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View Full Version : Just how crazy is Christmas at DL?



Skunker
07-27-2005, 12:12 PM
Ok, so now that I have driven myself nuts over planning our trip, I may not be able to get the time off when I thought....so am I nuts to think about going over Christmas break??? Just how crowded and crazy is it? Enough to ruin my trip? I should note that I've been to DL twice in August and once in July and it didn't bother me. I have gone in Sept. as well and enjoyed the lighter crowds then.

Help!

phoenixfire2k5
07-27-2005, 12:15 PM
Ok, so now that I have driven myself nuts over planning our trip, I may not be able to get the time off when I thought....so am I nuts to think about going over Christmas break??? Just how crowded and crazy is it? Enough to ruin my trip? I should note that I've been to DL twice in August and once in July and it didn't bother me. I have gone in Sept. as well and enjoyed the lighter crowds then.

Help!

Might be pretty crowded. I know that about a year ago or so, the park reached capacity on Christmas Day and closed the gates for a while. With the 50th going on, it is difficult to predict what the crowds might be like. Rumors are going on that the xmas parade will be moved over to DCA this year. But like I said, its difficult to predict. It might be average or more. Crowded on the weekends, and somewhat busy during the week.

DisneyDustin22
07-27-2005, 12:20 PM
First week or two of December wont be too bad. I went last year around December 9th I believe, park was almost empty. It was great. Very little waiting for anything. I also went on Christmas Eve, there were crowds, but not as bad as I expected. I highly recommend going on Christmas Eve if you can, the mood as surreal. Everyone in the park seemed to have the highest spirits. All night long you could hear guests guests wishing eachother Merry Christmas. In lines, all the kids were double checking with their parents that Santa knew what hotel they were at. It was just a day you could never forget. Definately not your typical day at Disneyland. I dont think I saw one employee who looked like they were unhappy about working on Christmas Eve. Overall it was my best experience at Disneyland ever.

phoenixfire2k5
07-27-2005, 12:24 PM
In lines, all the kids were double checking with their parents that Santa knew what hotel they were at.

LOL!

Skunker
07-27-2005, 12:49 PM
Do you think it would be less busy to go the week before Christmas, rather than the week of/after Christmas? How about Thanksgiving week, would that be about the same?

phoenixfire2k5
07-27-2005, 12:52 PM
You definitly don't want to go the week after Christmas. This is leading up to New Years, and with Christmas vacation going on and everything, it'll be pretty crowded. Thanksgiving week shouldn't be too bad. But Thanksgiving weekend is when the festivities usually being, like mainly the parade. So the crowds will be more than average.

evrythngwmn
07-27-2005, 12:52 PM
Do you think it would be less busy to go the week before Christmas, rather than the week of/after Christmas? How about Thanksgiving week, would that be about the same?

December 25 until the Monday following New Years day is the busiest point of the Christmas season. The weekend of that week in particular is most busy. You're better off going during one of the weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

biolabetty
07-27-2005, 12:54 PM
We went 4 times last December, twice toward the beginning, then around the 14th, and again on the 23rd. The 23rd was the worst we had ever seen at DL. It was worse than when we had gone in the middle of July that year, so we went on about 3 rides and then walked into DTD to get away from the crowds. We did take the holiday tour, and got great seating for the Christmas parade, but I would never go that close to Christmas again. The 14th was the best. The park did close at 8:00, but it was pretty much a walk on for all of the rides.

leotatoombs
07-27-2005, 01:00 PM
Ok, so now that I have driven myself nuts over planning our trip, I may not be able to get the time off when I thought....so am I nuts to think about going over Christmas break??? Just how crowded and crazy is it? Enough to ruin my trip? I should note that I've been to DL twice in August and once in July and it didn't bother me. I have gone in Sept. as well and enjoyed the lighter crowds then.

