Hello! Long time lurker, first time poster. I have been a TP member for a few years and have used the app a lot for both WDW and DL. I frequent both but consider DLR my home park! I love reading trip reports so thought I would throw one in here in case it helps anyone.
Who: Myself and my two best friends. Very experienced Disney adults with no kids.
How Long: Three-day Park Hoppers with Genie+.
Staying at Grand Californian- our second stay here and we just adore it.
Sunday 5/21- we were in Lake Elsinore for a Bachelorette party, so drove up and arrived at the Grand Californian for check-in around 8:50AM. Parked, dropped off luggage, walked through World of Disney, and walked into DCA close to 9:30AM. We decided to wait in line for Guardians- it was approximately 43 minutes. While in line, we grabbed a LL for Web Slingers, which we walked right into the pre-show for. In line for WS, we got a LL for Monster’s Inc. After WS, we got a drink from the tasting lab. I got a tropical hurricane which was pretty yummy, and my friends got the expresso martini. We watched the Dora Milaje show and the Spiderman show in Avengers campus before heading to Monster’s Inc. After MI, we headed to our Lamplight reservation for brunch at 11:50AM. Brunch was delish and always a favorite of ours!! After that, we hit up the Incredicoaster. We did a little shopping and luckily got an alert that our room was ready so headed to the room for a little unpacking and unwinding.
We headed to Trader Sam’s for a 4:30PM reservation and as always, it was so fun. It was very lively this afternoon.
We hopped over to DL around 6:40PM and used our LL for Indy. It looks GREAT after the refurb. After that it was Haunted Mansion, Big Thunder, Hyperspace, and some shopping on Main Street while waiting for the fireworks. Unfortunately, due to the weather it was projections only, BUT we really enjoyed the show. If you’re a 90s baby- lots of Disney movies we grew up with! We hustled over to Batuu after the fireworks to catch an Oga’s reservation. This is a must do for us on every trip. We finished Oga’s just in time to get in line for Splash Mountain 5 minutes before park close which was a walk-on. One final ride and I can’t wait to see this ride reimagined with Tiana and friends! We had a long but successful day.
Monday 5/22- This was our Disneyland starting day. We got in line for security to DTD at the Grand around 6:25AM and were maybe the 6th or 7th group in line. Security opened promptly at 7AM. Through security by 7:07AM and in the front of the DL gates by 7:10AMish. Cast members started scanning us in around 7:20AM and I was the first person in the park which was a really cool way to start the day. Early Entry by Plaza Inn was easy, and we were promptly let into Tomorrowland at 7:30AM. I assumed Indy would be down at park open (which it was) so grabbed a LL for that as soon as we entered the park. We got lucky with obtaining the golden ticket first thing in the morning, though we didn’t really need it. We rode Hyperspace twice and then lined up for Toontown. Thankfully, MMRR was ready to go at park open and we were on the ride in 10 minutes. I knew it was a risk but it paid off! After that, we rode Roger Rabbit, Alice, Big Thunder, and paused for some breakfast at Red Rose. Then hit Pirates and wandered around Batuu. Rise was down during this time and we eventually bailed. We did the canoes for the first time, and this was a blast! We hit Big Thunder one more time and went back to the room fairly early for our break. Indy stayed down most of the morning and I was able to acquire 3 MEPs because of this.
Around 2PM we had some lunch at Ballast Point in DTD. We got into DCA and ate, drank, and shopped around. There were lots of drinks and snacks we wanted to try! We hit GuardiansX2, Incredicoaster, Little Mermaid, and just kind of sat around and people watched. We had tickets to the WOC Dessert Party (8PM party for 9PM show) which we have done before but first-time post pandemic. We got in line to check-in around 6:30PM and picked a high-top table. Got our wristbands and went for another ride on Guardians before returning for the party. I am gluten-free and didn’t think the dessert offerings were amazing, but I also don’t care too much for dessert so maybe I’m a bad person to ask. I think it’s kind of expected when you have restrictions sometimes. However, the server was wonderful and was sure to make sure I received a separate platter with GF items. The seating was great, our server- Delia- was amazing (we left her a cast compliment), and the sparkling wine was good! My friend got the vodka drink and thought it was too sweet. We really enjoyed WOC 1! A really good experience and we will continue to do this every few trips as we don’t mind paying to have a seat and a drink after a long day haha We did Guardians one more time as our other friend went back to the hotel and called it a night. Incredicoaster was running during the show, as we read the news of this last week, so that was interesting to see. I don’t feel like it distracted us at all from the show. If anything, we thought it would be pretty neat to ride while the show was happening and added that to the list for another time.
Tuesday 5/23- This was our DCA starting day. By day 3 we were pretty tired! In line for security around 6:35AM. We decided to use the security from the Grand to DTD as I read the line moves faster than the dedicated DCA entrance. This indeed was the right choice! First in line at the Early Entry point on Hollywood Blvd around 7:20AM. We were in the first gantry for Guardians! My friend and I got 3 rides on Guardians during EE while our other friend (who thinks we’re nuts) decided to go party on WS for the morning. After that we sat down at Pym’s for a well-deserved breakfast and a drink/coffee. At this point we had already done just about everything we wanted so we took the day pretty easy. There was quite a bit of mist/drizzle in the AM and a lot of rides were down including RSR, Luigi’s, Incredicoaster for a bit, and unfortunately TSMM. We decided to walk around the pier, rode Incredicoaster, Silly Symphony Swings, Little Mermaid, and decided to go back to the room for some rest. We returned to DCA around 2PM and got some lunch and continued to try some drinks. We sat at Sonoma for a few hours and just people watched and relaxed. It was great!! Big Thunder was down in the afternoon so I was able to get 2XMEP out of that.
Headed to DL around 5PM and did Indy. My friends wanted to do some Fantasyland rides after that, so we split up and I got some ice cream and walked around. Did the castle walkthrough, watched the teacups, caught a little of the parade, and found a bench to hang out on and just relax. We proceeded to hit Big Thunder, Haunted Mansion, and Rise which thankfully came back up! We ate some Ronto Wraps after that and decided we were just way too tired and felt satisfied to call it a day… after one more ride on Big Thunder of course.
Flew home 5/24 out of SNA.
Sunday seemed lighter in crowds than Monday and Tuesday. It’s possible the grad night crowds started in DL or the fact grad night was happening kept some people away. Perhaps MK block outs as well. Just some observations.
The LL drops were a game changer. Being able to catch LL drops made it so I could plan our day however we wanted.
This was the first trip we took our time and people watched, ate, drank, just enjoyed the atmosphere. We’re typically big on rides and go as hard as we can but as we’re getting older it’s nice to take notice of other ways to enjoy the park.
Highly recommend you do the canoes at least once! My friends weren’t too excited by the prospect of this, but we all had a fun time.
We ended up buying into MB+ because we liked the idea of using them in CA and FL. Though the functionality isn’t near what it is in FL, we thought it was worth it for the speed of moving through LL. We watched people struggle with their phones at just about every line we were in so it was cool to just fly-by. The interaction with the shows and some rides were cool too and made us giggle. Definitely not needed but we liked them.