After three days at Disneyland, I figured I should do a "review". It's not like the world is lacking for books and blogs about Disneyland, and how to do it "right", so I don't care about trying to help you plan your next vacation. Besides, pretty much everyone I know goes to Disneyland way more often than I do anyway. Instead, I'm handing out awards from our trip. (Only things that we actually did were up for consideration here.)
Best Ride: California Screamin'
Julia and Ella don't hesitate to list this as their favorite ride in the park. Ella was just barely tall enough to go on it. Going in to the week, we weren't sure if the girls would like the bigger rides, but it turns out, the faster the better as far as they are concerned. Also, we went on this twice, with no waiting at all. We could have done it again, but I think my insides would have turned to jelly. It's been a long time since I went on roller coasters.
Most Ridden: Big Thunder Mountain
I think Shannon and I did this 5 times? It was just happenstance that every time we went anywhere near it, the line was either short, or the fast pass time was both short and convenient. It's a solid ride, so we didn't mind going on it again and again.
Worst Ride, kids vote: Indiana Jones
The girls did not like that the ride was dark, scary and jerky.
Worst Ride, adult vote: Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage
Longest Wait: Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage (54 minutes)
The app said the wait would be 20 minutes. Upon arrival at the line, the sign said 40 minutes. We'd been checking throughout the three days, and found that generally the wait times were a bit shorter than what the signs said. Not this time. 54 minutes, mostly in the sun. Plus, you can get the same experience in your dentist's waiting area if you position the fish tank between you and the TV.
Most Expensive Letter: G
California Screamin', Luigi's Rollickin' Roadsters, Soarin' Around the World. Can Disney not afford to put that extra letter on the signs?
Most Closed Ride: Pirates of the Carribean, Matterhorn (tie)
I guess this is what you get for going the first three days in March.
Longest Wait/Ride Ratio: Peter Pan
First, Shannon and I waited in line for 20 minutes or so by ourselves on night, only to have the ride break down. After another 10 minutes of not moving, we got out of line. Of course, the ride started back up again as soon as we were out of line. (We had fast passes that we didn't want to miss.) The next day we waited through another 30 or 35 minutes of the line with the girls. As the ride was ending, Ella's first comment was, "That was short." So, there you go, an hour in line, 3 minutes of Peter Pan.
Best Food: Churros
Most Broken Ride: The Haunted Mansion
The line stopped moving for about 10 minutes while we were waiting. We had literally just stepped out of line when it started moving again. (We just stepped right back in to line.) Then the ride stopped 4 or 5 times while we were going through, though never for more than about a minute.
Most Surprisingly OK ride: It's a Small World
The song wasn't nearly as annoying as I anticipated, and the girls loved all the terrible animatronics. It was worth it just to see their eyes light up at the hundreds of dancing dolls. Plus, the line was about 5 minutes long.
Most Realistic Ride: Disneyland Monorail
It was designed decades ago, but somehow Disneyland looked into their crystal ball and perfectly captured modern mass transit. The wait was way too long, there weren't nearly enough trains running, and even when it did come, 20% of the cars were empty because they were broken. The ride itself was perfectly boring.
Most Unknown Attraction: Sleeping Beauty Castle Walk-through
Did you know you can go inside the castle? Does anyone? There's no line, and it only takes a few minutes. You get to see a series of window displays that tell the story of Sleeping Beauty. Very low time investment, if you've got little kids who think going inside the castle is neat.
Most Anticipated Ride: Autopia
Julia was really looking forward to "auto-topia". I think she was a little bit underwhelmed. I think she was expecting something more like go-carts and less like riding lawnmowers on a guide rail.