The Holidays are upon us and so are the busiest days of the year at the Disneyland Resort. For park guests with children, or just not a lot of patience, here are some attractions and places to visit around the resort with potentially lighter crowds or entertainment for little ones.
1. Mickey’s Toontown
Mickey’s Toontown is at the very back of Disneyland and is often overlooked. It is decorated beautifully for the holidays and has a lot of interactive spots for young children plus two rides and several character meet and greets. Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin has an all-indoor and highly-themed queue. The best part about this ride is the fact that it has a FASTPASS option. The one other ride available in Toontown is Gadget’s Go Coaster. It is a great first rollercoaster for young children with only a 35 inch height requirement. Other than the rides, there are several characters out and about or near their houses, which are also available to walk through and explore. Walkthroughs are a great way to stay entertained without having to stand in line.
2. Pooh Corner and Critter Country Attractions
During colder months, Disneyland’s Critter Country becomes less busy because less people are riding Splash Mountain, which is often packed during the warmer months. Pooh Corner is a great place to escape the crowds and grab a snack at their candy counter or look around the gift shop. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh ride, also in Critter Country, usually has a short wait time as well. It should also be noted that Santa is doing meet and greets right outside of Pooh Corner right now instead of the Winnie the Pooh characters.
3. Star Wars Launch Bay
The Star Wars Launch Bay, in Tomorrowland, is the ultimate attraction for Star Wars fans. It has tons of displays of replicas and real props from the Star Wars movies. Several characters, like Chewbacca or Kylo Ren, are also available to meet. Video games and a short film are available in the Launch Bay without having to wait in line. In general, the Star Wars Launch Bay is a great way to escape the outdoor crowds and explore a more quiet attraction.
4. Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room
Another great way to escape the crowds and rest at the same time is the Tiki Room in Adventureland. Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room is a classic, and the short 15 minute show is a must see. Pick up a Dole Whip on your way in and enjoy the show. The Tiki Room is good for all ages and can be a great way to get away for a short time from the crowds.
5. Redwood Creek Challenge Trail
The Redwood Creek Challenge Trail is over near Grizzly Peak at DCA and is full of holiday fun for little ones. This area is decked out for the holidays and is a great place to get some energy out away from the hustle and bustle. From obstacle courses and slides to meet and greets with characters, there is something for everyone at the Challenge Trail. Chip and Dale are usually running around during the day and Santa is also available at this location as well.
6. Rides at Paradise Gardens Park
Paradise Gardens Park starts over by The Little Mermaid ride and ends before you hit Pixar Pier at Bing Bong’s Sweet Stuff. In this area, you’ll find several rides with wait times that are usually pretty low. This area has five rides as well as several seating areas back by Goofy’s Sky School that can be less crowded than the rest of the park. There is also some great entertainment going on for the holidays in this area as well if the rides are too busy.
7. Resort Decorations
If the parks are just too packed, eating or exploring at the three hotels on property is always a good option. Usually, last minute reservations are available for places like the PCH Grill at the Paradise Pier Hotel or the Storytellers Cafe at the Grand Californian. All three hotels feature holiday decor as well. The Grand Californian specifically has a really beautiful Gingerbread House display and giant Christmas tree in the lobby.
For more photos and holiday updates, check out our latest photo report here.