‘Tis the season for holiday shopping, and last week I found myself missing my holiday trips to Disneyland in Anaheim, CA, and so I decided to combine the two and headed down to Downtown Disney and the recently opened Buena Vista Street on a Tuesday afternoon. I had a truly magical experience and I wanted to share it with you!
Parking is conveniently located in the Simba Lot, and since November 19, has cost $10. Cast Members can still use their Main Entrance Pass Parking privileges. From there, I walked, with no waiting in any lines, all the way to the Downtown Disney entrance near the Disneyland hotel. Masks are required at all times and there is a temperature check, a security dog, and a metal detector station on the way in.
While the guests were lively, the space is used so well and walkways are clearly marked so that you never feel crowded. The entire district is beautifully decorated for the holidays, I’m so excited that I get to share some of my photos of it with you. But first, I want to acknowledge the beautiful mural of the late Chadwick Boseman.
There was no wait to enter Buena Vista Street in Disney California Adventure, so I set about my mission of shopping for Christmas gifts for my family. I waited in a socially distanced line for the shop, Elias & Co. for just 20 minutes, and then was able to freely walk about the store. Because Disney is following state occupancy regulations, the store is quite open and I was able to quickly and easily find gifts that I loved (but I can’t tell you what they are, in case my family reads this!)
I then walked out of Disney California Adventure and got into a line just to my right for a new store called Disneyland Resort Backlot Premiere Shop in Stage 17. This normally backstage area now hosts merchandise that traditionally would only be available within the park itself, including special merchandise created for the park’s 65th Anniversary this year. I only waited about ten minutes, and like Elias & Co., the shopping space is kept mostly empty so that guests can enjoy socially distanced shopping.
While Disney merchandise has always been available in Downtown Disney at World of Disney, to promote social distancing and to create more space, more Disney specific shops have opened around various themes. My last stop on the way out was the new Star Wars Trading Post where products previously only available in Galaxy’s Edge within Disneyland are available. I even got to hold one of the new Legacy Lightsaber hilts in the store. Since this is a much smaller store, they only let about 4-5 people in a time, and I had to wait about 20 minutes to get in.
By the time I left, I felt like I had only scratched the surface of things I could have done. Here’s a list of just some of the activities Downtown Disney provides:
• Viewing the Christmas trees and Holiday decorations
• The Disney Dress Shop
• Disney Home
• Julius Katz & Sons
• Kingswell Camera Shop
• Off the Page
Disney continues to open more shops and restaurants, so for updated information on what is available, please visit: https://disneyland.disney.go.com/experience-updates/downtown-disney
And one more thing! As I was leaving, I had a very exciting moment, because I saw my very first Disneyland Cat!
Original article by Daniel N. from Partners