Christmastime at Disneyland!
Christmas is one of the most enchanting seasons at Disneyland. The entire park is decked out in the Yuletide spirit, and even jolly old Saint Nick takes time out of his busy schedule to visit all of the little boys and girls at Disneyland. Town Square gets the addition of a 60-foot Christmas tree decked with 8,000 lights and ornaments, and the Castle receives two flocked trees in the moat. Throughout the park, guests can enjoy Christmas additions to many stores and lands. The Southern-style New Orleans Square Christmas will return again this year as well as the Toon-style Mickey's Toontown Decorations. Frontierland will also join in on the festivities with new decorations and rustic decor. If there is one time of the year that you must visit, it's the Christmas season.
Note: When you visit Disneyland during Christmas be careful on when you plan your trip. Traditionally Disneyland gets the biggest crowds (for this season) over Thanksgiving weekend and from Christmas Eve to New Years. The least crowded time of the year though is usually from December 1st to Christmas Eve. If you are planning a trip it might be worth it to take a few extra days off of work and visit the park on these very uncrowded days.
Disneyland Park Highlights
"Believe...in Holiday Magic"
The first ever holiday fireworks spectacular at Disneyland, "Believe...In Holiday Magic", is an all new journey through the beauty and joy of holiday memories. The spectacular presentation features new music, pyrotechnics, and for the first time ever in the History of Disneyland, it will snow! This new fireworks spectacular will replace the current fireworks show, "Believe...There's Magic In The Stars" during the holiday season with the largest display of pyrotechnics ever seen at Disneyland. The show is a combination of five "acts": The Magic of Christmas, Christmas Merriment, A Heartfelt Holiday, Holiday Wonders and The Spirit of Christmas, which are all connected with a dazzling symphonic orchestration of favorite holiday tunes, a captivating narrative, and amazing aerial imagery. Guests will be greeted by smiling faces, streaking comets the fly across the sky, a glitter of white sparkles that represent snowfall, and a pyrotechnic glow representing the Northern Lights. For the shows finale two comets will race toward each other and explode in a burst of light that begins the snowfall on guests throughout many areas of the park.
The best viewing areas for this new spectacular will be on Main Street (in between the Kodak Camera Shop and Coke Corner on Main Street often works very well); in the Castle forecourt at the Hub; in New Orleans Square along the Rivers of America; and along the it's a small world mall. Snowfall will only occur in these locations, so be sure to find the right location to experience this Disney Magic! Generally it is hard to reserve viewing locations hours in advance for fireworks shows, so we recommend arriving about twenty minutes beforehand. Unless you are near the Rivers of America watching the show after a showing of Fantasmic! you will most likely have to stand for optimal viewing. In either case, be sure to take care of getting any snacks and/or bathroom breaks beforehand.
"A Christmas Fantasy" Parade
When to Arrive and Seating
The Christmas Fantasy Parade runs along the normal parade route from Small World to Main Streets Town Square and then back again. Guests can find a good seat anywhere along the parade route. 30 minutes before show time should be more than sufficient to get front row seats for the parade. If you don't want to wait for the parade just hope on back to It's a Small World Way and find a spot along the terraced seating. This seating was originally set up for Light Magic back in 1997, so there are plenty of areas to view the parade from, considering the Christmas Fantasy Parade usually doesn't have as many viewers along the parade route.
All along the viewing area, there are restaurants and food carts. If you are on Main Street you have a choice of, the Blue Ribbon Bakery, Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor, the Main Street Cone Shop, and the Main Street Fruit Cart. Keep your eyes open for vendors that go up and down the street before show time selling cokes, and miscellaneous other snacks. Also if you have the time and want to sit down, the Carnation Café, the Plaza Inn, and Plaza Pavilion all offer nice food, but you cannot take this food with you to your curb side command post. "it's a small world" does not have the wide range of food but there are a few places. Directly north of the entrance to the Matterhorn there is a hot dog stand and a Matterhorn Freeze (slurpee) cart, which are both open on only selected days. If you want to venture into Toontown you can find Pluto's Dog House, Daisy's Diner, and Clarabelle's Frozen Yogurt. Also you can find food at the Village Haus Restaurant in Fantasyland. Keep your eyes open here too, because vendors go up and down the street selling cokes and other food items.
There are quite a few restrooms all along the parade route. On Main Street restrooms are located at: south of City Hall in the Guided Tour Gardens, the north of City Hall. Also in the Town Square area there are restrooms to the south of the Bank of Main Street, a.k.a. Annual Passholder Processing Center. Carnation Café, Plaza Inn, Plaza Pavilion, and Carnation Plaza Gardens all have restrooms. There is also one to the right of the entrance of Tomorrowland. By It's A Small World restrooms are located at: Meeko's Restaurant, by the Fantasyland Theater, in Toontown, between the Matterhorn and Sleeping Beauty's Castle. In addition, if you want to walk a little way, the Village Haus restaurant has a restroom to the west of its entrance.
"it's a small world" Holiday
Disneyland presents "it's a small world" Holiday, the merriest cruise to sail the seas. Disneyland converts the traditional "it's a small world" into a Christmas themed ride with an enchanting and musical Yuletide environment. The joyous scenes feature the colorful holiday decorations of all the regions of the world as well as spectacular lighting effects and 300 animated "Children of the World" merrily singing our favorite Christmas tunes. The songs include refrains of "Jingle Bells" and "Deck the Halls" in counterpoint to the "it's a small world" theme.
The entire mall and exterior of the attraction is also decorated in over 300,000 twinkling lights, topiaries, and multicultural decorations that make a breathtaking nighttime Christmas scene. Speaking from personal experience, "it's a small world holiday" is a spectacular event and well worth a trip down to the park. Don't miss out this holiday season!
Haunted Mansion Holiday
Halloween and Christmas traditions collide as the Haunted Mansion gets an ex-scream makeover!
New Orleans Style Holiday
The park will hold its second celebration of the holidays "New Orleans-style" this year in New Orleans Square. The land comes alive with elaborate displays of holiday decorations, draped throughout the wrought-iron balconies and hanging above streets and storefronts. Traditional Dixieland versions of holiday music will fill the air, including live performances and background music. These decorations are very original and a spectacular sight to see, so be sure to visit New Orleans Square when you visit Disneyland during the holiday season!
New Years Eve
Guests visiting the park on New Years Eve will get a special Disneyland count down to the New Year. Countdowns are located at various locations throughout the park including New Orleans Square, Tommorowland, in front of "it's a small world holiday", and of course in front of Sleeping Beauty's castle. Each countdown location has music and entertainment themed to the land that the countdown takes place in. The main countdown in front of the castle is led by Mickey Mouse and other surprise characters, and when the clock strikes twelve guests are presented with a spectacular Disneyland surprise. This is a very fun and exciting event, but crowds are extremely heavy so plan to spend a whole day at the park!
California Adventure Park Highlights
Flik’s Fun Fair
Flik and his bug buddies decorate with giant Christmas lights, oversized ornaments and towering candy canes throughout their realm.
We wish everyone a happy, safe, and magical holiday season! Enjoy your time at the Merriest Place on Earth!