In fact, much to Peter Pan’s dismay, Disneyland was made for the grownups.
That’s right, you heard me! The Happiest Place On Earth was originally made with adults in mind! Walt Disney wanted to encourage everyone to bring out their inner child and learn to play again, no matter their age.
As a young father, Walt had a problem. There were no amusement parks in his day where all members of the family could thoroughly enjoy themselves.
The amusement parks of the 1940s didn’t cater to families; the children’s rides were too small for adults, and the adult rides were too thrilling for young children. Walt often found himself sitting on a bench while his children enjoyed the rides that suited them.
The solution to this problem? Disneyland.
Walt created Disneyland as a place where all family members can play together – even if your family happens to be made of adults!
Below, you’ll find 10 reasons to say “yes!” to Disneyland as a grown up.
1. SPEND LESS TIME IN LINE
Going with a group of adults makes it easier to jump into a Single Rider Line to avoid long wait times. Single Rider Lines are available for:
- California Screamin’
- Goofy’s Sky School
- Grizzly River Run
- Indiana Jones Adventure
- Matterhorn Bobsleds
- Radiator Springs Racers
- Splash Mountain
It’s difficult for families to take advantage of this service, since the fee is an extra $10 per day, per guest. For a family of four, that’s an extra $40 per day! But going with a group of adults gives you and your friends/family the independence to each purchase your own MaxPass, and enjoy more rides throughout the day!
2. ENJOY MORE OF THE PARK
Going to Disneyland as an adult is the perfect remedy for not getting to go as a child. Since Disneyland is updated almost every year (check out our Disneyland and DCA Changes posts for 2018 to see what’s new this year!), there’s much more to see and do now that you’re older, and you’ll definitely be tall enough for all of the rides!
You’ll also be able to stay at the parks longer. Going as an adult means you can stay from opening to closing time if you wish!
I definitely recommend taking advantage of the late hours, especially any time after 2200. Most families leave after the evening spectaculars (fireworks, Fantasmic!, and World of Color), which leaves more free space in the parks for an older crowd.
Plus, even though Disneyland is wonderful during the daytime hours, it’s absolutely magical after sunset.
As an adult you’ll also have more of an appreciation of the work and detail put into every aspect of Disneyland.
Take a closer look at the booby traps lining the interior queue of Indiana Jones, the 60+ year-old animatronics in the Pirates of the Caribbean, or the turn-of-the-century American themes found on Main Street, U.S.A.
Best of all, go on a scavenger hunt to find all the Hidden Mickeys scattered throughout the park!
3. BONDING TIME
Disneyland is a wonderful place to bond with old friends and family members. It’s the perfect place to be kids again, and all of your problems seem to melt away the moment you hear those nostalgic Disney tunes drifting down Main Street.
There’s plenty of time in line to talk and catch up, to play games and laugh. Some of the best laughs I’ve ever had were at Disneyland with friends and family.
4. DISCOVER DISNEYLAND SECRETS ON THE PARK TOURS
There are a number of guided tours you can take that may be boring for children of a young age, but are perfect for adults young and old. On these tours, you can learn more about Walt Disney’s beloved park and enjoy a few perks along the way!
General guided tours include the “Walk in Walt’s Disneyland Footsteps” and “Grand Circle” tours. Depending on the time of year, you may be able to enjoy special holiday tours such as “Disneyland’s Happiest Haunts” and “Holiday Time at the Disneyland Resort!”
5. MORE THRILL RIDES
Without children who may be too small – or a bit frightened – of the large thrill rides at Disneyland, you’re able to go on all of them (if you dare). There’s truly something for everyone.
Indiana Jones Adventure, California Screamin’, and Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! are just a few of the thrill rides that the Disneyland resort has to offer.
The most popular thrill rides all have one thing in common: mountains.
Take a daring bobsled dash through the caverns of the famous Matterhorn, dare to get drenched with a 50 foot drop from Splash Mountain, blast through the West in an old mine train on Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, or brave the cosmos on the 3,035 feet of track in Disneyland’s dark coaster, Space Mountain.
6. ROMANCE IS IN THE AIR
Disneyland is a popular destination for newlyweds and a hotspot for couples looking for a great date night.
