Disneyland During The Holidays

We recently went to Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure for a fun day to check out all the festivities that they have going on for The Holiday Season.  Honestly, when Disneyland is decorated for the Holidays, it is my favorite time of the year. We headed into Disney’s California Adventure first.

Of course, everyone in my family was hungry so we to Taste Pilots’ Grill for lunch. My husband and son love going to Taste Pilots’ Grill. We always go there when we are at California Adventure. After filling ourselves up with food, we headed towards our first ride, Toy Store Mania!.  Along the way, we passed these really neat giant postcards advertising the new Cars Land which will be open next year. Cars Land is going to be huge, 12 acres.

Cars Land Coming Soon...

After taking the scenic route, we made it to Toy Story Mania. Angry Kid always puts on the 3D glasses and acts like a crazy kid. Here he is posing with his glasses on.

Project 365 322/365: Angry Kid is too cool with his 3D glasses for the Toy Story Ride. #disneyholidays

After going on Toy Story Mania!, we walked through California Adventure and headed towards the main gate of Disneyland. Angry Husband, his friend, and Angry Kid headed towards The Haunted Mansion while I met some fellow bloggers so that we could go on a scavenger hunt throughout Disneyland.  I teamed up with Ciaran of Momfluential, Caryn of RockinMama, Suz of Alive in Wonderland and OCFamily, Lisa of Babes in Disneyland, Shelby of Glitterful Felt Stories and especially to Heather of The Disney Food Blog.

Disneyland Railroad

My teammates and I set off for quite an adventure.  A large majority of our scavenger hunt involved us taking pictures of things on our list, and tweeting them out on Twitter. Unfortunately, my iPhone was at 52% battery left, which can go very fast, so I assisted on finding things on our list, rather than tweeting. Later that day, I set off on my own scavenger hunt, looking for wall outlets to charge my iPhone.  I brought my 10-foot iPhone charging cord, which made things a little easier. Before, we went on the hunt for some of the things on our list, we did some strategizing.

Blogger Scavenger Hunt at Disneyland

Caryn, Lisa, and Heather answering some of the questions on our scavenger hunt list.  We tried to get the easy stuff done first. Disneyland Trivia went fast with our Disney Savvy Group.  Ironically, we named our group, The Winners. After doing our preliminary tasks, we headed on our way. It turned into quite an adventure, almost like our very own Amazing Race, throughout Disneyland, of course. Ciaran did a great job of organizing all of the photos during the hunt.  And the best part, we found out later that night, that we were THE WINNERS!

Disney Scavenger HuntPhoto by Ciaran aka Momfluential.

While we were on the Scavenger Hunt, I was able to snap some photographs of the Holiday Decor at Disneyland with my DSLR.  Since we went throughout the park, I got some great photographs.

Christmas Tree on Main St. USA at Disneyland

My view of the Christmas Tree at the beginning of Main St. USA. This tree is over 60-feet tall, decorated with more than 2,000 ornaments, including the three-foot star on top, and has nearly 4,800 energy-efficient LED lights.

Reindeer at Big Thunder Ranch

Santa’s Reindeer Round-Up at Frontierland Ranch. They have real live and somewhat frisky reindeer, along with Santa and Ms. Claus. Santa is available for photographs, and we may have gotten a group shot with Santa during our Scavenger Hunt. The reindeer were partaking in some reindeer games, which in this case would be, getting angry with each other and fighting. I wouldn’t want to be in the middle of these animals. Although most of them were just hanging out.

Sleeping Beauty's Castle at Disneyland

Sleeping Beauty’s Winter Castle is decorated with Holiday wreaths and ornaments and coated with “snow” at the top.  The nighttime Sleeping Beauty’s Winter Castle light show is divided into three “acts” over the course of the evening. Each one begins at the Castle and travels the length of Main Street, U.S.A., finishing at the Town Square Christmas tree. Each act features a magical snowfall, and the final act concludes with “Believe…in Holiday Magic” fireworks.  The nighttime light show employs more than 200,000 points of light, 2,600 individual circuits and more than 85,000 individual wiring connections. Can you believe how much work goes into the nighttime activities at Disneyland? Wait, until you see my pictures at the end of this post!

A Christmas Fantasy Parade at Disneyland

I was able to catch the end of the Christmas Fantasy Parade but I was unable to get photographs, because people were standing in front of me, and I caught the tail end of it, near It’s A Small World. I love this parade because of the roller skating snowflakes. I love to watch the girls aka snowflakes, spin around.  I know it sounds cheesy, but it just reminds me of how special Disneyland is, during the Holidays. Since I did not get photographs this year, I went back into my archives.  I took some photos in 2009 of the parade, and I re-edited them. My photos are quite scary. I have improved quite a bit with my photography in the past two years.

After going on a few more rides, and charging my iPhone, we headed over to Disney’s California Adventure for a private dinner.  The Angry Family was tired, and needed to rest our feet.  Of course, I got some good photo opportunities while we were at dinner. And the dinner, was AMAZING.  Angry Husband and his friend, Jayson, were stuffed from eating so much.

A family portrait. Love the background with Sleeping Beauty’s Castle. Green screen of course.

Gingerbread CraftsSome crafts Angry Kid made.
Angry Julie, Phineas and Ferb

And my newest friends, Phineas and Ferb.

After a very filling dinner, we headed back to Disneyland to view the Believe… in Holiday Magic” Fireworks ShowWe centered ourselves in front of Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, for the fireworks performance. I may have posted about some obstacles that I had to overcome while watching the fireworks. I love the “snow” at the end. That is really the best part.

Fireworks at Disneyland
Fireworks at Disneyland
Fireworks at Disneyland

Aren’t those fireworks just breathtaking? I love them all!!! After such a long day, we headed home. Of course, I had to get one last photo. I love the lighted trees in Downtown Disney.

Lit-Up Trees at Downtown Disney
It seems like I covered mostly everything about Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure during the Holidays, but I didn’t. There are so many events going on at the parks with the attractions, entertainment, shopping, and dining that I can’t name them all. Please go to Disneyland’s site for more information about The Holidays at Disneyland and also, the Disney Parks Blog.

Disclosure: I received tickets and a invitation to a special event hosted by Disneyland.  I was not paid any cash. All opinions are mine. I would also like to thank Traveling Mom for organizing the scavenger hunt.


LOVE Disney at the holidays! Then again, they pretty much do everything in spectacular fashion :) Looks like you all had a great time and that's the thing I love about them - they have something for everyone. We're trying decide if we can make a trip to Disney World happen in January. Fingers crossed! PS- I kind of love your shirt :)

The Mrs.
The Mrs.

Looks amazing! We are planning our Christmas trip there!


Thanks for the awesome post! Trying to plan a trip for the holidays to Disneyland and seeing all the decorations and festiveness makes the decision to go even easier.


I seriously need to go during the holidays again. I am starting to save for next year.

Jodi Hall
Jodi Hall

oh my goodness how fun! Love the tree shot