Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Fireworks/Parade and Show Viewing at the Disneyland Resort

Fireworks/Parade and Show Viewing at the Disneyland Resort

       Today I’m going to share my opinion on how to get the best seats for Fireworks/Parade and Shows at the Disneyland Resort.
       Fireworks are a special treat at Disneyland. Not only do you have the show in the sky there is a show on Sleeping Beauties Castle. There are special lighting effects and fireworks on and shot off the castle. The fireworks are designed to frame the castle.

       You can choose to see the fireworks from anywhere in the park. The problem is you will not see the castle if you don’t sit in front of the castle. During the summer months there are special treats such as Tinker Bell and Dumbo flying during the fireworks. These can only be clearly seen from the front of the castle.

       If you wish to see the fireworks from in front of the castle plan on getting there early to claim your spot. I suggest at least two to three hours early. If you get there early enough you can claim a bench in front of the VIP section. Getting there early is even more important for special holiday fireworks shows. For the Fourth of July we sat for nine and a half hours to insure we got the best view. At Halloween we picked our spot around three. Christmas time there are more special nights showing the fireworks so you still need to get there early but not as early as Halloween.

       Parades at Disneyland run twice a day. You can usually got a nice spot on the curb around an hour before the parade. The first time it runs from Small World down the parade route toward Main Street ending at the Town Square end of Main Street. It goes back up Main Street to Small World.

       At Disneyland there are lots of little shows. One of my favorite is Billy Hill and the Hillbillies. This fun show in the Golden Horseshoe Review. Get there at least forty-five minutes early and grab something to eat and drink while you wait for the show. This is a great place to cool down on a hot day while you wait for a fun show.

       Fantasmic is a long running and wonderful show full of Disney magic and wonder. Watch Mickey battle evil and show how happiness, joy and kindness can win. This show is played out on the Rivers of America. You can see the show from anyplace on the river but in my opinion the best place to see the show is right across from the landing on Tom Sawyer’s Island. This is where Mickey will do most of his fighting. Get on the level right next to the water. Sit in front of the main lighting stands. You can sit right up against the fence or sit in the back of the area. If you have people in wheelchairs this spot is much better than the handicapped areas they provide. This is not an easy spot to get so once again get there early but don’t worry too much because people are required to sit during the show so people can see no matter how tall they are.

       Now let’s move over to Disney’s California Adventure. There are two wonderful shows at California Adventure, they are Aladdin the Musical and World of Color.

       Aladdin is a forty-five minute long live stage play that is good enough to be on any Broadway stage. I suggest you get to the Hyperion Theater at least forty-five minutes early.

       In my opinion I think the best spot to view Aladdin from is the first or second row of the upper section of the orchestra level. This is the first or second row above the large walkway that cuts the orchestra level in half. I like this spot because you can see the “parade” that goes through the audience as well as all that is happening on stage. The front rows are nice as well but it is harder to see what is going on in and above the audience. I don’t like the balcony levels because they show too much of the “stage tricks” for my taste.
       World of Color is California Adventure’s version of water works instead of fireworks. You must have a fastpass to see this show and there are three ways to get them. I like the “Yellow” section toward the middle. You get a good view of the water fountains and the lower water level. IMHO this is a must see!

       Here is how to get a ticket to see World of Color:

1.        As soon as the park opens go to the fastpass ticket machines next to Grizzly Rapids and get your tickets. Make sure you get all the tickets you need at the same time from the same machine. If you get them at different times or from different machines you may end up going to different shows and/or sitting in different areas.

2.   Pay for one of two sit down dining options costing about $40 per person. You get a great meal and your ticket to the show. You can call Disney Dining to book this in advance or hope they have an available table for walkup.

3.    There is a Picnic Meal option available online. These are cold gourmet meals. They come with a drink, tote bag and a ticket to the show. These cost about $16 per person. You can order these as far out as sixty days or the day before. These guarantee you a seat at the first showing of the day. There are a few walkup Picnic Meals available on the day but those get you a seat at the second show.

Here is a link to the World of Color tickets:

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