Opening Day Experience

Have you ever wondered what it was like to visit Disneyland on Opening Day in 1955? Even though the park has dramatically changed, expanded, and updated since its debut, you’d be surprised at how many of the original rides and attractions are still fan favorites today. This touring plan is designed to mimic the Opening Day experience as closely as possible, so enjoy your peek into the past!


When you first walk through the gates, stop and take a photo of the giant Mickey hedge. On Opening Day, all of the costumed characters in the park posed here for photos and to kick off the televised opening ceremonies.

Once you pass under the train tracks to Disneyland, visit City Hall if you have any questions or want a button to mark a special occasion. When you’re ready to officially begin your day, walk through Main Street USA to get to Fantasyland (you’ll come back to check out the cool shops later!)


  1. King Arthur Carrousel
  2. Peter Pan’s Flight
  3. Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride
  4. Mad Tea Party
  5. Storybook Land Canal Boats
  6. Dumbo The Flying Elephant
  7. Casey Jr. Circus Train
  8. Snow White’s Scary Adventures

When you’re ready to eat lunch, make your way over to Frontierland. Stop in the shops and take some photos of the Rivers of America, and then head into the Golden Horseshoe. If you want to see a show that won’t start for a while, walk along the path toward Fantasyland. Although the path wasn’t there on Opening Day, this quiet and laid-back spot most closely resembles the original vibe of Frontierland, before Big Thunder Mountain and the Shootin’ Exposition brought major thrills and wild adventures to the area.


  1. Mark Twain Riverboat


  1. Jungle Cruise

Now take some time to wander the shops of Main Street USA. While most of the shops are not the same as those open in 1955, the shops on Main Street were some of the most popular places in the park, so spending some time here is truly a part of the Opening Day experience.

When you reach the end of the street, stop by the fire station and then head over to the Disneyland Railroad. Complete the circuit around the park, and then make your way back up the other side of the street. Don’t forget to visit the Main Street Cinema and take a ride on one of the Main Street Vehicles!


  1. Autopia

Though your day will likely not be close to its end, the touring plan stops here. Disneyland was much smaller in 1955, and Opening Day only featured 18 rides and attractions, many of which have survived the test of time. If you want to keep going with your old-fashioned Disneyland experience, you can revisit the rides on this list, continue exploring shops in one of the original lands, or find a seat on one of the Main Street restaurant patios and people-watch.

Otherwise, you can use the rest of your day to appreciate how far Disneyland has come since 1955. The park is always evolving, and there’s always something new to experience, even for frequent park visitors.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comment *