Disneyland/world - is it really THAT great??? - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 75 Old 07-19-2005, 11:12 PM
 
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15 days until we're there! Make a Wish is coming tomorrow with our plane tickets,itinerary, and expense check!!Can't wait!!!!

Student mama to one awesome,talented and unique dd,15 and one amazing, sweet and strong ds,12(born with heart defect Tetralogy of Fallot,also on the autism spectrum),9 cats,and 2 gerbils.
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#62 of 75 Old 07-20-2005, 03:04 PM
 
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When DD was a baby, I was so anti-Disney, it bordered on hatred! LOL But I've eased up considerably since then and so, of course, my 6 1/2 yr old dd now recognizes the characters, etc. She didn't know about Disneyland at all until she heard her older stepbros and sis talking about it. They went A LOT as children. I honestly do not want to go. I don't like the Disney corporate engine and I don't like crowds or rides. LOL But we're going next year while on a trip to the US because my daughter wants to and we can afford it.

To ease her into it, we are going to EuroDisney next month. It's smaller, closer and less expensive. If it proves to be too much for all of us, we'll cancel our Disneyland plans for next year.

I never went as a child and I don't think I was missing anything. I don't know many kids in my area who went (I grew up on the east coast) unless their parents were super well off.
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#63 of 75 Old 07-20-2005, 04:58 PM
 
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Interesting discussion!

I have been to other big and small entertainment parks (like Great America, Six Flags, Universal Studios, etc.,) but never to DL or DW

I must say I do dread long lines, heat (somehow we end up in those parks smack in the middle of the day), high food prices and overpriced souvenirs (that DC's want more than life right there and then never play with them again)

But reading all the replies made me wonder - may be I am missing something... may be I should go with my DD?
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#64 of 75 Old 07-20-2005, 05:21 PM
 
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I don't think you are missing anything! It can be fun, yes, but I'd wait unti a child was really interested in going before shelling out the money. It's an easy place to take kids- if it's not hot and crowded etc. The hotel pools are great, etc. But we've kind of fallen into because of my inlaws proximity to it. In fact, lots of times we've go to stay at a hotel in WDW, just for the other activites and pool hoping, never once stepping into a park. You can boat there, ride horses, swim etc. You can see the fireworks from some of the hotels, too, without having to pay for a park pass.

But honestly? A family vacation is nice, no matter. It doesn't have to be WDW. Some of our best vacations have not been to WDW. Camping is also nice, and much cheaper, and without having to worry about the politics of Disney.
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#65 of 75 Old 07-21-2005, 02:33 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by irinam
Interesting discussion!

I have been to other big and small entertainment parks (like Great America, Six Flags, Universal Studios, etc.,) but never to DL or DW

I must say I do dread long lines, heat (somehow we end up in those parks smack in the middle of the day), high food prices and overpriced souvenirs (that DC's want more than life right there and then never play with them again)

But reading all the replies made me wonder - may be I am missing something... may be I should go with my DD?
If you'be enjoyed the parks you've been to, I suspect you'll be amazed at the difference at Disney parks. Universal's parks are close to the same quality, but just don't seem to have the "magic" to me that Disney creates. WDW is just so CLEAN, and the people that work there are usually there because they WANT to be (far fewer bored teenagers working at WDW than many other parks I've been to - and many people compete to get into the college program). Every tiny detail of what you see, hear and even smell has been taken into consideration at Disney. The focus is less on the rides and more on the experience as a whole, and this especially shows in Disney's newer parks and attractions.

I've only been to Walt Disney World in Florida, so far, so I'm basing all my comments on those parks.

I'd say try it if your daughter is interested, during a less-crowded and less-hot time of year. Read up and research before you go, don't push yourself too much while you're there, and you'll probably have at least as good a time as at Six Flags if not much better.
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#66 of 75 Old 07-21-2005, 03:01 PM
 
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I take my 23 month old DD to Disney frequently - usually about once a week. We haven't been since the end of June because of the summer crowds, but starting in August, we'll probably start going back regularly.

I've been to all of the other parks in SoCal (Magic Mountain, Knott's, Sea World, Universal, etc.) and none of them even come close. Disneyland is just such an experience. It's clean, the castmembers are friendly, and it's just magical. It is really expensive to get in, but if you can afford to do it, IMO, it is worth the expense. There is so much more to the park than just the rides. The shows and parades are excellent. The new fireworks show is simply amazing. I've seen it a million times now, but each time I'm still just blown away by it. There's also Fantasmic, which is a great live action/pyrotechnic type show, complete with projection screens made out of water. There's also a new Snow White musical, which is supposed to be really good, like Broadway quality, and rumor has it that once the show is done running in the park, that they're going to send it to Broadway.

There are lots of old favorites, and even if you don't like Disney characters, it's easy enough to avoid them, because they usually only stay in certain areas, like Main Street. This year, Disneyland has also added quests, which are really fun (and free!). You go to a booth and pick up a quest, and it asks questions about certain things in the park. You go around the park to get the answers for your quest, and when you complete it, you get a small gift.

As far as the food, yeah, most of it is really junky. You can find healthier options, like pastas, salads, and sandwiches if you don't want to eat burgers and fries. We always bring our own food. You can rent a locker for $5 and store a small cooler, which is what we usually do.

The DL hotels are expensive, but worth it if you can afford it. A lot of times, hotel guests get early entry into the park, so you can be there an hour or two before the gates open. It gets you on rides faster.

