I guess you could say that my family is a bit Disney obsessed. OK, so I am a bit Disney obsessed which in turn has led my daughters down the same path; and my husband, well, he’s been a good sport about the whole thing. Some of my fondest memories of my childhood are from Disneyland trips with my family. We went often and my love for Disney started at a young age. This love has continued into adulthood and now I am having so much fun watching my girls get caught up in the Disney magic.
We started taking our oldest when she was 8 months old and our youngest went on her first visit at 4 1/2 months. (Gasp! I know, can you believe it?!) In fact, the first time Alyssa did a big belly laugh was on her first visit to Disney. Such an awesome memory! We have season passes and we try to go at least once a month (and some months we go multiple times). Each and every time we go, we have new experiences, whether it be with characters, cast members, going on different rides as the girls get older, etc. We always have a great time, which is why we go so often. It’s not only fun for the girls, but my husband and I love going too! My parents and Mother in law also got passes to join in on the Disney fun.
Everyone has different opinions on Disneyland. We have talked with people who think it’s a waste of time and money to take a child under 3 there (by the way kids under 3 are FREE), people who can’t understand why we go so often, people who just hate Disneyland in general (shocking, right?!) and people who love it just as much as we do.
I am here to tell you that there is plenty to do with children under 3 and yes, even babies! OK, so a newborn-3 month old might not get too much out of it, and would probably be sleeping most of the time. BUT at 4 months when they are awake a little more, it’s a lot of fun! Both Disneyland and Disney California Adventure have great baby centers which have private nursing areas with glider chairs, padded changing tables and little potty’s for kids who are potty training. As well as diapers, wipes, baby food and formula for sale in case you run out. (Or have a bad case of Mommy brain and forgot to pack one or all of those items.)
So what can you do with kids under 3 at Disneyland? First off, just walking around is exciting. There is so much to look at and so much going on. Kids are like sponges and they gain so much just by being out and about. I remember both of my girls had HUGE smiles plastered on their faces on their first visit. Oh, who am I kidding, they are like that every visit. But there was something extra special about the first time they experienced Disneyland. I loved watching them look around wide-eyed just taking everything in. While walking through the park you generally run into many Disney characters (if you’re lucky and catch them walking around, they will hold your child’s hand and walk with them), street performers and food…LOTS of food! They have awesome apps that tell you where certain characters are going to be at specific times. It’s great if there are characters that are a must see for your family!
Apart from walking around, there are several shows and parades at both parks through out the day. My girls LOVE the Disney Jr. show and the Pixar Play Parade at Ca Adventure! There are also a ton of rides at both parks suitable for children under 3. Yes, even rides for 4 1/2 month olds! (It’s a Small World, Ariel, Whinnie the Pooh, etc.) Even when the girls were babies, we never felt like it was a waste of time or money. It truly is an amazing experience for families and kids of all ages!
People often talk about the expense that goes along with a day at Disney. They have lockers and allow you to bring in outside food and drinks. So, if you don’t feel like spending $9 on a sub par hamburger, you don’t have to. Although I will tell you that they have the BEST fried chicken and corn dogs!! The expense of tickets is totally worth it for the amazing memories you will create with your kids!
My family has hundred’s of pictures from our Disney trips with tons of amazing memories to go along with them. Disneyland holds a special place in our hearts and I imagine we will be continuing our frequent Disney trips for many years to come. After all, it is the happiest place on earth. OK, so maybe not when it’s 95 degrees and so crowded that you have to wait an hour to go on It’s A Small World, BUT it’s still pretty darn close!
Have you been to Disneyland with small kids? Tell us about your experience below!
Live, Laugh, Love,