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How Busy Is Disneyland the Week Before Christmas?

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The week before Christmas is one of the busiest times at Disneyland. It’s a period when the park is adorned with festive decorations, special events, and seasonal offerings, making it a highly anticipated destination for many visitors. However, this also means massive crowds and long wait times for attractions. Here’s an in-depth look at what you can expect during this bustling period.


The week before Christmas is one of the busiest times at Disneyland due to the holiday season festivities. The park attracts a significant number of visitors, leading to large crowds and longer wait times for attractions. However, with careful planning and use of park services like Disney Genie+ or FastPass, visitors can navigate the park effectively. It’s recommended to arrive early, plan your visit, and be flexible with your itinerary.

Disneyland’s Attendance During the Week Before Christmas

Although Disneyland doesn’t publicly release specific attendance numbers, it’s well known that December is one of the busiest months at the park. The holiday season, including the week before Christmas, attracts a significant number of visitors, with crowd levels peaking during this week.

Peak Hours and Less Crowded Times

During the week before Christmas, peak hours typically occur midday to early evening. However, weekdays earlier in the month tend to be less crowded. If you want to experience the Christmas decorations with fewer crowds, it’s recommended to visit during the first two weeks of December or the second week of January.

Disneyland Operations During the Peak Season

To accommodate the influx of visitors, Disneyland implements various strategies including extending park hours, utilizing digital technologies like mobile ordering apps and RFID-based “MagicBands”, and implementing reservation systems. They also employ cast members to manage traffic, and encourage guests to arrive early and stay late to avoid peak crowd times.

Special Events and Attractions

The week before Christmas, Disneyland offers various special events and attractions that significantly affect crowd levels. These include A Christmas Fantasy Parade, “it’s a small world” Holiday, “Believeā€¦In Holiday Magic” Fireworks, and Wintertime Enchantment. Additionally, Disney California Adventure hosts the Disney Festival of Holidays, celebrating various holidays such as Christmas, Navidad, Hanukkah, Diwali, Kwanzaa, and Three Kings.

Tips for Navigating Disneyland During Busy Times

If you’re planning to visit Disneyland during the week before Christmas, here are some tips to help you navigate the park:

  • Arrive early: Beat the crowds and enjoy popular attractions with shorter wait times.
  • Plan your visit: Research the park’s layout, attractions, and shows beforehand.
  • Utilize park services: Consider using services like Disney Genie+ or FastPass to save time on popular attractions.
  • Be flexible: Have a list of alternative attractions or activities to enjoy if your top choices are too busy.
  • Take breaks: Busy parks can be overwhelming, so schedule breaks throughout the day to rest and recharge.

Disneyland’s Recommendations for Visitors

Disneyland recommends that visitors planning a trip during this time make reservations using Disneyland’s theme park reservation system, determine when to visit and how many days to spend in the parks, buy tickets and book a hotel room in advance, and stay updated on any health and safety requirements.

Some of the most popular attractions during the holiday season at Disneyland include the Disney Festival of Holidays, Christmas Fantasy Parade, Haunted Mansion Holiday, “it’s a small world” Holiday, Sleeping Beauty’s Winter Castle, and Believe In Holiday Magic Fireworks.

In conclusion, the week before Christmas at Disneyland is indeed a busy time. However, with careful planning and a flexible mindset, you can navigate the crowds and make the most of your visit during this magical season.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are Disney Genie+ and FastPass services?

Disney Genie+ and FastPass are services provided by Disneyland to help guests save time. Disney Genie+ is a paid service that allows guests to select the next available time to arrive at a variety of attractions and experiences. FastPass, on the other hand, is a complimentary benefit that allows guests to save their spot in line for popular rides and attractions.

What is Disneyland’s theme park reservation system?

Disneyland’s theme park reservation system is a tool that allows guests to reserve their park entry in advance. Due to the park’s capacity limitations, especially during peak times like the week before Christmas, it’s highly recommended to make a reservation to ensure entry to the park.

What are some other peak times at Disneyland aside from the week before Christmas?

Other peak times at Disneyland typically include other holiday periods such as Easter week, the week of Thanksgiving, and the week between Christmas and New Year’s. Summer, particularly from mid-June to mid-August, is also a busy time.

How can I stay updated on Disneyland’s health and safety requirements?

You can stay updated on Disneyland’s health and safety requirements by visiting the official Disneyland website or app. This will provide you with the most recent information about park operations, health and safety protocols, and any changes that might affect your visit.

What is the Disney Festival of Holidays?

The Disney Festival of Holidays is a seasonal event held at Disney California Adventure park. It celebrates holiday traditions from around the world with food, music, and entertainment. Different cultures and their holiday celebrations, such as Christmas, Navidad, Hanukkah, Diwali, Kwanzaa, and Three Kings, are showcased during this festival.

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