Growing up in Southern California and going to Disneyland many, many times, I feel very blessed. But I have to say when WDW was built, there was always a feeling that it must be so much better there than at Disneyland. After all, they had more space. They had a chance to correct mistakes that they made at Disneyland because they had never did a park before. So WDW just seemed to me like the advancement over Disneyland.
Well, I have to say, having been to the Magic Kingdom in WDW many times now. I have determined that Disneyland excells in many areas. So I started making a list. I put it here for those who have never been to both parks and are Disneyland fans. I want you to appreciate what you have.
Better rides and attractions:
Pirates of the Caribbean -- DL's version is SO much better. We have real waterfalls. WDW is also lacking the lagoon with the Blue Bayou. That adds so much to the ride in atmosphere. Even the New Orleans theme outside seems to make the ride more special at DL.
Haunted Mansion -- The ride is basically the same, but I like DL's version better because of the Mansion outside. Part of the thrill of a haunted house is the exterior which gets you wondering what is inside! :confused: The WDW has a mansion too, but the way it is situated, you don't appreciate the exterior that much. It does not set the mood as well as the one at DL.
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad -- Now this is my favorite ride. I usually have to do it three times in a row when I go to DL. But having ridden the WDW version, I have come to the conclusion that the DL version is a bit more thrilling. It also has some AA creatures that seem to have been removed at WDW.
Tiki Room -- I know this is an older attraction, but the revamped version at WDW is not better. The middle eastern themed parrot from Aladdin (along with that annoying voice) seems a forced fit when the original theme was Hawaiian. Now that the DL version has been renovated, it is by far better.
Small World -- Now this is not my favoite attraction, but the DL version is better. The rides are the same, but WDW has the amazing clock hidden away IN the building. It just does not fit for me. Seeing the clock and hearing it ticking from afar added the magic to the ride. When it goes off with the character marching around it makes the whole experience. A clock in a building does not seem to make sense!
Fantasmic -- Another thread is devoted to this, but DL has it beat!
Space Mountain -- This is one of my favorite rides at DL. When I rode it at WDW I was disappointed. I even rode both tracks to see if it made a difference. It didn't. With the DL version I remember so many times coming off of it and just saying, "Whoa! What a blast!" I hope that with the refurbishment that they make it even better and not more tamer than it was.
Star Tours -- This is the same ride at both parks, but at DL they fully present the story about the future. At DMS the ride is presented as if it was a movie stage. I don't like that as much.
Buzz Lightyear -- Now I have not ridden this myself at DL, but it is said to beat the WDW version. I know when I rode it last at WDW, it needed some reburb because the paint around the joy sticks had worn away.
Areas and lands:
Adventureland -- After being at WDW, I realize now how well done the DL version is. It is smaller, but pulls of the atmosphere much better. They have stuck a kiddie ride made of brightly colored plastic right in the middle at WDW. It blows the whole exotic theme for me.
New Orleans Square -- This land is SO much better then the Liberty Square at WDW. The French and Southern feeling is so much more refreshing and fun!
Toon Town -- They are basically the same, but the location at DL is better. Located in the center and back of the park, it seems more logical, that as every kid believes, this is where Mickey Mouse would live. At WDW it is stuck to the side, and seems to me not as magical somehow. It also seems too disconnected from Fantasyland and more connected to Tomorrowland somehow.
Now there are rides or lands at WDW I like better...
Splash Mountain -- At WDW is seems to be better able to get you to forget that there is that amazing drop coming at the end.
Tower of Terror -- At WDW, you get the third demension which is the magic of that ride.
Pooh ride -- So much better at WDW!!
Tomorrowland -- It still has peoplemovers there!
Castle -- The WDW castle is better mainly because of the size and the restaurant that aspiring princesses can dine at!
So while I love both parks, I have to say that Disneyland remains a treasure that has many advantages over WDW. In this year we celebrate the 50th anniversary, let us not forget what we have at Disneyland!