Help!
Because christmas is I think now the #1 time of year to go! I Always looked forward to workin'/& or visiting around and on christmas eve & day! but it has gotten bad!!! I agree with disneydustin I believe in that the first two weeks of holiday season is a great time to go otherwise I would say stay away!!!(and I thought 4th of july weekend was bad) not as bad as the christmas season!!! you have to have a fastpass just to get on I.A.S.W.!!! christmas is the only season where this happens! you can't even get near it especially with the parade goin' on! although Christmas eve is the chillest day I think if you are goin' People do seem a lot nicer & courteous that night! But Because of theming of rides for x-mas it gets crazier every year!!! especially since they don't wait for thankgiving to transform park!!! every time in the last five years I've visited near christmas day, partners who go with me always want to leave early! christmas at d-land to me anymore I call miserable holidays at the happiest place on earth!!!! :eek:

phoenixfire2k5
07-27-2005, 01:08 PM
It used to be just the xmas parade and main street decorated. Then they transformed Small World. Then New Orleans. Then came the Haunted Holiday. And then the xmas fireworks. Yes, it is getting more and more crowded every xmas. And as I stated before, it'll be difficult to predict what it will be like with the 50th celebration going on. There is one thing that the previous posts have forgotten to mention. The first weekend of December (and this year it will include that Friday) is when they have their annual candlelight procession. Now, this is an AWESOME and powerful show. But it also attracts a very large crowd. If you do not want to hassle the crowd, and don't care to see it, I recommend staying away from the park that weekend. But I do highly recommend this show. It only shows one weekend a year and it is totally amazing!!! Last years show almost brought me to tears because of the awesome power of their voices. If you do decide to see it, you need to get their early. It is a must see!!

Skunker
07-27-2005, 01:15 PM
Ok, so Christmas break seems to be out at this point - I don't want to fight those crowds. How about the days PRIOR to Thanksgiving, say November 19 - 23/24? My son has that entire week off school, so if we went that week, but left before Thanksgiving weekend, how would that be?
I really appreciate all the input!

phoenixfire2k5
07-27-2005, 01:18 PM
That might be a good week to go. The fireworks should be going by then. Not sure about the xmas parade though. That doesn't usually start until Thanksgiving. The same with photo stops with Santa.

pisces
07-27-2005, 03:40 PM
It didn't seem bad to me last year.

I encountered no crowds the week between Christmas and NY.

However, there were heavy rains, and the Tsunami........

I don't know if it'll be like that this year.

John Wayne Airport
07-27-2005, 04:58 PM
I went on the weekend of December 18/19 last year and it was very very crowded. It was worth it though because of the Christmas decorations.

OregonGary
07-27-2005, 10:06 PM
We went a week before Christmas and then again on Christmas day last year. The week before wasn't bad, but were told that the park reached capacity and closed for a while on Christmas day. We enjoyed ourselves the week before Christmas, even though the park was fairly busy, but on Christmas day it was so full we at the end wished we hadn't gone.

stinkerbell
07-27-2005, 10:38 PM
We went the week between Christmas and New Years this last year, like pisces. We looooved it!! I'd been forewarned for eons that it's the busiest week of the year, super crowded, blah, blah, blah.

But that wasn't the case. It was comfortable, it rained heavily at some points (but not constantly or steadily), and we had the best time ever! We generally go in April or October to avoid crowds. We all thought it was one of the best trips we've had in years.

We're going mid-December this year for my daughter's birthday. Can't wait!!

phoenixfire2k5
07-27-2005, 10:40 PM
We went the week between Christmas and New Years this last year, like pisces. We looooved it!! I'd been forewarned for eons that it's the busiest week of the year, super crowded, blah, blah, blah.

But that wasn't the case. It was comfortable, it rained heavily at some points (but not constantly or steadily), and we had the best time ever! We generally go in April or October to avoid crowds. We all thought it was one of the best trips we've had in years.

We're going mid-December this year for my daughter's birthday. Can't wait!!

I think the major factor in this besides the weather, was because of the terrible and huge tragedy over in southeast Asia. When news got out about this after Christmas, I think a lot of people just didn't feel up to going to Disneyland because there were so many people that had lost loved ones over there or were just not found yet.

stinkerbell
07-27-2005, 10:48 PM
Perhaps. We didn't even know about it until after New Years. We were definitely on vacation, with no TV on. Had no clue!

But I think if people already had their Disneyland vacation reserved and they were on their way there, wouldn't they stick with their vacation plans? I'm not sure the tsunami was a factor. And from what I've always read online, the local AP holders tend to shy away that week.

evrythngwmn
07-28-2005, 02:40 AM
I think this past Christmas season is not a good gauge. As has been mentioned, last year it did rain quite a bit and brought crowd levels down. Thinking of 02 and 03, I stick behind what I said before of the days following Christmas being more crowded than early December.

