Growing up, I was a huge Disney geek and dreamed of one day running the company. When I moved to California, I fully expected to spend every day at the Happiest Place on Earth!
Of course, that didn’t happen. In fact, I think up until this summer I’d actually spent more time at Disneyland Resort before I moved out west than I did after. ^^;
That said, Ariel is still my #1 waifu and when the new “dark ride” I’d been waiting over 20 years for finally opened, I had to go back. Armed with a 3-Day Park Hopper Ticket, I was off to Atlantica (aka Anaheim CA)!
The first day I went to the theme park was the day after the attraction opened, Saturday, 4 June 2011. I’d thought about going on Friday, but I had work. I also don’t have an Annual Passport, so I wouldn’t have been able to buy any of the exclusive items anyway.
I saw a sign in one of the gift shops that said there was going to be a Ride Product Debut and Signing the next Saturday, so of course I had to go back on 11 June to check that out. I’m not an early riser so it was a struggle to get there during the signing hours, but I did it!
The next few weekends were very busy, including Summer Geekation, FriendCon (aka Anime Expo ^^ ), and a post-AX party with friends. Good thing the pass didn’t expire for 45 days instead of the usual 15! But time was running out, so I planned my third trip for Saturday, 16 July. Wow, I always do everything last minute! ^^;
Ride photos from The Little Mermaid – Ariel’s Undersea Adventure were really hard to get since it was dark and the clamshell carriages (and Audio Animatronics!) never stopped moving. Also because I was shooting video at the same time with my other hand. xD;
I have to admit that I was pretty disappointed the first time I rode it, though. Perhaps I was expecting too much? I did ride it a few more times over the summer and it grew on me somewhat. Maybe I need to ride it with my younger cousins and see it through their eyes.
Had been thinking about hitting up Walt Disney World next year since the ride will be opening there in late 2012, but this takes the wind out of my sails a bit because the ride will be exactly the same.
But according to the miniature model of the New Fantasyland at D23 Expo (EDIT: blog post here!), the surrounding area at WDW is supposed to be more immersive, featuring Eric’s castle and a statue of Ariel instead of just a Victorian Exposition-style building. Maybe it’ll even have a gift shop. 😀 Ah, we’ll see.
While I did ride Ariel’s Undersea Adventure quite a few times, that’s not all I did! I got to see the water show World of Color. Me and my camera got soaked! Dx
The new Star Tours: The Adventures Continue also opened the same day as Ariel’s Undersea Adventure. I’m not a huge Star Wars fan, so I only rode it once. It seemed to be the same as the old ride with a few new bells and whistles.
The refurbished it’s a small world is a rather tame ride, but you can’t help be cheered by it. Plus, there are now classic Disney characters hidden throughout!
Mickey’s Soundsational Parade was a new parade they had during the summer. It featured Ariel among other characters, so you know I had to check it out! In fact, I chased this float down Main Street USA! xD
According to the signage, the parade finished it’s run in early September. However, you can watch it in its entirety on my YouTube Channel! 😉
Disneyland Park and California Adventure are always changing. I’m glad I got a chance to visit them both this summer. Hopefully I’ll be able to go back again “real soon”!
This is just a small portion of the over 2000 (!) photos I took during my three days at the Disneyland Resort this summer. Videos of select attractions and shows are also available on my YouTube Channel!