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A Guide to a Romantic Valentine’s Day In Disneyland California

February, known as the month of romance, provides a unique opportunity to skip the usual roses and chocolates.

You can visit Disneyland California and enjoy exciting or romantic rides with your partner.

We’ve got some great tips on how to spend the most romantic day of the year, Disney-style.

We hope for even more Valentine’s Day offerings at Disneyland every year, making it a mini “season” like Halloween. 

Apart from visiting Disneyland California, you can travel to places like Santa Barbara and Carmel-by-the-Sea to celebrate Valentine’s Day with your special someone.

This article will discuss how to celebrate Valentine’s Day at Disneyland California and explore romantic options around California.

Valentine’s Day 2024 at Disneyland California

Valentine's Day 2024 at Disneyland California
Image: Cnbc.com

Disneyland is getting into the Valentine’s Day spirit throughout February by adding special decorations, food, and treats. 

Visitors can enjoy Minnie’s Valentine Surprise, a park-wide scavenger hunt where they search for the secret valentines hidden by Minnie for Mickey and friends. 

The park will be decked out in themed decor to celebrate the love between Mickey and Minnie Mouse, and there will be special food and drink options and souvenirs. 

Additionally, Disneyland will host Disneyland After Dark Events for added entertainment.

Disneyland After Dark Event

Disneyland After Dark Events are special-themed gatherings that happen after regular park hours. 

These thematic events, held at either Disneyland or California Adventure Park, include entertainment, food, photo opportunities, merchandise and more. 

Guests need to buy tickets for these events, and it grants them access to the park after it closes.

Certain attractions remain open during the event, providing a chance to enjoy popular rides with minimal wait times. 

Ticket holders also receive unlimited digital downloads of their PhotoPass photos and keepsakes, like a souvenir credential and an event guide map.

Each Disneyland After Dark night includes a pre-event mix-in at Disneyland Park from 6 pm to 9 pm before the main party starts. 

The 2024 lineup features returning themes and a new one for guests to enjoy. 

This year, Disneyland is offering more After Dark nights than ever before.

Disneyland Rides To Try On Valentine’s Day

Attractions play a big part in creating magical moments on Valentine’s Day at Disneyland Resort. 

Most rides are designed for couples to sit close to each other, so consider these options for a special experience with your significant other.

Dark Attractions to Sit Close to Your Sweetheart

If you prefer being close in the dark, go for what Disneyland Resort calls “dark” attractions.

They are enclosed rides where you’re secure in a vehicle, traveling through captivating scenes, often in low lighting.

Disneyland Dark Attractions:

  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Haunted Mansion
  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
  • Alice in Wonderland
  • Snow White’s Scary Adventures
  • Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride
  • Peter Pan’s Flight
  • Pinocchio’s Daring Journey
  • “it’s a small world”

California Adventure Dark Attractions:

  • Monsters, Inc. Mike and Sulley to the Rescue!
  • The Little Mermaid – Ariel’s Undersea Adventure
  • Toy Story Midway Mania!

Thrill Attractions to Hold Hands and Scream with Your Date

For an adventurous date with your Valentine, get ready to hold hands and scream excitedly on these thrilling rides.

Disneyland Thrill Attractions:

  • Big Thunder Mountain Railroad (bonus points for riding at night!)
  • Matterhorn Bobsleds
  • Space Mountain
  • Star Tours – The Adventure Continues
  • Indiana Jones Adventure

California Adventure Thrill Attractions:

  • Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT!
  • Radiator Springs Racers
  • Grizzly River Run
  • Incredicoaster
  • Goofy’s Sky School

Slow and Easy Rides Ideal for Romance

If a romantic experience is what you’re after on Valentine’s Day at Disneyland Resort, consider some of the slower attractions.

