Why Stay at a Disneyland Hotel (versus off property)


There are a lot of hotel choices near Disneyland and three on the Disney property: the Disneyland Hotel, the Grand Californian and the Paradise Pier Hotel. So why would you chose to stay at a Disneyland property? Here are six reasons to choose a Disney hotel instead of staying nearby.

Note that if it is your first family trip to Disneyland, I highly recommend staying on property if you can swing it. (Watch for Tips For Your First Trip to Disneyland coming soon and check out my recent 5 Reasons to take your child to Disneyland before Age 5)



The on-property hotels are closer to the parks and also have monorail access directly into the park. With all of the walking you will be doing over your stay, having this convenience makes so much sense and makes you feel like you’re truly staying within the magic of Disney. The hotels also all border Downtown Disney, which is a walking street filled with restaurants, shops, street music, kiosks and food vendors and big-name-brand boutiques like Sephora and Lego. You don’t need park tickets to visit and wander through Downtown Disney and it’s a fantastic place to hang out the night before you hit the parks. At Christmastime, they even have an outdoor skating rink in the ‘street’.

Character Appearances


When we checked into the Disneyland Hotel on our first visit, we were met by Goofy pretending to be a Bellboy and the girls received autographed Tinkerbell photos at the check-in counter. These special character additions make you and your child(ren) truly feel the magic of being at Disneyland.

Special Disney Touches

There are nightly story times on the TV and the rooms have many special decorating touches, even Mickey shaped soaps.


Character Meals


The restaurants are special. They all have kids meals, offer restricted diet options, and best of all, there are character meals to be had! At the Disneyland Hotel, do not miss the Goofy’s Kitchen breakfast! You’re guaranteed several character greetings and a fantastic spread including Mickey shaped pancakes! Who doesn’t want to start their day at Disneyland this way?

Pools and Common Areas


The Pools and common areas at a Disney property have special character and Disney themed additions that make them extra special.  You can be sure the pool area will be well equipped for little ones as well.

The Magic Hour

For Disneyland Hotel property guests, you are entitled to an extra hour in the park each morning.  What a fantastic way to catch all the must-do rides before the park gets uber-busy.

I highly recommend staying on property at Disneyland if you can, especially if it is your first visit to Disneyland.  That said, there are plenty of reasonably priced hotel options nearby.  I recommend staying across the street at the Annabella Hotel or Howard Johnson Hotel.

* This is not a sponsored post.


Pillow & Waterslides Photo Credit HarshLight
Highrise Photo CreditSam Howizit
Goofy’s Kitchen Photo Credit AngryJulieMonday
Goofy Photo Credit Bevelle Macalania


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