Solo (and first time!) Disneyland - Live Trip Report!

Just days away from departure, so it’s time to kick off a trip report!

I will be heading to Disneyland for the first time on Sunday. This will also be a solo trip, so the plan is to make this a live report…since what else will I have to do in line :laughing: I haven’t done a full solo trip to Disney before (although I do a lot of solo travel in general), besides a single post 4pm ticket while attending a work conference, so I’m excited to see how this goes.

I’m usually on the WDW side of the forum, and I’ve been to the WDW parks many, many times, but this is my first time going to DL. My trips are usually child-free so they are ride-focused while also spending time sampling the adult beverages across the parks. I’m a rope drop to close type liner, so there are a lot of park hours ahead!

The plan:
Flying in and out of SNA and plan to uber to/from the hotel. I’ll be staying at the Anaheim Marriott by the Convention Center. I’ll be flying out from Charleston, SC early Sunday morning and arriving around midday. Plan to head to the hotel and drop my stuff and head to the parks.
I’ve got a 5 day ticket so will be doing the parks Sun-Thursday before I fly back home Friday. I just switched back and forth on park reservations each day, but have a park hopper, so fully plan to bounce back and forth throughout the afternoons.

I also got a number of dining reservations, which is not my usual MO, but with this much solo time in the parks I think I will have plenty of time to stop and enjoy a meal. If you’ve got recommendations for any of these spots, let me know!

Sunday - Start at DL:

  • Late Lunch @ Cafe Orleans - the Monte Cristo is one of my favorite indulgences, so can’t wait to try DL’s first thing

Monday - Start at DCA:

  • Lunch @ Lamplight Lounge - not sure if this will end up being for actual lunch, or if it will end up just being for a snack and drinks
  • After Park Hours @ Trader Sam’s - one of the things I am most excited about. 10:30 reservation, which will be late for this east coaster, but will be worth it for a tiki drink for sure

Tuesday - Start at DL:

  • Lunch @ Blue Bayou - this is the first of two reservations for BB. I will cancel one of them, but haven’t decided which yet.

Wednesday - Start at DCA:

  • Brunch @ La Brea
  • Dinner @ Wine Country Trattoria

Thursday - Start at DL:

  • Lunch @ Trader Sam’s - probably going to cancel this one, but its a back up in case TS’s blows my mind on Monday
  • Dinner @ Blue Bayou - again, still deciding if I am cancelling this one or Tuesday’s lunch.

My dates are both pre-Magic Key and post-Magic Key, so I’m very interested to see what that means for the crowds. They seem to be pretty low right now, but I’m thinking they may pick up a little next week with people bridging tickets into the Key. Either way, plan to take advantage of single rider lines for sure.

It’s about time to start packing. I have never flown to the parks, since I usually drive to Orlando from Charleston, SC. So have to figure out how to condense all the park must haves into my backpack and carry on, without sacrificing all of my Minnie ears.

If you’ve got tips for snacks, drinks, touring suggestions, etc, definitely let me know!


I’ve been told, if you can pop into Jolly Holiday bakery right at rope drop you’ll get the freshest baked goods! I am so looking forward to a Matterhorn Macaroon for breakfast one day!


Have a great trip! We were there in late July and had a blast.


Looking forward to this one!


Oooh, great tip. Fresh baked goods sounds like a perfect way to start the day. I’m adding this to my list.


I would just say, don’t forget to make time for QS too. There’s some yummy stuff out there!

Jolly Holiday
Bengal BBQ
Mint Julep Bar
Little Red Wagon
Flo’s V8 Cafe
Pacific Wharf Cafe


Yes! I’ve got most of those on my list as well. High probability I will have to roll myself back to the hotel each night based on my snack and QS list.


I’m so excited to follow along with this report! I’m heading to my first DL trip in October, also my first solo trip, so I hope you have a blast & can’t wait to read along!


Looking forward to following along! I will be doing my first solo trip to DLR in November.


So excited for you…and the trip report. My sis and I will be making our first DL trip for Halloween this year and we are also well-versed with everything WDW but nothing in DL! Can’t want for your report. :slight_smile:


Wrapping up work for the day. I booked Sun-Fri based on flight prices, hotel prices and crowd levels. Now that it is here, I am a little anxious just to get started already! Today I did start playing around with TPs for Sun and Monday, but with the predicted wait times (and the unpredictability of BGs), it was quickly apparent that TP should not be necessary. I’ve got a general idea of what I want to try and do first each day but from there I am going to embrace a more spontaneous touring plan.

Finishing packing up now, and then just twiddling my thumbs until bright and early Sunday morning…


I will try to check in often on here while you are there. Come on here and ask all the questions!


Bright and early at the Charleston airport.


I have that bag!

Safe travels!

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And now boarding from Atlanta to SNA! Next stop Anaheim!


Love the luggage! Safe journey!


Oh yay! You should be here soon!

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Landed, got my bag and now just waiting for the Lyft! I checked Uber and it was $75 but Lyft was just $22. Definitely worth checking both.

Gotta say it was a real pleasure to walk out the doors of the airport and not immediately be hit with 100% humidity. It feels fantastic out.


:scream: I am definitely downloading Lyft now. That’s crazy.


Room at the Marriott was ready when I arrived around 12:30. So dropped my stuff in the room and now I’m walking to the park! First stop may have to be Starbucks to caffeinate.