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  1. #1

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    Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    Kind of similar to my other thread but not quite. A much more specific question. Alright I grew up going to Disney World in Florida. My parents to this day own a time share down there and central Florida to me is home in many ways. In 2009 I took my wife down there for her first time. She was amazed. We went again in 2010 with my parents. We spent two weeks the first time in 2009 and did everything in Central Florida. All of WDW, Universal, Sea World, etc. We agreed it was the best trip either one of us had been on.

    In September 2012 we went to Disneyland for the first time. I was worried I wouldn't "feel" the same about the place despite all the great reviews. We had also never been to California. In short, we loved it as well and that trip was as good as our Florida trip. We did three days at Disneyland, one at Universal and hung around the beaches and Hollywood and did a couple studio tours. California is unique, needless to say and I was as sad to leave it as I was Florida.

    We have a son, who is almost 2 and will be 2 and a half by September of 2013. That is such a great month to go to either of the parks so I sort of have it earmarked if we have the money and can afford it (please God). I want our son to go to one of the parks. Chances are my wife will be pregnant by then which is what we are hoping for. No big deal, I have looked up the guide and there are very few rides a pregnant woman is suggested to stay away from. She may actually prefer that I don't drag her on Space Mountain! But either way the chances are I take a pregnant wife and a two and a half year old son to one of the parks.

    I just don't know which one to choose. Both destinations have their pros:

    Southern California/Disneyland
    - better dark rides
    - less walking for our son (I want to avoid giving him a stroller)
    - the beaches
    - Knott's Berry Farm (never been there yet)
    - Toontown
    - Carsland

    Florida/Disney World
    - more theme parks
    - Typhoon Lagoon/Blizzard Beach water parks perfect for a child
    - more to do outside of Disney World suited for him
    - familiar with the resort we go to

    I guess it is a good problem, if we get to go. Who wouldn't want to have to choose between those two? My feeling is that in California we have the beaches which he would love but the traffic is also bad, there isn't much for him to do in Hollywood or at a studio, the hotel we would probably stay at again (Ayres hotel) is nice but it only has one room, although we would get a crib for sure. But Disneyland is the best park of them all. It is all close together. There are things like Mr. Toad, Alice, Pinocchoi, Casey Jr., that he couldn't ride in Florida. That's a plus.

    For Florida the plus is things like Sea World, even parts of Universal might be good for him too. Obviously Universal Florida trumps Hollywood's version. There is Gatorland which I loved and he would probably like as well. The weather in September will be very hot which is a minus compared to California's September weather which is lovely. We would probably stay in a time share a couple miles away from Disney World and could likely get an extra room. Florida also still has lots of sentimental value to me, even over California. Not to mention where we will be flying from (Toronto) the flight is shorter to Orlando which is a plus with a two year old.

    Alright, I am open to all suggestions. What would you pick and why? Elaborate.

  2. #2

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    my first super quick opinion is that Disneyland is crowded and a tight squeeze, WDW is more spread out and room to breathe. That is if you care about that but some people do. I feel over crowded every time I visit Disneyland and I hate that feeling.
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  3. #3

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    I would go with Disneyland...

    Reasoing, for a 2.5 year old, Disneyland would be a easier trek for walking for the parents, depending on what time of the year you go it could be crowded or not.


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  4. #4

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    Disneyland... and knotts has camp snoopy perfect for that age. I would slso look into legoland in ca. From disneyland to the beach is not a bad drive

  5. #5

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    Disneyland, for all the reasons mentioned. There's a lot less walking and the parks are close together, so it would probably be less overwhelming for a small child.

    Also, outside of Disneyland, there's also the Soak City water park associated with Knott's Berry Farm. SeaWorld and the San Diego Zoo have a lot of fun things for small kids to do, and are not too long of a drive from Anaheim. If you want to go up to the LA area there's the Santa Monica Pier and Aquarium at the beach - a fun place for a young kid. The Skirball Center and the Zimmer Children's Museum in LA also might be fun for him. Also, the Page Museum/La Brea Tar Pits and the Natural History Museum are great if you have a kid who loves dinosaurs and fossils.

  6. #6

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    Disneyland. If you get a stroller for DL, you won't have to worry about packing it up and taking it on a monorail or a bus. Disneyland is better for small children in general. Everything is close, not to mention the dark rides. Disneyland is also getting a new show in its Fantasyland Theater, as well as two new stage shows in our new Princess Fantasy Faire.
    Last edited by jasmineray; 02-02-2013 at 11:09 AM.
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  7. #7

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    Disneyland because of how spread out everything (its not). Also if she is into princesses than go with the original because again at WDW there is 2 1/2 hour line to see them. DL you can mostly just walk up to meet them. Also DL has no less thrill rides but more C and D ticket attractions. And for the adults there is less walking, better imersion into the parks and our Fantasmic is way better than thiers.
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  8. #8

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    Disneyland. Hands down for all the above reasons!

  9. #9

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    In addition to all of the above, one more point in DLR's favor: Disneyland also has a few more places for kids to blow off steam and run around if they want - Toontown is great and has a lot of participatory features (they can go in the "pound," go into the trolley and cars, etc.), and the Redwoods Challenge Trail has some fun climbing nets for youngsters. DCA also has a lot of rides that are appropriate for little ones - all the stuff in Flik's Fun Fair, the Little Mermaid ride, etc.

