Saturday, February 3, 2024

Disneyland Impressions!

Well, I can no longer say my last trip to Disneyland was over 50 years ago! In fact my last trip wasn't even 50 hours ago! Last week my daughter treated me to a four day trip (Tuesday through Friday) for my retirement gift! Yes, she IS the best daughter ever!

Now, I could write volumes on this trip, and I probably will write more, but I thought I'd do some "hot take" posts. That's what all the cool kid bloggers do! Actually, I'm going to break this down into four posts, as such as momentous occasion deserves more than one wimpy post. So we begin with....

Day 1- Arrival and Downtown Disney.

We arrived a little before noon. 

The red carpet was rolled out at our hotel! Ok, so it was a blue carpet, but it was still exciting. I've wanted to stay in the Disneyland Hotel for a long time. We were in the Adventure Tower.

We were greeted by our TV when we got to our room on the 7th floor, overlooking Downtown Disney.

In fact, this was our view!

We settled in and made our way down to find FOOD! We were hungry after our trip. It was a beautiful, sun shine filled day and people were enjoying the pool!

I had a Hawaiian Burger at the Tangaroa Terrace. I usually don't care for pineapple, but the roasted slice on this burger was wonderful!

A view of our lunch stop!

We then went into Downtown Disney. The thing that really stunned me is how close everything is together! I knew it was, of course, but until you actually see it, it's hard to imagine. Especially having been a Walt Disney World guy for so long. It's very easy to walk from Downtown to Disneyland to California Adventure. Very. Very. Easy.


A bit of Disney leaf magic.

In case you forgot where you were. Actually, it would be pretty impossible to forget that you were in Disney Ground Zero, since even the molecules in the place are Mickey shaped.

After we walked around a bit (and, yes, shopped) we took a very nice warm soak in the pool's hot tub. It's amazing how that will restore your energy!

Jess (my daughter) wanted to check out the Pixar Place Hotel since it was it's first day to be open, so we walked over. Again, it was very nice to be able to walk from place to place!

Here we are!!!

The first thing you see in the lobby...

These stained glass mobiles hang over the lobby as well. They were pretty neat. They were all Pixar, of course!

Then we went back to the hotel and checked out this huge model of Big Thunder that one of our buddies from Gorillas Don't Blog did tons of work on! Mike C. does great work!

And then we back to our room and sacked out for 12 hours. For real. You see, tomorrow we head for Disneyland!!!

So stay tuned for next week! It'll be a big one!!!


  1. Nice first-day photos, Stu. Looks like you beat the torrential rains that California is experiencing now? Looking forward to your Disneyland photos and commentary!

    1. Hi JB!
      Out of four days, we only had one morning of rain. Lots of rain! But only for that one morning. I'll give a rundown on that one in a couple of weeks...

  2. I'm looking forward to more trip report posts, and hearing what you have to say about the place, after not having been in 50+ years! It looks like it wasn't very crowded, based on the two pics you took of the "esplanade" between the two parks. I hope the crowds were light during your entire stay.

    Congrats on your retirement!

    - TokyoMagic!

    1. It really wasn't very crowded at all! We did a ton of stuff in very little time. Perfect, really!

  3. It looks like you had a great start to your multi-day trip! I’m glad you got beautiful weather, at least for that first day - the rains poured on me not long ago. In fact a few days ago I was at Downtown Disney, and Sue reminded me that you were probably in Disneyland at that very moment! Not that I would have bugged you while you were having fun with your cool daughter, but it would have been nice to say “hello” in person.

    That hamburger looks pretty tasty (bacon!), I will have to trust you that the pineapple was a good addition. It seems weird though! Funny, I saw one of those Mickeys made of leaves too, and watched a girl lay down on the sidewalk so her friend could take her picture next to it. Who knows what has been on that sidewalk??

    That model of Big Thunder should belong to me, how can we make that happen?

    Looking forward to part 2!

    1. You should have reached out! I've told my daughter about all the Gorillas! It would have been great!
      Yeah, lying down on any sidewalk doesn't sound like a great idea.
      Well, it's in sections. If we all wore long coats and created a diversion we might pull it off!
      Probably not...

  4. Thanks Stu! However a team
    Of model makers worked on that. So I can’t take all the credit . MAJOR : I’ve got some rock work we had to correct and I’ve got sone ore cars from a unused train that didn’t have a place on the final display…

    I’m not sure what up but blogger did not want to let me leave a post ….


    1. You're too modest, my friend! As a life long hobby modeler, I can only guess at how hard that project was. I pointed out to my daughter that even moving it would have been a huge undertaking! Bravo!

  5. Great post & great pictures! I love the Mondrian theme at the Pixar Place Hotel. And yeah, the coziness of Disneyland & its environs are a pleasant surprise when you're used to the wide-open spaces of WDW. So cool that you got to see Mike C.'s model in person! Looking forward to the next installment.

    1. Pixar Place really was neat! It also had some of the friendliest CMs in the gift shop (although there were plenty of friendly folks everywhere, of course).
      I was literally in awe of how close everything was. I mean, I've seen hundreds of pictures, but for some reason it never really sunk in!
      The next post is gonna be a doozy. It might end up being two. I haven't decided yet, lol!

  6. Stu, I love this post and can't wait to see more pictures and read more about your trip. It looks like you and your daughter had a blast! There's no better place for lots of fun and memory-making!

    1. More coming very soon!
      You're right! Memories for a lifetime!

  7. Ok, this kinda, maybe, sorta made me tear up. Maybe it's because I'm a mom, or maybe it's because I'm your only kid, but... I'm honored you called me "the best daughter ever". You're the coolest.
    So glad you have this community of Disney nerds (and you raised me right to fully appreciate WDE!)
    °○° Ears to many more DL trips!
    Maybe we can go with the Gorillas sometime °😊°
    your awesome kid

    1. I only write the truth!
      Yep that would be great!


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