Disneyland Resort: How Big Will Your Next Adventure Be?

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The Disneyland Resort, also known as, The Happiest Place on Earth, isn’t known for being the biggest of Disney Parks. It’s special because it’s the original place where Walt Disney put his imagination for us all to leave today and enter the world of yesterday, tomorrow, and fantasy.

How Big in Area is The Disneyland Resort?

How big is Disneyland Resort really, you ask? Well, the original Disney Park doesn’t come in as the smallest. Disneyland Park itself is the smallest of all Magic Kingdom-style parks, but with the 2001 addition of Disney California Adventure, it is now about 500 acres.

This is only counting the theme parks, but you also have the Downtown Disney District and the three Disneyland on-property hotels, the Disneyland Hotel, Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, and Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel.

All Three DLR Hotels
Credit: Disney

Compared to all the Disney Parks, Disneyland Resort comes in as the third-largest Disney Park. The smallest one being Hong Kong Disneyland followed by Disneyland Paris and Tokyo Disneyland. The two Disney Parks larger than Disneyland Resort are Shanghai Disneyland and its American sister Disney Park, the Walt Disney World Resort.

Even though the Disneyland Resort doesn’t cover a ton of space, there is a lot compacted into one area, so how would one keep from getting lost? The Disneyland app is the best place to start. You can easily start planning your Disneyland vacation prior to even arriving, by virtually looking through the map, and linking your park ticket. It will also show wait times, as well as, any dining reservations that you have.

Sleeping Beauty Castle
Credit: Disney

Size of Disneyland Resort vs. Disney World

Though the two American Disney Parks have similarities, they’re also pretty different! There’s quite a bit of a size jump when you go from the third largest of the Disneyland Resort to the second largest of the Walt Disney World Resort.

Disney World covers over 40 square miles with its four Disney Parks, Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney’s Animal Kingdom compared to Disneyland’s two theme parks. This space at Disney World also holds on-property hotels with six value hotel options, five moderate options, eight deluxe options, and 12 deluxe villa options.

Walt Disney World Resort Hotels

  • Disney’s All-Star Movies Resort
  • Disney’s All-Star Music Resort
  • Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort
  • Disney’s Art of Animation Resort
  • Disney’s Pop Century Resort
  • The Campsites at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort
  • Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort
  • Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort
  • Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter
  • Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – Riverside
  • The Cabins at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort
  • Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge
  • Disney’s Beach Club Resort
  • Disney’s BoardWalk Inn
  • Disney’s Contemporary Resort
grand floridian
Credit: Disney
  • Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
  • Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
  • Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
  • Disney’s Yacht Club Resort
  • Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort
  • Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
  • Copper Creek Villas & Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
  • Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Jambo House
  • Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Kidani Village
  • Disney’s Beach Club Villas
  • Disney’s BoardWalk Villas
  • Disney’s Old Key West Resort
  • Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows
  • Disney’s Riviera Resort
  • Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa
  • The Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
Bay Lake Tower Contemporary
Credit: Disney

As you can see, there are plenty more options and space at Disney World, but that doesn’t mean it’s for everyone. Some love the nostalgia and intimacy of the Disneyland Resort and that Park Hopping between its two parks are so much easier. It’s walking distance versus having to take some sort of transportation.

If a Guest wants to do separate days for each of the parks, Walt Disney World would take longer and be more costly. This could be why Disneyland has many more local Annual Passholders than Disney World as the latter caters more towards long-distance traveling vacationers. Although, it’s worthy to note that Disneyland’s Annual Passholders don’t just come from the Anaheim, Orange County area but out of state as well!

Annual Passport
Credit: Disney

For amenities, both pretty much include the same basic just with different options. Both equally great for adults and kids are the lodging, attractions, dining, and shopping. Walt Disney World too has its own place like Downtown Disney, and that’s Disney Springs.

Disneyland and Disney World both offer great inside and outside the theme park fun! As far as choosing between which coast to head to for your next Disney vacation, it really depends on what you’re looking for. Disneyland offers all the feelings from the foundation of Disney magic. Walt Disney World is not just a theme park, it’s The Most Magical Place on Earth with so many places to explore!

Credit: Disney

Here is a list of attractions that you can find at both Disneyland and Disney World, followed by many of the ones you’ll find at just Disney World.

Disneyland Resort has 91 attractions compared to Walt Disney World’s 171 attractions. Further down, you’ll see all the ones you can find at Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure in California.

