When Walt Disney opened Disneyland, the original Disney theme park, on July 17, 1955, he said he hoped it would be “a source of joy and inspiration to all the world.” He famously observed: “Disneyland will never be completed…as long as there is imagination left in the world.”
Since 1955, the Disneyland Resort has welcomed more than 750 million guests. It has expanded to become an approximately 500-acre, world-class, multi-day, family vacation destination, complete with two renowned Disney theme parks, three hotels and the exciting shopping, dining and entertainment district known as the Downtown Disney District.
The parks of the Disneyland Resort continue to offer guests more classic characters, more storytelling, more attractions and more of the unique Disney heritage that gives Disney theme parks their special personality. Learn more about Disneyland Resort below.
1 – Disneyland Park
Upon its opening on July 17, 1955, Disneyland introduced a new concept in family entertainment and launched the theme park industry. Disneyland presented 18 major attractions on its opening day including the Mad Tea Party, the Jungle Cruise, Autopia and the Mark Twain Riverboat, and it featured five themed lands: Fantasyland, Adventureland, Tomorrowland, Frontierland and Main Street, U.S.A. Today, Disneyland is an evolving American institution, covering nearly 100 acres and featuring more than 60 adventures and attractions in nine themed lands, having added New Orleans Square in 1966, Critter Country (originally Bear County) in 1972, Mickey’s Toontown in 1993 and Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge in 2019.
Favorite Disneyland attractions include Pirates of the Caribbean, Star Tours – The Adventures Continue, “it’s a small world,” Indiana Jones Adventure and the mountain range of thrill rides: Matterhorn Bobsleds, Space Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and Splash Mountain. Entertainment is presented throughout the park, with nighttime spectaculars including seasonal themed fireworks shows and stage shows including “Mickey and the Magical Map.”
Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, which opened in May 2019, is the largest single-themed land expansion in Disney Parks history. It features two immersive attractions, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance and Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run.
2 – Disney California Adventure Park
Since its opening in 2001, Disney California Adventure has been bringing adventure and fun to life with Disney storytelling magic and popular attractions including Grizzly River Run and Soarin’. With the addition of Cars Land and Buena Vista Street in 2012, the park features more than 35 adventures and attractions plus distinctive entertainment and dining.
Disney California Adventure has a total of seven lands including the 12-acre Cars Land, Buena Vista Street, Hollywood Land, Grizzly Peak featuring the reimagined Grizzly Peak Airfield and the exciting attraction Soarin’ Around the World, Pacific Wharf (all formerly parts of the Golden State area), Paradise Gardens Park and the reimagined Pixar Pier.
Among the attractions in Disney California Adventure are the Incredicoaster in Pixar Pier, where guests join the Incredibles in a mad dash to catch Jack-Jack as he wreaks havoc throughout a high-speed chase; Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT!, a rockin’ adventure where guests join Rocket in an attempt to save his friends, the Guardians, from the Collector’s Fortress; Toy Story Mania!, an interactive, ride-through attraction where guests enter into a 4D carnival midway hosted by the “Toy Story” characters; “World of Color,” an award-winning, nighttime water spectacular featuring nearly 1,200 fountains that bring Disney animation to life; and The Little Mermaid ~ Ariel’s Undersea Adventure, a “dark ride” that transports guests “under the sea” to experience scenes and beloved songs from “The Little Mermaid” film.
The opening of Cars Land in 2012 added Radiator Springs Racers, a high-octane indoor/outdoor adventure that revs through Radiator Springs and concludes with a high-speed race through the mountains of Ornament Valley, and Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree, in which baby tractors swing guests through a Cars Land hoedown. Luigi’s Rollickin’ Roadsters invites guests to climb aboard miniature Italian roadsters, Luigi’s Italian cousins, as they whirl into the traditional dances of their village. Buena Vista Street offers the Red Car Trolley attraction and Carthay Circle Restaurant, one of the premier dining locations at the Disneyland Resort.
