February 21, 2024

Living in Southern California can be a beautiful thing. One of the greatest benefits of living in this area: Disneyland is not that far away.

Many people go to the ‘happiest place on Earth’ and spend the day trying to ride every ride and see every show. Instead of doing the typical day at Disneyland, why not try something different?

Penny Day

Disneyland and California Adventure have over 50 penny press machines. Save some change and have a day that is dedicated to going to every machine and getting a souvenir penny. Be sure to go into City Hall and get a list of all of the penny pressers in both parks. The machines cost 50 cents and a penny for the pressing. There are also several quarter press machines. If you want to make it into a real collection, there are souvenir holders available for purchase on the top of every machine.

Character Adventure

Even though as college students, childhood is a thing of the past have a day at Disneyland full of getting characters autographs. Go ahead, buy an autograph book and have a blast taking photos with all of the characters. Look at the Disney handout that is found by the maps at the front gate to know the times and locations of all of the characters. An entire day can be spent trying to track all of them down.

Hidden Mickeys

Throughout the park there are hidden Mickeys everywhere. Some people take part in looking for them while waiting in line for a ride or walking to the next destination. However, a different approach is getting the book at a Main Street shop that reveals where all of the hidden Mickeys are located. Dedicate your next trip to finding all of them. You can even make a game out of it with your group.

Fine Dining

Instead of trying to ride every rideand only grabbing a burger at the plaza, spend the night at one of the nicer restaurants. This will take a little more money but the experience will be very enjoyable. The Blue Bayou is located beside the Pirates of the Caribbean ride and the restaurant is lit by candlelight with a view of the Caribbean waters. Ariel’s Gotto is another nice sit-down restaurant located in California Adventure. This restaurant has a fun atmosphere due to the Disney Princesses walking around to the tables taking pictures and engaging the guests. Taking the time to have a nice meal can be a great change of pace from eating on-the-go.


Most of the time people are rushing to ride the rides when the lines go down. One of the typical times that a line goes down is when the fireworks begin. Try getting a great view for the show instead of going to the empty lines. You may have to camp out for an hour or more in order to get right in front of the castle but that is one of the best spots. With the view of the castle, the fireworks will be clear in the night sky and the effects on the castle will be easy to see.

Hide and Seek

Let the ‘happiest place on Earth’ bring out your inner child. Ride off onto Tom Sawyer’s Island and spend some time playing hide and seek. The island is full of great hiding spots and it is a way to explore new areas. This idea can be used as a way to kill time and get away from the crowds.

Make Friends

Try talking to the workers at Disneyland. While waiting in a ridiculously long line, spark a conversation with a nearby ride attendant. It is a way to past the time and you may hear some interesting facts about Disneyland. Try talking to the people in line next to you also. You may find a new group to hang out with for the day.

People from all over the world come to Anaheim to experience a day at Disneyland. You should take advantage of living close and try something other than just riding the typical rides.