Robert H. (Bob) Jackson, Jr.
Professional Personal Travel Contact Me


  Bob's Vacation Destination Tips

Bob's Disneyland Visits
  1. Spring, 1987 - 1 day, offsite hotel

  2. Fall, 1997 - 3 days Disneyland Hotel

  3. Fall, 1999 - days, Disneyland Hotel

  4. Sept, 2001 - 1 day at off site hotel

  5. Sept. 2002 - 6 days at the Grand Californian and the Anaheim Hilton

  6. Oct 2003 - 5 days at Paradise Pier

  7. April, 2006 - 3 nights at Doubletree Anaheim

  8. March, 2007 - 2 nights offsite at Hilton Anaheim

  9. July, 2007 - 2 nights offsite at the Anaheim Hilton

  10. January, 2008 - 2 nights at Paradise Pier, 7th floor, DCA view

  11. February, 2008 - 3 nights at the Anaheim Hilton

  12. July, 2008 - 4 nights, Marriott Courtyard Disneyland Resort

  13. October 2008 - 1 night, Anaheim Doubletree Suites

  14. May 2009, 3 nights, Marriott Courtyard @ Disneyland

  15. October 2009, 3 nights, Anaheim Doubletree Suites

  16. August 2010, 3 nights Anaheim Doubletree Suites

  17. September 2011 - 1 afternoon, Long Beach Marriott.

  18. November 2011 - 3 days at Disneyland Hotel

  19. May 2012 - 2 days at Hilton Doubletree

  20. August 2012 - 3 Days at Hilton Doubletree

  21. November 2013 - 3 days at Hilton Anaheim

  22. February 2014 - 2 days at Hilton Anaheim

  23. September 2015 - 3 days at Hilton Anaheim




Disneyland Resort

What's Here?

Quick tips for new visitors to Disney's California Parks: Disneyland and California Adventure in the Disneyland Resort Area, Anaheim, California


Getting Oriented

Disney's Anaheim, California complex is two theme parks (Disneyland and California Adventure), a public dining shopping entertainment complex (a.k.a. "Downtown Disney"), and three Disney owned hotels (Paradise Pier, Disneyland Hotel and the Grand Californian).

 It is tempting to compare California's Disney complex to their Florida complex, but be careful. California has both history and tremendous real estate constraints. While DisneyLand will never have the real estate scale of the huge Walt Disney World Florida Complex (120 acres in California to Florida's 47 square miles), the Disneyland Resort California remains both the revered birthplace of Walt's theme park dream and a testbed for selected new ideas, given the California park's proximity to Disney's corporate headquarters and creative thinktank in nearby Burbank, California.


How To Get There

bullet By Plane: the nearby John Wayne Airport (Airport code: SNA) or Los Angeles International (Airport Code: LAX) for better flight schedules. The downside of LAX is that it is 38 miles from Disneyland through some of the most crowded, unpredictable freeway systems in the United States. My personal travel times between Disneyland and LAX have varied between 45 minutes and nearly three hours! 
bullet By Train: Amtrak - Anaheim Station


Where To Stay

Offsite Brand Name hotels Within Walking Distance

Anaheim's Convention Center is next door to the Disneyland and California Adventure Parks and anchors an area called "the Anaheim Resort". Referring generically to the area immediately around the Disney Parks, the term "Anaheim Resort" is more often used to refer to the Anaheim Convention complex which features many dozens of small local motels and the following chain hotels within easy walking distance of the Disney Parks.

bullet Anaheim Hilton and its newer, smaller nearby sister property, Anaheim Doubletree Suites
bullet Marriott Anaheim Convention Center and its newer, smaller nearby sister property, Courtyard by Marriott,  at Disneyland

Three On-Site Disney-owned hotels

bullet Disney's Grand Californian Hotel and Spa- The high end of Disneyland's three on-site resorts, this beautiful hotel was designed by the architect who also designed Disneyworld's Wilderness Lodge and Animal Kingdom Lodges in Orlando, Florida. Rich wood tones, a soaring central atrium, and subtle use of stained glass makes the Grand California a retreat in itself. Located adjacent to both Downtown Disney and the California Adventure park (in fact, The Grand Californian has its own private entrance to the California Adventure park), this property also incorporates a wing of condo-like accommodations for the Disney Vacation Club (Disney's timeshare program).
bullet Disneyland Hotel - The original hotel nearest the Disney property and most historic of the three on-site hotels, the Disneyland Hotel evokes fond memories of celebrities, families and was built by a personal friend of Walt Disney. Now owned by the Disney Company, the hotel has been frequently remodeled and is the mid-tier of the three DisneyLand on-site hotels.
bullet Paradise Pier Hotel - Acquired by Disney in the 1990s, this high rise overlooks Disney's California Adventure Park. Though the lowest end (and most traditional) of the three Disney hotels, it is still a very nice property and often priced lower than the other two.

What to Do

In The DisneyLand Park



Jungle Cruise - Slow water ride with crazy skippers, fiberglass wildlife and bad jokes you can't help but chuckle at. 


