The park is a combination of theme rides, recreated worlds and cultures, and film shows, all mingled with eating and shopping. There are several theme designs which tell a story or create a world.Depending on the length of line or diligence of the visitor, it is possible to cover the entire grounds from opening to closing, but more relaxed visitors may take a second day.
Official site: disneyland.disney.go.com
Address: Box 3232, Anaheim, CA 92803, United States
Opening hours: 9am-10pm
Useful tips: Passes can be purchased for two or three days at a discount. Hours are extended into the evening during the summer. The queues which form at the individual attractions in summer - especially at week-ends - can best be avoided on week-days such as Tuesday and Wednesday when there are fewer visitors.
Guides: Guided tour available as optional extra.
Facilities: Gift shop, On-site accomodations, Restaurant or food service
Disney's California Adventure Park
Disney's California Adventure Park is entered through a replica of the Golden Gate Bridge. The park features three themed lands - Paradise Pier, Hollywood Pictures Backlot and the Golden State.Paradise Pier is a beachfront amusement area which recreates the amusement park piers of yesteryear. Attractions include a coaster and a carousel.The Backlot is a celebration of the movie business. Attractions include a Hyperion Theatre, Jim Henson's Muppet Vision 3-D and a Disney Animation Centre where guests can view test scenes still in production.The Golden State has six districts highlighted by Grizzly Peak, a bear shaped 100-foot high mountain.While this might all sound similar to the Parks next door, the rides here are different, perhaps more oriented towards older children or adults, and the area is often less crowded. It is also one more thing to do in the area if you have already experienced Disneyland on one or more occasions in the past.
Opening hours: 10am-8pm; Sun: 9am-10pm; Sat: 9am-12am
Useful tips: Passes can be purchased for two or three days at a discount. Hours are extended into the evening during the summer.
Facilities: Gift shop, On-site accomodations, Restaurant or food service, Wheelchair loan or rental
Main Street USA
Main Street USA exudes nostalgia for late 19th century American small towns. It's a simple life with Victorian architecture, horse-drawn trams, double-decker buses and a fire-engine.Enter an old theater to see "Great Moments with Mr Lincoln" where Abe comes to life before your eyes.Main Street is anchored at one end by the railway station where visitors can board steam trains which not only circle the park, but can be used as transport to the other lands.At the other end of Main Street is the town square and Sleeping Beauty's castle plus the radiating entrances to the other lands.Keep in mind that this perfect world is recreated in three-fifths scale.
New Orleans Square
Adjoining Adventure Land in Disneyland lies New Orleans Square, its streets typical of a French-influenced town of about 1850, with shops, restaurants, cafés and balconies. Boats (bateaux), such as are used in the swamps of Louisiana, ply from the square. On the trip you are treated to a colorful revue in the form of a battle between a pirate ship and a coastal fort ("Pirates of the Caribbean") and a ghost scene in an enchanted Haunted Mansion which is a copy of a public building in Baltimore.Neither of these major attractions is a roller coaster, but rather carefully crafted and not-to-be-missed total adventures.
In the heart of Disneyland is Fantasyland, where the familiar characters from Disney's productions are brought to life. These include Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Mickey Mouse and Alice in Wonderland. Since reconstruction of this section in 1983 the setting for Disney's fairytale world now includes a European village, an imitation of the Castle of Neuschwanstein and a steel-framed "Matterhorn" (sledge rides available). On festive summer nights fireworks displays add to the atmosphere of make-believe.
Tomorrowland was built to portray a view of the future, however this requires constant updating as views changed. In 1994, Disney began renovations to update Tomorrowland - it now appears as sci-fi writers of the 1920's and 1930's would have thought the future looked like."Space Mountain" is one of the most popular rides in the Magic Kingdom. The ride hurls you through the light show of space on a coaster track.
Adventureland features the tropical jungles of the world in its Jungle Cruise boat ride which passes many animated animals and native scenes. This tropical theme is expanded in the Tiki Room where animated birds and critters sing and perform for visitors, the Indiana Jones adventure ride and a bazaar of jungle crafts from around the world.
Frontierland is a recreation of the American Wild West complete with the Golden Horseshoe Saloon stage show, shooting galleries, a paddle-wheel steamboat "Mark Twain", a reproduction of the sailing vessel "Columbia" both of which take passengers around the large Tom Sawyer Island.The theme coaster is the Big Thunder Mountain Railway which dips through the rock formations and the mines of the U.S. west.
Capturing the feel of the mountain forests of America, the prime adventure in Critter Country is Splash Mountain which is essentially a high-speed water ride on a log past appropriate scenes. It ends in a slide which will get you wet. Arcades and shops complete the theme.This area was previously known as Bear Country.
Mickey's Toontown in Disneyland features the Gadget's Go-Coaster and Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin for the kids.While the area appeals to kids, the attractions have been laced with the kind of humor which also appeals to adults.
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