We went to Disneyland in May. This is our first trip with two kids, and second overall. Here are my notes from the first trip.
Hotel: We stayed at the Courtyard Marriott Theme Park Entrance, and I’d definitely stay there again. It was closer to the park entrance than the Disneyland Hotel, and at least $100/night cheaper. Our room had bunk beds for the kids and a separate bedroom. The waterpark was fabulous and I think James liked it more than Disneyland. The only downside I can think of: right at park opening time, the line to get through security was insanely long and disorganized. But you can work around this by using the Magic Hour benefit, or just leaving 30 minutes later.
Car: We had a beach day. We drove down to Laguna Beach and parked at the Montage Hotel. There is a public beach right behind the Montage Hotel that is incredible. Our original plan was to go to Newport Beach/Balboa Island, but I’m so glad we found this beach instead. It was perfect. I actually wish we’d stayed there longer, instead of trying to find other cooler places along the coast.
Food: We went to Farrell’s Ice Cream Parlor! We also went to Pizza Press, In-N-Out, Canters Deli, and Great Mex (during our beach day). At the park, we had lunch with princesses at Ariel’s Grotto, and dinner with pirates at Blue Bayou. Blue Bayou was shockingly good, and both kids seemed to really enjoy it.
**Booze: **There is a Target less than one mile from the hotel, and the hotel had a decent sized refrigerator. Plenty of room for wine and booze amongst the restaurant leftovers!
**Rides: **This was kind of a weird trip from a ride perspective. We definitely went on rides, but I feel like it was less than last time, and it was harder to get James to go. He finally got to go into the haunted mansion, and Emily bribed him with a light saber to go on Star Tours. But he threw an epic tantrum and we had to force him onto Storybrook Land Canal Boats (of all rides). The theme ride for this trip was Dumbo. Both kids wanted to go on Dumbo over and over and over again!
**City Stroller Rentals: **We rented a double stroller. On some level I felt like James should be able to walk; but Disneyland is an overwhelming, tiring place, so I was glad to have the stroller. Once again, City Stroller could not be more convenient.
**Magic Hour: **We did not take advantage even though our multi-day park hopper tickets granted us access.