by Character Diva
Going to Disneyland is almost always a magical experience, but if you’re pregnant, you may be worried about certain things. If you’re in your first trimester, will you be nauseous, or if you’re farther along in your pregnancy, you may worry about the extra fatigue, all of the walking, or fitting comfortably on the rides. I have been pregnant on two of my trips to Disney and here are some of the points to consider, as well as some of my tips to help keep the magic in your vacation.
Disney Diva Tip: With everything in this article, please consult your doctor or midwife first. I am not a medical expert by any means, and both times I went to Disney while pregnant, I made sure to disclose to my doctor my travel plans as well as ask what was safe and what I should avoid, particularly when it came to certain dining choices or rides.
This is probably the first thing you thought of when you thought about being pregnant at Disney. I will have to admit, even though our pregnancy was planned and my husband and I were thrilled to be expecting another baby, I was a little disappointed that I wouldn’t be able to ride Tower of Terror (my favorite attraction), particularly when I found out it would be closing in early January and replaced by the Guardians of the Galaxy attraction. I was also disappointed knowing that my petite little princess had finally hit the magical 40 inch mark and would be able to ride the “big” rides, but this would be something she’d experience with Daddy and not me. But while these were disappointments, they didn’t come close to the joy I felt at expecting our newest little addition to our family, and I would definitely sacrifice them again. Plus between shows and other forms of entertainment, character meet and greets, and a long list of attractions you are still able to ride, there are still plenty of things to experience while being pregnant at Disneyland. In fact, the only rides you CAN’T ride are:
-Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
-Gadget’s Go Coaster
-Goofy’s Sky School
-Grizzly River Run
-Hyperspace Mountain (Formerly Space Mountain)
-Indiana Jones Adventure
-Radiator Springs Racers
-Tuck & Roll’s Drive Em Buggies
-The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
So as you can see, while there are a lot of Disney favorites in the mix, there are still plenty of other shows and attractions for you to experience. As far as fitting comfortably, you shouldn’t have too much of a problem. Disneyland’s attractions are fairly accommodating size-wise, and again, there are plenty of parades, character meet and greets, and other attractions that you should still be able to ride. Disney Diva Tip: Depending on where you are in your pregnancy, you may also wish to avoid rides that have motion sickness warnings. While I tend to be fine on these types of rides, depending on how nauseous you are feeling, you may want to take a raincheck on riding the teacups and pose for a picture in the one located next to the attraction instead.
Being pregnant means that you may have to alter your usual diet slightly. Since I’m not a big seafood fan, and I tend to be a “meat and potatoes” kinda girl, this really doesn’t affect me much at Disney, except in two areas. Cheese and Deli Meats. I love Mexican food. Unfortunately, Mexican cheeses such as queso fresco and cotija are unpasteurized, which means “No Bueno” for women who are pregnant.
Fortunately, Disneyland’s Dining website displays their menus online, so you are able to look at those and determine what dining options are available to you. Our family usually eats at Rancho del Zocalo or Cocina Cucamonga at least once during our stay. We also had made reservations at Tortilla Jo’s in Downtown Disney. I sent an email in advance asking what cheese they used on their products, but they weren’t very helpful, and suggested I speak with a manager or chef once we arrived to ensure that products or suppliers hadn’t changed between the time of the email and our arrival. What was helpful was that they said that most of the items on the menu could accommodate most dietary needs, and a list of ingredients and item labels were available upon request.
Tortilla Jo’s dinner menu was slightly more helpful since I could scroll through it and find out what was safe to eat (At the time of our trip, it was yay for the beef and chicken enchiladas, among other things) and what wasn’t (no to the tortilla soup, the taquitos, most of the salads, the tamales, everything on the comal menu, the enchiladas de mole, the chile relleno de lentejas and the fajitas burrito.) But fortunately, I still had a good selection to choose from and had no problem finding something for me to eat. (Plus their chips and guacamole are super filling in themselves… read Inspire Diva’s review here.)
My doctor also advised me to stay away from pre-packaged salads (especially if they contained cooked meat), and deli meat because of the chance of listeria. She did say I could take a food thermometer with me and ask them to prepare it and test the food, but that just seemed like too much work on vacation, and while my family loves Earl of Sandwich and all of its discounts, we opted to dine at other locations.
But if your family is craving a hot dog, have no fear… you can still go with them. One place we did eat at was at Award Wieners. When my aunt asked me what I was going to eat, I just told her I’d eat the vegetarian option (which is super yummy and something I order even when I’m not pregnant). It’s a bun loaded with bell peppers, caramelized onions, Portobello mushrooms, and pepper jack cheese and either fruit or fries. I skipped buying a soda and just ordered a complimentary water (because it’s free and I wanted to make sure I was staying hydrated along the way), but needless to say, I left feeling pretty full.
While it is a smaller area and less walking when compared to Disney World, Disneyland can still be exhausting! Plus pregnancy does crazy things to your body…. It may make you sensitive to hot or cold weather, and even if it doesn’t, you still will most likely have a lot of walking to do. Attractions like Main Street Cinema or Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln on Main Street and the new Frozen musical at the Hyperion Theater or Turtle Talk with Crush in California Adventure are great ways to spend the day, and relax in an air-conditioned setting. Other attractions such as “The Little Mermaid- Ariel’s Undersea Adventure” generally have very short lines (if at all), and are indoors, and you can ride them as often as you’d like. Another good choice (though it’s temporarily closed) is the Disneyland Railroad… you can climb aboard the train and ride it over and over again, and decide when and where you’d like to get off. And if you really need a break or are feeling a little lightheaded, but don’t want to head back to your hotel or head home, you can always go rest in one of the Baby Centers or First Aid Stations.
Hey, you’re pregnant at the Happiest Place on Earth! Why not announce it? In addition to having several baby items you can buy (from the typical onesies and baby toys to the unique pink and blue Mickey Mouse ears), you can also go to Guest Services (located at City Hall on Main Street in Disneyland or at the Chamber of Commerce on Buena Vista Street in California Adventure) and get “First Trip” and “I’m Celebrating” buttons.
Need more ideas? Why not do a photoshoot by the entrance to Disneyland, the Partners statue, or in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle? Have older kids? Don’t forget to include “Big Brother/Big Sister” shirts for your older kids (or at least the one who was recently promoted). Or why not consider wearing a shirt that shows off your cute little baby bump and highlighting future mouseketeer? And if you’re planning on having a Disney nursery or baby shower theme, it’s always fun to try and get pictures with those characters as well.
Disney Diva Tip: If you are planning on making an announcement, I recommend using a Photopass Photographer. Now I will admit, I’ve had a range of Photopass Photographers…. From ones who seemed to want to be rid of us as quickly as possible, to ones who took dozens of pictures trying to capture the “perfect shot” or document our entire experience. While it is true that you never know who will be behind the camera, explaining what you want to do (and also asking nicely if there’s a particular pose or shot you want) will go a long way towards capturing that perfect picture, and they might even be flattered that they get to help with your special news.
So those are some of things to consider if you’re heading to Disneyland while pregnant. Ready to book your trip? Contact Authorized Disney Vacation Planner, Patricia Payne from All For Dreams Travel! Her services are FREE and she can offer you all kinds of bonus tips and advice! Click HERE for a FREE QUOTE!