“The idea of Disneyland is a simple one. It will be a place for people to find happiness and knowledge. It will be a place for parents and children to share pleasant times in one another’s company… Here the older generation can recapture the nostalgia of days gone by, and the younger generation can savor the challenge of the future” – Walt Disney. We couldn’t agree more with the man himself. If we could go anywhere for a couple’s trip to escape and have a break from reality, we would choose Disneyland. While we love going on rides and tasting all of the amazing food, there are a few things that we believe are unknown to most couples taking a trip to the park. These three experiences are ones we make sure that we don’t miss out on each time we visit. Here’s our list of the three best kept Disneyland secrets to experience on your honeymoon or couple’s trip!
Also if you missed it, here is a link to our post of 5 tips for a magical Disneyland honeymoon!
The Animation Academy is tucked away nicely inside a building in California Adventure, and yes this building has all the air conditioning you could desire on a hot California day! In fact it was our couple’s trip years ago in the summer that prompted us to explore and find this hidden gem! It was such a busy day at the park and this was the perfect escape to take a breather in a nice cool place.
When you take a free class at the Animation Academy you will learn how to draw different Disney characters from a real animator. The classes start every 30 minutes and last around 20 or so minutes from start to finish. The cast members at the entrance have a schedule of which characters will be drawn at which times during the day so that you can find out when you want to attend. The other cool thing is that you can take the class as many times as you want to. We probably went to five sessions throughout our visit. Each of us did a better job on different characters and it was fun to see how our drawing turned out! Bonus: You get to take home a free souvenir that you created and you learn new skills together!
“Turtle Talk” with Crush from “Finding Nemo” is in the same building as the Animation Academy, so you can also take a second to go over there and check it out! It’s pretty amazing technology how they do Turtle Talk and have Crush answer your questions. It’s totally worth your time to take a few moments to laugh and be entertained by the coolest Disney turtle known to man.
Our next suggestion of one of the best kept Disneyland secrets is to simply learn some park history before you go! Disneyland has so much history to it because it is the original park and the one that Walt himself built. When most couples think of Disneyland they imagine lots of awesome rides, and hopefully enough fast passes to keep you from waiting in too long of lines! If you do end up standing in line it makes it a lot more enjoyable when you can talk about and appreciate the history of the ride you’re waiting for. The Haunted Mansion and Indiana Jones are two rides that have a lot of detail built into the queue lines and behind a lot of those details are stories.
Details aren’t just in the ride queues. There are even more details throughout the park that shouldn’t be missed. If you haven’t looked for and found Patrick Begorra the leprechaun’s house yet, put it on your bucket list! Before you do that though, we highly recommend you read the Little Golden Book that he is featured in and that tells the story of his house. The windows of Main Street, listening for a secret message tapped in Continental Code at the railway station in New Orleans Square, and looking for a certain REAL skull on Pirates of the Caribbean are all fun places to start exploring!
Last, but definitely not least, the third of what we believe are the best kept Disneyland secrets is the Silhouette Studio on Main Street. If we were only to get one souvenir on our Disneyland trip, this would be the one. This Disneyland tradition opened up on July 18, 1955, just one day after Disneyland opened to the public. The trade of silhouette cutting originated in France in the 1700s before the French Revolution, because it was a good way to capture an image of a person before photography was invented. There are very few cast members or artists in general that learn this skill.
These silhouettes are so much fun, pretty quick, and a great value for honeymooners. When you get to the park or sometime in the morning you drop by the studio to schedule a time to come back for your portraits. They are amazingly quick when they are cutting and the detail that they put into them creates a silhouette that looks just like you! The artists are so much fun to talk to and the last time we were there we even learned that one of the artist travels to Utah each year to cut silhouettes for the Colonial Heritage Festival in Orem!
If we were asked what we thought were the three best kept Disneyland secrets to experience on your honeymoon or couples trip, the Animation Academy, learning park history, and the Silhouette studio would be our top choices. Incorporating them into your honeymoon will make your experience unique, and allow you to come home with stories to tell. The rides are fun and exciting, but sometimes a change of pace makes all the difference in making the best trip possible!
If you want to learn more about the history of silhouette cutting, check this website.