T-minus 3 Days to the Happiest Place on Earth

So for the past few weeks, we ve been talking all about how we re heading to California for the D23 Expo1 and some quality time at Disneyland of course! Now the countdown is really on Carl, Danny and myself from WDW Magazine are heading to Anaheim on Thursday along with Kathleen from Get Down to Disness2 and Shannon from Destinations to Travel3, and we couldn t be more excited!

T-minus 3 Days To The Happiest Place On Earth

Last time I talked a bit about why we re going to sell The Best of WDW Volume 14 along with our 2016 Disneyland and WDW Calendars, meet the fans, and report live from D23 for you! A few days ago, Carl shared how different Disneyland is from WDW5, and so I thought I d check in and let you know how my PLAN is going! As the veteran Disneyland visitor of the group (this is my 14th trip to Disneyland, and will mark 3 months of my life spent at the happiest place on earth!) I was prepared to not have a 180-day mark for Advanced Dining Reservations or the worry of creating Fastpass+ reservations weeks in advance of the trip. As much as I love planning, I m really looking forward to playing it by ear! But that doesn t mean I don t have a PLAN!

T-minus 3 Days To The Happiest Place On EarthNext stop: Buena Vista Street at Disney s California Adventure!

Photo by Stephanie Shuster.

I ll be heading out on Thursday morning and should arrive in the early afternoon if all goes to plan. I m excited to be eating dinner that night in Downtown Disney at Tortilla Jo s great Mexican food is one of the reasons I love California and it s owned by the same folks who run Tutto Gusto, Tutto Italia, and Via Napoli in WDW so I know we ll be in good hands! Friday Sunday I ll be reporting live from D23 so you can follow along with all our adventures here and on Facebook, Twitter, Periscope and Instagream. I plan to check out Downtown Disney, The Grand Californian Hotel, and the Disneyland Hotel in the evenings, including a stop at Trader Sam s Enchanted Tiki Bar!

T-minus 3 Days To The Happiest Place On EarthAmong the rides exclusive to Disneyland is the original mountain the Matterhorn! Photo by Stephanie Shuster.

Monday Wednesday I ll be enjoying the parks with my husband. We opted for Park Hopper passes since it s only a few hundred feet between park entrances and we can go back and forth all day if we like! We chose a 4 day pass so we ll either use that first day on Thursday or Sunday to spend a couple evening hours at Disneyland taking in Paint the Night and Disneyland Forever (I hear they re great and I want to see them more than once!)

The only Dining Reservation I ve made is for lunch on Monday at Carthay Circle Theatre over in Disney s California Adventure. It s a prix fixe 3-course meal that includes premium viewing for World of Color so for us it was worth it to pair a meal we wanted to do with a show we wanted to see!

T-minus 3 Days To The Happiest Place On EarthClassic Mickey Pancake.

Photo by Stephanie Shuster.

My husband has only been to Disneyland once (with my family, 3 years ago at Halloween!) but he was under the weather and wasn t able to get on all the rides. This time I m making it my mission to get on every single ride, and see every single show! With old-school FastPasses in place I m not worried. Plus there s so much to eat at Disneyland that we can t get at WDW! In Disneyland I m hoping to get a walkup table at Cafe Orleans but will settle for the beignets at the Mint Julep bar if need be. Rancho Del Zocalo is a great spot for more Mexican food, and Coca-Cola Refreshment corner (the west coast version of Casey s) is a must-d0! Matterhorn Macaroons and Mickey Macarons at Jolly Discount Holidays © Holiday Bakery are on the list, along with a Dole Whip Float from the Tiki Juice Bar, and a couple of skewers from Bengal BBQ.

T-minus 3 Days To The Happiest Place On EarthLooking forward to checking out Carsland will this be headed to WDW soon? Hopefully we ll find out at D23!

Photo by Stephanie Shuster.

