60 Reasons We Love Disneyland

60 Reasons We Love Disneyland

Photo credit: HarshLight / Foter / CC BY

Sixty years ago today, the Happiest Place On Earth opened its gates to the public for the very first time. Despite a few setbacks on opening day, Disneyland quickly became a magical destination for the young and young at heart. The park has gone through quite a few changes over the years. We’ve seen some beloved attractions leave and we’ve gained some wonderful new attractions, as well. As Walt Disney once said, “Disneyland will never be completed. It will continue to grow as long as there is imagination left in the world.” In honor of Disneyland’s 60th anniversary, we’ve compiled a list of 60 reasons we love this magical park:

  1. The history at Walt’s original park is so special! Disneyland is the only Disney park in the entire world which Walt set foot in during his lifetime. There’s something magical about walking in Walt’s footsteps.
  2. The Mickey Mouse made out of flowers at the park entrance is gorgeous!
  3. Main Street, U.S.A. is designed to resemble a movie premiere. The red pavement serves as the red carpet, and the windows serve as the credits for the film. You can even find delicious popcorn sold on Main Street.
  4. The windows on Main Street are a wonderful tribute to those who worked to make Disneyland the Happiest Place On Earth.
  5. The shops on Main Street, such as the Magic Shop, are each uniquely themed and charming in their own way.
  6. The horse-drawn carriage on Main Street, U.S.A. add to the turn of the century feel of the street.
  7. The Dapper Dans serenade guests with turn of the century barbershop tunes, as well as, some Disney classics.
  8. You can see the opening day dedication plaque on Main Street, U.S.A.
  9. Sleeping Beauty Castle is stunning, especially with the added sparkles for the 60th anniversary celebration!

    60 Reasons We Love Disneyland

    Photo credit: Tom.Bricker / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

  10. While Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride is no longer at Walt Disney World, it can still be found at Disneyland.
  11. The Alice In Wonderland dark ride is adorable!
  12. Disneyland’s New Orleans Square is home to the very exclusive Club 33.
  13. Fantasmic! on the Rivers of America is phenomenal. The show features Peter Pan, the Sailing Ship Columbia, a dragon, and so many Disney characters!
  14. Disneyland’s new Paint The Night parade is simply amazing! It’s full of energy, Disney characters, and lots of sparkling lights!
  15. You can still ride in the front of the monorail at Disneyland. If you haven’t experienced this, what are you waiting for?!
  16. Everything is within walking distance – the resorts, Downtown Disney, the parks – everything!
  17. Walt’s Apartment is located on Main Street above the fire house. Walt and his family would stay in this apartment when they visited the park.
  18. If you look in the window to Walt’s apartment, you’ll notice a lamp still lit for Walt. When he was in the park, he would light the lamp so the cast members would know he was there. Today the lamp is lit as a tribute to Walt Disney.
  19. Disneyland’s Splash Mountain is longer than the Walt Disney World version and is a guest favorite.

  20. The Sailing Ship Columbia can be seen sailing on the Rivers of America.
  21. Toontown is a wonderful place to hang out with Mickey and friends. You can even see where some of your favorite characters live!
  22. Characters at Disneyland are much more widely available than they are at Walt Disney World. It’s possible you might just run into your favorite character strolling through the park.
  23. Hidden Mickeys are everywhere! And they’re so much fun to search for!
  24. The music at Disneyland is so special. From the show music to the background music, each song has the power to transport you into the story.
  25. The weather at Disneyland is lovely! Unlike Walt Disney World, it usually doesn’t rain a little every day.
  26. The food at Disneyland is delicious! And as usual, it tastes even better if it’s shaped like Mickey!
  27. The Haunted Mansion gets a special overlay each year called Haunted Mansion Holiday. This overlay celebrates both Halloween and Christmas with many Nightmare Before Christmas decorations and a special soundtrack.
  28. Space Mountain also gets a special Halloween overlay called Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy.
  29. The Christmas decorations at Disneyland are absolutely beautiful. It even snows on the castle!

