Disney World vs. Disneyland
All you need is a little faith, trust, and pixie dust!
Disney World is located in Orlando, Florida
Disneyland is located in Anaheim, California
Both parks are Disney so of course they are amazing and magical. But let’s discuss the main differences and what each park entails.
Parks: Disney World
Disney World has 4 main parks: Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom, and then Epcot. You need a day at least to visit each park and enjoy them thoroughly. There are many places to stay in the parks in Disney World.
There are value resorts and then there are more expensive resorts. You do get a cool Disney band that is your park ticket and your hotel key. All the resorts are amazing. I usually stay at the value resorts like Pop Century, Disney’s Art of Animation, and All Star Movie and Music Resorts are the coolest. They are family friendly and a very reasonable price. They are themed and have huge characters and toys at each resort. You also have your food onsite and the bus to take you to the Disney Parks.
I’ve stayed at Port Orleans and that was a higher priced resort and more adult friendly too.
On the other hand, Disneyland only has 2 parks. They are Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure. You can do these parks in a day with the park hopper pass. It is easy and efficient. If you want to spend longer you can. There are not many places to stay here but maybe 3 places. It is less of a magical experience when it comes to the dining and resorts. We stayed in Burbank and drove there.
Food: Disney World vs. Disneyland
Disney World has so much options for food in all 4 parks. The alcohol is endless and Epcot you can drink all around the world. But Disneyland does not have much alcohol. You are only allowed to drink in one of the parks (California Adventure).
As for the reservations for food, Disney World is your go to for this. You can eat at Be Your Guest in Belle’s castle, lunch in Cinderella’s castle, and Ohana at the Polynesian. Those are a few I have attended. I made reservations 3 months or more out to be able to enjoy this dining experience that was so magical. I felt as if I were in a fairytale the whole time.
As for Disneyland, they had minimal dining places with experiences. We ate at a Star Wars themed restaurant over in the Star Wars area and it was an interactive experience, but it was quick dining.
One thing both parks are a hit on is the treats and sweets you can buy! Wow they are amazing and to die for!
Rides: Disney World vs. Disneyland
As for rides, of course Disney World has more because there are more parks, but Disneyland has very similar rides as Magic Kingdom. They are almost the exact same. There was Indiana Jones in Disneyland that was not at Disney World. Also Nemo at Disneyland was actually an underwater experience where they take you down in a submarine and you are actually under the water doing the ride. This was epic!
One thing I loved about Disneyland over Disney World was the fast pass. I paid $15 for all day for fast pass and picture. They scanned my phone each time I wanted a picture and it came to my Disneyland app. It was amazing. Also I got to fast pass almost every ride and never wait in line past 20 minutes. It was so worth the $15. Disney World has fast pass but it is much higher and more complicated.
I also visited Disneyland during the Halloween season and I loved all the decorations.
Fireworks and Shows
Fireworks at both Disney parks are phenomenal. I love how the castles light up and they project a show/story on the castle while the fireworks are going on. Also Fantasmic is magical at both locations too.
One difference in the castles are that Disney World has a bigger one because it is Cinderella’s castle, whereas Disneyland has Aurora’s castle.
I enjoy everything Disney and magical. I love feeling like a kid at heart and this is the place to go. I would definitely recommend trying out both parks at some point, but if you want the most of your Disney experience I would definitely visit Disney World in Florida to get the full dining, parks, resorts, and luxury it provides.