Southern California is known for its year-round temperate climate. Most trips to Disneyland require a light jacket in the early morning and evenings. However, in summer time and even early fall, the weather can heat up and remind you of your other favorite place on Earth, Walt Disney World. If warm and sunny weather is forecast for your trip, here are some tips to keep you cool.
Bring cooling towels and fans. Standing in line for a ride in the hot sun is just brutal. While wearing a hat will help, it won’t keep you as cool and comfortable as you would probably prefer. That is why I suggest having a cooling towel and/or a fan. When it is hot, the gift shops will put out the Disney Parks spray bottles with fans and cooling towels. These fans do work very well, and will cost you about $20, while the cooling towels are about $17. My tip is to plan ahead and purchase the towel and fan before your trip. This O2COOL fan from Amazon does not have a lanyard, but is small enough to put into your park bag. It is about $9.99 with free shipping for Amazon Prime members.
Cooling towels are made from a material that retains water, but feels dry to the touch so it does not drip water on you or your clothes. When they dry out, you simply wet them again at the nearest Disneyland water fountain or restroom sink, wring it out, and then it cools you again. I have used these Frogg Toggs from Amazon, and they are about $9.99 with free shipping for Amazon Prime members. You could purchase both a spray fan and cooling towel for about the same price as the Disney Parks fan if you plan ahead.
Take a break. Even when it is not hot, my family likes a break in the mid-afternoon to head to the hotel to rest and decompress. The best time to take this break during the summer is between about 2 pm and until 5 or 6 pm. Use this break to stay off your feet and enjoy the air conditioning in your room, or take a dip in your hotel pool. If your hotel is too far away for a break or you want to take the rope drop to kiss goodnight challenge, there are places to cool off at the Disneyland Resort. In Disneyland, indoor queue lines and queue lines in the shade are not plentiful. If the line is not too long, I suggest the Pirates of the Caribbean, as this ride is about 20 minutes long to give you a good rest while in the boat. You could also visit Star Wars Launch Bay in Tomorrowland, or one of my ABSOLUTE favorites is Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln at the entrance to Main Street. Not only is this attraction and queue completely indoors, you can browse the archives in the queue area or sit to watch the 50th Anniversary video. You can also find places indoors at Disney’s California Adventure (DCA). My favorite place to cool off at DCA is the Animation Academy building. Inside you will find benches in the main room, called the Animation Courtyard, where video clips and stills from your favorite movies are played overhead on large screens. Plus all queue lines are indoors! The indoor attractions in the building are the Animation Academy, Turtle Talk with Crush, and the Sorcerer’s Workshop.
Eat Indoors. If you took that break I suggested, head back to the parks around 5-6 pm and have dinner in one of the indoor restaurants. Most of these restaurants will require advanced dining reservations (ADRs), which are available up to 60-days in advance on the Disneyland website. Blue Bayou at Disneyland is an extremely popular choice for indoor dining, and you will need an ADR to eat here. There are some quick service dining options with indoor tables (and some outdoor tables), which include Plaza Inn, Golden Horseshoe, and Alien Pizza Planet. At DCA, dining option indoors are Carthay Circle (ADR recommended) and also include Fiddler, Fifer and Practical Cafe and Lamplight Lounge. Several options are also available in Downtown Disney and at each of the Disneyland Resort Hotels.
Get wet. Summer is a great time to play on your favorite water rides!! By far, I have found the biggest soaker is Grizzly River Run at DCA. I have never been on the raft ride without being drenched by the end. TIP! Water even comes up through the drain in the bottom of your raft after you splashdown the waterfall, so watch your shoes! For little ones, head to Princess Dot Puddle Park in Bug’s Land at DCA. At this time of this writing, Bug’s Land is set to close in late summer 2018 to make way for construction of a new Marvel themed land, so check this one out this summer before it is gone! My favorite water ride at Disneyland is Splash Mountain. If you want to get as wet as possible ask for the first two or three seats in the log and you are guaranteed to be splashed!
Stay late. There is so much to do after dark, especially with late closing times during the summer! The Paint the Night Parade at DCA is a great reason to stay late. I first watched this parade in summer 2015 and I’ve been hooked ever since! Be sure to watch this at least one night during your summer vacation. While World of Color at DCA is on hiatus until late 2018, next summer watch this from the ‘wet zone’ and depending on how the wind is blowing, you may get wet during the show. At Disneyland, you should stay for Fantasmic!, which plays each night during the summer on the Rivers of America, and of course, watch the fireworks over Sleeping Beauty’s castle.
Have other great tips to share! Add them to the comments! Want to try those tips out? Patricia at All For Dreams Travel can plan that trip for you!
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