It's kind of funny how this entire trip played out. I for one, had no idea it was going on. This entire trip was planned by my sister and her boyfriend right under my nose and an hour or so after my graduation dinner, I was whisked away to the Happiest Place on Earth. Cheesy right? Haha. Whoever said Friday the 13th was unlucky, was dead wrong.
I was downstairs trying to configure Netflix for my sister when the doorbell rang and I was ambushed by her boyfriend, his sister, and their friends telling me to pack my stuff, and that we were headed off to Disney. In situations like that, my mind shuts off and I stare blankly trying to figure out what to pack! So after ten minutes of confusion and another ten minutes of scrambling/packing, we were on our way.
We went ahead and took things slow for the first day, so we opted to go for California Adventure our first day, Disneyland the next. Personally, I find both parks to be completely amazing and it is such a waste if you don't visit both.
Unlike Disneyland, California Adventure offers more restaurants and rides that are built to serve an older audience. Whilst Disneyland serves to please the younger crowd, California Adventure has it's key areas that are meant for older thrill seekers. But at that, they also have rides meant for the kiddos as well.
One of the things I've noticed about this park is the very cohesive Californian theme it holds. From the entrance it has that old city theme going on and from there, it switches to beach life, to wilderness and so on—all things that make California, California.
The Grizzly Bear Mountain! I was so sad when the Grizzly Bear Rapids ride was closed, it's one of my favorites!
The not-so-little little green Army Men from Toy Story!
Where the beach theme of California Adventure starts! Paradise Pier has some of the coolest attractions in the area. Some of the best restaurants also! If you don't eat at Disneyland or California Adventure, you are missing out. By eating, I don't mean going to the place where everybody goes and orders a pizza, a burger, etc. Go to the cafes and the actual restaurants, you won't be disappointed.
As for us, we settled for the Cove Bar, behind Ariel's Grotto. California Adventure is the only park in the Disney area that serves alcohol and such, you won't find it anywhere else besides here. If you do plan on going here, I really do suggest you visit the Cove Bar, it's got the Little Mermaid theme going on and their Lobster Nachos are to die for.
Even their drinks are pretty! I'm very picky when it comes to my Buffalo Wings but hey, Cove Bar doesn't disappoint.
Just thinking about the Nachos itself is making me salivate, and I just had lunch too!
Right outside the Cove Bar was this fantastic view of the other attractions in the park.
Yes, as the Ferris Wheel turns, the carts slip and slide in and around the bars. Would you ride this?
One of my favorite parts of all of California Adventure. I'm not too sure what this avenue is called but I love the whole old Hollywood feel this area has. The old buildings have a bunch of really cool vintage shops that have old timey Disney things! The backdrop of the clouds at the very end is pretty damn awesome.
Unfortunately, one of the rides that will never fail in giving me anxiety before riding was closed for the day. Either it was because it was Friday the 13th, or because they really had to renovate the place. Every time I see the Tower of Terror, I think of the old movie starring Kirsten Dunst, one of my childhood favorites!
After adventuring on for a bit, we made our way to Cars Land! Cars Land is really, really effing cute and if you're a fan of the movie you would have a blast seeing Radiator Springs come to life.
We went on this ride. It was hilarious in every way possible. Think of the Spinning Teacups, but you're on a tow truck.
Mater! What I love about Cars Land is that they went above and beyond in creating these characters. The actual truck talks to you and cracks jokes!
We relaxed for a bit here at the Cozy Cone Motel. Inside the giant cones were refreshments you could buy and they all had that cone theme. Ice Cream Cones, Chili Cone Queso, Cone Dogs. Ahh, very punny.
And just like that, Lightning McQueen showed up!
We made our way to the Cars ride, which is by far the only ride that has the longest wait in all of California Adventure. At this point it was late in the afternoon anyway so we didn't mind waiting an hour and a half.
I thought the queue itself wasn't THAT bad. There was a lot to see and when you're with good company, it doesn't feel like an hour and a half.
In a nutshell, you ride a car, go through Radiator Springs, get a race car makeover and you race with the car next to you :D
Cars Land at night is absolutely beautiful. California Adventure at night is also really, really stunning.
We relaxed around for a bit and did some souvenir shopping before riding one last ride.
Probably my favorite ride in all of California Adventure! We were able to make it in time before they closed it early because of the World of Color show. I really like California Screamin' in comparison to other roller coasters because this one is ridiculously fast and you don't see the tracks at all.
The Wonderful World of Color!
It was my first time watching it, and it was absolutely breathtaking! With the water effects going on, they projected scenes from Disney movies onto the water, and had the music playing in sync with them.
Well that's it for Day 1 of the Disney Weekend, stay tuned for Disneyland!