In summer 2018 Pixar Pier opened as a new land in Disney California Adventure, featuring four whimsical neighborhoods where guests can step into beloved Disney and Pixar stories. The first neighborhood, inspired by “The Incredibles,” features the exciting new Incredicoaster, and others celebrate themes from Pixar favorites such as “Toy Story” and “Inside Out.”
Avengers Campus, an entirely new land dedicated to discovering, recruiting and training the next generation of heroes, is coming soon to the Disneyland Resort, inside Disney California Adventure Park. Guests who are lifelong fans of Super Heroes and those discovering them for the first time are invited to team up with the Avengers and their allies to live out their Super Hero dreams in this fully immersive land that mixes innovative technology and fun for all ages. Avengers Campus brings together Earth’s Mightiest Heroes for the common good, and they’re calling all recruits to join the action: Team up with the Avengers and their allies; sling webs with Spider-Man, taste-test inventive food and drinks and become part of a bigger universe. Kids and guests of all ages will find their powers as they unite with family and friends to take an active role alongside some of their favorite heroes, with a chance to live out their own heroic story.
3 – Downtown Disney District
The Downtown Disney District (no admission fee required) is a walking promenade of exciting dining, shopping and entertainment experiences. The 20-acre, 300,000 square-foot avenue is centrally located between the Disneyland Resort theme parks and hotels and features approximately 50 distinct venues. Atmospheric music and entertainment create a lively backdrop for guests, and the destination features a diverse collection of casual restaurants, favorite snacking stops, shopping boutiques and high-energy entertainment. including Earl of Sandwich, Sprinkles, La Brea Bakery Café, Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen, Tortilla Jo’s, Naples Ristorante e Pizzeria, WonderGround Gallery, Splitsville Luxury Lanes, Salt & Straw, Black Tap Craft Burgers & Shakes, Ballast Point Brewing Company, The VOID, The LEGO Store, Curl Surf, Catal Restaurant & Uva Bar, Sephora, Sprinkles, PANDORA Jewelry, The Disney Dress Shop and the World of Disney store.
4 – Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa
Featuring 948 rooms and 50 Disney Vacation Club villas, Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa is the flagship hotel of the Disneyland Resort. The design of this AAA Four-Diamond, award-winning luxury property is inspired by the turn-of-the-century California Craftsman movement. In 2009, the hotel became home to the first Disney Vacation Club units on the West Coast. It’s also the first hotel in the United States to be built inside a Disney park (Disney California Adventure).
Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa was refurbished in 2017, bringing new magic to the property. The hotel offers suites, a large convention facility, swimming pools, the new Tenaya Stone Spa (opening 2020) and dining locations: Storytellers café, the award-winning Napa Rose restaurant and GCH Craftsman Bar & Grill. With approximately 35 sommeliers, including several advanced sommeliers, Napa Rose boasts a significant number of certified wine experts under one roof.
5 – Disneyland Hotel
Significant new enhancements at the iconic Disneyland Hotel were completed in 2012, including re-imagined guest rooms, Disney-themed suites, a new restaurant and bar – Tangaroa Terrace and Trader Sam’s Enchanted Tiki Bar – and a water play area with Monorail-inspired water slides. Other distinctive restaurants at the hotel include Goofy’s Kitchen and the award-winning Steakhouse 55. This AAA Four Diamond hotel features 973 rooms, including specially themed Disney character suites, and one of the largest contiguous convention spaces in the Western United States with 136,000 square feet.
6 – Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel
A casually elegant 481-room hotel themed to the colorful “day at the beach” California seaside culture of fun, Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel features the whimsical Disney’s PCH Grill restaurant, a pool deck with cabanas and water slide, and 30,000 square feet of convention and meeting space.
For a no obligation, FREE Quote on a Disney vacation package, please contact our travel partner Magical Vacation Planner at 407-442-0227 (407-442-0215 for Spanish). You can also request a FREE quote online by Clicking HERE.