Monday, July 16, 2012

Disneyland, Los Angeles, CA, USA

The happiest place on earth....

And where all your dreams come true! 

I absolutely love Disneyland! It's the place where you can visit, become a kid again and let your worries go for the day, plus go on a few rides and see your favourite Disney characters.

The first Disneyland I ever went to was the Tokyo Disneyland in January 2009 with a group of uni friends and Gaffa. We only bought a half day night pass and missed the parade as it was raining. Then in May 2009 I was in San Francisco visiting my mum and we went to Disneyland in Los Angeles. So this visit with Gaffa was my second visit to the LA Disneyland. It doesn't get old though, I still get excited seeing all the Disney characters and going on all the rides. I would be the person that has an annual pass if I lived near a Disneyland and I'd definitely get my monies worth by visiting regularly.

My awesome Auntie J and Uncle P drove us down to LA from San Francisco in one day and we stayed overnight in one of the many hotels close to Disneyland. They have loads of shuttle buses that take you directly from your door to the front of Disneyland. Next to Disneyland there is also California Adventure Park, which I'm yet to visit but I've heard is not as good, so I'm not fussed about what I'm missing out on.

With a map in hand and big grins on our faces we enter Disneyland, ready for some fun! First ride was the Star Wars 3D simulation, Star Tours. I'm not a big Star Wars fan, but Gaffa is. 

Next we went to the Buzz Lightyear ride where you sit in a automatic carriage that takes you around and you shoot at targets. Your score is calculated and shown on the spaceship buggy dashboard that you're sitting in. And at the end of it, you can email a photo to yourself :) Here's our photo... I was never good at shooting games, clearly... But I did do a bit better with my mum....

Win vs. Gaffa
Mum vs. Win
From here, Gaffa and I split from my aunt and uncle so we could explore the park at our own pace and go on the more adventurous rides that they didn't want to go on. Gaffa and I made our way around the whole park going on every ride we possibly could get on. Space Mountain was awesome, a roller coaster ride in complete darkness with a few stars twinkling. Kudos to my mum who went on this ride with me the first time I was in Disneyland LA. We'd gotten a fast pass for Space Mountain and returned at the specific time. My Auntie J gave it to my mum and encouraged her to come on the ride with me. My mum was a good sport, not knowing what it was she joined me in the line. All throughout the ride she was screaming! The photo was hilarious!! One of my funniest memories of my mum!

Splash Mountain was fun. We got wet, very wet! 

We also went on the Pirates of the Caribbean ride, Thunder Mountain, the Indiana Jones ride...The Tea Cups ride was cool. Gaffa did most of the spinning, I just took photos and videos. 

We enjoyed a clam chowder for lunch, typical American food had to be eaten!! 

Throughout they day we also saw a lot of the Disney characters, which we got photos with. One disappointment though was Minnie Mouse. We spotted her and asked her for a photo, but she said no, because she was only taking photos with the little kids in the restaurant. How sad, Gaffa is still annoyed. He still can't get over the disappointment of Minnie mouse rejecting him! What's really funny is that the only photo Gaffa wanted to get was with Minnie....oh well he'll have to settle with Winnie-Mouse =)

closest we got to Minnie Mouse...

Winnie & Winnie

Later in the afternoon we met up with my Auntie J and Uncle P and also my cousin S and her daughter, Little K. She's 3 now, and last time I was in LA my cousin was almost about to go into labour, so I had not meet Little K yet. We went on the It's a Small World ride. This one always makes me smile, seeing the different countries and cultures from all around the world. It is Little K's favourite ride, she was quietly singing along all the way through, so cute!

It was a nice and sunny day and to cool off my cousin S treated us to some Dole Whips. According to Squidoo, "Dole Soft Serve Mix is a lactose free dry mix that is reconstituted with tap water and frozen down in a soft serve machine. Marketed under the popular Dole brand name, this unique product delivers an intense, natural pineapple fruit flavour, yet is fat free and cholesterol free". Imagine soft serve ice cream in a cup, but pineapple flavoured; with some pineapple juice, very refreshing! 

We also went on the Dumbo ride with her. Little K wanted a pink dumbo but we were too late to get one for her so she started crying. It didn't help much eeither when she bumped her head on the Dumbo plane while getting in. It wasn't a nice experience for her at all. 

To cheer her up we went to see the Disney princesses. Everyday there are 3 different princesses. That day we were lucky enough to see Mulan, Sleeping Beauty (aka Aurora) and Cinderella (aka Belle). Little B loves Mulan, and when she saw a photo of Little K with Mulan on Facebook she started crying. Poor girl :( Both Belle and Aurora made Gaffa stand in the middle, as he was the prince, with his two princesses on either side. 

It was almost parade time, so we plonked ourselves on the sidewalk to get a good view. Note to anyone wanting to see the parade, do get your spot early as it does get packed. Finally it was parade time. It was different from the first time I was here, so I assume they change it up every few months to keep it interesting. Here are some photos of the parade (my videos are too large to put up at the moment). Over excited and super smiling people dancing and singing - love it!!

who thought Mickey could play the drums?!

All the characters came out on the floats. It's a great way to end your Disneyland experience. On weekends they even have a fireworks show. The first time I was in LA it was the weekend. We saw the fireworks show twice that year, once from our hotel carpark and once while we were actually inside the park.

Afterwards my cousin S took us all out for dinner at the Jazz Kitchen in Downtown Disney. Great New Orleans food! We unfortunately had to rush off to catch the last shuttle bus back to our hotel. But we had an awesome day at Disneyland :-) Thanks for meeting us, S and Little K!!

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