Disney and California Adventures can be daunting if you're visiting for the first time or if you are planning a group trip. So here's what you need to know to make the day smooth sailing.
Decide whether you want to get a park hopper or a pass for just one park. You can get also get a three day pass. That's decision number 1.
Parking You can street park around Disney and walk. It'll be a 15-20 minute walk and you can save money on parking to get a souvenir or nice lunch. If you're going to pay for parking, keep it in your budget.
Pack food. There's a Walmart up the street. You can get fruits and veggies for a fraction of what it costs in the park. That being said, if you got an Annual Pass, you get a discount at most places in the park. Harbor Blvd also has some fast food places that will feed you before you visit the park. Water is free at the park, ask for a water cup anywhere.
Get fast passes and plan your day according to that pass. You'll hardly wait in lines and get to see so much more at the park!
If you're looking to get the most out of your trip, you can start at California Adventure. Get your fast passes at Guardians of the Galaxy and then head to a meet and greet with Spiderman. Next head to Monster's Inc. If you go to the exit and there are two of you, you can ask for a Buddy Pass which moves you through the line a lot faster. All of these rides thus far are perfect for small children (except Guardians...make sure kids are the appropriate height). Now it's time for Guardians of the Galaxy. It replaced the Tower of Terror and completely changed the ride. It's SO much fun and the drops are not bad. There's no video inside the drop so just enjoy it. You might even do it a couple times in a row. Upon exiting, there are usually dance parties with Guardian impersonators which are a lot of fun.
When you're ready for a break, visit the Animation Academy for a drawing lesson. It's a 10-15 minute lesson that teaches you how to rough sketch several Disney characters. When you're done, you can visit Turtle Talk with Crush or meet Frozen cast members all within the building.
Don't forget to eat! There are tables by Monster's Inc. which are shaded and off the beaten path.
When you're done head over to Disney and ride the Haunted Mansion ride (also worth getting a fast pass). During the holidays, they change the ride to match a Christmas theme which gives it an entirely different feel.
After the rides and attractions you can head to entrance to visit shops and see performances from the Dapper Dans or meet characters.
If you're up for more rides feel free, but this will take a large part of your day if you're going in a big group.
Coming up, I'll show you another way you can plan a fun day at Disney!