IT IS HERE.
Halloween time in Disneyland and Disney California Adventure is a special time full of unique details and decor, special ride overlays, LOTS of holiday snacks, and epic merchandise.
Here’s a run down of all the things you must see, eat, and do while you’re in the parks between now and October 31st.
The Halloween snacks are here and I need so many days to try it all. Disney Food Blog is my go to source for all Disney Food news and they put together an amazing PDF of ALL the special Halloween snacks in the parks. I am pasting it here but this is in NO way my work – we are all benefitting from the magical DFB team here!
So far my favorite things on the list are
- Stone Vengeful Spirit IPA (of course this list starts with a San Diego IPA, do you know me at all?)
- Pumpkin Spice Mickey Beignets
- Lunch at the Paradise Garden Grill which is not explicitly Halloween so not on the DFB list, but is delicious Mexican food themed for the Coco “Plaza de la Familia” area. Justin had the burrito and I had the steak tacos and both were excellent!
We are all about the DCA beer culture, and the new beers on tap throughout the park are really pretty amazing for fall! These can also be seen above in DFB’s post but I wanted to make a few special call outs:
- Elysian’s the Great Pumpkin Ale at Hollywood Lounge is 8% – absolutely the best bang for your buck if you’re looking for a fun day
- Pizza Port’s Graveyard Pale Ale is an excellent San Diego Craft beer that I love
- There are several Oktoberfest style lagers throughout the park, so keep your eye peeled if you want that classic fall style
RADIATOR ‘SCREAMS’ HAUL-O-WEEN
Car’s Land got its first ever Halloween decor last year, and boy did they do it right. The details in this park are absolutely perfection, it is just as if the characters of Radiator Springs went through and prepared for the holiday. Spider webs from chains and wrenches, jack-o-lanterns from gas cans, and headstones from the grills on cars. Everything is so special!
The rides themselves don’t change, but there are music and theming changes for both Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree (which turns into Mater’s Graveyard JamBOOree) and Luigi’s Rollickin’ Roadsters (which becomes Luigi’s Honkin’ Haul-O-Ween). Both ride changes are very kid friendly, with simple music and decor changes.
There are 3 major ride changes during Halloween that you should know about:
- Haunted Mansion transitions to Haunted Mansion Holiday
This is a full ride overhaul from the traditional Haunted Mansion to a magical ride through the world of Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas. It is truly amazing but it is very, very popular so expect longer wait times. If you are coming after Halloween keep in mind that this specific layover stays through Christmas so don’t be sad if you miss it. 🙂
- Space Mountain transitions to Ghost Galaxy
In all honesty this ride gets much more scary during Halloween, and so if you have a little one who is jumpy around scary creatures, rider beware. These are not your typical friendly white fluffy ghosts, these are very terrifying looking, creatures projected throughout the ride, which is darker than your usual Space Mountain. I love it, but be careful with kiddos!
- Guardians of the Galaxy: Mission Breakout! becomes Monsters After Dark but ONLY after the sun sets each day
Again, this gets a little more frightening during Monsters After Dark. The music is loud, the ride is much darker, and all in all is a more intense experience. The story changes as well and the story is pretty amazing! I love the changes and it is absolutely worth doing twice in one day to catch the usual GotG in addition to Monsters After Dark, but again, beware with kids!
MAIN STREET AND BUENA VISTA STREET
Magical decor is found up and down both main streets in both parks. Special call outs include the Mickey Mouse Pumpkin on Main Street and the Headless Horseman statue in DCA. Don’t miss a quick photo pass with both locations!
ALSO all the characters are in costume when they are out on Main Street or Buena Vista Street! Seeing Mickey and the gang in their holiday attire is so much fun! Keep your eyes peeled as you enter both parks for Halloween character meet-and-greets. Mickey, Minnie, Daisy, Donald, Goofy, and Pluto all have a different Halloween costume on in each park. In Disneyland they are wearing their traditional Halloween costumes, but in DCA these are costumes that the character has ‘made’ themselves. You may also run into more villains during Halloween time on Main Street, including Cruella de Ville, the Queen of Hearts, and more! Taking the time to meet characters in both parks is well worth it, as they are quite different experiences between DL and DCA, but equally as special! Keep in mind that this does not apply to characters in their homes, so if you meet Mickey, Minnie, or Goofy in their houses in Toon Town they will be in classic outfits, not in Halloween costumes. Plan accordingly!
Look for all the MERCH! Halloween has sooo many specialty items including ears, shirts, spirit jerseys, light up necklaces, purses, balloons coffee mugs, home décor, souvenir popcorn buckets and beverage cups, Halloween costumes, YOU NAME IT. If you like the spooky, there is so much for you!
Do you have any questions about planning a trip to Disneyland Resort during Halloween? Anything you love about Halloween in the parks that I didn’t mention? Message me or leave a comment!