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Published: June 29th 2017
Geo: 33.8327, -117.916
Who would have thought? Disneyland Paris > Disneyland Anaheim. In comparison, Paris makes the US version look tame, outdated and childish. Having said that, we still had a memorable day, mostly for the better. It wasn't all smooth sailing though, things certainly didn't start perfectly. We woke at 7, had breakfast and left the hotel just before 8, aiming to make the opening of Disneyland at 10am. We took the 20minute metro ride to Union, arriving at 8.30. Here, we had to buy regional train tickets out to Anaheim, costing $30ea return.
We couldn't believe we had to wait not 5, 10 or 30 minutes, but 80, for the next train towards Disneyland. Plus, that train was to be delayed 15minutes. If that's not painful enough, we were about to be introduced to a stupid seating policy. After everyones seated, the driver makes an announcement; the bottom level of the train is only for the disabled. Further, all four seat arrangements are only allowed for groups of 3 or more? Even though these arrangements consist of 80% of the seating, the train is not half full, but most passengers are singles or couples. This meant the ticket inspector bluntly
forcing half the passengers to move seats, and have to wander through carriages to find a 'valid' spot, and most 4 seaters being vacant. Stupidddd.
Finally, we arrived in Anaheim and caught an ART Shuttle from the station to Disneyland, getting in around 11.20pm. We didn't get off to a flier, our first experience, the 'Tiki Room' was extremely lame. Our second, the impressive looking Indiana Jones ride broke down as we reached the end of the line. Next, the Pirates of the Caribbean ride, which started to 'turn the tide' for the day. We had a delicious lunch of steak gumbo and New Orleans fritters (pumpkin and banana), before heading for the Haunted Mansion. This was undergoing a special Halloween theme, like many sections of the park. Worth noting, is the majority of rides are the same as Disneyland Paris, and of those, most are identical in design, or at least very similar.
From the Haunted House, on towards Critter Country. It was close by, and Splash Mountain sounded fun. Well it was fun, but not the aftermath. We both came off the ride looking like we suffered from wandering bladder syndrome. Soaked, from waist to toe, my jeans clinging to
my legs and shoes squelching with every step. Next we waddled through Winnie the Pooh, Pinocchio, Mr Toads Wild Ride and Rodger Rabbit. With our clothes about 6% dry, we decided we were due more self punishment. The Matterhorn bobsled ride, a lot of fun, riding a coaster in and out of a frozen mountain side, finishing with a splash and re-moistening our garments.
Well, soaked we might as well submerge ourselves entirely.. in a submarine for a Finding Nemo themed adventure. Well, adventure is a strong word, maybe a moderately entertaining, slow paced, scenic rest would be more accurate. Complete of course with the most cringable and borderline offensive American style attempt on Australian accents and stereotypes. *Shudder* 'Dive, mate, dive for Straya!'
Tomorrowland included some of the more entertaining rides and experiences. First, Buzz Lightyears laser blast, a carbon copy of our experience in Paris. Then, things got weird.. for 'Captain EO', a show, a cheesy 4D 80s throwback tribute to Michael Jackson as a 'Space Captain' of a ragtag group of ridiculously designed alien crew. Nat got stuck behind the worlds biggest afro hair, having to shuffle aside seats for a view.I think the 3d goggles must have been
laced with LSD, as Ive no idea what on earth was going on with the absurd and lame characters and storyline. Some cool MJ tunes though.
In the line for Space Mountain and guess what? It broke down. This time however it worked in our favour, many bailing and having us move forward patiently just in time for ride to restart. There was a Halloween theme on this ride as well, and whilst good overall, paled in comparison to Paris. Next, Star Tours, a 3d Star Wars themed shuttle simulator. The story and quality of simulator here definitely eclipsed the Paris version. A good ride.
Last, after sunset, a second attempt at the Indiana Jones ride. Success! It was now up and running, and worth the wait. Ride of the day for me, the theme, story and queue adding to the experience, a rough jeep ride through a cursed tomb. Nats bad luck continued, being stuck behind someone with the worlds biggest hat, electing to hold it rather than remove it, restricting visibility for the both of us. We enjoyed the ride so much, we rode it a second time before grabbing chilli dogs and a pretzel for dinner and enjoying a
spectacular fireworks display to finish the day.
We arrived back at Anaheim station via ART Shuttle around 8.40pm. Next train to LA, 11.09pm. Ah.. what? Really? Nothing to link Disneyland customers to LA? Nope. We met another Australian couple stranded in the same circumstances. They haggled a cab driver and kindly offered us a free trip back to Union Station to accompany them. Deal. So then here we are, back at the hotel. We had a great day, but still cant believe the stupidity and inefficiency of American transport. Its worse than Melbourne's Metro and that's saying something. Universal Studios tomorrow, for our last full day and night of our time overseas for this trip. Heres hoping for a good final day. Hopefully that Michael Jackson Captain EO thing doesn't give me nightmares.
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