8 Favorite Disneyland Rides


All the rides at Disneyland are fun or exhilarating in their own way.  But we have our own personal picks.  Here are 8 Favorite Disneyland Rides from the Wesley’s.  As soon as we walk through the gates of Disneyland, it’s a race to see how many of our top choices we can get done.  Here are some of our favorite rides that highlight our trips time after time.

Parker enjoys the slower rides.  His favorites are Astro Blasters and It’s a Small World.

On Astro Blasters, up to two players per space buggy become Buzz Lightyear’s companion and shoot a laser gun at the Zurg targets.  The buggy can change directions as it moves along an automated track.  Buzz talks to the players encouraging them throughout the game.  There are hidden targets that will give you thousands of points if you hit them just right.  It’s a competition to see who gets the most points in our family.  Brian always wins, unless he’s riding with Parker. J  That little guy LOVES to change the direction of the space buggy right when we are aiming at something (especially the hidden targets).


He enjoys It’s a Small World for two reasons. First, it’s a boat ride.  We’re constantly reminding him to stay seated.  He thinks the water is fascinating.  Secondly, the colors of the dolls and scenery are vibrant and cheerful!  It’s impossible to not have a smile on your face and sing along to its popular tune.  It’s also a fifteen minute inside ride perfect for a rest from the sun and heat.  The décor changes around the end of November and Christmas around the World becomes the focus of this ride.

Who doesn’t love being in a rocketand flying to the moon?  Astro Orbiter does just that!  Justin loves to pretend like his rocket is soaring through the sky and aiming for the stars.  I will warn you… it’s a little tight for bigger people.  Backpacks and camera bags are better left on the ground because of the small space.  Justin prefers to do his flying at night- soaring over Tomorrow Land.  During the day, however, his choice is to fly in pirate ships above England and into Neverland with Peter Pan.  He gets excited that he’s flying over the island with pirates and mermaids in the distance!

Katie and Becca are thrill seekers!  They like all the fast rides but Space Mountain is their favorite.  The air conditioning makes it the perfect opportunity to cool down and enjoy deep dark space.  The space pod navigates you through the dark with twists, turns, and drops- all at an exhilarating speed of about thirty-five miles per hour.  If that gets them all wound up, they can chill in their next favorite ride- Pirates of the Caribbean.  This automated boat ride is unique because it starts off in a Louisiana bayou and drops (yes I do mean that literally) you into a world of pirates and treasure.  There are two drops about eight to ten feet high in the dark.  Immediately, the spray is invigorating and everyone is anxious to walk in the shoes of a pirate.  The story of Jack Sparrow echoes through the remainder of the ride.  The girls love the battle between Jack Sparrow’s team and the British soldiers.

My favorite ride is the Haunted Mansion.  The cast members take a large group to a dimly lit parlor and the narrator offers a challenge to find a way out with no windows and no doors.  Yes, there are the “screams” and the “haunts from ghostly spirits” but the best part is that no one gets hurt or feels threatened.  Next you’re led to a doom buggy which you ride till the end.  The narrator’s voice echoes through the back of the doom buggy and shares the story of the happy haunts and the hitchhiking ghosts.  The kids really love to watch the ghosts dance in the ballroom scene.  My favorite is the graveyard scene where the atmosphere is much heartier.  At the end of September, the story is changed somewhat as they transform the story to The Nightmare Before Christmas.  It remains decorated as such until January when they change it back to the original script.

Of course, who could forget Thunder Mountain Railroad as you board an older mine train- roller coaster style?  I’m not crazy over roller coasters, but this one is pretty smooth and doesn’t have any loops.  Some of the rock formations on the ride are based on the hoodoos of Bryce Canyon National Park in southern Utah.  They’ve recently added some upgrades to the ride.  TOTALLY worth riding!!

Brian’s favorite ride in Disneyland is Pirates of the Caribbean.  He loves that it’s dark and cool and it has a fun story line.  He’s always impressed by the engineering behind such a ride.  If we aren’t riding Pirates of the Caribbean, Brian likes to relax and take it easy in The Haunted Mansion.  However, like the girls, he can’t resist the fast and adventurous Space Mountain.  He also has a soft spot for “The Classics” which are the four older rides located in the middle of the park.  These include Peter Pan, Mr Toad’s Wild Ride, Pinocchio, and the Scary Adventures of Snow White.

Take time to find out for yourself what your favorite rides are in Disneyland.  Who knows?  Your favorite ride might be Jungle Cruise or Indiana Jones or Winnie the Pooh.  I think the best part about these rides is that I’m riding them with my family and making memories with them.  What are your 8 Favorite Disneyland Rides? 


One thing that’s more of a tradition than a ride is we visit Disney often enough that we try to take some of the same photos each time we visit.  Outside of the Mr Toad’s wild ride they have a car that seats about three kids.  On our first visit to Disneyland the girls fought over the steering wheel.  We didn’t realize it was a thing until our next visit when the girls showed the car to the boys and pushed the boys aside to play with a steering wheel.  Yes, the kids are old enough we don’t fight over the wheel anymore… but as soon as Brian or I get a camera out it’s the Hunger Games all to see who can get to the wheel first.  This has become one of our silly traditions.

Another traditions is to take a photo at the Excalibur sword. Each kid pulls their hardest with the hope that they’ll be king for the day.

What are your theme park traditions?


 Note, these rides don’t include the California Adventures Park.