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Theme Park in Anaheim, CA

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The Magic Continues in this magical place.

  • Nov 7, 2005
  • by
Pros: Great Rides, location, and fun.

Cons: May be a bit costly for some, food is expensive. Not many Thrill rides.

The Bottom Line: Still the grandest of all the theme parks

It is hard to believe that Disneyland is 50. The place of so many happy moments from my Childhood and adult years were spent at this special place.

Disneyland is often thought of as the standard for all theme parks to aspire as it has played host to millions of guests including heads of state and celebrities since it opened in 1956. Over the years the park has changed with the times, but the same charm that captivated you as a child still remains in the present.

One of the nicest features to Disneyland is the Fast Pass system designed to reduce wait times for the more popular attractions. Here is how it works, instead of waiting 35 minutes in line for Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye, I inserted my park ticket into a nearby Fast Pass machine and was given a boarding time for the ride roughly 45 minutes later. During this time, I was able to get on Splash Mountain and The Haunted Mansion before returning to a special Fast Pass line that by-passed the main ride for Indy and had me loaded in a couple of minutes. By using the Fast Pass I was able to ride three rides in the time that it would have taken to ride one.

I was also able to use Fast Pass on such rides as Star Tours, Space Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean, Autopia, Big Thunder Mountain, and Splash Mountain. While I would have liked to have had The Matterhorn included as a ride option, it is still a great system that will help guests especially those with children better manage their day at the park.

One of the amazing things about the park is the incredible detail that is paid to the sets in the rides as well as the costuming and lighting. Despite the age of some of the rides, they still are as vibrant and lively as they were when I first saw them many years ago. The Haunted Mansion has had a nice makeover as new projectors have been installed making the ghostly residence seem to come alive. I was fortunate to get on Splash Mountain as it had been scheduled for maintenance the week I arrived, but it was postponed for a week later allowing me to get in several rides during my stay. The big drop at the end of the ride never gets old and the opportunity to get a picture of your expression at the rides end always makes for fun as you can see your expression on the big display monitors.

With great rides, food, and a fantastic series of parades, Disneyland is still the best value in theme parks and while it does not have the thrill rides of other parks, it has the best atmosphere and tone of any park on the planet. You have to try very hard not to have a great time at Disneyland as the helpful staff and the vast array of things to see and do make this a must see attraction when visiting Southern California. For frequent quests, I would suggest looking into the season pass that is now offered as it is a great value for frequent visitors.


The park currently is gearing up for the Holidays as The Haunted Mansion now sports a Nightmare before Christmas theme for the Holidays. Also, The return of Space Mountain is a triumph as the updated FX, and audio, along with new cars make this classic a treat.
Gareth Von Kallenbach



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review by . October 28, 2009
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About the reviewer
Gareth Von Kallenbach ()
Ranked #111
I am a syndicated movie & game critic, writer, author and frequent radio guest. My work has appeared in over 60 publications worldwide and he is the creator of the rising entertainment site "Skewed … more
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Disneyland is an American theme park in Anaheim, California, owned and operated by the Walt Disney Parks and Resorts division of The Walt Disney Company. It was dedicated with a press preview on July 17, 1955, in ceremonies led by Walt Disney and opened to the general public the following day. Disneyland holds the distinction of being the only theme park to be designed, built, opened, and operated by Walt Disney.

Currently the park has been visited by more than 515 million guests since it opened, including presidents, royalty and other heads of state. In 1998, the theme park was re-branded Disneyland Park to distinguish it from the larger Disneyland Resort complex. In 2007, over 14,800,000 people visited the park making it the second most visited park in the world, behind the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World.

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