1st Disney night and day -- DL newbie style/WDW comparisons

Discussion in 'Disneyland Trip Reports' started by Luv2Roam, Jun 5, 2001.

  1. Luv2Roam

    Luv2Roam DIS Veteran

    Jun 3, 2000
    We arrived at Anaheim Desert Inn & Suites early evening, May 28. Looking for a decent meal we whipped out the hotel directory and chose -- the Spaghetti Station. :rolleyes: (Think that was the name. It was very forgetful.) Of all places to choose.
    If you want in and out QUICK, that's the place to go. But beyond that.... We both gave it a Thumbs Down. It is located next to another hotel on the backside of DL. Too expensive for what you get and just passable food.
    We went back to the hotel and decided to walk around DTD.
    Tuesday, May 29 (Day after Memorial Day):
    EE day! We arrived at the appointed 1.5 hours early. (7:30 am) The crowds were building... The anticipation was mounting...
    After entering, DH needed a good cuppa coffee. We hit the bakery on Main St. Not too bad. I had a cinnamon twist and DH had a cinnamon roll (he said it was okay). He never was impressed with DL/DCA coffee while we were there. Appears they sell only Nescafe they way they only sell Coke products. If you like instant, you will probably like DL coffee. (DH says WDW has much better coffee and coffee choices.)
    We made a PS at City Hall for the Blue Bayou @ 5:00 pm.
    We rode Space Mountain. (No wait at all.) Mosied around, getting our bearings. We went and sat for the Indy Jones rope drop. CM's seem to egg on the crowd, making the build up more intense. (Bad move IMHO) When the rope dropped, the young ones tore off. (Indy isn't far away.) Young teens started trotting and CM's were right there to tell them sternly that no running was allowed. We arrived to a small line. Many of the young ones allowed to run were now frantically calling for their parents, almost crying. (This is one area DL needs to learn from US.)
    We started riding the various rides and didn't stop until hours later. We always just seemed to be one step ahead of a mammoth crowd. No waits and when we disboarded, long lines. Pure luck!
    Had a great time! We covered a lot. We even took a break and went to the Disney Character warehouse. Another let down, sorry to say. The store was a very large room with not much in it. Even the few items I browsed were not the bargains I was expecting. They were more like Disney Store on sale prices. Just okay. Nothing I had to have or much of anything that even caught my eye. They had a few pins, but even at "sale" prices they were $7 each. Even for traders, it would be better to buy in the parks the nicer and cheaper pins.
    Back to DL to the Blue Bayou. It is all everyone says. Very nice. Our last meal at WDW was the Mexico restaurant with the same set up. (Water, boats going by.) DH liked BB better. I enjoyed both. The cost was salty. We had our regular meal (no appetizer/desert) and non-alcoholic mint juleps. The cost was $70 with tip.
    Then we headed to DCA to check that park out. We really accomplished a lot that first day.
    Hotel: Very nice. We were both pleased. I had made ressies in February @ $54 a night. The room was a nice size (Room 331); included a mini frig, microwave, blow dryer, remote TV, we had two Q beds -- room to roam. DH never did make it to the pool or hot tub. It was busy a lot and he was always too pooped. We stayed out late roaming the parks every night. A continental breakfast was included.
    For anyone arriving late by driving -- parking at this hotel may be a problem. We never had concerns, but they obviously have a lack of parking spaces issue.
    We were near the back of the complex and that was really a plus. It was more quiet. The staff was always VERY friendly and gracious. This hotel is VERY close to the cross walk to the park entrance, but is not the closest. It is just around 1/4 block from the cross walk. Then after crossing the 6 lane/meridan street, it's around a two block walk to get to a park entrance. Very short walking distance. Very handy! Beyond what WDW is, even with their bus system.
    We were disappointed that DL/DCA does NOT have fireworks, Fantasmic and etc every day, like WDW does. :(
    Before putting your plans in effect -- make sure you get to view these at DL/DCA! We changed our vacation plans due to this.
    WDW pin traders most likely will be disappointed that the DL/DCA carts/stores do not have LE's like WDW does (or did when we were there in January). The CM lanyards are not even worth mentioning. They are fine-- if you want to look at the same pins all day. :rolleyes:
    Also surprised that DL/DCA does not have the very nice gift shops that WDW does. WDW drops off all riders at large, nice gift shops. DL gift shops are dinky in comparison and the merchandise not as nice. (IMHO) I never thought I would miss a ride ending in a nice gift shop! hehehe
    !! To Be Continued!!
  2. Luv2Roam

    Luv2Roam DIS Veteran

    Jun 3, 2000
    Oh, our first day DH just couldn't get over how "little" the DL castle is compared against WDW's. I told him he was not the first on that comment. But it is a very nice castle. (Thumbs Up)
    We were also surprised at the many Behind the Scenes glimpses there were. WDW attempts to keeps theirs a guarded secret. DL often doesn't make any attempt to hide it.
    DL doesn't have the facade that WDW does. But partly I think is a space issue.
    At WDW, CM's were VERY particular on FastPass times. We were even turned away when we arrived 4 minutes early for Tough to be a Bug at WDW.
    At DL, a teen in front of us whined to the CM about not having a FP on the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, and was allowed in the FP lane. :rolleyes:
    AND BTMR at DL is MUCH NICER than at WDW! We really liked it at DL. WDW is jerky, bouncy and threw us all over the seat. (We think the seats are much wider at WDW and so you are bouncing all over.)
    And yes, Pirates is better at DL. But I love it anywhere!
  3. Marla Hellwig

    Marla Hellwig I'm not lost, it's called creative exploring

    Mar 25, 2000
    You covered alot of ground so far. Thanks for posting!

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