It’s no wonder the holiday season is one of the brightest and busiest at the Disneyland Resort, which will be decked out with lights, wreaths, shiny ornaments and sky-high Christmas trees from Nov. 15, 2013 – Jan. 6, 2014. Debuting this season: World of Color − Winter Dreams, an all-new holiday version of the popular “World of Color” special effects water and light show presented in Disney California Adventure Park’s Paradise Bay.
Note that this is the first year the Disneyland Resort has hung ornaments, decorated trees and is baking holiday treats before Thanksgiving, giving families a head start to enjoy the sparkling festivities and new shows. If possible, plan to visit on a weekday (Sun. – Thu) before the Christmas break to beat the holiday rush and see the colorful new shows.
The World of Color – Winter Dreams show, hosted by Olaf the snowman from the upcoming animated movie “Frozen,” includes new special effects and combines animation with classic winter scenes from Disney favorites, such as “Bambi,” “Fantasia” and “Toy Story.” Nearly 1,200 powerful fountains create one of the world’s largest projected water screens. This is a popular attraction, so it’s important to secure your FASTPASS tickets from a World of Color kiosk as soon as you are inside the resort.
Also new this year is Disney ¡Viva Navidad!, a celebration of Latino culture with food, music, dancing and a sizzling street party, also in California Adventure. Special activities including crafts and face-painting for children, live Latino music and dance lessons take place in Paradise Garden.
The grand finale of “Disney ¡Viva Navidad!” will be the special celebration of Three Kings Day (Dia de los Reyes) Jan. 3 through 6, 2014 in Paradise Garden.
Returning to the Disneyland Park are A Christmas Fantasy parade, Sleeping Beauty’s Winter Castle, “it’s a small world” Holiday and “Believe…in Holiday Magic” fireworks followed by snowfall on Main Street, U.S.A., New Orleans Square and “it’s a small world” mall. Santa Claus appears in the parade throughout the season and will be listening to holiday wishes through Dec. 24.
Best time to visit
If you haven’t made it to the resort before the Christmas break, you might try for Christmas Eve, when attendance is usually a bit lighter than other days. But the parks may close earlier too.