Pirates of the Caribbean - The last ride Walt Disney was personally involved with in development, its a richly themeatic water ride through pirate life with arguable the largest collection of audi0-animatronic figures in the park.


Disneyland Railroad - reflecting Walt Disney's personal interest in railroading from his youth, this is a great way to either get a sense of scale ofthe park before diving into the rides or a great way to relax midday when every other ride queue is too long.


Enchanted Tiki Room - Originally designed as a sit-down dining venue, Walt realized its higher calling was as an attraction. Talking birds, angry Tiki gods and a short thurnderstorm make this a classic.


Mark Twain Riverboat and the Sailing Ship Columbia (on a more limited schedule than the Mark Twain)


Splash Mountain - - Disney's response to log flumes, you'll learn far more than you really needed to know about Brer Rabbit and Uncle Remus stories.


Big Thunder Mountain Railroad - a fun - though short and bumpy - roller coaster.


Finding Nemo - an unusual underwater adventure in a submarine. Cute, but not for the claustrophobic.

Big Kids and Adults


The Monorail - recently updated in a retro style, but still no air conditioning, sadly. Right it when the temeratures are not sizzling.


Indiana Jones Temple of Doom Adventure - the best of Disney's vehicle-with-motion-simulator-augmentation rides, in my humble opinion. DisneyWorld's Dinosaur ride is similar technology, but not as interesting themeatically.


Space Mountain - Disneyland's clever response to the need to add a high-thrill roller coaster to its park but constrained by space, this is a roller coaster in the dark with a space-ish theme.


The Haunted Mansion - - could be a little intense for very young children, but a very cool experience. More entertaining than scary - hint: its mostly a sedate ride, not the walk-through affair common at county carnivals. This attraction converts each fall to a charming tribute to Tim Burtons "The Nightmare Before Christmas". If the "Nightmare before Christmas" overlay is in operation when you visit, don't miss it.


Star Tours -  essentially a motion simulator rather than a ride.  The waiting line/preshow area is one of the most entertaining in the complex.

 In The California Adventure Park

 Big Kids


Twilight Zone Tower of Terror - Fear of elevators - this ride is not for you...or maybe it is. Themed to the Rod Serling series which fewer and fewer guests remember, this Disney-designed ride is guaranteed to have someone screaming in your ear.


Tough to Be a Bug - - a dark 3D theater show that will have you jumping to your feet at the end. May be toooo intense for little ones.


Mulholland Madness - a relatively tame roller coaster with cars that spin as it moves around its short bumpy course.



Kids and Adults


Soaring over California ( a motion simulator) - Think Imax theater with a hang-gliding simulator, wind, and smell generator. My favorite ride at California Adventure,this inspiring, relaxing ride takes you on a refreshing aerial  tour of California's most interesting landmarks.  It cloned itself to become the "Soaring" attraction at Walt Disney World Florida's EPCOT park.


California Screamin - (A roller coaster) - a high speed, outdoor roller coaster with a particularly fast launch and one inversion.


Mickey's Fun Wheel - Disney's version of the classic, big Ferris Wheel, with cars seating 4 that are either stable or slide back and forth on tracks as the wheel goes around.




Where to Eat


Disney's Napa Rose Restaurant - in the Grand Californian Hotel


Napa Rose is one of Anaheim's top-tier restaurants. Its theme and ambiance, borrowed from its somewhat obscure location tucked away inside Disney's upscale Grand Californian Hotel, is a blend of early 20th century Arts and Crafts architecture and decor with a clearly Californian twist. Soaring stained glass, mellow wood interiors.


Tip: Disneyland's Dining Reservations number ( 714-781-3463) doesn't have access to all Napa Rose Seating. If you get turned down at the Disney Dining telephone number, call Napa Rose directly at 714-300-7170.



Inside the Disneyland Park (requires Park Admission)


the Blue Bayou Restaurant - enjoy a nice moonlit lunch or dinner on the back patio of a southern plantation decorated for an evening party. Watch passengers for the adjacent Pirates of the Caribbean ride pass lazily by. If you have the open arteries for it, their deep fried Monte Cristo sandwich is a favorite specialty, though lately it is only on the menu at lunch.


Top Tips and Friendly Advice


Disneyland offers early admission (also known as "Magic Morning", usually one hour before regular park opening) on selected days for guests in the three Disney On-Site hotels or guests with some Disneyland Ticket Package deals. This early admission generally applies only to Disneyland - California Adventure rarely if ever opens specially for guests. Schedules vary, and generally include Saturday and Sunday. Check with your hotel Guest Services or Front Desk staff for specific times and dates during your vacation.


FastPass - Understand it. Use It.

More Disneyworld Information

bullet - a very cool and financially valuable website listing up-to-date discounts on hotels and tickets for Walt Disney World, DisneyLand and related properties.


The Laughing Place  - Good general coverage of DisneyLand and one of the few sites that provides detailed information on Disneyland in California.


This Unofficial website is NOT affiliated with The Walt Disney Company in any way.
For official information on DisneyLand, please visit their website at All rights are reserved by the author/editor.
DisneyLand, California Adventure, and it's theme parks, events, attractions and area names are trademarks of The Walt Disney Company.