Oh, and I just did a search on "Christmas Crowds" and found an interesting thread started by BornieoTheLoveBug titled Park Visit 12/13/2003. I don't know how to link it but think it would be a good one to check out.

tinkerbelle901
07-28-2005, 03:03 AM
Ok, so Christmas break seems to be out at this point - I don't want to fight those crowds. How about the days PRIOR to Thanksgiving, say November 19 - 23/24? My son has that entire week off school, so if we went that week, but left before Thanksgiving weekend, how would that be?
I really appreciate all the input!

Ginakai,
My dd and I went the week before Thanksgiving last year. We arrived early Sunday and flew home on Thanksgiving morning. Sunday was fairly busy. Monday and Tuesday were great. I expected Wednesday to be the busiest, so we went to DCA that day and it wasn't bad at all. We went over to DL to watch the Christmas parade one more time before we left. DD wanted to ride Small World one more time, NOPE! The whole area near Small World was wall-to-wall people, we couldn't even get near it.As we were leaving to head back to our hotel (around 7 pm), the lines to get in DL were HUGE :eek: I was glad we were leaving!
All the Christmas festivities were up and running during the time we were there (Christmas parade, Christmas fireworks, holiday overlays for rides). My dd age 6 LOVED the Christmas parade, I think we saw it 3 times!
I would definately go back that time of the year again, maybe thanksgiving 2006. We're going in the summer this year as we wanted to see all the 50th fireworks and HM without the holiday overlay.

Malcon10t
07-28-2005, 08:46 AM
We went the week between Christmas and New Years this last year, like pisces. We looooved it!! I'd been forewarned for eons that it's the busiest week of the year, super crowded, blah, blah, blah.

But that wasn't the case. It was comfortable, it rained heavily at some points (but not constantly or steadily), and we had the best time ever! We generally go in April or October to avoid crowds. We all thought it was one of the best trips we've had in years.

We're going mid-December this year for my daughter's birthday. Can't wait!!
We went last year from 12/24-1/3. Normally, that week is unbelievably crowded. Last year, it was very light (compared to normal.) I would expect, with the 50th, this year it would be heavy. Just take ponchos for the rain. We throw on a poncho and keep on moving.

pisces
07-28-2005, 09:20 AM
"I think the major factor in this besides the weather, was because of the terrible and huge tragedy over in southeast Asia. When news got out about this after Christmas, I think a lot of people just didn't feel up to going to Disneyland because there were so many people that had lost loved ones over there or were just not found yet."-----Above

I never noticed a down mood in the Park. No way was I going to cancel. However, it was difficult seeing the morning paper, which the hotel delivered whether I wanted it or not. I could have done without that, and they would not waive it off. You had no choice but to view that front page at your doorstep.

I don't think the rain, itself, drove people away; because it rained the previous year (2003) at exactly the same time.

Then again, it was a pretty severe rain that seemed to batter the coast. I love rain, and had been to Knotts several times in pouring down rain. I'd prepared and brought super thick rubber boots------which nobody else seemed to have! Those boots got me through, especially when all the puddles would collect in the cobblestone. It's hard when the Matterhorn bobsleds fill up with water, though. No drainage in those cars; you're sitting in puddles. But, I'd rather have a wet fanny, then wet feet. No matter what else, my feet were dry.

Anyway, last year was the heaviest rain ever recorded.

I can't imagine it would rain like that, yet again, this year, and that week.

Still, life is so strange, anything could happen.

CherryGodmother
07-29-2005, 10:44 AM
I actually love Disneyland in the rain. I grew up in Long Beach and we went often. They used to sell rain ponchos in the mercantile shop in Frontierland for cheap and we'd throw them on and keep on truckin'. I especially remember how much more magical New Orleans Square was in the rain. Pirates and Haunted Mansion just seem more authentic when it's gray outside and you're rain-soaked!

Our vacation plans this year are to hit the park from December 18th through 22nd. The kids are too old to take out of school - every day is important - so we have to time it with their Christmas break. I'll just have to keep my fingers crossed and hope that if we spend enough days there, we'll get it all done!