First DLR Trip -- January 2018

The subject line is a bit misleading–I grew up in Orange County and have been to Disneyland several times, but no longer live in the area and it will be my almost 3 year old daughter’s first visit.

We will be visiting the parks for 2 days, and staying on site (haven’t booked yet, but probably DLH, though I could be convinced to do Grand Californian instead. We’ll be going back to the hotel for naps.).

This is a really specific question, but I’m trying to decide if we should go on Tuesday, January 9 and Wednesday, January 10 or Wednesday, January 10 and Thursday, January 11.

According to the Crowd Calendar Wednesday and Thursday are the better days to go… but I’m worried that the Star Wars Half might actually mean extra crowds on Thursday? I’m assuming that’s been accounted for in the calendar algorithm, but wanted to check. Also, following the Extra Magic Hour calendar, if we went Wednesday and Thursday that would mean doing DCA first… but I feel like my daughter should experience Disneyland before DCA…

I know the difference between Tuesday and Thursday is probably fairly negligible in terms of crowds, but I wanted to see if anyone had any advice.

And if anyone has any intel as to what parades and nighttime shows will be going on in January, let me know! I seem to find conflicting information as to whether Fantasia or World of Color happen that time of year.


Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday are all about the same in terms of crowds IMO so I would say go with your want of your daughter doing DL first for the Tuesday extra magic hour you would get by staying onsite. I would also argue that for the same reason you want her to experience Disneyland first, she should experience a stay at DLH before Grand Californian- much more Disney themed & perfect for a first trip.

As for nighttime entertainment, usually by then FWs & Fantasmic will only be running on weekends. WOC would run everyday however, has been known to go down for refurb in slower winter months but it may be more like late Jan-mid Feb that they do that maintenance. Parades will be a big question mark as next year Disney has announced that Pixar Play parade will move to DL & Paint the Night will be in DCA but no word on specific dates or what that means for current Soundsational parade. They most likely won’t release any info on the specifics until 4-6 weeks before.

Thanks for the advice and information! It’s really helpful!