Walt Disney as soon as stated: “It’s sort of enjoyable to do the difficult.” He likely wasn’t describing browsing his famous amusement park with a young child, yet this has actually become my mantra when I bring my almost-three-year-old to Disneyland.

As a happy Disnerd, I have actually currently taken 2 multi-day journeys to Disneyland with my child, and strategy to take a lot more. He loves a number of the characters (Mickey and Woody are tops) and is constantly video game to attempt brand-new things.

Though a journey to Disneyland with a young child might not be everybody’s dream, with a little preparation, preparation and persistence, you can make it a wonderful experience that a minimum of among you will constantly keep in mind.

When to go

My finest suggestions for taking a young child to Disneyland is to precede they turn 3– maybe simply prior to they turn 3. Any visitor under 3 years of ages does not need a ticket, so absolutely benefit from the expense savings (around $100 daily!) while you can. That belonged to the motivation for our last journey.

A lot of regular visitors to Disneyland understand there is no longer a “sluggish” season, however crowds are generally smaller sized in January and February. Bear in mind, nevertheless, this is likewise the time of year Disneyland finishes one of the most upkeep, so there’s an opportunity your preferred trip might be down throughout a late winter season go to. Peak times consist of the majority of summer season, around spring break and throughout the lead up to Christmas and New Year’s Day.

When it comes to days of the week, your best choice is generally going to be throughout the week (simply look out for those popular three-day weekends). And, if you can, begin your day early and get to the park about 30 minutes prior to it opens. Crowds and heat will be very little very first thing in the early morning, permitting you to optimize your magic.

Okay, a little bit of debate here. If you read this and Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge has actually currently opened, think about avoiding a Disneyland journey with your young child. I understand, who would wish to lose out on this fantastic brand-new experience? Nevertheless, your kid most likely will not satisfy the height requirements to ride either of the tourist attractions, and the rest of the park will be jam-packed

What to bring

Now, this will not be an extensive packaging list, however rather, a fast list of must-have’s or “need to strategies” for your very first Disneyland journey with a young child. (Bear in mind, we are simply concentrating on Disneyland just here, not its more youthful, much bigger East Coast brother or sister– that’s an entire other monster.)

Snacks. If you’re remaining at a close-by hotel, have a look at my ideas later for enduring the night in a hotel space and the most affordable method to get food and treats on the home, however for an excursion, here are a couple of treats I suggest loading to make the days simpler (and conserve you a fair bit on purchasing deals with in the park):

  • Easy fresh fruit, like apples and bananas. (A single banana can cost around $2 at the park.)
  • Applesauce or other capture packages and granola bars– these travel quickly and are a fast treat.
  • Recyclable water bottles– ice cold water is totally free at all of the fast service dining establishments around the park, while a bottle of water will run you $4.

An excellent bag. To haul whatever you require to the park, you might bring an unwieldy diaper bag, however I have actually discovered a little sling bag works excellent. I brought this one with me and had the ability to squeeze in 3 diapers, wipes, talcum powder, apple sauce packages, fruit treats and granola bars, hand sanitizer, sun block, and a little first-aid package. It’s in fact my go-to day-to-day bag with my little man and holds more than you require for one day at Disneyland.

A budget plan for mementos or a pre-purchased stash. A note about mementos. Something Disney anticipates is that you will purchase t-shirts, toys and other goodies to honor your journey. I discover this is an excellent incentive for a young child to make at the end of the day as a benefit for (typically) etiquette. My child gets 3 tokens at the start of the day and if he has at least one left when it’s time to leave, I will let him select a keepsake (within my selected budget plan, obviously) prior to leaving the park. (Older kids might like making a pre-loaded present card they can invest as they like.)

Another choice for mementos for the budget-conscious who do not mind a much heavier load throughout the day, is to purchase mementos ahead of time. You can quickly discover packed animals and other Disney-branded goodies at shops near you or online for less than they are offered in the parks. If you like to pre-plan, this is an excellent way to do so.

Stroller or no stroller?

Here’s where things get a little questionable as soon as again. I’m going to inform you to avoid the stroller. We as soon as brought a wonderful reclining umbrella stroller and my child beinged in it for all of about 15 minutes, and the rest of the day, we hauled it around empty. YMMV, however I have actually discovered if you speed the day right and take a break in the afternoon with a parade or even better, a relaxing program, you most likely do not require to bring a stroller, as your kid might mainly be powered by enjoyment and a little bit of sugar. (Have A Look At the Mickey and the Wonderful Map live program in Fantasyland for a minimum of 25 minutes of shade and seating). Obviously, if you discover yourself in requirement of one, they are simple to lease for your day in the park.

Note: Disney just recently altered their guidelines around the types and size of strollers allowed the parks, so prior to you go checked out the main policies and make certain your stroller is enabled if you select to bring it. (Wagons are no longer allowed.)

Browsing the park

One fast no-brainer: Download the main Disneyland app Not just does it provide present wait times around the park, you can likewise make table-service bookings and order ahead at numerous quick-service dining establishments, making one less line you and your young child need to sustain. Perk app: The Play Disney Parks app provides themed video games, a number of which communicate with the trip lines and can assist keep your young child Pleased, instead of Irritated, when waiting in line.

