Tomorrow I embark on a journey with my family to Disneyland for a couple days. Now, we have always been Walt Disney World people at heart. I grew up going to the World more than once per year, and therefore have a very deep connection to that place. However, I feel that it is also very important that fans like us take time to visit the "original". We may not like to admit it, and we ALL know that Disney World is WAY better, but it is important to keep in mind the significance of Disneyland. Here are three big reasons why:
1. History: Disneyland is where it all started. In 1955, Disneyland opened with Walt's blessing, and the park is littered (not literally of course) with historical goodies and little symbols of the days of its founding. The original versions of famous classic Disney rides are largely located here, save a couple that have been renovated more than their counterpart in the World. I will write a post later this week about some of the little historical parts of Disneyland you can still see today. You can feel the touch of Walt himself in Disneyland in a different and more direct way than anywhere else I have been.
2. The Food: I am referring here specifically to the sit-down dining experiences that are available here, and not in Walt Disney World. Admittedly, the options are much fewer, because the theming and space does not allow for as much creativity and complete theming. However, there are several place in which you must eat if you are to consider yourself a fan of Disney Dining. The Blue Bayou at Pirates of the Caribbean, the Carthay Circle Theater Restaurant, Napa Rose, Goofy's Kitchen, and of course, Club 33, are all places that are destinations in their own, and deserve your attention, even though they are in Disneyland, as opposed to Disney World. They each have their own experience to accompany the food, and are each laced with tons of Disney magic.
3. World of Color: This one is maybe the most important. Each night, World of Color lights up the skies in and around Disney's California Adventure, and boy is it an experience. My brother and I are both show and music nerds, and spend our evenings wholly agape and in awe of the constantly changing sounds and sights that is World of Color. The incorporation of the Ferris Wheel, California Screamin', and all of Paradise Pier, is absolutely breathtaking. The show borrows technology from Fantasmic! over at the Studios in Florida, but adds hundreds of lasers and fountains, synchronized to music, and takes water projection to a completely different level. You will be entranced by the number of elements in the park that partake in the show, and the scale to which they take it. In other words, this show is so worth seeing, that it is enough by itself to get you to California.
I know how tempting it is to decide that Disney World is best (and it is), and therefore decide to only vacation there. However, there are many magical experiences to be had in Disneyland that cannot be experienced in the World. It is where it all started, and therefore it deserves your pilgrimage.