    60 Reasons We Love Disneyland

    Photo credit: Brett Kiger / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

  30. You can ride The Mad Tea Party under the stars! Not having a canopy over the attraction also makes for a great photo!
  31. You can join Indiana Jones for an exciting adventure through the Temple of The Forbidden Eye!
  32. The Disneyland cast members truly make the park a magical place. These wonderful people will go out of their way to make your visit as magical as possible!
  33. The park is small, so your feet won’t hurt so bad from all the walking!
  34. The details at Disneyland are amazing! The imagineers literally think of everything when designing these attractions.
  35. The Disneyland ADR window opens 60 days prior to your vacation, so you don’t have to plan your dining reservations quite as far in advance.
  36. There are many great non-Disney hotels within walking distance of the parks.
  37. Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room was Walt’s first use of audio-animatronics on a large scale. Now, over 50 years later, this show is still delighting guests of all ages.
  38. You can get a Dole Whip while you wait in line for the Tiki Room; And then you can take your Dole Whip with you into the show!
  39. The Jolly Holiday Bakery is so cute and themed after Mary Poppins, which naturally makes it “Practically perfect in every way!”

  40. The Matterhorn Macaroons at the Jolly Holiday Bakery are just as delicious as they are adorable to look at!
  41. Speaking of the Matterhorn, the Matterhorn Bobsleds can be found at Disneyland. This attraction was the very first tubular steel continuous track roller coaster ever built.
  42. The Disneyland Railroad, inspired by Walt’s love of trains, is a great way to see the park. It’s also a fun attraction in and of itself.
  43. The Lilly Belle railroad car, named for Walt’s wife, is beautiful. The presidential train car was designed in a Victorian theme with help from Lillian Disney.
  44. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad – it’s the wildest ride in the wilderness and one of my personal favorites!
  45. Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln, an attraction close to Walt’s heart, can be found on Main Street, U.S.A. The history of this attraction dates back to the 1964 New York World’s Fair.
  46. Also located at Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln is the Griffith Park bench Walt used to sit on as he watched his daughters at the park. These visits to the park helped inspire Walt to create Disneyland.
  47. Disneyland’s Tom Sawyer Island was personally designed by Walt Disney.
  48. Disneyland’s Pirates of The Caribbean is the original attraction and was the last attraction Walt worked on. It is also a bit longer than the Walt Disney World version.
  49. The Blue Bayou restaurant overlooks the Pirates of The Caribbean attraction. They also have great food!

  50. The Disneyland Dream Suite located above Pirates of The Caribbean is stunning! Walt had planned to built this private apartment; however his plans were not completed during his lifetime. The Disney imagineers brought this dream to life in 2008 during the Year of A Million Dreams.
  51. Disneyland still utilizes the paper Fastpass system. These make a great souvenir if you happen to have any unused Fastpasses after your vacation.
  52. Snow White’s Scary Adventure can still be found at Disneyland, though it is no longer at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom.
  53. Mickey Premium Ice Cream Bars! Mickey shaped chocolate and ice cream – need I say more?
  54. The It’s A Small World attraction was delivered to Disneyland from the 1964 New York World’s Fair.
  55. We love the punny jokes on The Jungle Cruise! Hey look over there – it’s the backside of water!
  56. The Storybook Land Canal Boats showcase beautiful miniatures of the lands from numerous Disney films. This attraction also has a history in Walt Disney’s love of miniatures.
  57. A petrified tree which was Walt’s anniversary gift to his wife Lillian is on display near The Golden Horseshoe.
  58. The Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage takes you into the underwater world of Nemo and friends. And of course, everyone’s favorite seagulls can be seen at this attraction too. Mine! Mine!
  59. Every now and then, the park is open to guests for a full day. 24 hours at the Happiest Place On Earth? Yes, please!
  60. The Disneyland Forever Fireworks show, created especially for the 60th anniversary celebration, is spectacular! In addition to fireworks, the show also features colorful projections on Main Street, Sleeping Beauty Castle, and It’s A Small World.

What do you love about Disneyland? Let us know in the comments.

Happy 60th Anniversary Disneyland!


Link Parties: Fast Pass Friday, Saturday Sharefest

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Kimberly's love of Disney began at an early age and grew even more when her family won a Walt Disney World vacation from a local radio station. She grew up visiting the parks every one to two years and is fascinated by Disney history and trivia. Whether at the parks or at home, Kimberly is constantly looking for hidden Mickeys. She enjoys sharing tips and helping others plan their Disney vacations. In addition to Frontierland Station, her writing can also be found at The Magical Blogorail, Sand 'n Sea Adventures, and Blogsprout.

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