Attractions at Both Disneyland and Walt Disney World

  • “it’s a small world”
  • Astro Orbitor
  • Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
  • Dumbo the Flying Elephant
  • Jungle Cruise
  • Buzz Lightyear’s Astro Blasters at Disneyland and Space Ranger Spin at Disney World
  • Grizzly River Run at Disneyland and Kali River Rapids at Disney World
  • Mark Twain Riverboat at Disneyland and Liberty Square Riverboat at Disney World
  • Mad Tea Party
  • Mickey’s PhilharMagic
  • Peter Pan’s Flight
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • King Arthur’s Carousel at Disneyland and Prince Charming Regal Carrousel at Disney World
  • Space Mountain
  • Splash Mountain
  • Haunted Mansion
disney legends
Credit: D23
  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
  • Tom Sawyer Island
  • Under the Sea – Journey of the Little Mermaid
  • Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room
  • Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run
  • Soarin’ Around the World
  • Star Tours- The Adventure Continue
  • Toy Story Mania!
  • Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance
  • Railroad
Credit: Disney

Attractions at Disney World

  • Avatar Flight of Passage
  • Country Bear Jamboree
  • Discovery Island Trails
  • Expedition Everest
  • Gorilla Falls Exploration Trail
  • It’s Tough to be a Bug!
  • Maharajah Jungle Trek
  • Na’vi River Journey
  • Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
  • The Animation Experience at Conservation Station
  • The Barnstormer
  • The Magic Carpets of Aladdin
  • The Oasis Exhibits
  • Tomorrowland Speedway
  • Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover
  • TriceraTop Spin
carousel of progress
Credit: Disney
  • Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress
  • Wilderness Explorers
  • Wildlife Express Train
  • Alien Swirling Saucers
  • Awesome Planet
  • Canada Far and Wide in Circle-Vision 360
  • Disney and Pixar Short Film Festival
  • Frozen Ever After
  • Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros
  • Impressions de France
  • Journey Into Imagination with Figment
  • Kidcot Fun Stops
  • Lightning McQueen’s Racing Academy
  • Living With the Land
  • Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway
  • Mission: SPACE
  • Reflections of China
  • Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith
  • Slinky Dog Dash
  • Spaceship Earth
  • Test Track
  • The American Adventure
  • The Seas With Nemo & Friends
Tower of Terror
Credit: Disney
  • The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
  • Vacation Fun – An Original Animated Short with Mickey & Minnie
  • Walt Disney’s Imagineering presents the EPCOT Experience
  • Walt Disney Presents
  • Swiss Family Treehouse
  • Aerophile- The World Leader in Balloon Flight
  • Affection Section
  • African Birds
  • African Elephants
  • African Hogs
  • African Lions
  • American Heritage Gallery
  • Ankole Cattle
  • Asian Small-Clawed Otters
  • Beauty and the Beast Sing-Along
  • Bijutsu-kan Gallery
  • Butterflies
  • Cinderella Castle
  • Conservation Station
  • Coral Reefs
  • Cotton-top Tamarins
  • Dino-Sue
  • Flamingos
  • Fossil Fun Games
  • Gallery of Arts and History
  • Gibbons
grace the gorilla 4
Credit: Disney
  • Giraffes
  • Gorillas
  • Hippopotamuses
  • Horses
  • House of the Whispering Willows
  • ImageWorks
  • Invertebrates
  • Komodo Dragons
  • Leave a Legacy
  • Manatees
  • Meerkats
  • Mexico Folk Art Gallery
  • Migratory Birds
  • Okapis
  • Palais du Cinema
  • Reef Fish
  • Rhinos
  • SeaBase
  • Sea Turtles
  • Sharks and Rays
  • Stave Church Gallery
  • Tigers
  • Tree of Life
  • Vintage Amphicar Tours
  • Vultures
  • Zebras
Credit: Disney

Differences between Disneyland and Disney California Adventure

If a roaming area is what you’re looking for, but you also want to have traditional memories of being at the Disneyland Resort, you may want to think about spending some time at Disney California Adventure. Although in size it’s smaller than Disneyland Park, it has fewer attractions which gives it more space to just hang out and relax.

Many adult Guests do find themselves hanging out at Disney California Adventure simply because it was the first place inside the Disneyland Resort parks to serve alcohol! Even though now Disneyland Park also serves alcohol at Oga’s Cantina at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, and pretty soon the Blue Bayou as well, Disney California Adventure has more places that serve alcohol.

There are places to grab a drink and lounge or Quick-Service spots where you can just grab a beer and go. Also at Disney California Adventure, there are more attractions that are thrilling, like roller coasters, which is great for adults and older children.

