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in the Park
Tips and ideas for the traveling family
|Adrienne Krock, editor|
|Disneyland Holiday Tour|
In 1962, Walt Disney produced a special, "Holiday Time at Disneyland." Almost forty years later, Disneyland Guest Relations has produced a special of its own: A two and a half hour tour of Disneyland Park, called, you guessed it, "Holiday Time at Disneyland." Now through January 6th, Disneyland offers this tour for $20, per person, in addition to its two regular tours. There are no discounts available for the Holiday tour.
For the first two hours of the tour, a friendly and knowledgeable Guest Relations Host or Hostess guides 15 visitors through the Magic Kingdom. The participants learn about the holiday traditions at Disneyland as well as those of winter holidays around the world. The tour guide not only shares a little Disneyland history with the tour group, but also points out the decorative embellishments added to Disneyland for the holiday, telling the stories behind them.
During the tour, the group rides the holiday versions of Haunted Mansion and it's a small world, utilizing the Fast Pass line. At the end of the tour, the tour guide escorts participants to a special reserved viewing area. The tour runs twice a day and, depending on the time, at this viewing area, the group either watches the Very Merry Christmas Parade or the Holiday version of Believe! fireworks.
Sound good so far? There is more, but I don't want to give away too many surprises. What are the holidays without a gift? The Holiday Time at Disneyland tour guides have gifts for each participant, of course.
Now for the bottom line: is it worth $20? I think so. This weekend, lines for Haunted Mansion and it's a small world holiday each reached two hours long or more. Fast Passes run out quickly. For $20, visitors learn a little about the park, have some time to appreciate the nuances of the holiday atmosphere, walk-on to two of the most popular attractions, enjoy reserved seats for the parade or fireworks, and even take home treats. The time saved from waiting in line or reserving seats alone is worth the $20, let alone the tour and treats.
My family had the opportunity to enjoy the tour this weekend with two very good friends of ours. My three- year- old, Matthew, avoids the regular Haunted Mansion on his best day, so my friend watched him while Kevin and I enjoyed the Haunted Mansion Holiday Makeover. Matthew eagerly joined us on it's a small world Holiday. While our seats for the fireworks were wonderful, Matthew held his hands over his ears because the noise from the exploding shells was uncomfortable for him. This would not keep me from sitting in this spot again, however, because he was happy as a clam with his hands over his ears. I enjoyed watching his joy in appreciating the fireworks show.
Because participants keep moving and are entertained by attractions on this tour, I think it would be appropriate for children, although I have reservations about taking young children on the Haunted Mansion Holiday Makeover.
Disneyland sells tickets to this tour at the ticket booths outside of Disneyland or at the Guest Relations desk inside City Hall. I anticipate tours booking up quickly once word gets out, so plan to purchase your tickets early if you want to attend.
Adrienne gathered experience taking kids to amusement parks when she worked as a day camp counselor and director. She was an elementary school teacher before she started her favorite job, being Matthew and Spencer's Mom.
Adrienne, Matthew and Spencer visit Disneyland several times a month, usually with Daddy, too.
Besides Matthew & Spencer, Adrienne and her husband Kevin created and maintain The Happiest Potties on Earth website.
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