If you go, I recommend going during the off season in the middle of the week. Usually during off season, the park closes early during the week - at around 7:00 or so, but it works out perfectly because there aren't many crowds, so by 7:00, you've done everything that there is to do.

Christmas is also neat at DL. They have "snow" with the fireworks, and a lot of seasonal treats, like peppermint ice cream. The park is always decorated for the holidays, and it's really beautiful.

As for the rides all having stores at the exits, that's really not true. Space Mountain and Buzz Lightyear's Astro Blasters are the only 2 rides that exit into gift shops. There is a small toy store near the exit at Small World, but you don't have to go into the shop to exit. So other than those two, there are no rides that force you to exit through gift shops.
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#67 of 75 Old 07-21-2005, 06:00 PM
 
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We went in May when ds was about 23 months old. My parents idea. I loved DL as a kid but I do think that ds was a little young. There were things he loved, but we should have taken him to Cali. Adventures where there is more playthings to climb on, run around, slides, that kind of thing that I think is lacking a bit at Disneyland. He was not going to stand in line for more than 10 minutes so we didn't go on many rides, but he loved the busses that go up and down mainstreet, he liked the parades and the characters (even though he had no idea who they were-- he fell in love with Minnie), the gift shops (he just got one stuffed animals but liked checking things out), the ice cream. He loved running around Downtown Disney and the Lego store and eating out. We stayed in Disney's Peirpoint Inn which was nice, has a cool pool on the roof, a cartoon room and a resteraunt where the characters come and dance and sing for breakfast (but this isn't hte pricey "character breakfast" this is 12 dollar a plate stuff). So, he liked it, and will like it more next time.
Of course, there are a ton of other vacations I'd rather go on, but we live close by, and I like my kids to experience all sorts of things, including Disneyland.
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#68 of 75 Old 07-22-2005, 12:12 AM
 
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We went for dd's second bday. omg! was it totally horible. my dd was sick, all 7 days! shewas barfing and had direhha , it was a huge waste of $1400. but we are going back in november to try again, hopefully we'll have a good time

Kristin- Wife to J, Mommy to B (11), M-S (8), and little J (4) and J&J (7 months)
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#69 of 75 Old 07-24-2005, 05:08 AM
 
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#70 of 75 Old 07-24-2005, 09:47 AM
 
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We live five miles from Disneyworld, and when we first moved here we thought it'd be fun to take dd (2) to the parks. Wow, i changed my mind quickly. It is so overstimulating and chaotic. When you look at around at all of the families with upset, overtired, hot children you wonder just how much fun anyone is really having.

I suggest sticking to a zoo or a nat'l park where your littles ones can enjoy nature and run free and probably have more fun than at DW.
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#71 of 75 Old 07-29-2005, 04:58 AM
 
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i'm not into it (although i was when i was a kid - lived nearby), and dh is WAY not into it. So we're going to let that be grandma's trip with ds. She has been dreaming about that since before he was conceived. :LOL he's 4 now, but i don't think he'll be ready until 6 or so. it seems like it would just be too overwhelming for him right now.
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#72 of 75 Old 07-29-2005, 11:41 AM
 
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Best times to go to Disney World in FLA is Dec-Feb, not during the school breaks though. It is cooler and also the parks are less crowded, much less! We ONLY go in Dec for this reason.

I think other parks are ok, but we went to Universal for the first time two years ago and it was just not the same quality. They do try to be like Disney, but they fall short. The rides are dirty and the "decorating" is not done fully so you can see exposed wires and things like that. It was nasty imo.

We may not have it all together, but together we have it all
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#73 of 75 Old 07-29-2005, 03:45 PM
 
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I agree about Universal, it seems less complete somehow, and far more adult than WDW. One of my favorite things about WDW is I can do stuff that is more "adult" like nice restaurants and good shopping, and at the same time be a little kid again and meet Mickey and ride rides just for fun. It's easy to believe in Disney's magic for me. Universal had less of the "bringing out the kid in you" going on.
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#74 of 75 Old 08-04-2005, 04:39 PM
 
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My daughter loves radio disney( its the only radio station i let her listen to because its family friendly) and they are having a promotion where you could win a FREE trip to all 4 parks.
everyone should go at least once in there lifetime.[/QUOTE]

Gee, Sweetums, you sure were excited about that radio promotion. Did you win?
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#75 of 75 Old 08-04-2005, 04:54 PM
 
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I took my DD for her 4th birthday. It was so awesome!!! WE LOVE LOVE LOVE Disneyland. She wasnt familiar with the characters either. But you don't have to be. The whole place is simply magical.
She told me that it was the best day of her life. She has been back again when she was 5 and 7 and 8 and 10 and we are planning a trip this year (she is 13) and my youngest 3 will finally be old enough to go and enjoy it.
I suppose it isnt for everybody. But if you go off season, there really arent lines. And most of the lines have interesting things to look at etc. . .
There is something about Disneyland that isnt about the rides or the characters. The whole place is the magical world of childhood. It is so spotlessly clean. It is colorful and there is cheerful music everywhere.
I am just as happy as I could be just sitting on a bench at Disneyland because there is just something magical in the air.
This is not true for everybody. But in my experience Disneyland is more than the sum of its parts.
If I lived in California I would probably go every year.
Joline
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