Wait times at Disneyland last week followed the pattern predicted by the Disneyland Crowd Calendar. The resort wide crowd level was off by more than one index level twice, on Monday and Wednesday. January is off-season for Disneyland Resort and that means a big dip in attendance during the week and busy parks on the weekends.
Let’s look at how the crowd levels stacked up each day last week on the TouringPlans.com Disneyland Resort Crowd Report:
On January 8, 2016, the band formerly known as Mulch, Sweat, n’ Shears will begin their post-Disney life under their new name, American Martian. They also begin their post-Disney life…at Disney, since their first show will be at the Orlando House of Blues at Disney Springs. The concert will be starting at 7pm and there is no cover charge! If you were a fan of Mulch or are simply a fan of top-quality rock and roll, do yourself a favor and get out to the House of Blues in Orlando.
American Martian (formerly Mulch, Sweat, n’ Shears)
Are you a Disney Park critic? I know, it’s hard to be critical of anything Disney (at least I think so), but even I have to admit that I’ve experienced a few things that some parks don’t do as well as others. Of course, there’s also a number of things that each park does very well! Today, I’m breaking down Disney Park Strengths and Weaknesses beginning with a park that has expansions in the works: Hollywood Studios.
Disney’s Hollywood Studios first opened in 1989 and is all about the magic of the movies. If you’re up to date on your Disney news, you know that Hollywood Studios has had quite a year! Several attractions have closed for good while several new other offerings have made their debut. I’m talking about Star Wars Launch Bay, Path of the Jedi, and Club Disney here. The biggest Hollywood Studios news of the year, however, is that the park is gaining a much anticipated Star Wars Land and a Toy Story Land!
Now lets get to the Hollywood Studios strengths and weaknesses, shall we?
Flip flops on the left, athletic shoes on the right. (We never took a foot shot.)
Once upon a time, I went to Walt Disney World with one of my best friends. I read all about how I should increase my walks the closer I get to my trip, and how I should wear good socks and good shoes. And if I happen to get a blister (or feel one coming), I should use moleskin to keep the area from getting worse. I was pretty obsessed with preventing sore feet and blisters.
My friend wore flip flops the entire trip.
Do you know what happened? Neither of us had foot problems. Neither of us got blisters. Neither of us had sore feet from being on them all day. I wore socks and athletic shoes. She wore flip flops. And nothing happened.
The moral of this story? You might have feet like my friend: no matter what shoes you wear, nothing bad will happen to your feet. On the other hand, you might be like me, and your feet requires the utmost care.
It’s the most wonderful time of the year and holiday parties are always in vogue. Recently, Hollywood and Vine in Disney’s Hollywood Studios has begun to offer dining with Minnie and friends for the holidays, and it has been announced that this dining offering will continue after the tinsel is off the tree. Previously, I have had a fantastic meal at the now-retired Jedi Mickey meal during the also-retired Star Wars Weekends. How would this meal stack up?
The Character Touch
Your host is Minnie Mouse, but when you arrive, you are greeted by Santa Goofy for a photo opportunity. The characters will not sign autographs during the meal, and so you are given a souvenir autograph card with everyone’s signatures. Once seated, we were each given a small sample of Minnie’s hot cocoa. It was extremely rich and thick (more like a drinkable mousse than cocoa), but the chocolate taste was not overpowering.
A small cup of Minnie’s hot cocoa arrives at the beginning of your meal. (Photo by Julia Mascardo)
During our meal, we were visited twice at our table by each character: Minnie, Mickey, Donald, and Daisy, all wearing their holiday finest. Compared with the character interaction we saw during the Jedi Mickey meal, the characters seemed a bit more rushed at this meal, and the spacing was not the best. Within the first five minutes of our meal, we had seen all four characters at our table, and then we didn’t see them again until we were paying the bill. In some ways this was nice, as we could make trips to the buffet without fear of missing anyone, but it did feel a bit chaotic while trying to get settled at the table. (As a side note, Minnie was a gracious hostess, moving a chair out of the way to help me get a better picture of her beautiful dress.)
Allow me to get one thing out there at the outset: I love my family, and traveling with them is one of my favorite things in the world to do. With that said, however — and I say this lovingly — my daughter is not the bravest kid around, and my wife likes to stick to rides that are tame enough that you could step off of them without harm if need be. I, on the other hand, love thrill rides — the taller, the faster, the better. Much though I love spending time with my crew in the parks, I’d be lying if I said there weren’t times when I sadly shuffled towards the queue to see Voyage of the Little Mermaid whilst Twilight Zone Tower of Terror beckoned and mocked me in the distance…
Sooooooo, you want to spend time with your family, but there are thrill rides waiting to thrill you. Whatever shall you do? This article will hopefully offer some ideas for getting your thrill-fill without stranding your family to sit on a bench while you ride. Tips after the jump!
As prices increase at Walt Disney World, many people have expressed a desire to spread out beyond Disney and explore other theme parks in the area. Although each theme park has its own unique activities that make a one-on-one comparison difficult, there are some places where a direct comparison can be useful. At both SeaWorld Orlando and Epcot, there are restaurants where you are able to dine with an underwater aquarium view of sea life: Sharks Underwater Grill at SeaWorld and Coral Reef Restaurant at The Seas with Nemo & Friends Pavilion in Epcot. Here’s how they stack up with each other after a lunch visit to each.
Like many Disney restaurants, it is highly advisable to have a dining reservation for Coral Reef. Although there may be some availability for walk-up dining, it is a very risky proposition. When we arrived at Sharks and asked if they had any availability for a walk-up on a Saturday afternoon, the hostess looked at us like we were crazy. They had plenty of availability, and reservations are only absolutely required during peak attendance times.
Even though It’s a Small World is not on my list, it is a stunning attraction to see during the holidays.
At the Disneyland Resort, the holiday season (which started November 13th, 2015 and ends January 6th, 2016) is the best time to visit the park. Even though this time of the year is the busiest, it is still totally worth it. During the holiday season The Disneyland Resort feels like totally different theme park. Disney spares no expense when it comes to the holiday season and there are special activities taking place throughout The Resort. But that leaves an important question: which ones should you experience? Well, I am here to help.
If you are planning on staying at The Resort for more than one day, I suggest trying to partake in all the special holiday celebrations. These shows and events only take place during the holiday season so take advantage of them while you can. However, for those of you that are not staying multiple days, like myself when I visit in December, I have come up with seven holiday activities and events that you need to experience. These events are not in any particular order but they all should to be in your Touring Plan.