Pixar Pier
Credit: Disney

Though there is still plenty for kids to enjoy at Disney California Adventure, there’s so much more for the younger kids at Disneyland Park. From the slower attractions like Haunted Mansion, dark rides in Fantasyland, and Mickey’s Toontown, you can have those little ones tuckered out by an afternoon parade. There are also more opportunities to meet your favorite Disney character over where it all started with a mouse. Each California Disney theme park carries its own unique atmosphere for Disney fans of all ages to enjoy!

Here is a list of attractions at both of California’s Disneyland theme parks.

Attractions at Disneyland Park

  • Indiana Jones Adventure
  • Jungle Cruise
  • Tarzan’s Treehouse
  • Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room
  • Davy Crockett’s Explorer Canoes
  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
  • Splash Mountain
  • Alice in Wonderland
  • Casey Jr. Circus Train
  • Dumbo the Flying Elephant
  • “it’s a small world”
  • King Arthur Carrousel
  • Mad Tea Party
  • Matterhorn Bobsleds
could pinocchio change like snow white
Credit: Disney
  • Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride
  • Peter Pan’s Flight
  • Pinocchio’s Daring Journey
  • Sleeping Beauty Castle Walkthrough
  • Snow White’s Scary Adventures (now Snow White’s Enchanted Wish)
  • Storybook Land Canal Boats
  • Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
  • Frontierland Shootin’ Exposition
  • Mark Twain Riverboat
  • Pirate’s Lair on Tom Sawyer Island
  • Sailing Ship Columbia
  • The Disney Gallery
  • Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln
  • Main Street Cinema
  • Main Street Vehicles
  • Chip ‘n Dale Treehouse
  • Donald’s Boat
  • Gadget’s Go Coaster
Haunted Mansion
Credit: Disney
  • Goofy’s Playhouse
  • Mickey’s House and Meet Mickey
  • Minnie’s House
  • Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin
  • Haunted Mansion
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run
  • Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance
  • Astro Orbitor
  • Autopia
  • Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters
  • Disneyland Monorail
  • Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage
  • Space Mountain
  • Star Tours – The Adventures Continue
  • Star Wars Launch Bay
  • Disneyland Railroad
  • Fortune Tellers
Splash Mountain
Credit: Disney

Attractions at Disney California Adventure Park

  • Animation Academy
  • The Bakery Tour
  • Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT!
  • The Little Mermaid – Ariel’s Undersea Adventure
  • Mickey’s PhilharMagic
  • Monsters, Inc. Mike and Sulley to the Rescue!
  • Radiator Springs Racers
  • Soarin’ Around the World
  • Sorcerer’s Workshop
  • Toy Story Midway Mania!
  • Turtle Talk With Crush
  • Walt Disney Imagineering Blue Sky Cellar
  • Games of Pixar Pier
  • Golden Zephyr
  • Goofy’s Sky School
  • Grizzly River Run
Incredicoaster Sign
Credit: Disney
  • Incredicoaster
  • Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind
  • Jessie’s Critter Carousel
  • Jumpin’ Jellyfish
  • Luigi’s Rollickin’ Roadsters
  • Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree
  • Pixar Pal-A-Round
  • Radiator Springs Racers
  • Redwood Creek Challenge Trail
  • Silly Symphony Swings
Incredicoaster and Toy Story Midway Mania
Credit: Disney

Time Needed to Explore Disneyland Resort

Though Park Hopping in one day is an option, to have the best experience at the Disneyland Resort, two to three days would allow you to enjoy everything. Both parks have activities, attractions, and entertainment to enjoy morning, afternoon, and evening so one day for each park gives you a great opportunity to try and fit everything in.

If you have an extra day to spend, it’s also fun to explore the shopping and dining at the Downtown Disney District, as well as, some of the restaurants and bars at each Disneyland Resort hotel, like Trader Sam’s! There is a Downtown Disney station for the Disneyland monorail where you can use your park ticket to take a ride from outside the park to inside or vice versa.

Here’s a list of all the dining options at Disneyland!

