Can you believe we have never been to Disneyland?! We are originally from the east coast so we have always gone to Disney World in Florida. We have been stationed in the mid-west twice now and I wanted to make it over to California before we get ready to head to our next duty station in the next few months. We have been to Disneyland Paris while we were stationed overseas, and loved it! In my opinion, both the Paris park and the one in Cali are comparable in size. There are only two parks, vs four in Florida - which makes it much easier and less stressful to plan and navigate. I love to plan everything in advance. I got spoiled planning for Disney World where you can plan everything out 180 days in advance. Here in Disneyland, you can only reserve dining reservations 60 days out. You cannot reserve or even look at fast pass reservations until you walk into the park! With that being said, we took advantage of the max pass. You can read more on that here.

So, we are typically in the parks before they open until they close. I like to book early breakfast reservations so that we can enter early, and get some really clear photos of the castle without a million people around. Later in the day we will go back to the room to change, eat dinner, whatever before the fireworks at night.
Speaking of the room......

We decided to stay off property for this trip because unlike other Disney properties, there are only three hotels "on property" and they are all pretty expensive. I'm talking a minimum of $300-$500 a night! That is a crazy price for just a room to sleep and shower in. We decided to go with one of the neighbor hotels across the street. We went with the Best Western Stovalls Inn and had absolutely no complaints! We loved our hotel. It was about a 17 minute walk to and from the park (with a Starbucks in route that has mobile ordering 😉), and the room came with a fridge, microwave, pool, free breakfast and a gym!

Relaxing walk every day

We loved the restaurant directly next door - Coco's. The food is very good and very decently priced!

We stopped in for lunch. I got the sandwich, soup & salad lunch combo for $10 and it was perfect! Kids meals were $6 so it was a win for us.

Now onto the parks......

We started off with California Adventure first, and we were glad we did. It's not a very big park, I mean, it is - but it doesn't have very many attractions - which means that you could do a half day there and then park hop to the next park.. Immediately upon entering, I purchased Max Pass - and we were able to do everything within a couple hours before bouncing over to Disneyland Park for the rest of the afternoon.

We did the 3 day park hopper. I'm not going to lie. I was most excited about the food, lol! Disney World wins for the best park but as for the best food? Disneyland! On this trip, we utilized mobile ordering  a lot! We had that option when we went on our trip last summer and didn't use it - i don't know why! It's pretty damn convenient. You go on to the Disneyland app, order what you want from participating places, and your stuff is ready when you get up to the counter! (you get priority)

Here are some of our snacks and meals over at California Adventure 😛
* keep in mind - we shared everything so that we could try everything - I swear I didn't eat all of this on my own haha  *
I started off with the brioche french toast over at Flo's V8 cafe

After that, we got on all of the rides in Cars Land and then we made it over to the Cozy cone Motel for lunch. I was VERY excited to try the bacon mac & cheese cone and it was a disappointment! I was so sad, lol. It was just okay.

We also got the pretzel bites.

                                 The kids shared chicken drumsticks from Poultry Palace ...... 


                                                         ...and a "slightly annoyed" hot dog from Angry Dogs


Some other snacks we enjoyed.....

The best damn cookie you will ever eat! 


It's very true what they say - Disneyland churros & corn dogs are the best.

Before leaving the park, we stopped into Lamp Light Lounge for the famous lobster nachos and some other appetizers.

Potato skins - aaaaaamazing!

Lobster nachos & mini donuts - sooo good!

Disneyland Park:

This romper was realllllly comfortable!

We did the character breakfast at Plaza Inn. I will not do that again. There are supposed to be nearly 20 different characters here and there were only four. I don't think it was worth the money for just four characters. Especially ones we have already met. On a positive note, the food was really good. It was buffet style, exactly like The Crystal Palace in DisneyWorld. Another thing I really liked about Plaza Inn was that you pay when you enter, vs paying at the end and having to wait for your server to bring you your check. So once you're done, you can just go.

STAR WARS : Galaxy's Edge

Disclaimer- I've never seen any of the movies until recently. So therefore, I was never a Star Wars fan but oh my god! Galaxy's Edge is amazing! From all of the details they put into it, the cast members are really into their roles - i loved it!

Some eats & treats....

Beignets & Pommes Frites from Cafe Orleans

Imagination pink macaroon - We did not like this. It tasted like straight up pepto 😝 It was cute though, lol.

Pork Belly Skewers from Bengal Barbeque. Good- but very salty.

On the third day, we did breakfast at Carnation Cafe. Everything was great, reasonably priced, no complaints :)

Matterhorn macaroon from the Jolly Holiday bakery and the pineapple-raspberry swirl dole whip from Tropical Hideaway. Both were really good!

Gray stuff gateau from Red Rose Tavern and churros from the churro carts. We had lots of churros on this trip 😄

"It's a small world" ride. I am happy to say that it is just as equally annoying here. lol On a fun note- as soon as we got onto the boat for this ride, a bunch of camera crews pulled up next to us and were getting off the ride as we were getting on. Immediately following the camera crews, was security following around a couple. No one seemed to know who they were - except me - the tv junkie haha 😜 It was Twitch and Allison from Disney's fairytale weddings. I'm guessing they may have been filming for the upcoming season :)

I have to admit- i really liked Disneyland! I may even prefer Disneyland over Disneyworld. It's not as chaotic as the other park, and has a more relaxing feel.

Hopefully this helps some of you if you're thinking of taking the trip out there. We loved it! 

Make sure you're following me on instagram. I saved everything (and more!) to my Disneyland highlights.