With fall and winter surely on their way, it’s time our family thinks about the soft, sunny rays of southern California. Of course, there’s always a lot of activities for families in Anaheim at any time of year, with some of our favorite events to plan with the kids taking place over the holidays.
Of particular note are the hotel values in season at Disneyland, where savings apply to the following accommodations: the posh Disney’s 948-room Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, which also features 50 two-bedroom equivalent Disney Vacation Club units; the fun 969-room Disneyland Hotel; and the smaller, 481-room Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel with its “day-at-the-beach” theme. All the hotels are close to the parks and the shopping, dining and diversions of the Downtown Disney District.
During this period through late February, guests who book a Disneyland Resort Hotel vacation package will save up to 35% on room rates, and get perks such as non-stop theming, great swimming pools, outdoor play areas to wow the kids, and costumed characters strolling the grounds. With hotel deal in hand, you can turn to their website to see the variety of discounts on Park Hopper Passes. You’ll need them to take advantage of all that both Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure have to offer including the updated “It’s a Small World” cruise, and the very popular hit of Disney’s California Adventure Park, Toy Story Mania!
The rates vary by date of stay, with week days being the best value and of course, less crowded. Stay and save up to 30% most nights at a Disneyland Resort hotel when you travel between November 1 and December 24, 2011. This one must be booked by December 10, 2011.
If you can wait long enough (or prefer to make this trip your holiday present to the family), then go for the better offer: Save up to 35% on stays most Sunday through Thursday nights at a Disneyland Resort hotel when you travel between January 2 and February 29, 2012. For this offer, you can book as late as February 29, 2012 but you’ll have many more options if you do it sooner.
Taking the family away from relatives and best friends over Thanksgiving, Hannuakah, Christmas? Disney’s got you covered. Mickey Mouse’s cartoon-style Christmas tree highlights the winter cheer in Mickey’s Toontown for the 2011 holidays, which are being celebrated at Disneyland Resort every day from Nov. 14 through Jan. 8, 2012. In addition to enjoying Mickey and friends, your family may also be able to see themselves broadcast on the “frozen” facade of the of “it’s a small world” ride at Disneyland park. A new segment of the amazing son et lumiere show (which we caught in Orlando and just loved!) features a musical score filled with favorite holiday tunes and huge, projected images of resort guests celebrating their holiday visits.
There’s lots more in store, with some highlights: This holiday season, Lanny and Wayne, Santa’s techno-savvy elves from the “Prep & Landing” holiday specials, appear in a “World of Color” sequence that caps all the fun at California Adventure.
Disneyland Resort also welcomes back “A Christmas Fantasy” parade, the nightly snowfall on Main Street, U.S.A., and a special holiday version of Haunted Mansion. In Fantasyland, holiday guests will find the traditional snowdrifts and icicles adorning Sleeping Beauty’s Winter Castle. The 60-foot-tall Disneyland Christmas tree is specially designed to present a nightly holiday light show like no other with more than 62,000 energy-efficient LED lights.
A Holiday edition of the street show, “Phineas and Ferb’s Rockin’ Rollin’ Dance Party,” includes festive decor, costumes and holiday tunes. In Blue Sky Cellar at Golden Vine Winery, the Imagineers’ workshop offers guests a preview of what’s coming to Disney California Adventure, including Buena Vista Street and Cars Land in 2012. This is something your teens will love. And for the young at heart, there’s the new Little Mermaid ~ Ariel’s Undersea Adventures and Goofy’s Sky School attractions, along with such favorite as Silly Symphony Swings, California Screamin’ and Mickey’s Fun Wheel.
Need to pick up some holiday gifts? At The Disney Gallery on Main Street, U.S.A., in Disneyland, a display of vintage and new art celebrating Walt Disney’s love of railroading will premiere during the holiday season. “All Aboard for A Grand Circle Tour of the Trains of Disney!” will survey Disney trains from the classic Disneyland Railroad to such historic routes as Nature’s Wonderland and the Carolwood-Pacific circuit that operated in Disney’s backyard in Holmby Hills, California.
In addition to hotel values, families may prefer to book guided holiday tours that provide entry into “it’s a small world” Holiday and Haunted Mansion Holiday, reserved seating for the Disneyland “A Christmas Fantasy” parade, a keepsake remembrance and entertaining information about the history behind Disneyland holiday traditions. For information and reservations guests may visit Disneyland City Hall or call 714/781-4565.
It’s a busy time of year, but expanded hours at both Disneyland Resort theme parks extend the fun. Learn more and pre-plan your trip online at holidays at Disneyland Resort.