Disney’s California Adventure 09/05/2014

Disney Parks are always top notch in terms of attractions and theming, however when California Adventure opened it was classified as a massive disappointment. The park seemed to cater more to teens and thrill seekers than families like Disney has been known for. However when Cars Land was announced it was clear Disney had not given up on California Adventure and had clear aspirations for cleaning up the park and bringing it up to that high Disney standard. So if you can’t do it right the first time, throw a bunch of money at it and try try again. 😛 So how’s Disney’s California Adventure today after all the improvements? Let’s find out!

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I’m here at California Adventure today!

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The entrance area to the park.

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Reminds me of the entrance to Hollywood Studios in a way, and as you can see there’s street cars that run along those rails.

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After getting our Fast Passes to Radiator Springs Racers (The biggest attraction in the park) we proceeded into Flik’s Fun Fair.

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The area is based off of A Bugs Life movie and it’s decently themed.

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And here’s the first ride of the day, a bug like monorail?

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Not sure what to call this ride but you sit in the cars and it takes you around in a circle past some theming.

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Like this.

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Into the cookie box we go!

Who wants a giant cookie?

Who wants a giant cookie?

Someone took a bite of that cup cake.

Someone took a bite of that cup cake.

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Next up A Bugs Life bumper cars!

Though since this is Disney the bumper cars move incredibly slow and barely even bump each other.

Though since this is Disney the bumper cars move incredibly slow and barely even “bump” each other.

Until next time.

Until next time.

Now for a real ride!

Now for a real ride!

The theming is always top notch on the Twilight Towers of Terror.

The theming is always top notch on the Twilight Towers of Terror.

You're about to step into an elevator.

You’re about to step into an elevator.

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Step in.

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Spooky ghosts on the way up.

Where'd they go?

Where’d they go?

Entering the Twilight Zone.

Entering the Twilight Zone.

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Doors open and here we go!

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“A warm welcome back to those of you who made it, and a friendly word of warning, something you won’t find in any guidebook. The next time you check into a deserted hotel on the dark side of Hollywood, make sure you know just what kind of vacancy you’re filling. Or you may find yourself a permanent resident… of the Twilight Zone.”

The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror is my favorite Disney attraction in any Disney park. The theming is top notch, the ride is very thrilling, there's just something for everyone. A true Disney classic in my book.

The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror is my favorite Disney attraction in any Disney park, if you couldn’t tell by the shirt. 😛 The theming is top notch, the ride is very thrilling, there’s just something for everyone. A true Disney classic in my book.

Monsters Inc dark ride anyone?

Monsters Inc dark ride anyone?

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Monstropolis! Notice the empty line, another reason why I love Disneyland, it’s not packed end to end like Disney World.

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Aww they’re on their first date how cute.

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Boo? Where’s a boo?

Hey look Boo's door!

Hey look Boo’s door!

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That smiley Randal!

Well we got Boo back safely but someone is always watching... always watching...

Well we got Boo back safely but someone is always watching… always watching…

Muppets anyone?

Muppets anyone?

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The pre show room was also very very empty. You were able to sit on the floor without fear of anyone stepping on you. You could never do this at Disney World!!!

Let's start the show!

Let’s start the show!

Muppet Vision 3D is a really dated attraction, but it’s still fun. Though if any attraction is in desperate need of updating it’s definitely this one.

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Time to enter Radiator Springs?

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Walking down the streets of Cars Land, the crown jewel of the major updates to this park.

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And for the star headline attraction it’s Radiator Springs Racers! A dark ride, high speed car ride using the same ride system as Test Track over at Epcot in Disney World.

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Here we go into the canyons.

The scenery at the beginning of the ride is just beautiful.

The scenery at the beginning of the ride is just beautiful.

Slow down there folks!

Slow down there folks!

I'm gonna fix you guys up before you go racing.

I’m gonna fix you guys up before you go racing.

Alright let's have a fair race guys.

Alright let’s have a fair race guys.

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The finale of the ride after the dark ride elements is a race against another car, it’s always random as to which car wins so hang on tight!

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Here we go!

