Romance may not be the first word that comes to mind when pondering a trip to Disneyland, but maybe it’s time to reconsider.
As Disneyland itself puts it, “Here is the world of imagination, hopes, and dreams. In this timeless land of enchantment, the age of chivalry, magic and make-believe are reborn - and fairy tales come true. Fantasyland is dedicated to the young-in-heart, to those who that when you wish upon a star, your dreams come true.”
Just about any relationship could benefit from a gulp or two of that Kool–Aid.
Whether you are newly coupled, betrothed for years or somewhere in between, enchantment, chivalry and hope can be hard to come by in this 21st-century world of texts, tweets and emails. One of the great pleasures of Disneyland is the excuse to leave your quotidian cares behind and play hooky for a day. You’ve most likely earned it.
Start the day slowly with Mickey Mouse pancakes at the Plaza Inn on Main Street. Let yourself be tickled pink by the silly shape of the pancake; slather it with butter; douse it with maple syrup. Forget about dieting and being sensible. Instead, remember the pleasure of simple enjoyment without guilt or the pestering of your nasty superego. Maybe even give your superego the day off! Embrace your id.
Fully satiated, adventure beckons. The Astro Orbitor in Tomorrowland is a great place to start. These golden rockets fly high above the park and give you a great view of the surrounding area. Rediscover your inner child and scream with delight. The rush of endorphins is real.
Weirdly, Space Mountain is one of the most romantic rides in the park. Torpedoing through space with the stars twinkling above you and laughing at the sheer speed of the ride will leave you giggling like a little girl. If the line’s not too long, why not go again? You have all the time in the world.
Other thrills come in the form of Splash Mountain, Thunder Mountain, Indiana Jones Adventure and even the Haunted Mansion. If you watch any reality television, you know that fear brings couples together. A strange but true fact.
Lunch at the Blue Bayou in Pirates of the Caribbean is a must for those chasing a date vibe. The low lighting, from twinkle lights and lanterns, creates a perfect atmosphere for relaxation. The background music, consisting of crickets chirping, frog croaking and the soothing sounds of a banjo picking out old-timey classics like “Oh Susanna” will surely give you the urge to make out like crazy.
Evening brings its own, undeniable pleasures as the whole of Disneyland looks dreamy, with colored lights and trickling water fountains all around. Watch the parade or spin in the teacups, in the Mad Tea Party. Go grab a drink at one of the hotels or at Downtown Disney before circling back for a final ride or two in the dark. The Jungle Cruise is great as late as possible, with most kids tucked snugly in their beds.
Go for the day, or splurge and get a room at one of the three hotels in the Disneyland Resort. The Grand Californian Hotel & Spa bursts with grown-up luxuries, like breast of duck with coastal mushrooms and black mission figs at the hotel’s own Napa Rose. The Mandara Spa boasts dreamy luxuries, like the Couples Retreat Ritual, a nearly two-hour delight of full-body massage and facial in the sumptuous couples suite.