( All of this time browsing and playing in the parks on your phone can be draining pipes to its battery, so I suggest bringing a little portable battery charger for your phone. Additionally, Disneyland provides fuel rods around the park for sale. They cost a one-time charge of $30, however can be switched out a limitless variety of times at any fuel rod kiosk in the U.S.)

Now, as soon as you remain in the park, here are my top do’s and do not’s with a young child in tow.

Do these flights

  • Pirates of the Caribbean. It’s mellow enough to not be too frightening for many kids, and a couple little splashes begins the trip off with laughs (plus, with a 16- minute trip time, it’s a fantastic method for grownups to get some downtime).
  • Jungle Cruise. Toddlers enjoy having a look at all the animals in their “natural” environments aboard a brief river journey and the corny, yet captivating, skippers keep things moving for the grownups
  • Disneyland Railway. Who does not enjoy a leisurely train trip with great deals of landscapes and people-watching? And with almost 20- minutes to circle the park, its another good method to unwind.
  • Finding Nemo Submarine Trip. This is another unwinding trip that toddlers love, though avoid it if you get claustrophobic.
  • Tarzan’s Treehouse and Tom Sawyer Island. If your young child requires to burn some energy, these are both excellent choices for checking out
  • Autopia. Kids enjoy automobiles– what else can we state?
  • Dumbo the Flying Elephant. A timeless.

Avoid these flights

  • The majority of the dark flights in Fantasyland. I understand this is sacrilegious, however a few of these flights are loud and can be frightening for more youthful kids. The exception here is Peter Pan’s Flight, though with a wait time that can surpass 45 minutes, strategy to do it very first thing. Likewise, have a look at The Lots of Experiences of Winnie the Pooh in Animal Nation– among the very best dark flights for young children.


Without a doubt, satisfying their preferred characters is an emphasize of a Disneyland journey for numerous kids. With character meals and satisfy and welcomes around the park, it’s tough to understand what to prepare for. If you desire downtime and simple access to characters, prepare for among the character breakfasts. If you wish to be sensible about whom you satisfy, I ‘d state select your leading 3 characters work those into your day utilizing the Disneyland app for times and areas around the park. Perk pointer, if you do not have a choice and simply wish to satisfy a couple characters for the experience, there are typically members of the Fab 5 (Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy and Pluto) at the start of Main Street U.S.A. conference visitors and the lines are typically brief. (My child fulfilled and got pictures with Pluto and Donald Duck in about 20 minutes on our last journey.)


If you wish to see numerous characters, however wish to keep an arms range (some kids can be a little tense by a six-foot-tall Goofy), a parade is your best choice. Presently, Disneyland provides simply one parade two times daily– Mickey’s Soundsational Parade. Conserving areas for the parade is strictly verboten, so strategy to confine your household 30-60 minutes prior to the start of the parade and settle in. This is a fantastic chance to unwind and share a treat. Cast members keep the park so tidy, I do not even suggest hauling a blanket to rest on, however if you’re specifically germaphobic, resting on a light coat or sweatshirt ought to suffice.

Perk ideas

  • While this guide is tailored towards a toddler-centric day, you might want to slip in a little bit of big-kid time. If so, absolutely benefit from Rider Change This service permits an adult in your group to wait in line and ride a tourist attraction while you wait and have fun with the kiddo and when that rider is done, you can hop right on the trip.
  • Complimentary diapers Free is constantly excellent and if you need diapers in the park, Huggies offers them totally free of charge in the Infant Care Center near completion of Main Street U.S.A.. Emergency treatment is found here, also, and provides whatever from storage of cooled medications to bandaids and OTC medications to visitors.
  • Peaceful locations. Checking out Disneyland can be frustrating for anybody and if you are taking a trip with a relative who might have a cognitive special needs, Disneyland has areas for you. Simply ask a Cast Member and they will direct your household to among these peaceful areas.
  • Unless you’re taking a trip with an older kid who isn’t prevented by height limitations, avoid the brand-new digital MaxPass. Because the majority of the flights included in it have height limitations that numerous young child’s do not satisfy, you’re much better off conserving that $10 daily (per individual) for a meal or a keepsake.

Tips for households remaining at a close-by hotel

When remaining at a hotel near the Disneyland Resort with a young child, Amazon Prime Now is your pal. You’re currently hauling a safety seat, several bags and carry-ons and an energetic young child, so why not load light? Instead of load all the fundamentals, I put a Prime Now order ahead of my journey, to be provided to our hotel. Diapers are a need to for our yet-to-be-potty-trained little (you will conserve a lot travel luggage area by delivering a pack) and I consist of a number of the treats noted above (consisting of the fresh fruit).

For the hotel, I likewise suggest bringing some light rope and Command hooks No, this isn’t for anything strange, however rather to develop a “space” for your young child if he still oversleeps a baby crib. Protecting the rope throughout a little area of the space in between the hooks and laying a flat sheet over the leading provided my child his own little area to drop off to sleep and reduced interruptions that can feature oversleeping a brand-new location.

And the very best little bit of suggestions I can provide as you go out to the parks is to simply delight in the time. With a lot to see and do, it’s absolutely frustrating, so simply catch the reality you will not experience everything in one journey. When you succumb to that, all that’s delegated do is take in the magic, both as a moms and dad, and as a huge kid yourself.