  10. #10

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    Thanks for the information everyone, so far. I am a long ways away from this being a reality and when it is I think it's a good problem to have to decide between the two. Who knows, I may have my mother in law come with us which would certainly help a bit with things in general. Or it might just be the three of us, who knows.

    The traffic in southern California is a real bear though, even using the carpool lane. Also getting into Disneyland is tough too. The parking is atrocious. These are other things I am contemplating. The parking in WDW is so easy and spread out and the traffic in Orlando is very manageable.

    It'll be a tough call. If my wife is pregnant my opinion is that if we are going to go to Disneyland it might be better to do it with one kid than two. It's a longer flight, which factors into it. Being from Toronto people on this side of the continent don't go to Disneyland too often, it's always Disney World. So maybe we go to California this time since it may be a long time before we do it again. Where as Orlando is closer to us. Then of course my son would love the wave pool and the lazy river and slides at Typhoon Lagoon. See, I'm back and forth on the issue.

  11. #11

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    One more nod towards Disneyland is the shorter lines. Or at least in my experience the lines are shorter because of more attractions spreading out the crowds.

  12. #12

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    Another vote for Disneyland, for the reasons stated above. However, be aware that September in Anaheim can be roasting as well, like it was when the Space Shuttle flew over. It probably won't be near as humid as Florida, though.

    You mentioned the possibility of visiting Knotts. From what I gather, Knotts has become much more of a roller coaster park than it used to be. Do some research to see if you think it would be toddler-friendly enough to make it worth the trip.

    What I would do after visiting Disneyland is book a hotel down in San Diego and visit Sea World, the Zoo, and Old Town. Legoland is about an hour north of San Diego (spitting distance from my grandparents' house), so if you're interested in that, you may want to spend the night in Carlsbad. BTW, Sea World, the San Diego Zoo and Legoland can all be fully explored on Google Street View, which can give you a pretty good idea of what those parks are like.

  13. #13

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    With the traffic - there are hotels literally across the street from Disneyland, so getting there in the morning could be as simple as walking over, or getting on the Anaheim Resort Transit bus that takes you right up to the gates. The ART goes around to a lot of the area hotels and runs throughout the day and night, so that would solve the traffic issue for you. The hotels are of varying prices too - the Disney hotels on property are expensive, but Anaheim also has some great ones of more modest prices that are served by ART.

    There's the Disneyland Express that can pick you up and bring you to the Disney hotels/other local Anaheim ones from either LAX or SNA - so you could even avoid driving to and from the airport if you wanted.

    If you wanted to go to San Diego or LA and you really don't want to drive, a lot of companies like Starline offer day trips to San Diego, Legoland, Sea World, etc. The prices for those are comparable to what you might pay for a rental car and gas - so you could get to a lot of places without driving. There's also the Metrolink train up to LA.
    Last edited by Malina; 02-02-2013 at 01:42 PM.

  14. #14

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    Quote Originally Posted by matman730 View Post
    Another vote for Disneyland, for the reasons stated above. However, be aware that September in Anaheim can be roasting as well, like it was when the Space Shuttle flew over. It probably won't be near as humid as Florida, though.

    You mentioned the possibility of visiting Knotts. From what I gather, Knotts has become much more of a roller coaster park than it used to be. Do some research to see if you think it would be toddler-friendly enough to make it worth the trip.

    What I would do after visiting Disneyland is book a hotel down in San Diego and visit Sea World, the Zoo, and Old Town. Legoland is about an hour north of San Diego (spitting distance from my grandparents' house), so if you're interested in that, you may want to spend the night in Carlsbad. BTW, Sea World, the San Diego Zoo and Legoland can all be fully explored on Google Street View, which can give you a pretty good idea of what those parks are like.

    Yeah we didn't get down to San Diego last year. The furthest south we went was Laguna Beach. Legoland does sound like a lot of fun though and I am aware how grand the San Diego Zoo is so its an option. I didn't find it nearly as hot in September in Anaheim as it was in Orlando. We were in Orlando from September 26-October 10th 2009 and it was on the border of being too hot. So that being said the weather might be better for a toddler in Anaheim.

    The knock is that the Disneyland hotels are not worth the price of admission like the WDW ones. I've checked the prices. So we stayed at the Ayres Inn which is right next to the Honda Center and down the street from Angels Stadium. It was a very nice hotel but I get the feeling being in a resort might be better with a toddler.

    Also, I have looked up a lot on Knott's. It does have a ton of rollercoasters but still has Camp Snoopy. I know it isn't extreme like Magic Mountain or anything but I'll just have to look at some of the height requirements.

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    Re: Alright, for a two and a half year old, Disneyland or Disney World?

    Yeah, the Disney-owned hotels are quite pricey. Take a look at the Howard Johnson's. It's the closest nice hotel to the park (they advertise an 8-minute walk), and it's almost as good as staying on-property, without the huge price tag. There are hotels that are cheaper and closer, but they aren't as nice.

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