DLR -ish planning thread - May 7, 2024

Trip is a go. :blush::blush:
Poll post 27

DD 17 is graduating this year. And I had floated the idea of doing a mother-daughter trip in lieu of a grad party (as I had done with DD19 when she graduated in 2022). DD17 was always sort of -meh- on it, because she is more the party-type and she and I are not as close as DD19 and I are, AND she really isn’t into any special thing that we could hone in on.

I mentioned it again a week or so ago. She and I have gotten volumes closer over the last year, and she was far more open to the concept, but said, “I’m just not THAT into Disney.” I answered that there were more options in the world that Disney World, and then couldn’t help but jokingly tag on , “you know - there is DisneyLAND.” And lo and behold her eyes lit up and she said, “We could go to California!?” I told her we could look into/consider anything. And she gave me a green light to look into options, but she did say it might be fun to go to California and go to the beach, and go to Universal, and spend a few days at Disney.

So - I did some research. A lot acutally. I have since ruled out Europe, NYC, most cruises (still low key looking at DCL and an Alaskan cruise on Princess). But I keep coming back to SoCal.

I can get some nonstop flights from Charlotte, NC to LAX plus hotel for less than $660 a person for 6 nights. It’s Spirit, which I am willing to try bc it’s not like I’m trying to get a cruise, or something. And @Enchantedbythemouse has me willing to try it.

I’m looking at Anaheim Majestic Garden - has anyone stayed there?
I’m open to other options in walking distance for my daughter and I.

I would not rent a car. I’d uber from airport to hotel, and then use uber for the other outings (thinking San Juan Capistrano, Crescent beach day, and another day to Universal Studios Hollywood).

She is not the Disney Rope-Drop-to-closing-do-every-ride-and-meet-every-character type like DD19 and I are. I anticipate focusing on Marvel, Pixar, and Star Wars. With a hefty dose of shopping and eating.

We did DLR in 2018 and she was the one who sort of “lost out” because I was so focused on MY interests and then my sons were total tools the last day and I failed to add a fifth day like I wanted to. Not that she’s lost sleep over it. But I would love to take her back. Let her set the pace (sort of :wink: ).

Please weigh in my DLR experts.
@Julianne_fki @Wahoohokie @Jeff_AZ @lolabear_la @gingerSnaps543222 @93111tink

I know I am missing others.


I have not stayed there, but maybe Lolabear can tell you more.

The location is not ideal, but doable if your priority is staying on a budget, particularly since you and DD can walk. I see there is a shuttle so that might be an option for you. I haven’t stayed on that side of DL recently but I think it is easier to get into the parking area now than it used to be. If you follow this red path, you can get to the parking tram, which will take you to Downtown Disney. You can also walk all the way, but it’s pretty far.

Good call. Uber works great in SoCal.

I’m excited for you! Hope this works out.


Dude - thank you - that is not where I thought it was. I have my maps messed up.
I’m going back to the drawing board.

That’s to the west of the park, correct? LIke is that the parking garage in the top of the photo?
Nope - I’ll pay more to stay east or south.


ETA - you are correct that I am a budget-er. But I just started working per diem in home hospice and I have more money to spend than normal. Feeling safe walking to and from is well worth a few hundred dollars.


Anyone have any experience with Fairfield Suites and Castle Inn? They seem to be an easy walk to Espalande.

Stovall’s is about the same price as the first suggestion, but on the south side and I seem to recall someone saying it wasn’t the best walk at night?

I think I had Anaheim Majestic Garden and Castle Inn mixed up… :stuck_out_tongue:


Yes that is to the west of the park. I’m glad I helped you catch that!

I have stayed at the Fairfield and it is among the closest non-Disney options. It’s Marriott, which I prefer because it is consistent in cleanliness and quality. The hotel was refurbished from something else so the frame of it is kinda sketchy, but the rooms are well furnished.

There are a couple closer hotels but probably more expensive.


I should mention I have a reservation here for March so my money is where my mouth is!


I have never stayed at Magestic, it’s too far for my liking (and in the wrong direction for me. I have stayed at the Castle Inn twice (most recently in October with @Julianne_fki) and Fairfield Inn several times as well (most recently in September). Fairfield is closer to the parks so I give it the edge, though they are about the same in terms of quality. Both are fine: clean and safe. Neither are fancy, but not much is around DLR. My go to is Grand Legacy at the Park, but it has gotten a lot more expensive lately. I also stay at Anaheim Desert Inn and Suites (fabulous location with a good price but it isn’t the nicest of hotels). It is clean and safe though, and cheaper than anything else right by the crosswalk. I also have stayed at the Anaheim Hotel and like it just fine. I usually go with the cheapest as there isn’t much difference to me in those hotels.


