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Disneyland Article
Holiday Spectacular 11 Must See Attractions

It's A Small World
ID:
TMS-4529
Source:
Mercury News
Author:
Marla Jo Fisher
Dateline:
November 10, 2019
Posted:
November 20, 2019
Status:
Current
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It’s hard to believe, but the winter holidays were once the slow season at Disneyland, back when people spent their weekends shopping instead of heading to a theme park. Those days are long gone, thanks to the resort’s over-the-top holiday decorations and entertainment. With a holiday season that extends from early November through Jan. 6, the decked-out Disneyland and California Adventure have become must-see destinations for families.

If you’re headed for the land of the mouse, there are 11 unforgettable holiday experiences to explore. But first, a few tips: Aim for weekdays, when the crowds are less dense. Make a dining reservation now if you want to eat in a sit-down restaurant. And get to the parks early to enjoy the foods and indoor attractions, such as It’s a Small World and Haunted Mansion Holiday. Then steel yourself for the onslaught as the crowds arrive later to see the lighted decorations.

DISNEYLAND

The Christmas tree: The first thing you see when you walk through the tunnels into the park is the 60-foot-high artificial Christmas tree on Main Street decorated with 1,500 Victorian-themed ornaments and 100 electric candles. Many people stop to take selfies, but if the line is long, consider doing it on the way out instead.

“Believe … in Holiday Magic” Fireworks: In the evening, this fireworks spectacular and its “snowfall” feel magical, even though we adults know it’s really “snoap” – soap flakes that simulate the cold, wet stuff.

Sleeping Beauty’s Winter Castle: With its 126,000 twinkling LED lights, icicle-designed illumination and “snow” on the turrets, this enchanted castle may tempt you to start taking pictures as soon as you see it, but wait until you get closer for better photos. The castle just got a new paint job, complete with gold highlights, and a $300,000 roof, so it should be looking its best.

“A Christmas Fantasy” parade: Disneyland brings back its illuminated holiday parade with Mickey, Minnie, Disney princesses and Santa with floats, music and marching “tin soldiers.” Look for Anna, Elsa and Olaf on their “Frozen” float.

It’s a Small World Holiday: Even if you’ve been before, you really need to see the charming holiday version of this iconic ride with its 50,000 lights, dolls celebrating international holiday traditions and special music. Go first thing, though, or get fast passes, because everyone else has the same idea.

Haunted Mansion Holiday: Each year, this popular ride gets a decor re-do based on Tim Burton’s “The Nightmare Before Christmas.” The seasonal overlay lasts from early September until Jan. 6. Look for villain Oogie Boogie, Sally and, of course, Jack Skellington. While you’re there, check out the massive gingerbread house. This year’s creation is a nearly-10-foot-high replica of the Haunted Mansion Holiday, in honor of the mansion’s 50th anniversary. Building it took a team of six people 13 days – and 30 pounds of gingerbread, 120 pounds of frosting, 75 pounds of powdered sugar and 140 pounds of fondant.

DISNEY CALIFORNIA ADVENTURE

“World of Color — Season of Light:” The holiday-themed production of this nighttime spectacular includes synchronized music, lights, lasers, water, fire and some 1,200 fountains bringing animation to life. Dining packages, which can be booked at Disneyland.com, include reserved viewing.

Disney ¡Viva Navidad! Street Party: The Three Caballeros host this popular celebration, featuring folklórico and Latin dancers, live musicians and Mickey and Minnie in their fiesta best. This lively event can be seen best between Jumpin’ Jellyfish and Bayside Brews.

Special holiday food and drink: Bring your appetite (and wallet) to the Festive Foods Marketplace, where the food and drinks – including holiday cocktails – reflect holiday traditions from different cultures. Kiosks are set up along walkways selling specialty items. And the Disney Festival of Holidays offers musical performances and food, including Christmas/Navidad, Hanukkah, Diwali, Kwanzaa and Three Kings Day. Visit St. Nick: Find Santa Claus, his sleigh and elves at Santa’s Holiday Visit at the Redwood Creek Challenge Trail.

Cars Land makeover: Two rides are transformed for holidays: Luigi’s Joy to the Whirl and Mater’s Jingle Jamboree. Look for the “Snowcar” on the road to Radiator Springs and decked-out “Cars” characters.
 
Attractions Referenced

Haunted Mansion Holiday

It's A Small World

It's A Small World Holiday

Sleeping Beauty's Winter Castle

 
Parades Referenced

Christmas Fantasy Parade

 
Lands Referenced

Main Street U.S.A.

 
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