DISCLOSURE: I was provided 2 tickets to Disneyland in exchange for this post. To grab your own tickets and get more inside info about HalloweenTime at Disneyland, visit Disneyland.com.
Didn’t score tickets to Mickey’s Halloween Party at Disneyland this year? Don’t fear, my pretties. We’ve got your back. (Hint: You don’t necessarily need to hit up Mickey’s bash to have a spooktacular time at Disneyland this season! Promise that’s the only time I’ll drop “spooktacular” in this post… maybe.)
Going to Disneyland for 12-hour tour-de-force days has become a sort of specialty between my sister and I — and our daughters. We’ve got LadyP & LilMiss (mine) and M&M (hers). Ages 2-8 at the time of this writing. Let’s just say we’ve been taking these chicklets on epic Disneyland adventures 1-2 times per year since the oldest one (mine) was the age of our youngest one (hers) now. And yes, these little mice’s nonstop giggling and loud personalities make Mickey seem like a stick-in-the-mud…
Our Number 1 rule since we started doing this madness years ago: Start with matching shirts for all. (As can be proved by our previous trips to Disneyland…)
Back to HALLOWEENTIME. Here’s the new stuff we discovered at Disneyland this go-around:
Jack Skellington and Sally visit everyone waiting in line at the Haunted Mansion — twice a day! Hands down: The Haunted Mansion is the absolute BEST HalloweenTime attraction… we salute you year after year, Jack, but this year you up’d your game….
There we were, standing in line to go into our beloved Haunted Mansion… minding our business, chomping on New Orleans Square popcorn and Minnie Mouse PEZ (brought from home) to kill time and make the 45-minute wait go quicker… when out from the gray steel door halfway through the winding line stroll —– Sally and Skellington! Right there. Face to face (well, behind the bars). Talking to us! Asking us if we liked tricks or treats better — to which Sally cleverly offered, “Well, if you scare the trick-or-treaters, they’ll drop their candy and you can get more…” There’s a reason those two are King+Queen of Halloween.
CHURRO POPCORN. I put this in caps because… CHURRO POPCORN. Just cinnamon-y enough. Not too sweet, but sweet. Beyond addicting. IS THIS A BRAND NEW FLAVOR OR I’VE BEEN UNDER A ROCK?!?! My sister discovered this fab find in a cart near Small World. Let’s just say waiting in line for rides suddenly turned joyful….
New toys and even-tastier treats have taken over Main Street… Yes, most parents cringe at the toy/treat kiosks at every corner (I’m always the first one to day “NO-WE-CAN’T-GET-ANOTHER-ANYTHING-RIGHT-NOW!”) but for some reason I weaken if there’s a holiday like HalloweenTime connected with our trip. Maleficent Mouse Ears, ghoulish cake pops and the most fabulous chocolate ‘roll-cake’ (at the Plaza Inn, alongside our traditional fried-chicken dinner) were my faves this year…
(I should note that I also fell in love with the little Jacks outside Haunted Mansion….)
And, if I may give some unsolicited advice (based on personal experience): Just get the damn balloon (you can’t miss ’em on Main Street). Just this once. The kids (and you) will remember it for years and years to come… and Mickey will be right by your side, smiling with you, all day long.
More costumed characters were out and about! Maybe this is new (again, has it been that long since we’ve visited Disneyland?!) but I’ve never seen more characters ‘out in the wild’ just walking around. Throughout the day, we spotted and fangirled over Cruela Deville, Jasmine, Goofy, Rapunzel, the Beast… in the flesh! Very exciting. Like, paparazzi exciting. (I feel like there’s one more too… that sugar high really got to my memory…)
But my absolute favorite new part of HalloweenTime that we stumbled upon? COCO. I. Can’t. Even. Tell. You. How. Festive. It. Was. Although my memory is spotty (high on that Churro Popcorn, thanks) I’m pretty sure this display hangs out right around Frontier/Adventureland… SO GORGEOUS:
I mean, the detail…. I almost wept it was so lovely.
(SIDE NOTE: There’s a Mexican restaurant right next to this spot I snapped below… we didn’t eat there but the chips & guac that I spied on while taking this pic looked yummmmmm….)
See? No Mickey’s party needed if you want to gush over Halloween at Disneyland (even though we love you Mr. Mouse….) Eats + treats + toys + decor = HalloweenTime fun. Yeah we were pooped at the end of our 12-hour mission, but for the love of pumpkins, it was worth it. Always worth it.