Thursday, May 26, 2011

First Trip to California Adventure

Paradise Pier post World of Color
We made our annual visit to Disneyland a couple weeks earlier than previous years thanks to M's silver pass, which got four of us into both parks for free, which is awesome. This is the first year in the last three years that Disneyland didn't do any free passes for the general public; two years ago, I went for free on my birthday and last year, I went for free as part of their volunteer promotion. It was a great day and I got to actually ride the California Adventure rides for the first time; I had previously only seen the park while running through it for the Disneyland 5K. I loved Tower of Terror and California Screamin (the big white rollercoaster); there's nothing like riding a ride for the very first time between the anticipation and the surprises. None of the other rides were particularly interesting, the only other ride we went on was California Soarin'; we spent most of the day in Disneyland and only came back to California Adventure for the World of Color and the beer. Disneyland Resort is completely dry while you can buy beer and wine at California Adventure, a nice way to relax in the middle of the day. At Disneyland Resort, we went on Pirates of the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion, Big Thunder Mountain, Jungle Cruise, Indiana Jones, Space Mountain (3x), Peter Pan, and Matterhorn. We had Dole whips, churros, Bay Cities sandwiches that we brought in, and nachos and a chicken sandwich from Whitewater Snacks, a bit of a hidden secret for good, reasonably priced amusement park food (an oxymoron) inside the Grand Californian Hotel. As much as I really liked Tower of Terror and Californian Screamin', I don't think that the more expensive park hopper pass is worth it and I won't be paying for it in the future. Disneyland has so many more good rides, is aesthetically so much prettier and has a lot more charm and the nostalgia factor. I'm glad I was able to try California Adventure but I'll be sticking with Disneyland next year!
Our usual first ride of the day
Over to California Adventure: the Tower of Terror
Inside the lobby of the Tower of Terror
Back to Disneyland resort
My Dole whip float. K. had two Dole whips.
Our guide was pretty wacky
The Evil Queen from Snow White; rather intimidating
Between resorts again: we spent a lot of time hopping between the two parks, taking advantage of the fast passes

One of the best parts of California Adventure, the Karl Strauss beer cart! We tried the Red Trolley and the Tower 10 IPA. The IPA was perfect and the Red Trolley was pretty good
For reference, I'm wearing Lululemon polocrosse tights and cool racerback in static very violet, purple Nike drifit pullover, Uniqlo UV cut black wrap cardigan, LL Bean pink down jacket (pictured below), Fred Flare "Carrie" sunglasses, and Nike Free Run sneakers. Very comfortable Disneyland outfit.
Back to Disneyland
Waiting in line for Matterhorn, right before my mouse ears flew off on the ride. So sad :(.
Dinner at Whitewater Snacks in the Grand Californian Hotel: chicken nachos. The nacho chips were surprisingly good; homestyle, not like Tostitos
Grilled chicken sandwich
More Karl Strauss beer
World of Color. Basically a light and pyrotechnics show with some projected images set to famous Disney songs. Pretty but I don't feel the need to see it again.

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