Over at Disney s California Adventure we ll be visiting the Cozy Cones, and I can t pass up soup, salad, or breakfast in a Boudin sourdough bowl at Pacific Wharf Cafe. There ll be plenty of #Disneyland60 treats to tempt me too luckily I can share everything with by hubby and then taste twice as much! Finally, I m beyond excited to start my Starbucks You Are Here Disney mug collection I ll get two in California and complete the set with 4 more in WDW this December. So there you have it. Loads of D23 fun, collecting mugs, walking to the parks, and ALL THE FOOD.

That s my plan. California, here I come!

T-minus 3 Days To The Happiest Place On EarthOld school FastPasses are still the norm in California! Photo by Stephanie Shuster.

Be sure to follow along with #WDWMagD23 on social media and keep your eyes on the blog next week as we bring you lots of by the minute news and a special LIVE edition to WDW Magazine! After the trip, we ll all be back on the blog sharing our west coast experiences with you!

Plus, follow me on Instagram and Periscope using @stephshuster if you want to see all of my #Disneyland60 fun!


  1. ^ we re heading to California for the D23 Expo (www.wdw-magazine.com)
  2. ^ Get Down to Disness (www.wdw-magazine.com)
  3. ^ Destinations to Travel (www.wdw-magazine.com)
  4. ^ The Best of WDW Volume 1 (www.the-best-of-wdw.com)
  5. ^ how different Disneyland is from WDW (www.wdw-magazine.com)

Heading West: #WDWMagD23 & #Disneyland60

Heading West: #WDWMagD23 & #Disneyland60

Carl announced last week that some of the WDW Magazine team is heading down to the #D23 Expo1 in Anaheim, CA this August, and I couldn t be more excited!

I grew up on the west coast, and spent most of my childhood Disney days at Disneyland, not WDW, so heading back to California is full of nostalgia for me. But I ve never been to D23 before, and in addition to crossing it off my Disney bucket list, I just can t wait to meet our fans, talk nothing but Disney all day long, and share some of the fantastic products we have coming out this summer!

Heading West: #WDWMagD23 & #Disneyland60Packing my bags to head to D23 Mickey makes the ultimate accessory!

I ll be on the floor most of the time, so come on by and say Hi I d love to meet you, and we ll be giving away some great prizes with our partners Get Down to Disness2 and Destinations to Travel3. You can find us in booth A514 (subject to change, but we ll post the information right here), and whether you ll be at the Expo or following along from home, you can join in the fun online with a special LIVE edition of WDW Magazine and on social media using the hashtag #WDWMagD23.

We ll be reporting live from the Expo and there s so much to see and do, you can bet that we ll be bringing you lots of updates for 3 days straight!

But the things I m most excited to see?

  • John Lasseter s Hawaiian shirt collection (my hubby is a Hawaiian shirt collector just like Pixar s big cheese)
  • A Goofy Movie cast reunion to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the film (video below if you want to rock out like it s 1999)
  • Shopping for event exclusive souvenirs4 (I m a sucker for souvenirs)
  • Frozen FANdemonium (there s no denying it, I m a Frozen fangirl!)
  • Worlds, Galaxies and Universes (a presentation about the upcoming live action Disney films)

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After all the fun at D23, I m looking forward to a few days at the happiest place on earth Disneyland! I m excited for some of the special rides (Indiana Jones Adventure and Radiator Springs Racers), food (Matterhorn Macaroons and Mint Juleps), and shows (World of Colour and Mickey s Soundsational Parade).

But what really has me pumped up are the 60th Anniversary Celebrations! I was lucky enough to visit twice during Disneyland s 50th Anniversary, and from what I hear, the food, merchandise, fireworks, and new Paint the Night parade are out of this world!

I can t wait to experience it all and report back to you!

Heading West: #WDWMagD23 & #Disneyland60I had a blast with my family celebrating at Disneyland 10 years ago what will #Disneyland60 be like?

In the coming weeks I ll be finalizing my PLAN for #WDWMagD23 and #Disneyland60 so stay tuned!


  1. ^ the WDW Magazine team is heading down to the #D23 Expo (www.wdw-magazine.com)
  2. ^ Get Down to Disness (www.getdowntodisness.com)
  3. ^ Destinations to Travel (www.wdw-magazine.com)
  4. ^ event exclusive souvenirs (disneyparks.disney.go.com)
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