We just got back from an amazing vacation. My husband and I spent 3 days in Disneyland/California Adventure, 1 day in Legoland, and 1 day in SeaWorld. We went to Legoland for our honeymoon, so going back after five years was a blast. My husband had been to Disney and SeaWorld before, but it was my first time going to both. The best part of the trip was that we got to go with the couple that introduced my husband and I, and their two little ones, our adopted niece and nephew. We don’t get to see them very often, so spending a week together hanging out and having fun was great.
I felt just like a kid, enjoying the rides, the food, and the shops at Disney for the first time. Plus we got to go during Pixar Fest! There are plenty of limited edition collectibles for the celebration (pictures to follow). We’ve been collecting pressed coins together since we were dating, so we picked up quite a few new ones this trip as well. I also have a new hobby….collecting Disney pins and buttons. There is so much about our trip to tell, so I would love to share some of our fun with you and maybe give you some ideas for your own vacation!My first trip to Disneyland made me feel like a kid again!Click To Tweet
We arrived in Anaheim on a Sunday afternoon. After checking into our hotel, we headed to Downtown Disney. Just visiting the shops and restaurants was exciting to me! We found a few pressed penny machines and there were plenty of photo ops. My husband took lots and lots of great pictures. I’m actually kind of glad he was such a shutterbug!
The first shop we visited was World of Disney. We picked up these awesome Star Wars hats (we’re total Star Wars nerds), and wore them together the rest of the time we were in Disney!
We also picked up an album for our pressed coins and this Pixar Fest tumbler with a little green man from Toy Story inside. It even lights up! There were pictures of it floating around online before our trip and was dying to get one, so I was excited that they weren’t sold out.
I also learned about pin trading. I love collecting pins and finding new ones. It’s hard to explain the excitement, but there’s a kind of rush in finding a pin you love to add to the collection. (Pictures of our pins will come later in the article, too.)
We also browsed through the Lego Store, which showcased some remarkable Lego structures. Then we walked and browsed some more. The live entertainment was enjoyable, and we were able to watch the treats being made at Marceline’s Confectionery. The people are definitely artists. It’s almost too pretty to eat! I picked up an Eeyore mug for my husband. He loves Eeyore, so I had to surprise him with it when I saw it.
We ate dinner at Goofy’s Kitchen on Sunday night. It was easily the highlight of the whole trip. It’s a buffet style restaurant and the food is delicious! If you have food sensitivities, the chef will speak with you personally. He walked me through the whole buffet to let me know what was gluten free and what wasn’t.
As great as the food was, the best part of the experience was the characters! We met Goofy, Minnie, Chip and Dale, and Pluto. There was a lot of interaction with the characters. They would come to the table and pose for pictures. My niece was wearing a Minnie Mouse dress, so Minnie gave her lots of attention. She danced with her, hugged her, and of course, we took lots of pictures. The food and characters were completely worth it.
I’m always a little leery on more intense rides thanks to motion sickness, but that wasn’t a problem this trip, thank goodness! I could write books about everything we did, so I’ll just share some of the highlights. Our first full day in Disneyland started with Space Mountain and Star Tours. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed both. Storm troopers were patrolling the streets. We wandered around the Star Wars Launch Bay, where we met Boba Fett, Darth Vader, and Chewbacca.
Later we rode The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. It’s based on Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day. I grew up watching the cartoon, and I may have worn out our VHS copy. Even though it’s a slow ride, it was nostalgic and a little emotional for me to be on it. It was like part of my childhood coming to life. Then we met Eeyore and Rabbit!
Of course we rode the classic teacups and saw The Mad Hatter and Alice. We also ran into Peter Pan and Captain Hook, who made my nephew an honorary pirate. And we took the Jungle Cruise, and later the iconic Pirates of the Caribbean.
At this point we were all getting a little tired, so we stopped at The Golden Horseshoe Restaurant in Frontierland for coffee. It came in these adorable travel mugs! I love the classic characters riding the teacups.
We took the Disneyland railroad and spent the rest of the afternoon and early evening in Mickey’s Toontown. Toontown is full of fun buildings and architecture. We toured Donald’s house, Chip and Dale’s House, and Mickey’s house, where we also met Mickey Mouse.
We went back to Disneyland after lunch on day 3. Then we wandered around Main Street and found some more penny machines in the shops. We made Pinnochio dance in the Penny Arcade and picked up some saltwater taffy at the Candy Palace. It was mouth-wateringly delicious! Later we rode Big Thunder Mountain, the Mark Twain Riverboat, and Gadget’s GoCoaster. I even took a picture of my husband in the pound!
No trip to Disney is complete without souvenirs, right? We picked up this limited edition collectible Mike and Sulley popcorn bucket and cup. Monsters, Inc. is my favorite Pixar movie, so I was super excited to be able to get both of these. They were selling out before we went, so I was worried we wouldn’t be able to get them.
We collected 57 pressed coins from Disneyland and California Adventure. The machines are scattered throughout the parks, so it’s kind of like a treasure hunt. The designs feature characters, attractions, and so much more! It’s definitely a fun hobby and pretty affordable, too.
And of course, my new favorite…pins! We collected 31 pins….
….and 8 buttons.
(For more details and closeups of our pins, click here.)
Stay tuned to read about our time in California Adventure, Legoland, and SeaWorld! What is your favorite thing to do in Disneyland? Share in the comments below!