  • Asian Street Eats
  • Ballast Point Brewing Co.
  • Black Tap Craft Burgers & Shakes
  • CrazyShake Window by Black Tap
  • Earl of Sandwich
  • Jamba
  • La Brea Bakery Cafe
  • Naples Ristorante e Bar
  • Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen Express
  • Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen
  • Salt & Straw
  • Starbucks
  • Starbucks West
  • Tortilla Joe’s
  • Uva Bar & Cafe
blue bayou
Credit: Disney
  • Wetzel’s Pretels
  • Alien Pizza Planet
  • Bengal Barbecue
  • Blue Bayou Restaurant
  • Cafe Orleans
  • Carnation Cafe
  • Character Dining
  • Churro Carts
  • Clarabelle’s
  • Daisy’s Diner
  • Docking Bay 7 Food and Cargo
  • Edelweiss Snacks
  • French Market Restaurant
  • Fresh Fruit Carts
  • Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor
  • The Golden Horseshoe
  • Harbour Galley
  • Hungry Bear Restaurant
blue and green milk
Credit: Disney
  • Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe
  • Kat Saka’s Kettle
  • Lemonade Carts
  • Market House
  • Maurice’s Treats
  • Milk Stand
  • Mint Julep Bar
  • Oga’s Cantina
  • Plaza Inn
  • Pluto’s Dog House
  • Popcorn Carts
  • Pretzel Carts
  • Rancho del Zocalo Restaurant
  • Red Rose Taverne
  • Refreshment Corner
  • River Belle Terrace
  • Ronto Roasters
  • Royal Street Veranda
  • Stage Door Cafe
  • Tiki Juice Bar
  • Tomorrowland Skyline Lounge
  • The Tropical Hideaway
  • Tropical Imports
  • Troubadour Tavern
turkey leg
Credit: Disney
  • Turkey Leg Carts
  • Award Wieners
  • Carthay Circle Lounge – Alfresco Dining
  • Smokejumpers Grill
  • Adorable Snowman Frosted Treats
  • Angry Dogs
  • Bayside Brews
  • Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta
  • Carthay Circle Restaurant
  • Churro Carts
  • Clarabelle’s Hand-Scooped Ice Cream
  • Cocina Cucamonga Mexican Grill
  • Corn Dog Castle
  • Cozy Cone Motel
  • Fairfax Market
  • Festival Foods Marketplace
  • Fiddler, Fifer & Practical Cafe
  • Fillmore’s Taste-In
  • Flo’s V8 Cafe
flo's v8 cafe
Credit: Disney
  • Fresh Fruit Carts
  • Ghirardelli Soda Fountain Chocolate Shop
  • Hollywood Lounge
  • Jack-Jack Cookie Num Nums
  • Lamplight Lounge
  • Lemonade Carts
  • Lucky Fortune Cookery
  • Mendocino Terrace
  • Pacific Wharf Cafe
  • Paradise Garden Grill
  • Popcorn Carts
  • Poultry Palace
  • Pretzel Carts
  • Rita’s Baja Blenders
  • Schmoozies!
  • Senor Buzz Churros
  • Sonoma Terrace
  • Studio Catering Co.
  • Turkey Leg Carts
  • Wine Country Trattoria
disneyland character
Credit: Disney
  • Character Dining
  • Classic Afternoon Tea at the Disneyland Resort
  • The Coffee House
  • Disney Princess Breakfast Adventures
  • Disney’s PCH Grill
  • GCH Craftsman Bar
  • GCH Craftsman Grill
  • Goofy’s Kitchen
  • Hearthstone Lounge
  • The Lounge at Steakhouse 55
  • Napa Rose
  • Napa Rose Lounge
  • The Sandbar
  • Steakhouse 55
  • Storytellers Cafe
  • Surfside Lounge
  • Tangaroa Terrace Tropical Bar & Grill
  • Trader Sam’s Enchanted Tiki Bar
Credit: Disney

Those vacationing to the Disneyland Resort often spend two days exploring each park. There have been lots of Annual Passholders at Disneyland that will visit for a few hours to ride an attraction or two and enjoy some of those Disney Resort foods. Disney is reimagining its Annual Passport Program for Disneyland as it does for older attractions.

When planning out your Disneyland Resort vacation, it’s good to take a look at common wait times and research dining options. With the Disneyland app, as mentioned before, you can keep track of all of that right from your phone. Also, ask a Cast Member if you ever have any questions when you’re at the parks. Oftentimes, they’ll have a bunch of tips and advice to make your trip extra magical!

World of Color
Credit: Disney

Walt Disney always said that Disneyland would never be complete as long as there is still imagination left. That remains to be true as Imagineers continue to develop new attractions and lands, as well as, re-imagining the older. So, there will continue to always been more to do and see at Disneyland as long as the innovation continues!

Is there something about Disneyland’s size that you didn’t know? Tell us in the comments!

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