The Guide: Disneyland for Adults

It is completely acceptable for adults to go to the happiest place on earth without any children. Here’s how.

According to recent numbers, one-third of visitors to Disneyland are adults, with no children in tow. Whoa. So why exactly are they there? What do they do? Should you? Yes, you could. Experiment. Try it as a day trip. But always have an exit plan. Laguna Beach, for example, a very grown-up place, is a half-hour away. You drive in, you see Mickey, you drive out. You’re eating dinner by the ocean by 7:30 p.m.

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Photo credit: Disneyland

The Lay of the Land

Disneyland has two parts: The original Disneyland Park, and across the way, the California Adventure Park, opened in 2001. If you’re unsure about this whole Disney field trip, go with the Adventure Park —it’s more adult (i.e., the outlets serve booze). But be brave and follow this two-step plan.

Photo Credit: Disneyland
Photo Credit: Disneyland

Step 1: Take in a Morning Tour 

Sign on for “The Disney Story” or “Cultivating the Magic”—two tours that we’ll gamble are waaay too tedious for children. That means on these half-day tours, it’s mostly adults.

Storybook Land, Photo Credit: Disneyland
Storybook Land, Photo Credit: Disneyland
Photo Credit: Disneyland
Photo Credit: Disneyland

“The Disney Story” recounts the story of Walt’s life as you walk through the Adventure Park (that’s the one with the booze). You’ll also get to skip the lines for Soarin’ over California (a great ride that lets you “hang glide” across the state) and Radiator Springs Racers. Even better, you are given access, albeit brief, to Club 1901, a members-only lounge.

Photo Credit: Disneyland
Photo Credit: Disneyland

“Cultivating the Magic” explores the cool facts about the botanicals at Disneyland Park. You’ll learn about the Dominguez Palm, varieties of bamboo, the Bodhi tree with heart-shaped leaves, and the Disneyland official rose. You’ll also get expedited service for the Jungle Cruise and Storybook Land.

Disneyland Rose, Photo Credit: Raj Boora
Disneyland Rose, Photo Credit: Raj Boora
Photo Credit: minnemom
Photo Credit: minnemom
Photo Credit: Disneyland
Photo Credit: Disneyland

Step 2: Afternoon Cocktail(s) & Snack

For swank atmosphere, you can’t beat a martini in a setting that mimics Hollywood’s Golden Era: Carthay Circle Restaurant. It’s on the second floor of the Carthay Circle Theatre, a replica of the Los Angeles theater where Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs premiered in 1937.

Carthay Circle Restaurant, Photo Credit: Anime Nut
Carthay Circle Restaurant, Photo Credit: Anime Nut

To treat hunger pangs, head to The Cove Bar for the lobster nachos and a glass of Chardonnay (a nice lobster pairing). And don’t forget, our very own Pacific Edge Hotel is just ~45 minutes away!

See? Wasn’t that easy? Next time, the Mickey ears.

Hero Image Photo Credit: Disneyland

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