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March Disneyland Trip Report - Part 1

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I made a quick trip to the Disneyland Resort on Friday, March 4. This was one of the trips that I call a Menu Blitz, where I go all over the resort and collect/take pictures of menus, as well as photograph anything else that seems new or interesting.

It was also my first trip with my new point-and-shoot camera - I bought a new Canon PowerShot SD970 IS a few weeks ago. I had my Garmin ForeRunner GPS with me as well - according to that I covered 9.5 miles in 4 hours and 55 minutes of roaming around.

I thought I'd take you with me on my wanderings and show you some of the things I saw.

I parked in the Mickey & Friends parking structure and then walked over to the Disneyland Hotel. This is actually the first Disney picture I took with my new camera (the first of thousands, I'm sure!). The remodel is complete on the Dreams and Wonder Towers and has now moved to the Magic Tower:

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There's construction walls around the back, and access to Goofy's Kitchen and Steakhouse 55 is through the lobby. Notice the big mirror - those are at all the corners.

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Because of the construction of the new pool and restaurant area (you can read a bit about the two new restaurants, Tangaroa Terrace and Trader Sam's, in this Disney Parks Blog entry), access to the Wonder Tower is via the path between the Dreams Tower and Downtown Disney. But at the end of the Dreams Tower there is this set of peepholes where we can get a glimpse into what's going on. I liked how they were at varying heights. :-)

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There wasn't much to see - I'm guessing this is part of the structure for the new pool slide.

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I liked how the fence was actually built around this tree! You can also see an example of one of the old-time attraction posters that they have placed along the fence.

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I visited the Paradise Pier and the Grand Californian, collecting menus, and then did a turn through Downtown Disney, also in search of menus. But menu photos are not exactly interesting. I'd logged 2.25 miles by the time I arrived at the Esplanade. They have this Let the Memories Begin display there:

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The Family Fun Weekends sign just inside the entrance to Disneyland:

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The construction walls that were covering the trolley tracks on Main Street last month are gone, but there are walls up on either side of the entrance to the Opera House.

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In Tomorrowland, work is proceeding on Star Tours, which now has an announced opening date of June 3.

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The Buzz Lightyear Astro Blaster Fastpass machines are behind walls.

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The Star Traders shop is temporarily closed, and merchandise has been moved into Starcade next door. So you can play video games and shop for your favorite Star Wars merchandise at the same time! :-)

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There's walls around the base of the Observatron also.

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The Tangled meet and greet area in Fantasyland.

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Something I'd never noticed before - the coat of arms for Dumbo! (Motto: Believe & Soar!):

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Construction walls at the Mark Twain dock.

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For the three Mardi Gras weekends, the restaurants in New Orleans Square were offering special food items. There was a Bananas Foster Crepe at Cafe Orleans, and Bouillabaisse and Apple Fritters a la Mode at the Blue Bayou.

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The French Market had two special sandwiches: a Muffaletta and a Shrimp Po Boy (pictured here). That looked good, but I didn't get a chance to try it.

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Royal Street Veranda, French Market, and Harbour Galley were all offering a Mickey Brioche. This was an egg bread with some purple, gold and green sugar sprinkled on it. It was about 6" around. It was a little dry, though.

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In the Court of Angels they were doing character greetings with characters in their Mardi Gras costumes.

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In the area between the French Market and the Haunted Mansion were a couple of merchandise carts - this one offered New Orleans-themed items, and the other one was doing Mardi Gras face painting.

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Jeanine already did a nice blog entry on the Mardi Gras weekends, including Princess Tiana's Mardi Gras Celebration, which I saw on Friday. Before the show, the Jambalaya Jazz band played on the stage.

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The cast in their Mardi Gras parade from Frontierland to New Orleans Square before the show - they even threw a few beads. I wish they'd been able to bring back Tiana's Showboat Jubilee on the Mark Twain - I really enjoyed that show.

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Critter Country is still undergoing "beautification" and those walls are still up.

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There was a beautiful display of spring flowers - daffodils and tulips - in the planters around the hub:

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The day started off cloudy and overcast, but once the marine layer burned off it was a beautiful day - the warmest we've had in a several weeks - it got to the upper 70s! I like the color on the tree in the middle of this photo - and you can see some of the foliage from Pixie Hollow in the corners.

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Saint Patrick's Day is coming, and there's some new merchandise out - several t-shirts, Mickey ears, baseball caps, an antenna ball and a lighted shamrock on a lanyard.

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There's also a special Duffy:

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And several St. Patrick's Day treats - Marshmallows on a stick:

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Krispie treats:

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And, my favorite, the Mickey Leprechaun shorts apples:

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In Part 2 I'll have photos from Disney California Adventure.



The previous post in this blog was Mardi Gras Mischief at Disneyland.

The next post in this blog is March Disneyland Trip Report - Part 2.

Comments (6)

Ron Stalsberg Jr:

Thanks for all the great photos Laura. It looked like you had a great time and beautiful weather. 9.5 miles in just over 4 hours, that is some serious walking. We get back to Disneyland about every 4 years, so it is great to keep up with what is going on. Thanks again Ron..

Colleen Caleb:

Hi Laura! In two weeks I'll be visiting Disneyland and DCA for the first time ever (after I think 40+ trips to WDW) and am beside myself with excitement. It looks like there are a fair amount of walls up around the park, and I'm glad to be mentally prepared for that, so thank you for posting up-to-date pictures. Everything looks beautiful and I can't wait to be where it all began!

Laura replies: Colleen, have a wonderful trip! Disneyland isn't WDW, but it's special in its own way.

Jeff O:

Really enjoyed this blog, Laura. Planning my first ever trip to DL, so this made me all the more eager to go. Do you have any pointers for someone making their 1st visit ever? We have been to WDW many times. Thanks again for the great blog!

Laura replies: Hi Jeff. Thanks - I'm glad you enjoyed it! A while back I asked readers for tips for first time visitors to Disneyland, and here's the link to the blog about that: http://land.allears.net/blogs/lauragilbreath/2009/08/ready_disneyland_first_time_vi.html

In that blog are links to a couple of other blogs that Jack Spence wrote, where he talked about differences between Disneyland and WDW. Hope that helps!

Lori:

Laura-looks like the DL pool will be out of commission for a while. We will be there in April. Do you know if there is another pool option for DL hotel guests?

Laura replies: To the best of my knowledge the Never Land pool is not scheduled to close until after the new pool area is complete, so there should always be a pool available to guests of the Disneyland Hotel.

Mike Caljouw:

Great pics Laura
The carmel apple pic reminds me of a story .My son went in to buy a carmel apple with the Mickey ears and shorts .He had a $5 bill ,but found out it wasnt enough to get one .So he was going to settle for a regular carmel apple .Just then a nice man said he would buy him one .When my son offered the $5 ,he said no thanks .Its been a great day and it was his treat .When my son told us the story he smiled from ear to ear .He said some people are just nice .We will be in Disneyland March 15th to enjoy the Park and the friendly people within .
Mike [Disney Nut]

Elizabeth Goodman:

I have never been to DL, but hope to go someday. We are huge fans of WDW and everything Disney. Enjoyed reading the blog and seeing the beautiful pics of the tulips!

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on March 6, 2011 5:00 AM.

The previous post in this blog was Mardi Gras Mischief at Disneyland.

The next post in this blog is March Disneyland Trip Report - Part 2.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.