And we won! Lightning McQueen is there to congratulate us of course.

And we won! Lightning McQueen is there to congratulate us of course.

Radiator Springs Racers is an amazing ride, as well it should be for costing $200 million dollars, but all in all it makes a great addition to Disney’s California Adventure and definitely cements the park as a must visit destination now.

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Don’t worry if there’s a fire, Radiator Springs Fire Department has you covered.

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The rest of cars land is also neat and has some great theming to check out.

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So we wandered around and stumbled onto this bakery tour. Hmm let’s check it out.

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Mickey bread!

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It’s a real working bakery and Rosie O Donnel is one of your guides on how the baking process works.

Mmmm fresh bread!

Mmmm fresh bread!

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It was time for lunch so we headed for Downtown Disney.

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We decided on Rainforest Cafe, although this one was kinda lame compared to other Rainforest Cafe’s I’ve been to. So recommendation eat somewhere else besides Rainforest Cafe when at Disneyland.

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They did have Dory in the tank though. 😛

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Looking down past Downtown Disney at the Disneyland Hotel. Notice the lack of people again.

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A look of the layout of the place.

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My other favorite part of Disneyland Resort as compared to Disney World, you got Disneyland on the left and…..

...Disney's California Adventure on the right.

…Disney’s California Adventure on the right. Well let’s head back in shall we?

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Resuming with a visit to Condor Flats.

Condor Flats is being removed from the park by summer of 2015. Soarin’ will still be in the park but it is currently getting a rumored upgraded screens and sound. So the whole Condor Flats section will be combined with Grizzly Peak into a Grizzly Peak National Park area of the park. I think this is definitely an upgrade and has a more consistent theme, since Soarin’ was the only ride anchoring the Condor Flats area anyway.

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Hmm wonder what’s in that hangar over there…

Could it be Soarin?!?!?

Could it be Soarin?!?!?

Some of the destinations we'll be Soarin to today, this is the original version of the ride at Epcot but with almost no wait! You'll never see that at Epcot.

Some of the destinations we’ll be Soarin to today, this is the original version of the ride at Epcot but with almost no wait! You’ll never see that at Epcot.

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Next up we found a pretty neat adventure trail that reminded me of Disney classic such as the Swiss Family Robinson Tree House at Magic Kingdom.

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They were plenty of trees and….

Plenty of nets to climb on!

Plenty of nets to climb on!

The key is don't fall down.

The key is don’t fall down.

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Neat little ranger station in the area.

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Plenty of places to explore in this area, definitely a hidden gem of the park.

Is that a Grizzly Mountain I spy over there?

Is that a Grizzly Mountain I spy over there?

After exploring Grizzly Peak we stumbled upon the entrance to Paradise Pier and some live street entertainment.

After exploring Grizzly Peak we stumbled upon the entrance to Paradise Pier and some live street entertainment.

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These guys were great! Funny and entertaining, also great costumes.

At the end of the show they had all the kids do the Army Men pledge which was to listen to their parents and most of all have fun!

At the end of the show they had all the kids do the Army Men pledge which was to listen to their parents and most of all have fun!

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And there it is California Screamin’ in all its glory over the lake.

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How about we go further in and take a look?

Ready to launch in 3...2...1...

Ready to launch in 3…2…1…

Blast off!

Blast off!

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California Screamin’ is full of launches and is overall a great long ride. Yeah it’s not themed much like other Disney coasters but its a great experience and definitely has that boardwalk coaster feel.

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Holy cow look at all those pipes.

Gone though are the Mickey ears that used to occupy the loop area of the ride and in it's place a Paradise Pier sign.

Gone though are the Mickey ears that used to occupy the loop area of the ride and in it’s place a Paradise Pier sign.

There's no lift but instead magnets to bring you up the hill.

There’s no lift but instead magnets to bring you up the hill.

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Let’s not forget the tunnels on the ride. Great fun!

So how about we go for a ride?

So how about we go for a ride?

Again California Screamin’ is a great ride one of the better Disney roller coasters in my opinion, fun for all ages not too scary but also not too boring either.

