Disneyland has been our “go to” family place since 1988. So naturally, when we had kids we were excited to introduce them to Disneyland as well. And it exceeded our expectations to watch each of our kids fall in love with it, too.
Disneyland is such a great place for families with kids of all ages! I saw newborns being worn by their parent while they took their older kids on rides. Fantasyland is ideal of course as it has the most amount of things your kids will enjoy.
As the parent of a 1 year old, you might think that she didn’t have favourites yet, but let me tell you, did she ever!
Kel’s Top 5 (1):
1. Peter Pan’s Flight – So much visually to look at, and nice and gentle.
2. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh – Definitely best with her on my lap so she could actually see (first time I had her in the seat and she couldn’t see anything).
3. Finding Nemo Submarine Journey – Some kids might get a little nervous with the dark and enclosed space, but she found looking out the window super fun at the scenes outside.
4. Pirates of the Caribbean – She didn’t even mind the 2 drops at the beginning! (Little Daredevil).
5. “it’s a small world” – Annoying, yes, but much better since the addition of the Disney characters at least.
Caius’ Top 5 (3):
1. Gadget’s Go Coaster – He could not get enough of this ride! He would have stayed on just that ride for the entire trip. It is a perfect gauge to determine if they’re ready for bigger rides.
2. Pirates of the Caribbean – He just loves all things pirates. He sings the song at home, and picked a pirate sword as his souvenir for the trip.
3. Mad Tea Party – Luckily my husband and I do not get sick spinning around. This ride is absolutely hilarious. He giggles from start to finish, which makes us giggle, which makes him giggle…
4. Peter Pan’s Flight – This is a great all ages ride. It has a huge line up, but it is worth it.
5. Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters – I mean, the kid is three, so a ride that he gets to shoot a gun? Yes.
Finley’s Top 5 (1):
This past July we got to spend my second son’s very first birthday in Disneyland. It is just such a magical place to experience with your children no matter what the age.
1. Mad Tea Party – He just thought this was the funniest ride.
2. Peter Pan’s Flight – There is a lot for them to look at and see. He had just learned to walk on this trip, so the line up was definitely not his favourite part, but once on the ride he was perfectly entranced.
3. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh – Even if you don’t have kids, you need to go on this ride. It is absolutely darling. There are super bright colours everywhere, and a gentle rocking motion in the ride vehicle.
4. “it’s a small world” – I am tentative about putting this ride on there. Finley really loved this ride for the first half. After the first half, though, he decided that he wanted to move and walk and play. But the first half he was clapping along to, which was adorable.
5. Pirates of the Caribbean – Now, the first time he went on this ride he loved the beginning. The drops did not even phase him. But once we got to the boat room with the cannon balls, he freaked! He scrambled out of my husbands arms so fast and even stained his shirt with a foot plant in his mad dash to get to me. He spent the rest of the ride with the bottom of his face in my shoulder. The next time he went on he was subdued, but didn’t cry. By the end of the trip he sat still through the entire ride.
It took my kids a really long time to get on board with the big rides at Disneyland (you can read more about that in our blog post “Disneyland with a Sensitive Child”). Their favourite rides have changed over the years as they have grown and matured. Our last trip was just this past summer and my kids were 7 & 10.
Evan’s Top 5 (7) :
1. Splash Mountain – Because you get wet!
2. Alice in Wonderland – It smells like tea at the end.
3. Mad Tea Party – It spins really fast and it makes me really dizzy.
4. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad – I like that it’s country and has dinosaur skeletons.
5. Space Mountain – It’s like Star Wars and feels like you’re in space.
Ava’s Top 5 (10):
1. Splash Mountain – I like how happy it is.
2. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad – It’s fast!
3. Pirates of the Caribbean – I like that it’s in the dark and you go down a big hill at the beginning.
4. Matterhorn Bobsleds – Because I like the Yeti.
5. Space Mountain – I like that it’s in the dark and all the lights.
Audrey’s Top 5 (11):
Audrey is the oldest and has been the most times. She is always really happy to go with the flow.
1. Splash Mountain – Because you get wet, especially when it’s hot.
2. Space Mountain – Because it’s in the dark and really fast.
3. Matterhorn Bobsleds – Especially at night. Go during the fireworks to have the lineups be shorter and a little extra “magic”.
4. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad – Because it’s fast, and because the goat gives you tummy flips.
5. Pirates of the Caribbean – Because it’s super fun and it’s always our first ride.
Addie’s Top 5 (8):
Addie is our daredevil. She couldn’t wait ’til she was tall enough for as much as possible.
1. Space Mountain – Because it’s fun.
2. Splash Mountain – Because it gives you a huge “tummy drop”.
3. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad – Because I like the theme and because it’s fast.
4. Pirates of the Caribbean – Because it has lots of stuff to see.
5. Matterhorn Bobsleds – Because it’s fast and the monster is really cool.
Lexie’s Top 5 (5):
Lexie was 4 and a half the last time we went to Disneyland. As the youngest of 3, we were dragging her on the big rides long before she was ready. She didn’t like anything with a “down-down” (think: Pirates, Splash). She tolerated Matterhorn and Space and Big Thunder, but really preferred the gentler rides. I asked her what her favourites were, and these were her answers. I think Lexie’s top 5 would change depending on what day you asked her!
1. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh – Because it has hunny and lots to look at.
2. Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters – Because you can really shoot.
3. Autopia – I like it because you can really drive!
4. Alice In Wonderland – Enjoyment level sky rockets when she gets to ride in a pink Caterpillar.
5. Mad Tea Party – Because it’s a short lineup.
What are your kid’s favorite rides? Does it change with every trip?
Thanks for stopping by and have a magical day!
Erica, Heidi, Elisia and Danielle