Happy Valentine’s Day! We were very excited to be at Disneyland for Valentine’s Day this year! It made the day feel extra magical!
We got an early start to the day so that we could get our 5 day pass quickly, and spend as much time inside the park as possible. When we opened our hotel door though, it was incredibly foggy, and so very chilly! The weather report had told us it would be 35 degrees Celsius (95 degrees for my American friends), so we were quite shocked. We were also a little bit concerned, since the clothing we had brought was quite light. We delayed leaving a bit so that we could see if/how fast the fog might burn off. We were rewarded with our patience when the fog indeed began to burn off, and the temperature rose almost 10 degrees in a half hour!
The line for security was quite long, but it moved quickly, and we were able to get to a ticket counter quite quickly, and the nice lady converted our e-tickets into a five day pass. Then we were into the line to actually get into Disneyland itself! We stood in line for about 15 minutes, and then we were in!
We took a few photos at the front gate (you can just see the rest of the fog burning off in the background), and then we went into through the tunnel, and into the main street section of Disneyland.
It was so wonderful to see all the whimsical buildings, and characters in costume. The sun was warm, and bright, and everywhere there was chipper music playing, and people talking excitedly and laughing. We were glad to have arrived at the park so early because we were able to get several pictures in without any other people in them!
We had been told that it’s a good idea to move to the back of the park quickly, if you want to avoid lines, and crowds, so as soon as we’d taken some nice pictures at the front of the park, we headed straight to Toon Town, and were delighted to find that there was essentially no one else there! It was absolutely magical to see all the oversized cartoonish buildings. We went on our very first ride, ‘Roger’s Wild Car Ride’, and then took some photos before the crowds started to gather.
We found Minnie’s house, and a comically short line to meet her! We decided she would be the perfect character to meet on Valentine’s Day, so we did a short tour of her house, before stepping out into the garden to meet Minnie Mouse herself!
Next, we headed over to Tomorrowland, but on the way, we bumped into Mary Poppins and Bert! They were just finishing a photo session, but I was able to grab a delightful picture as they were heading out!
In Tomorrowland, we picked up a FastPass for Space Mountain. The FastPass allows you to skip the big line, if you come back at the time listed on your Fastpass. Ours was for 5:30pm, so we decided to take a look around Tomorrowland, and then we spotted the monorail! We thought it would be nice to give us a look around the entire park, so we headed up to the platform, but just as we arrived, it broke down! We waited around 20 minutes for them to sort out whatever mechanical problem there was, and then it was our turn. It wasn’t a particularly long ride, but it gave us a great look at the whole of the park from a slightly elevated perspective.
There is something about Tomorrowland that I really adore. I think there’s something just so quaint and optimistic about the futurism of the 1950’s, and I much prefer it to the institutional and rather sterile vision of the future we see today.
We stopped at Redd Rockett’s Pizza Port for a (ludicrously expensive!) slice of pizza. We found a nice bench in the main square of Fantasyland to eat on. We were glad it was in the shade because it was ~30 degrees Celsius by that time!
After lunch we meandered between Frontierland and Adventureland, exploring the beautiful New Orleans Square. The Mark Twain Riverboat wasn’t running, because that part of the park is under construction, but we were still able to get on the boat, and see a sweet little band playing.
After we can cooled down by the water, we headed over to The Haunted Mansion, where we’d picked up a FastPass earlier. While we were standing, waiting to go in, a sweet little boy and his mum gave us a Valentine’s card, and a candy, because the little boy had told his mum how much he liked my candy dress from Modcloth! It was adorable!
I remembered on our first trip to Disneyland, when I was 11, being absolutely petrified by the Haunted Mansion. This time I found it considerably more comical, though still a fun experience.
By this time, the heat of the day was really starting to get to us (after all we’d gone from -20 in Calgary to +30 in California in the past 30 hours), so we headed back to the hotel for an afternoon nap, and a bit of rest for our poor tired feet!
We returned to the park in time for our FastPass on Space Mountain! I’m very impressed with how Disneyland has modified, and updated older rides to coincide with changes to their movies, and Space Mountain is no exception! The addition of Star Wars elements to the ride have really made it exciting! I also adore how even dull aspects of the ride, like waiting in line, are turned into an element of the ride – for example the feeling that you’re at a spaceport terminal, waiting to board your spaceship!
After Space Mountain, we headed to Pixie Hollow, and took some of the ‘kids rides’, like Alice In Wonderland, Toad’s Wild Ride, Pinocchio’s Journey, and Dumbo’s Flying Adventure. This is another aspect of Disneyland that I really adore. Although the rides aimed at younger kids certainly don’t give the same ‘thrill’ that the roller coasters do, the animatronics, the music, and the delightful colours all contribute to making an immersive and enjoyable ride that I enjoyed despite not being the target audience for those ‘younger rides’.
As it grew dark, we headed back to the hotel, exhausted, but excited for another day at the park tomorrow!