Halloween time is my favorite time to visit Disneyland. The resort is decorated with pumpkins and scarecrows, rides such as Space Mountain and the Haunted mansion are even spookier and the fireworks show is the best. Also, the weather is usually ideal at this time of year. The heat of the SoCal summer has — thankfully — worn off but evenings are still warm enough to not need a sweater.
One of the top things on my daughters’ — and, admittedly, my — list of things to do this year at Disneyland was visit the Little Mermaid Ride which opened at California Adventure. The ride, a classic Disney dark ride, lived up to my expectations. My favorite part was being transported “under water,” and it was also neat to see how technology hasn’t changed all that much over the years to make a dark ride such as this or older-style rides seem out of date, meaning that Aerial’s undersea adventure will be thrilling guests for years to come.
I also had the privilege to stay at the renovated Disneyland Hotel during my visit. While the renovations to the resort are not complete, the rooms are finished and look great. We stayed in a one-bedroom suite, which with two queen-size beds and a pull-out couch, could easily sleep six people — and possibly more — without even feeling squished. A wet bar area with a fridge was a nice touch and any parent knows that having a fridge is almost a necessity with young kids. While we didn’t check out the newly revamped restaurants (saving that for next time) we did check out the bar (the kids were asleep — I swear!). And the tiki-style bar, Trader Sam’s, was the ideal place to relax after a busy day at Disneyland. The bar itself is small and intimate, but the outdoor patio and fireplace area are perfect for lounging with a group. They also serve snacks until late, which worked out perfectly for us.
While one pool at the Disneyland hotel remains to be completed, the most spectacular addition to the resort is surely the monorail slides. We spent an entire morning riding the two slides with our 4 year old and 2 year old. I think the best part about them is that there is no age limit or restrictions on the slides. Your little one just has to be brave enough to go down. The resort provides life jackets for non-swimmers and lifeguards at the top and bottom are there for safety. It was awesome watching our 2 year old go down. She had a giant smile on her face at the bottom and gave a bit whoop before she slid down. During one slide, she turned around and went down backward and even that didn’t slow her down.
With several restaurants, such as Goofy’s Kitchen, and a new pool area, yet to try out, I can’t wait until next Halloween…or maybe I won’t, and we’ll return at Christmas, which is my second-favorite time to visit Disneyland.