In fact, here are a few date ideas for you…
- Take a ride through the stars and miniature fairytale kingdoms come to life on the Fantasyland Storybook Canal Boats
- Watch the evening firework spectacular
- Eat ice cream surrounded by the small-town life of Car’s Land
- Cry together during World of Color (Just me? That’s cool.)
- Go wine-tasting in California Adventure (DCA) during the Food & Wine Festival
- Drink hot chocolate from Ghirardelli during the World of Color (bonus if it’s the holiday season; Christmas just isn’t complete without hot chocolate)
- Get a bite to eat at one of Disneyland’s fine dining establishments, which leads me to the next (and one of the best) benefits…
7. ENJOY FINE DINING
You can splurge on meals! Without kids to take up much of the food budget, you’re able to spend a little more on some of Disneyland’s finest dining.
Grab a bite at the swanky Carthay Circle restaurant in DCA, or get your Cajun on and dine near the water under the colored lanterns of the Blue Bayou.
You can even get a little tipsy, which makes the rides and attractions that much more entertaining! There is no alcohol served in Disneyland itself, but head over to DCA to find plenty of bars. Downtown Disney also offers several locations with fancy adult drinks, as well as a chic adult vibe.
Also, you can eat all the treats you want without tiny grabby hands wanting a piece!
8. DISNEYLAND IS A STRESS RELIEVER & MOOD ENHANCER
Stepping into Disneyland is like stepping into your favorite Disney movie, where everything always works out in the end. Leave your problems at the gate, and enjoy life just as much as you did when you were small and carefree.
9. YOU CAN ENJOY TRICK-OR-TREATING WITH AN OLDER CROWD
You can dress up and go Trick-or-Treating at Mickey’s Halloween Party from September to October!
For most adults, dressing up to ask the neighbors for candy can seem a bit silly.
But what if you still want to go Trick-or-Treating as an adult? What if you still want that pillowcase full of candy to eat for the rest of the year? Head over to the Happiest Place On Earth and get your Halloween on.
There are many places to get treats throughout the park, each giving you a handful of the good stuff whenever you stop by. You can get all the candy your little heart desires!
Some people really go all out for this special holiday event, with costumes that perfectly match their favorite characters and must have cost hundreds – if not thousands – of dollars. It’s an incredible people-watching experience, and lots of fun to see everyone in costume. It’s also the only time that adults are allowed to wear costumes into the parks!
Even if you don’t want to dress up, or don’t have the means to, the party is certainly worth the extra money for the featured spectaculars, short wait times, and special Halloween treats!
Also, you’ll feel really important being at an exclusive Disneyland event.
10. EVERYONE’S DOING IT
No peer pressure here, but everyone’s doing it.
Look around next time you’re there – there are so many groups of teenagers, young adults, and adults (without kids!) just hanging out and having fun. There is something about Disneyland that really brings people together and makes them feel ageless.
So you see, Disneyland has never just been for kids. Consider going on an adults-only amusement park adventure next time you’re itching for some fun!
After all, there’s nothing more entertaining than squishing four full-grown adults into one of the Mad Tea Party teacups and spinning until you’re drunk with giggles. Just don’t *actually* get drunk before braving this whirling jaunt.
How about You? What are your thought on Disneyland for adults? Have you ever taken an adults-only trip to the Happiest Place On Earth? Tell us in the comments section below!
This MDT Post By: Steve Bell
Steve is the the Military Disney Tips Founder. He a retired U.S. Military Member who's been touring the Disney Parks since 1971! Steve's mission is to help military families with their Disney vacations in every way. Check out Steve's Bio.
Subscribe to Steve's email newsletter to get website updates and news by clicking this link.
Planning a Disney Trip? Want to get the best military discounts that are available? Feeling a little confused?
See Our Great Disney Discount and Planning Info:
- Disney Veteran & Military Discount Eligibility Guide
- The Military Family’s Walt Disney World Comprehensive Vacation Planning and Preparation Guide
- Military Disney Tips Disney Packing Checklist
- Disney Military Tickets – Your Start to Finish Guide
- Resorts/Hotel Overview Page
- Dining Overview Page
- Transportation Overview Page
- Technology Overview Page
Military Disney Tips' Recommended Disney Travel Agent
Ears of Experience Disney Only Travel Agency. Military family owned and operated! They know all the ins and outs of Disney military discounts!