Monday, November 4, 2013

Things I Love About Disneyland (That You Won't Find in Any Guidebook)

Things I Love About Disneyland (That You Won't Find in Any Guidebook)

By D'land Diva

Like many folks, I enjoy vacation planning. There is just something about flipping through guidebooks, reading articles online and looking at Disney pictures that get me pumped for my Disney vacation.

But, after my vacation, when all is said and done, it is the little things that really made my vacation memorable. When I think back to the most special of trips, it wasn't the fact that I rode on Splash Mountain- it was the view at the top of the flume. It wasn't the tune of It's a Small World that got stuck in my head for hours that I remembered- it was the awe of the first time guests who sat in the boat in front of us oohing and ahhing over every different scene.

So what are some of the things that I love about Disneyland that you maybe would not find in a guidebook?

1) The chlorine smell by the Pirates of the Caribbean ride.

2) The fact that I can buy a Christmas ornament in several shops throughout the park no matter the time of year.

3) Saying four guests when a cast member asks how many people in our party before we get on a ride. It used to be two. Then it was three. Now it is four. Four beautiful people that I love and get to experience the park with.

4) The beaded necklaces that are sometimes thrown out by musicians performing in New Orleans Square (and no, I don't have to flash anyone to get them!).

5) The announcement of the train arrival at the train stations. That deep voice on the loudspeaker, slow and steady.

6) The way the flowers change throughout the year. Springtime brings tulips and poinsettias appear at Christmastime.

7) The friendly competition of Buzz Lightyear's AstroBlasters. It's not just about besting my own score- it's about trying to beat my husband's score!

8) The location of where the cast members are from printed under their name on their nametags. I've seen Saudi Arabia, Washington D.C., Bahrain, Los Angeles and Sri Lanka to name a few.

9) The Flag Retreat ceremony at dusk when the current and former military service members step forward into the circle around the flag. I don't consider myself an extremely patriotic person, but it brings a tear to my eyes every time seeing an older soldier from the Korean War standing next to a younger soldier who just returned from Afghanistan.

10) The great snack debate: churro, popcorn or Mickey pretzel?

11) The way the princesses in the Fantasy Faire interact with my children. My five year old son is a "handsome prince" and my daughter is a "beautiful princess." Once the princesses learn their names, they call them by names and they engage in conversation with them. There's no "just hand over the book to sign and take your picture already."

12) The way cast members ask you to exit a ride once you reach the end. They try to theme it like on the Winnie the Pooh ride: "Welcome back honeybees. Just bounce on out to your right." They could just say "Rides over, get your butt out."

13) On Splash Mountain, you will get wet. But, usually it is just one side of your body that gets wet, just to make you extra uncomfortable.

14) In line for Buzz Lightyear, there are vegetables and herbs growing. Yup. We try to guess the rosemary and basil and lettuce types. It's a fun way to pass time and don't tell anyone, but we have been known to pick a leaf to sniff them.

15) The fireworks at night. You are standing next to strangers, but are united in this one time period. When they are over it is back to every man or woman for themselves.

16) Watching the ducks on the Rivers of America.

17) The sensory overload that comes at about 3 p.m. in the afternoon. Go watch the ducks. It helps.

18) The nastiness of the burgers at Hungry Bear that is balanced by the deliciousness of their oversized onion rings.

20) The way my two year old daughter bounces from ride to ride.

21) The knowledge of the drivers of the Main Street Vehicles. They are full of trivia and clearly LOVE their job.

22) The way the inside of the Matterhorn lights up at night.

23) The view of Tomorrowland from the top of the Innoventions building. Check it out next time!

24) Watching folks as they ride down the flume of Splash Mountain. Some scream, some hide their head, and some look a bit like a deer  caught in headlights.

25) The sweet fried food smell that comes off the corndog cart at the end of Main Street.
26) The feeling you get that you have truly entered another world once you go through the turnstiles. Suddenly, everything in the world seems right.

27) The outside/inside seating at Red Rockett's Pizza Port. The seating in the back of the restaurant is outside, but it is completely covered.

28) Ice cream simply tastes better when sitting on a curb on Main Street.

29) It's the only place where matching shirts with lame sayings are cool and admired.

30) Looking at Tom Sawyer's Island and remembering my husband's proposal and feeling lucky to still be visiting this incredibly magical place.


  1. Awesome list!! Thank you! :-D

  2. Disney parks, where full grown adult men will wear the silliest of hats - proudly! All day long!

    Love your list, just had to add the hats to it!

  3. Wonderfully written, and so true, so true!


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