake, 5 days in WDW (one per park, plus an extra day for hopping, re-do's, etc.) is a perfect amount of time for us.

    Not having actually experienced it, I'd say 3-4 days should work great.
     
  6. Cinderpamela

    Cinderpamela DIS Veteran

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    I agree with Hydroguy that 4 days is nice but 5 days is better. We have been several times, we usually do 5 days and still don't get everything done that we want to... and that was before Carsland. So our next trip in November is going to be 6 days.

    And definitely read the DL for WDW vets link that Hydroguy posted above... it is full of great information for those coming with a WDW perspective!
     
  7. Rainasunshine

    Rainasunshine Some say it's all a dream, but I know, I know that

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    I would do five days because there is so much to see and it is easily overlooked. It is a smaller area but that just makes it easier for hidden gems and sights:-)
     
  8. interstate70s

    interstate70s DIS Veteran

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    It sort of depends on the make up of your family I think. Our kids are elementary school age so they pretty much enjoy everything. Maybe teenagers would be bored with the smaller slow loading rides, and the meet and greets, but we enjoy that stuff. So if you have teens or no kids maybe 4 would be ideal, but if you have kids elementary school age or younger you may want more than 4 days so you can see everything you want to and not feel rushed. This year we are doing 5 full days plus a 6th day for a Halloween party.
     
  9. bmalina

    bmalina Earning My Ears

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    Hi Hyrdoguy,

    Thank you very much for the link, I will check it out. I was wondering if 5 days would be the way to go.
     
  10. bmalina

    bmalina Earning My Ears

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    Thank you to everyone for the quick replies and helpful info!

    Looks like I have some reading to do... :)
     
  11. Mary09

    Mary09 Mouseketeer

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    If I was coming from across the country I might do a Southern CA City Pass instead of 3-5 days in just Disneyland, especially if you've done WDW so many times. Unless you wanted the vacation to be predominantly Disney. Be warned that Anaheim doesn't have much of a resort feel. I'd spend a few days in San Diego.
     
  12. LizEN

    LizEN Mouseketeer

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    I agree. Last time we were in the Annaheim area, we only had one day for both parks on a first time visit for my kids. It was definitely rushed, and we knew it would be, but I don't think we would have needed more than two days. Three would be a total luxury for us.

    BUT--We were there in late August, I was Uber-commando, I have two teens, we've been to WDW a lot in the past few years AND we love other sights in the area. YMMV--esp in summer.

    Have fun!!
     
  13. KCmike

    KCmike Never have fallen asleep on any

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    4 days minimum. Are you staying onsite or offsite? What other parks do you plan on doing? Any kids? How old?

    Congrats on finally making the trip to Disneyland. It is amazing. We were WDW vets who finally went in 2007 and now we've been as many times to Disneyland as we have to WDW. We have made 8 trips to each. We love Disneyland so much.

    Feel free to keep asking questions. Everyone here is very friendly!

    Congrats again Brian!
     
  14. HydroGuy

    HydroGuy DIS Veteran

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    From your signature it appears that was in 2009. It is really the case that with all the new stuff at DCA - needing a whole other evening to see WOC and Mad T Party - plus Cars Land, BVS, longer hours and all of that, has added the need for one more day.

    Up until three summers ago I would say three days minimum. Now I say four.

    :wizard:
     
  15. LizEN

    LizEN Mouseketeer

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    Hmm. I didn't realized so much had changed.
    Thanks Hydro, I'll have to re-think my Possible Nov. plans then...
     
  16. Mary09

    Mary09 Mouseketeer

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    I haven't been since Cars Land but 4 days is about our max, and what we usually do. And then moreso because it's cheap than because there's nothing we'd rather do in CA more.
     
  17. bmalina

    bmalina Earning My Ears

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    Hi Mike, we haven't booked a hotel yet, but I anticipate we would stay onsite. (It's our 1st time so I'd like to get the whole experience. But the partner hotel rates are very tempting. There will be three of us on the trip, my wife and I and our 9-yr-old. son.

    Not sure what else we'll hit while in California. I'd like to take them to a beach also. I spent time in Santa Monica which was great, so that's a possibility.
     
  18. d1gitman

    d1gitman Mad About The Mouse!

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    we did 4 days in Nov 2009 and that was just enough then but since then there is WoC, Carsland and other things i'm sure. I'd say 4-5 days.
     
  19. I❤MICKEY

    I❤MICKEY DIS Veteran

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    Our first visit was June 2011 and we had 4 days which wasn't enough. There was so much we missed. Since then we bought an AP and haven't spent less that 7 days in the park (except for a day visit in May). On day six this past week DH said He thinks 6 is perfect.
     
  20. tomgreen41

    tomgreen41 Earning My Ears

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    If you're pressed for time, I would say 2 days minimum. This would mean arriving early, leaving late, and making the most out of these 2 days.

    If you want to do it in a bit more of a leisurely pace, 3 days is good.

    My family went there in March 2011 and we spent 4 days. By the end of 4 days, we had done everything we wanted to do (some things multiple times) and seen everything we wanted to see. It was perfect. We arrived early, went back to our hotel mid-day for a nap or swim, and then back later in the afternoon and evening. Kids were young, so we packed it in at around 8:00 p.m. and weren't too tired.

    5 days... probably too long. If we had stayed 5 days, the sheer excitement of experiencing everything for the first time would have been gone... still great, but diminishing marginal utility.
     
  21. razza1987

    razza1987 Mouseketeer

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    three days and four nights is the package I am looking at doing for next March



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