I've been dreading writing this trip report since the day I arrived in Anaheim, and you will see why. But the time has come, and venturing on this journey I have decided to do.
To start off with, I am a BIG fan of WDW. I grew up going to DL, but over the years I found that I got more of my Money's worth if I went to Florida. More theme parks=more time spent away from home...and it usually runs the same cost to go to CA as it does to fly to FLA from Colorado.
I was excited that we chose to go to DL since I hadn't been there in 17 years. We go to WDW at least once a year, and I've grown to love that place. However, we went to WDW the first week of January this year, and it was horrible! HM was a disgrace...Pirates was nice, but everything just seemed so 'blah.' It was messy, the CM'S were generally rude...it just wans't as enjoyable as it used to be.
We got to Anaheim on May 29 for a short trip. We were scheduled to leave on June 1, so that gave us 3 days in the park and one resting day on the end of the trip.
We travel with our two children. My son Tyler is 3.5, and my daughter Aimee is 1.5. Both have birthdays in August, so that will be fun! My wife's mom, dad, 3 sisters, 1 brother (downs syndrome), aunt, and grandma (wheelchair) came along for the trip as well. It's always a drama, but it's fun to have so many people around.
Wish I could have chosen the people I wanted, but what can you do?
I'm going to try to keep this short. We found out that the Electrical Parade, Fantasmic, and the Fireworks shows were not showing on any night that we were going to be in the parks, so that made me cranky. I understand the need of on and off season, but they should have at least ONE night time show for people.
First day was DL. I'll admit...the park is in FABULOUS shape! It was clean! I mean NO TRASH AT ALL! In WDW it's rare to find an alley wihtout any litter on it. The paint was fresh, and the crowds were sparse! We started out in Tomorrowland cause Tyler wanted to ride the Monorail. We walked right on to that and saw Ca. Adventure (which I'd never seen before) and the rest of the redesigned park. It was fun...but the ride was short and not very informative. I think I much rather prefer the monorail in Florida, but these attractions are difficult to compare since one has a legitimate feature of transportation and the other is just a roundabout in the park. It WAS VERY COOL to see the monorail glide through while in line at other attractions, though, and that made up for the lack of rideability.
We then hit Autopia, which was GREAT! The took out a piece fo road for 'offroading' and the ride was longer than WDW. The cars were not as cool as Florida's version, but overall I'd say this Autopia was nicer.
Innoventions should NOT be showing 'new technology' that is 2 years old. They showed us blackberries and LG Chocolate phones...we walked out. I miss the COP.
Space Mountain is GREAT! It buries WDW's version. They need to do what DL did and use one track, make the ride longer and smoother...also, they should utilize the new cars to double their ride capacity. Nobody likes a single rider seat anymore. It was so dark in there it was AMAZING!
In Fantasyland, the Matterhorn was fun, but way too bumpy and jerky. It hurt more than anything. I think this should be the next refurb that DL spends money on. They could totally make this a new E-Ticket if they brought it up to speed with everything else. Comparing it to Everest...well, you can't compare it to Everest. Two different technologies cannot equally be compared. Even though it's a slower ride, it's enjoyable at the speed. If you go too fast, you won't see anything at all. The yeti in this ride look great even though they are not in the category as Everest's Yeti. Keep them, they're a nice thing to see with those red eyes! My son like the ride, but he said once was enough! It was his first REAL coaster ride! I am so proud of him!
The rest of Fantasyland can be summed up by saying that it beats the snot out of WDW's Fantasyland. The queues are more enjoyable, and the rides are cleaner and more crisp! Toad should never be replaced ever again! Storybookland had some great additions, too!
My only complaint was one CM who literally threw his rule book at us when we tried to get on Casey Jr. with a group of 8 people (one in wheelchair). He told us that he could only allow 6 people on total with a wheelchair. I understand rules, but he then came over and THREW it at my wife and said, "Next time, read this before coming on MY attraction!" We left a bad note at City Hall. he was rude.
The rest of the CM'S were great! They were all very accomodating and were all smiles. I can't remember the last time I went to WDW and saw smiling employees!
I'm a doombugger, adn the HM in DL was SOOOOOO much better than WDW's...I cried when i came out cause it's a shame how bad WDW is compared to DL. Pirates was better and longer, too.
I guess the only good things that WDW has over DL is Spalsh Mountain, ToT, and well...that's about it. Indiana Jones was awesome, and WDW sorely needs that ride.
While I love Beauty and the Beast on stage in WDW, Aladdin was pure magic! I don't know how often I could watch it, though, as the Genie's jokes would surely get old.
OH, the jungle cruise in WDW is better, too...however, the addition of Pirranha was GENIUS! made me jump!
I know that at one point I actually told my wief that I felt like a kid again! I truly felt the magic of Disney that I thought was long gone!
All in all, I've learned that if I want quality and magic and substance, I'll go to DL in the future. If I want total Disney Immersion (read: quantity), I'll go to WDW. It still is a agreat resort since there's so much to do and so many more parks to enjoy, but the rides and show quality surpassed WDW by leaps and bounds!
My ONE major complaint was that we were there on their first grad night, and they didn't announce early in the day that their stores would close promptly at closing instead of leaving htem open late like they had all week. I wanted a certain hat (my only souvenir), and when they closed, I couldn't get it. The next morning we went to DTD to find it, and World of Disney sucks compared to WDW's version. They don't carry the same gear that the park had, and I couldn't find my hat. I went home (for the first time ni 32 years) without a Disney souvenir.
Oh yaeh, I had some cool moments, too. I rode Splash Mountain, and it broke down at the base of the big incline adn we had to evacuate. We tried it again the next day, and it broke down right at the base of the first hill. We tried it again, and we finally made it through! It was the first (and second) time a ride went 101 with me on it! I got to see the show house for the HM and I got a picture of it, despite a CM yelling at me to "put the camera away!" I just laughed at him and said, "yeah, right."
When in line for Space Mountain it broke down when we got to the front of the line. We waited for 10 minutes adn got on and rode it. It came to emergency stop right as we came in the docking station after the ride was done. It was broken for the night after that! Talk about luck! We got to speak with one of the engineers that works on the ride during the downtime, and he explained how they check it and maintain it and everything. Ncie guy! Great info...great fun!
Overall, it was a successful, and magical journey! I'm sure we'll start going to DL as often (if not mroe than) WDW!