Saturday, April 28, 2012

Disneyland: It's fun to be a kid again!

As I reflect back, I realize 2 things. 
1. I must have had a lot of PTO the year I turned 25
2. This was the year I think I evolved from an enthusiastic Disney hobbyist to a certified, obsessive-compulsive Disney lover.
Early morning tram ride to the parks.
After the whirlwind trip with my best friend to the world, Bill and I wanted to visit my brother out in Los Angeles for a long weekend. My brother, Tony, had moved out there a few years prior and we had never been to LA. Disney had a promotion that year that you got a free day in the parks on your actual birthday with ID, so who was I to pass up a FREE day?

I wish I had done more research on Disneyland. I knew it was smaller and that we could likely see most of it in one day. I did not know that it was 2 separate parks (Disneyland and California Adventure), but was surprised to see that they practically shared an entrance. The entrance gates were a stone's throw away, unlike in the World where you would need a monorail, bus, boat or car to park hop.

Another thing I didn't expect was for the Castle to be so much smaller! It's definitely cute on a smaller scale, but somewhat disappointing compared to the magic of walking up Main Street in the World. Walt refers to the castle as a "weenie", something to draw the guests in.

We had no touring plan, but knew some of the main attractions we loved from the World and wanted to see how it was different in Disneyland. The first thing we hit was Buzz Lightyear's Astro Blaster. Bill says Space Mountain was better at the Land. We noticed some rides were similar but different between the World and Land. For example Pirates of the Caribbean and the Haunted Mansion had different queues and different ride layouts. I looked forward to riding Toy Story Midway Mania, but the queue was outdoors so we didn't get to enjoy Andy's room. They did keep the interactive Mr. Potato Head.

Tony had never done Toy Story Midway Mania or Soarin'. And of course we had to do Tower of Terror. I love thrill rides, and Tony likes them, too. But his face in the photo was priceless; it truly was the tower of "TERROR". 

We checked out the Boardwalk area in California Adventure Land. We had a lot of fun on the giant Ferris Wheel.
Fun to be a kid again!

We tried a few things that don't exist in the World at all. For one, we did the underwater Nemo ride, which used to be 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. We finally got to try Mr. Toad's Wild Ride. Due to a lack of touring plan and hot weather, we ran out of energy to wait for the Matterhorn (but that's just a reason to go back, right?).

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