We have taken a few trips to Disneyland now with our kids and feel like we have a pretty good system going. We have visited the park when the kids have been 9 months, 2.5 years, 3.5 years, 4 years, 5 years and 6 years old.
We have been for Valentine’s Day, Halloween and Christmas time and loved every visit.
Here is what made our visits not only manageable but fun for all of us:
1. BRING THE BIGGEST STROLLER YOU CAN
Our stroller was the command center for every trip!
Babies, toddlers and little kids need a lot of things and can’t walk the 10 miles that a day at Disney requires. We store all the things we need for a day in the parks like snacks, water, changes of clothes, diapers, etc. in the stroller so we don’t have to carry everything.
The stroller worked as a great place for the kids to nap when they were younger.
We weren’t sure if we would have to return to our hotels for nap time, but both kiddos were able to nap in the stroller while rolling around the park.
Even at five and a half Cannon would get tired and want a break in the stroller. It was especially helpful as we usually stay in a hotel close to Disneyland but not on property so walking back to the hotel at night the kids would always fall asleep.
Our stroller also has a great rain cover that really helped when it rained during our visits. I think having a good stroller is key to having a good visit if you have little ones.
You can rent strollers at Disneyland if you can’t bring one with you but I am not a huge fan of them, they don’t look comfortable and don’t have a lot of protection from the elements. Still better than nothing but highly encourage bringing your own if you can.
We LOVE our double Thule Cougar Chariot.
2. IF YOU HAVE A BABY, WEAR THEM
When we took Emerald for her first visit when she was nine months old. We brought our Becco baby carrier (as well as a stroller) and wore her while in line and often on the rides. She was comfy and happy to take naps and just hang out with us.
3. BRING YOUR OWN SNACKS AND WATER.
I am a BIG fan of Disney snacks, we particularly love a popcorn bucket to share while waiting in line. But we also bring lots of our own snacks so that we aren’t spending tons of money as well as the kids aren’t getting sugar overload. It’s nice for their tummy to have snacks they are used to getting. We also save special snacks to have while waiting in longer lines to make the time go by faster.
4. BRING PORTABLE PHONE CHARGERS
More and more you need your phone to make plans, check the wait times and take millions of photos. I love the Disneyland App but it also drains my phone’s battery quickly so we bring portable charges to be sure our phones can make it through the day.
5. FIND TIME TO PLAY
Waiting in line and sitting on rides isn’t a great way to get energy out of little bodies. It’s important to find time for them to move and play. Toon Town, Tom Sawyers Island and Red Wood Creek Challenge are great places to let kids run free.
5. TAKE A BREAK
When we are visiting for more than a couple days we like to take a break day.
On our trip in October we thought we would spend the day at our hotel pool then in Downtown Disney. It wasn’t very warm so we headed to the beach instead and had a great time before jumping back into the parks.
5. WHEN YOU DON’T NEED A STROLLER STILL BRING A BACK PACK
When we are visited Disneyland Paris we didn’t have our stroller with us so we went without. We stayed on property and the kids were 4 and 6 so we just carried a backpack. We carried a change of clothes for both kids, chargers, snacks and water bottles. We did not have the kids carry their own bags because that is difficult getting on and off rides. The change of clothes was very helpful for when we all got soaked in a sudden downpour!
Most importantly take your time, enjoy the little things and know you might not do everything but you are making memories and bonding as a family!
What are your favorite tips for visiting a Disney park?