Stepping Into Spring at The Disneyland Resort

by Lisa Stiglic, contributing writer

Southern California has shaken off — we hope — the last of the heavy rains and has stretched out its welcoming arms to the warm rays of springtime. The Disneyland Resort is no exception and is the perfect destination to visit and revel in the burst of freshness, from new spring menu treats to seasonal celebrations to some great photo ops courtesy of Mother Nature.

I wanted to ensure I kept up with the busyness of this spring, so I grabbed my camera and headed to Anaheim to visit springtime at The Disneyland Resort. And, as luck would have it, I was able to meet up with an old high school friend and her son who helped me savor the springtime surprises.

Main Street Magic

Our higher-than-average rainfall here in Southern California this season has resulted in a cornucopia of vibrant, colored blooms. Such was the sight upon entering into Disneyland Park and even more so as I ventured deeper into the park.

The Matterhorn sits majestically against a bright blue sky with the blossoming trees bordering the scene for a memorable photo op. Photo by Lisa Stiglic.

It was hard to put my camera down, because everywhere I looked I was greeted with splashes of colors, but it was time to visit the Candy Palace to find the Main Street Electrical Parade treats. In commemoration of the return of the iconic parade, Disney candymakers have created some whimsical eats, including cake pops and marshmallow stick sweets.

The spinning snail has its own dessert, a cake pop, available for noshing. Photo by Lisa Stiglic.

Next up, I met my friend and her son at the Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe for some sweet snacks. Every season, the bakery rotates its schedule to to fit the current celebration. This time, I was presented with bright and fruity desserts. I went with the strawberry shortcake, while my guests opted for the carrot cake cupcake.

The sweet, strawberry shortcake was moist and delicious with a spring berry on top. Photo by Lisa Stiglic.

This decadent cupcake was almost too cute to eat…almost. Photo by Lisa Stiglic.

Between the two desserts, the shortcake was my favorite as it actually did lend itself to the essence of a strawberry shortcake, but minus the whipped cream. Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe also now has a fan favorite available: Raspberry Rose Mickey Macaron.

And, as we made our way into Adventureland, Mother Nature presented us with the cuteness factor.

Make way for the baby ducklings! I was lucky enough to catch this familiar spring sight. Photo by Lisa Stiglic.

It's a Churro's Life for Me

March 18 marked the 50th anniversary of the ever popular and populated Pirates of the Caribbean attraction in New Orleans Square. I decided to skip that day (I can't imagine what the lines were like) but I dragged my two co-horts with me to hunt for the elusive gold-dusted churro — a fun nod to the iconic attraction. I located the treasure at the churro cart just outside of The Haunted Mansion, so I ordered up one for photo taking and for consumption. The "golden churro" is described as a "gold-dusted churro with lemon flavor accents.

The new flavor hints at lemon but I like the traditional cinnamon-sugar churros better. Photo by Lisa Stiglic.

Be Our Guest

Last month, I visited Red Rose Taverne in Fantasyland, which pays homage to everything Beauty and the Beast. This pop-up, sit-down eatery offers a tasty new menu with mouth-watering sweets, including the Lemon-Rose Cake with Strawberry Rose Filling, and the Grey Stuff Gateau, a chocolate mousse with a raspberry center. I wasn't able to return this time around due to time factor, but if you do stop in to visit Belle, Beast, and Gaston, do try the Grey Stuff — it's delicious.

Red Rose Taverne is located in the heart of Fantasyland taking over Village Haus. Photo by Lisa Stiglic.

Pursuit for Pineapple

For the Dole Whip fans out there, Disney has combined two favorites into one: a pineapple-flavored cotton candy. I stopped in at the Tiki Juice Bar to inquire and was told the confection was only available at Disney California Adventure Park (DCA), so off our trio went across the esplanade to explore. Once into DCA, my friends scurried to get in line for California Screamin' while I tracked down the treat. Thinking my hunt could take some time, since so many new things sell out quickly, I was pleasantly surprised at how easy the cotton candy was to find. It's literally at every food cart I saw. I purchased one to take home to daughter—I'm not a big Dole Whip fan—but I did sample it and found the slight zing of the pineapple tasty and not overly sweet, like most cotton candy. My co-horts agreed that it wasn't too sweet.

The Dole Whip inspired cotton candy is a huge hit with guests. Photo by Lisa Stiglic.

Just in Time

Spring is fast and fleeting in Southern California. The rain exits, we enjoy a few weeks of mild weather, then the heat descends upon us. The same can be said for springtime at The Disneyland Resort. When I visited late March for this article, the Food and Wine Festival was still going strong in DCA, and the Easter Eggstravaganza was just about to start. By now, both events have finished, spring break is winding down, and Grad Nights are just around the riverbend.

Yet, there is still time to enjoy the freshness of spring at The Disneyland Resort—just remember to take your camera along to capture the blooms and colors and in case the duckies are still on the grounds near Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe. And, don't forget to enjoy the yummy spring sweets along the way.