I wish I could help but I either stay all fancy in the bubble at an official Disney hotel or I go pay $0 and stay at my aunts house (I mean the bonus of this is family!). My aunt lives in Laguna Niguel which is 30 min or less away. Last summer we just ubered to Disney from her house.

I did book the Fairfield Inn once so I’d agree its proximity looks good and for two people the rooms should be enuf space. I personally got a last minute deal at Disneyland Hotel when they offered a sale so I didn’t end up staying at Fairfield.

However, if you’re also going to go to the beach and universal you might consider staying closer to them for those parts of your trip.

I have ubered from Disney to Universal and be prepared to spend $100-$200 depending on surge fees. Also though Lyft is cheaper in Florida I often find Uber cheaper in LA area for some reason. And the $200 was when we did a Halloween Horror Nights and it was very late (think 1-2am) and we were four people so needed an XL.

How many days in each place were you thinking?

I love SoCal. It’s one of those handful of places I think I could live. Have so much fun and enjoy your mother daughter time!


Oh yeah Also I personally prefer Spirit Airlines to SWA. You gotta ignore all the jokes! Lol.


For a budget hotel, you can’t beat the Desert Inn & Suites. It’s in a fabulous location and the price is usually pretty good. It’s not a “nice” hotel but it ticks all the other boxes.


Oh yeah, I think I usually pay well over $100 on my way to Disneyland from the Hollywood area at around 5pm (and traffic is SLOW) vs. like $50 the other direction at 10pm and it was super fast.


Thank you!
When I did a mock booking it was about $60 each way. I didn’t know it would be much higher. I still would do it over renting a car, but I don’t know that it would save money.

The fact that it is non stop AND the cheapest gives me two reasons to try them.

Thank you for all the hotel comments @Wahoohokie @Julianne_fki @Jeff_AZ @gingerSnaps543222
It sounds like I have a handful of options. I just need the rest of our May activities calendar to be identified so that I can move forward. I am sure I will be back with questions again!


Yes same for us when we did HHN. Lots of traffic going out. None coming back. But it was outrageously expensive cuz it was XL and past midnight I think.


Disneyland Grad Trip :raised_hands: :raised_hands:

Just wanted to add about the cost of Uber/ Lyft to and from DL. My sister did a week in October. After 1.5 days of Uber fees they rented a car. But they are also comfortable driving around there as they lived in SF for a few years and somewhat knew the area.
Also, check CLT to SNA flights. It is much closer to Disneyland than LAX becuase of traffic. From New Orleans anyway, the flights are about the same, if not just a few dollars more. They do have shuttles to DL which can also save $$ on the Uber charge, especially when comparing LAX to Disneyland.


For hotels/motels, I like staying on Harbor Blvd. It’s just so convenient.

Candy Cane Inn is my personal favorite. It’s not the cheapest but has been recently remodeled and has a Disney “feel”. It’s technically off property but is located right behind Carsland. So it’s worth the price to me.

When we visited last February everything was clean, grounds were very well maintained, and service was excellent. And the free breakfast spread is much better than most. Both in quality and in how well they staffed it. They also have a very cute shuttle that is allowed to drop off in the Disney lanes. It’s a short walk though, so we usually only used the shuttle if it was there when we were leaving.


My DD21 and I just got back yesterday from a quick overnight trip! The last 2 trips we have stayed at the Motel 6 on Disney Way just past the Garden walk mall. A 10 minute walk to the park entrance. Totally basic but nice and clean. Check in is allowed at anytime you arrive. 10am for us. Nice pool and Hot tub. 1 night was $130 total! :blush: Most hotels on Harbor are a good pick. Tropicana, Park Vue, Desert Inn or Grand Legacy are right there closest to the crosswalk heading to park. There are a couple nice shops in Garden Walk mall, a couple restaurants and 2 escape rooms. We’ve been stopping at a shop on the second floor in there that has Gachapon machines with different anime, Sanrio or Disney items. We take the Amtrak from Santa Barbara to Anaheim and take a Lyft to and from. Two different trips when a few of us were blocked from Disneyland did a day trip to Hollywood and then a day trip to Knotts Berry farm.


Just lastnight I watched a beautiful review video of Candy Cane Inn! Now I want to stay there too. :blush:


On YouTube, SoCal Disney Dad and Provost Park Pass have videos on some of the hotels closer to the park.


When in March? I will be there March 2 to 8.


We fly in Friday the 1st and fly out the morning of the 3rd! Looks like we’ll be there at the same time. We’ll have to say hello!