Toy Story Mania! Unlike the Florida version there's not much of a line so we don't get to hear much of Mr. Potato Head talk to guests waiting in line.

Toy Story Mania! Unlike the Florida version there’s not much of a line so we don’t get to hear much of Mr. Potato Head talk to guests waiting in line.

See look no line! This never happens in Florida!

See look no line! This never happens in Florida!

Well that was fun how about we check out Aladdin the best Disney stage show I’ve seen to date.

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Jarfar telling Aladdin to go fetch the lamp.

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Very high production values and huge sets!

Jarfar trying to take Jasmine for himself.

Jarfar trying to take Jasmine for himself.

Don't worry though Aladdin comes riding in on an elephant courtesy of the Genie.

Don’t worry though Aladdin comes riding in on an elephant courtesy of the Genie.

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Prince Ali to save the day!

I can show the world shinning shimmering splendid.

I can show the world shining shimmering splendid. Tell me, princess, now when did you last let your heart decide? A whole new world!

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However all is not well as Jarfar has to mess a few things up for everyone by rubbing the lamp.

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He commands the Genie to make him an all powerful Genie.

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And it looks gloom, till he’s sucked back into the lamp.

Now what to do with that pesky bird?

Now what to do with that pesky bird?

Happily ever after.

Happily ever after.

Again can’t say enough about the Aladdin show at California Adventure, it’s easily the best stage show I’ve ever seen. I really wish they had this at Disney World as well.

Little Mermaid anyone?

Little Mermaid anyone?

Who's ready to board their clamshell?

Who’s ready to board their clamshell?

It's definitely a colorful ride.

It’s definitely a colorful ride.

And of course here's Ariel.

And of course here’s Ariel.

Ursula shows up and...

Ursula shows up and…

Happily ever after? Yeah the ride ends that quick.

Happily ever after? Yeah the ride ends that quick.

But don't forget the fireworks!

But don’t forget the fireworks!

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And dancing fish. I have no problem with the ride being short my only thing is Ursula does nothing for the story of the ride, she’s just their to look at once and that’s it. They could have done much more for her character on the ride.

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It was time to head back to the Pier for a crazy ferris wheel.

Mickey's Fun Wheel!

Mickey’s Fun Wheel! Now the crazy thing is some of those cabins are not stationary, see the red oval rails? The cabins roll along the rails while the wheel spins.

And they swing a lot! So let's see if this makes me puke.

And they swing a lot! So let’s see if this makes me puke.

Uh oh getting closer.

Uh oh getting closer.

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They did provide barf bags how very nice of them.

Well there's no escaping. But hey there's California Screamin' again!

Well there’s no escaping. But hey there’s California Screamin’ again!

Well it didn’t make me puke, but it was not an enjoyable experience in the moving cabins. Definitely passing on this one next time, how about something a little more tame like….

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King Triton’s Carousel.

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Nice little fountains around the carousel.

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Time for one last coaster?

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Goofy’s Sky School is a standard wild mouse with a poor attempt at a theme.

Well at least we learned to fly.

Well at least we learned to fly.

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Yeah not much to look at on this coaster. Definitely an unexciting part of the park.

Well how about a parade?

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Parade time!

Crazy monsters from Monster's University.

Crazy monsters from Monster’s University.

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Sully riding the bike.

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How old is a Sea Turtle?

 

And here's those Army Men again.

And here’s those Army Men again.

And the rest of the Toy Story crew.

And the rest of the Toy Story crew.

With an appearance from Lightning McQueen.

With an appearance from Lightning McQueen.

And Mater!

And Mater!

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And that concludes the Pixar Play parade!

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Upon getting ready to leave the park there was nice band playing near the front.

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Time to go 😦

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Come back soon!

Disney’s California Adventure is a great park now, there’s still a few rough areas such as Goofy’s Sky School but with the addition of Cars Land and other planned upgrades it is definitely on par with other Disney parks now. While I still prefer the original Disneyland to California Adventure they both make a great package that I would visit any day over the four parks in Florida. Gotta stick with the originals. 😛

 

 

 

 

 

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