The holidays are even more magical at Disneyland and we recently got the chance to experience some of the great things that the park has in store for visitors during Halloween. During select evenings, the park is transformed into a magical trick-or-treating extravaganza with Mickey and his friends. Guests come decked out in their best Halloween attire as do Mickey and his friends, for an evening of trick-or-treating, shows, special events, and fantastic attractions that Disneyland is famous for. The event sells out so those wishing to attend will want to make sure that they purchased their tickets in advance to avoid any disappointment.
For those not fortunate enough to get tickets the park still offers plenty of magic and fun for guests as it is open until 7 PM on Halloween party nights and Disney’s California Adventure is open until midnight ensuring those who purchase a Park Hopper ticket will still be able to get a full day and nights worth of entertainment.
I last attended the Halloween events during 2011 as it coincided with our coverage of Blizzcon so I was able to experience an afternoon and evening of magical fun. This timeout we arrived as the park opened at 8 AM on a Friday and were amazed that it was not that crowded. Taking advantage of what we expected to be a momentary lull we quickly went on the Halloween themed Haunted Mansion and Space Mountain attractions which from experience I know often have very long lines during this time year even for those who use the Fast Pass option. We were delighted that there was no line at all and we quickly enjoyed the “NIghtmare Before Christmas” theme that takes over the haunted mansion through the end of the year. Jack Sellington and friends have delightfully changed over the famous mansion as they blend the Christmas and Halloween holidays into one. The matter how may times I have experienced this fantastic seasonal event I am constantly amazed by the talent of the engineers who make it feel as if it is an entirely new attraction year in and year out.
Ghost Galaxy takes the fast paced thrills of Space Mountain and adds a malevolent specter to the attraction who appears at various times as guest twist and turn in the darkness. Seeing eyes, hands, and other gruesome imagery emerge out of the darkness as she rushed past brings a whole new level of excitement and tension to this already classic attraction and is not to be missed.
The park is decorated in fantastic orange black and other fall colors and the entryway is lined with all sorts of Disney themed pumpkins and jack-o’-lanterns. The area in the town square where we enjoyed gigantic Christmas tree near Main Street USA has a larger-than-life Mickey inspired pumpkin that many guests took full advantage of as they posed for pictures next to it.
We spent the remainder of the day enjoying attractions ranging from Splash Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean, Star Tours, and the countless other attractions that have made Disneyland the most magical place on the planet. I was disappointed that I was not able to experience BigThunder Mountain Railroad, but it was down for track resurfacing during our visit.
As the evening arrived, we made our way over to California Adventure and experienced Cars Land and the fabulous Luigi’s Tires and Radiator Springs Racers which we have not had a chance to enjoy since our visit last November. Everything about the land is still as magical and engrossing as before and the attractions held up even better than they did during our debut experiences with them.
We made sure to take in as many of our favorites as time allowed including Soaring over California, Grizzly Rapids, Toy Story Midway Mania and much more during our visit. Guests will want to note that the Tower of Terror attraction has even more of a crowd than usual during this time year as there are seasonal treats within so please plan accordingly.
Pacing is always key when you experience the parks as it is impossible to experience all there is to offer in one park let alone two during a one-day visit but unfortunately due to time constraints we managed to get in as much as we possibly could during the time was available to us. The always amazing World of Color show is as memorable as ever and I only wish that we would be able to get to the park during the holidays to check out the upcoming holiday themed show which is said to be themed around the upcoming release of “Frozen”. For now, we were grateful for the time that we had in this enchanting place and eagerly look forward to our upcoming coverage of the Disney Fantasy and holiday cheer from Disney.