Pictures: Christmas Has Started at Disneyland Resort

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Finally, Christmas has started at Disneyland Resort. Normally a lot of people scoff at Disney starting their holiday celebration in early November, but as this nightmarish year comes to a close I think everyone is ready for the warm embrace of Christmastime. Let’s take a look at some of Disneyland and Disney California Adventure’s decorations.

Disneyland’s Christmas tree is huge and glorious. It’s comically large (it’s just 17 feet shorter than the park’s icon, Sleeping Beauty Castle) but that’s part of what makes it so great. The tree has hundreds of lights and over 1,800 ornaments.

Next to the tree is the park’s flagpole and dedication plaque, which are surrounded by beautiful poinsettia plants.

During the holidays Sleeping Beauty Castle is transformed into Sleeping Beauty’s Winter Castle. I’m a fan of the snow on the spires.Stores up and down Main Street, U.S.A. have great looking garlands attached, as well as various Christmas decorations in the windows. Here you can see the lamp in Walt’s apartment has been replaced with a miniature Christmas tree.

The Partner’s statue surrounded by poinsettia plants.

The Dapper Dans are in their Christmas outfits, and can be heard singing a variety of Christmas songs during their sets.

New Orleans Square looks nice and festive with its Mardi Gras-themed Christmas decorations.

The Jingle Cruise may not have returned this year, but you can still find a jungle-themed Christmas tree near its queue.

"it's a small world" holiday“it’s a small world” Holiday, arguably the best holiday offering for many people, is a drop dead must-do. It gets transformed top to bottom for Christmas, almost to the point where it’s a completely different ride. The facade is covered in thousands of Christmas lights, which looks incredible at night.

Of course there is a plethora of Disneyland holiday merchandise available in almost every shop. Including a ugly Christmas sweater of version of the park’s popular Spirit Jersey shirts. I especially liked the Chip & Dale nutcrackers.

This festive ornament stein can be found at most of the resort’s quick service restaurants.

I’ll be updating this post as I eat more of the special holiday food items that are available. The first item I tried was this Barbacoa Torta ($12.99) from Rancho Del Zocalo. It’s big, messy, and delicious.

I can never say enough good things about Disneyland’s candy chefs. Just look at these beautiful desserts.

Over at DCA, the popular Festival of Holidays event has returned. It features multi-cultural entertainment, as well as a “Festive Foods Marketplace” with tasty, yet expensive, sample sized portions of food items, desserts, and alcohol. I haven’t tried any of these items this year, but many of them are the same as last year. See the video embedded below to watch the Brickers from Disney Tourist Blog and I taste test almost every dessert item.

DCA’s tree matches Buena Vista Street’s 1920s theme perfectly. On it you’ll find garlands and period-appropriate ornaments. It’s a beautiful tree.One of my favorite items under the tree is this miniature recreation of Walt’s barn.
The Red Car Trolley gets decked out for Christmas as well. Cars Land gets a huge amount of Christmas decorations, including the popular Snowy the Snow Car photo-op.Garlands made of car parts run up and down Cars Land’s main street. New for 2017 are Mater’s Jingle Jamboree and Luigi’s Joy to the Whirl. Besides new festive music, there’s not much to these seasonal overlays. However, the new songs are fun and catchy.Cozy Cone Motel has this cone Christmas tree out front.  The Horn-O-Plenty that was added to Cars Land during Halloween has been decorated for Christmas as well.   Like Disneyland, DCA also has some limited time holiday food offerings. It was sold out the day I was taking these pictures, but a must try for me is this Yule Log donut at Schmoozies.

My absolute favorite thing that Disneyland Resort does during the holidays is Viva Navidad over in DCA. It’s a wonderful high energy show that is packed with enthusiastic performers and great music. It’s not a parade, even though it is performed on part of DCA’s parade route near Goofy’s Sky School. The best spot is in the middle, near the Bayside Brews beer stand. Arrive about 15 minutes early if you want a prime spot.

There’s so much more that I don’t have room for in this post, such as seasonal musical acts, Disneyland’s long running Christmas Fantasy Parade, food, and more. Check out our blog post for a rundown of everything. But trust me, it’s all worth seeing. Disney goes all out for Christmas. You can pretty much not ride anything but still make a full day of seeing and doing Christmas things. What’s your favorite thing about Christmas at Disneyland? Let me know in the comments below.

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Guy Selga Jr.

Disneyland writer for and co-author of the Unofficial Guide to Disneyland. Also a Disneyland local and appreciator of Disney theme park history. Twitter and Instagram: @guyselga

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