It’s the middle of summer, so it may seem strange to be talking about Halloween already! But for those of you planning a visit to the Disneyland Resort this fall, you need to plan ahead. Tickets for the largest fall event at the resort – Mickey’s Halloween Party – go on sale today for annual pass holders, and next week for everyone else. So what do you need to know as you plan for the Halloween season?
Mickey’s Halloween Party is an ongoing event than runs from September through October. You need a separate ticket for this after-hours party, even if you are an annual pass holder. For pricing and dates, check out the Halloween party page here. Mickey’s bash has TONS of special offerings, from trick-or-treating to an exclusive fireworks show. The best part? You can dress up in full costume (yes, even adults!).
If you’ve been to the Halloween party before, there are some important costume rule changes this year. Disney has released much stricter guidelines, for both adults and little kids. Here are the new rules that were not in place last year:
- Capes may be worn, but they cannot extend past the waist.
- Headgear (including hats, masks, and wigs) may not cover your face.
- Costumes may not drag or extend fully to the ground (a.k.a. no floor length dresses).
- Heavily layered costumes will be subject to thorough additional screening.
For the complete list of costume guidelines and prohibited items (including the rules already in place last year), please see the costume page here.
Even if you’re not attending Mickey’s Halloween Party, there are still several special Halloween things to do at the Disneyland Resort. Aside from limited-edition snacks, drinks, and souvenirs available for purchase, you can visit the Halloween-themed areas in the park:
- Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy – Space Mountain transforms into a ghostly adventure through a haunted universe. Inside the ride, you’ll have to outrun angry spirits as you fly through space.
- Haunted Mansion – Nightmare Before Christmas – From Halloween through Christmastime, Jack Skellington takes over the mansion. He and his friends plan the scariest Christmas ever known…all in good fun, of course.
- Dia de los Muertos in Zocalo Park – The open park by Rancho del Zocalo (called Zocalo Park), hosts an ongoing fiesta to celebrate Dia de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead. Here, you can enjoy face painting, mariachi performances, floral displays, and other crafts and activities.
For a detailed explanation of Halloween time changes at the Disneyland Resort, see my previous post here.
There’s also a brand new tour creeping into Disneyland this Halloween season: the Happiest Haunts tour! Take a behind-the-scenes look at the park’s spookiest attraction, the Haunted Mansion, and learn what secrets the mansion hides behind closed doors.
HALLOWEEN TIME TIPS
- Focus on the big rides, not trick-or-treating. The lines will be much smaller than during regular park hours, so the price of the ticket is worth it for the sheer number of rides you can visit alone! Each trick-or-treat stand offers little candies or bags of chips, so there’s no exclusive Disney treats to collect. If you really want to focus on trick-or-treating, avoid the New Orleans Square stations. Those are always the most crowded.
- If you can, eat dinner in Frontierland, New Orleans Square, or Critter Country. The spooky fog and Cadaver Dan performances on the Rivers of America are some of the best parts of the party.
- Even at the end of October, Disneyland is generally fairly hot until sundown. If you can, go for a lighter costume rather than a heavy one; you might regret wearing too many layers. Last year, I wore an Alice in Wonderland costume and wasn’t the least bit cold, even at midnight.
The Park During Halloween
- California Adventure doesn’t do much décor for Halloween, but they do sell lots of the Halloween treats on Buena Vista Street. So if you are in California Adventure and want a pumpkin cookie, you don’t have to hop parks!
- If you visit the park during Halloweentime, you’re in for a treat; it’s the only time of year when lots of villains openly roam the park. On any given day, you’ll most likely see the Evil Queen, Frollo, the Evil Stepmother, Captain Hook, and the Queen of Hearts. The other villains come out to play too, but their appearances are harder to predict.
Halloween is one of my favorite seasons at the Disneyland Resort. With the villains, the décor, the cobwebs popping up in New Orleans Square…the magic is just over the top. So if you’re considering visiting this fall, I say GO FOR IT! You’ll have a magical time, even if you don’t go to Mickey’s Halloween Party.
What are your favorite things to do during Halloween time? Let me know in the comments!