Although I love Walt Disney World and it is like home to me (wink to the CA girls), I find myself giddy to get to place where it all began. I’m heading to Disneyland this month before my Disney Mexican Riviera Cruise to pay homage to Walt.
I’m returning to the Grand Calfornian, which I had the pleasure to stay the first year it opened. I was so impressed with just the front door to this resort (and of course all that is beyond it) that I have a pin to commemorate it. The whole resort is done in the Arts and Crafts style and was designed by Peter Dominick, who also did the Walt Disney World Wilderness Lodge and Animal Kingdom Lodge. The door to which I refer is a gorgeous sliding glass door that I literally have sat in the lobby and watched open and close as the guests arrive.
The private entrance to California Adventure and being in such close walking distance to either park is a special perk that I savor. But once I’m off for the day, it is the charming dark rides that draw me. There was a time when I’d head straight for Soarin’ Over California. But this time, being a bit older and more sentimental, my first stop following Main Street USA will be to photograph my foot on the spike that marks the center of the "land" just past Sleeping Beauty Castle. (Watch for that photo at the end of the month!)
From there, I must take a spin on those rides I just can’t find at the "World". Alice’s Mad Tea Party, Pinocchio’s Daring Adventure, Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin and Storybook Land Canal Boat are at the top of my list. And yes……….there’s the Toad.
I have to admit, I fell in love with Mr. Toad at Walt Disney World. And although I do enjoy an occasional ride on "the Pooh", I feel Mr. Toad’s departure from Walt Disney World did leave a gaping hole where wild used to live. There’s a little bit of a dark side with this ride that appeals to me. I mean, where else can you have such a great time in hell? I’d like to know how come I never get to experience the heaven ending to this ride??!! What kind of secret meter did the Imagineers invent to determine that this is where I should end up?
And of course, there’s the modern dark ride that I will experience in a row until my travel mates scream "no more"! Indiana Jones Adventure is hands down one of my favorites at either Disneyland or Walt Disney World. And my timing couldn’t be better!! With the release of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Skull to theaters on May 22nd, I’m hoping to ride IJA until my body gives in to my vertigo-esque motion sickness and then swoon over a still adorable Harrison Ford for a late show that evening!
Joanne at MouseFanTravel dot com