Just came back from my first ever visit to the Disneyland resort over the anniversary weekend. I thought I'd share a couple of experiences. It's all short though, as I have 20 gigabytes of video to capture still!
-Disneyland is now by far my favorite park, shooting Disneyland Paris off that spot. It's small size are both a crowdcontrol nightmare and a charming characteristic. I love how the place feels at least a bit less commercial than the Parisian and Floridian parks.
-Space Mountain was nice, but I am seriously spoiled with the *old* Parision version
-Buzz sucks - I hate movie based attractions outside of Fantasyland. Disneyland should not be a movie park, that is what Universal is for!!
-It was good to finally properly experience Star Tours and Honey I Shrunk the audience with understandable English instead of that silly French.
-Matterhorn rocks, both from a coaster enthusiast standpoint as from that of a Disney fan.
-Toontown was not as great, just as I expected - don't like plastic comic book themes.
-Fantasyland was nice, similar but smaller than the Parisian version, but at least they got rid of the awful fair theming. I liked Toad's.
-Unexpectedly, I thought BTM was better than in Paris, as it felt a little wilder. Still I like the looks of the island ride in Paris.
-Tom Sawyer Island and the surrounding canoes and boats are wonderful, great place to relax.
-Splash is cool, just like in Orlando
-Haunted Mansion was kind of nostalgic, but Paris' Phantom Manor is better. Still a great ride though.
-Pirates rocks! ( d'oh! )
-Indy was awesome. The queue is an attraction in it's own right.
-Jungle Cruise goes between pretty nice to really great, depending on the skipper
-The fireworks and parade were, of couse, awesome. The 50th video at the Opera was great, although I hated not being able to videotape it and it not being available on DVD. Incidentily, I usually don't buy merchandise as I think it's pointless and far too expensive. I spend over a hundred bucks at Disneyland - wow...oops!
-DCA is a nice park, but not up to Disney standards. Having said that, I'd easily trade it in for the awful studios in Paris if I could! Tower in Orlando is better but this one is great too. I liked the rapids, and seeing Bugs again and the Muppets were great again, too. The animation building is very cool and the Aladdin musical was just wonderful, and then some! Also nice to see the Electrical parade still alive in som form, although I do really believe it should be on Mainstreet.
Overall a great couple of days, and a great ending to my 2 week vacation! I only have one complaint really, and I don't mean to offend anyone with this, but what's with all the "Americanism" at Disney? Perhaps I should have expected this as it is a general characteristic of the US anyway, but I was a little dissapointed with that. Oh well. Overall, Disneyland really is the Happiest Place on Earth for this fella!