Disneyland Slow Attractions:

  • Main Street U.S.A. vehicles (closing mid-afternoon for parades)
  • Jungle Cruise
  • Mark Twain Riverboat
  • Storybook Canal Boats
  • Disneyland Railroad
  • Disneyland Monorail

California Adventure Slow Attractions:

  • Animation Building and Animator’s Studio
  • Pixar Pal-a-Round (stationary gondolas)

Things To Do In California On Valentine’s Day

Here are some things in California on Valentine’s Day:

Carmel-by-the-Sea

Carmel-by-the-Sea
Image: Paigevaughnphoto.com

Carmel-by-the-Sea is a perfect spot for a romantic getaway. 

In the daytime, you can enjoy wine tasting at various tasting rooms. 

Take a leisurely stroll through the European-inspired village and explore unique boutiques and art galleries.

For dog lovers, Cypress Inn is a great choice. 

This historic hotel allows you to bring your furry friend. 

It offers al fresco dining in a beautiful courtyard with twinkling lights. 

The courtyard features a love-themed wall motif by the renowned artist Mr. Brainwash. 

Whether you’re in the early stages of dating or have been married for years, Carmel-by-the-Sea is an enchanting place to spend Valentine’s Day.

Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara
Image: Poseysgoplaces.com

Another romantic California destination for Valentine’s Day is the Four Seasons Resort Biltmore Hotel in Santa Barbara. 

This Mediterranean-style hotel and spa, located near the beach and downtown, provides a luxurious retreat. 

The hotel boasts one of the most beautiful restaurants for a romantic meal or stay.

While in Santa Barbara, visiting the Santa Barbara Zoo can be a fun daytime activity for couples. 

Watching lovebirds in the trees and feeding giraffes make an enjoyable experience together.

Solvang

Solvang
Image: Wikipedia.org

For a sunny escape, head to wine country in the Santa Ynez Valley and explore the captivating Danish town of Solvang. 

This town, with its charming eateries and Instagram-worthy architecture, is one of the most romantic places in California for Valentine’s Day.

During the day, you can explore the town in a horse-drawn carriage. 

Solvang offers various attractions, from the Danish Museum to decadent bakeries. 

After sunset, consider spending the night at the Mirabelle Inn, which features a gourmet restaurant and a posh interior that makes you feel like royalty.

Visit the Long Beach

Visit the Long Beach
Image: Rachelwakefieldblog.com

Long Beach offers the charm of a warm and sunny city, with beaches and marinas lining the waterfront. 

Despite being a large and sophisticated city, it exudes a relaxed, easy-going atmosphere reminiscent of a resort town.

Various lodging options include a cabin on the permanently docked ocean liner Queen Mary. 

This retired British ship, now a hotel, features three world-class restaurants and is open for visits daily, even if you’re not staying overnight.

You can explore Shoreline Village, a boardwalk with trendy boutiques, souvenir shops, and restaurants along Shoreline Marina. 

The village offers rentals for bikes, skates, and pedal carts, with miles of beach paths to enjoy. 

Consider taking a boat tour of the Long Beach harbor or visiting the remarkable Aquarium of the Pacific along the waterfront.

It features large tanks, over 50 animal exhibits, educational programs, and interactive activities.

Go For A Romantic Getaway at Glen Ivy Hot Springs

Romantic Getaway at Glen Ivy Hot Springs
Image: Nbclosangeles.com

Glen Ivy Hot Springs is an excellent choice for a romantic Valentine’s Day getaway. 

The food is fantastic, but the true highlight is the spa treatments. 

Indulge in full-body treatments like the signature Glen Ivy Detox Body Treatment. 

This includes a scrub to exfoliate the skin, a generous application of Shea butter for moisturizing, and a warm body wrap to eliminate toxins and enhance hydration. 

Reservations are essential for a Valentine’s Day visit.

FAQs About Valentine’s Day In California

1. What special events happen at Disneyland on Valentine’s Day? 

Disneyland offers special dining experiences for couples, including romantic dinners at Blue Bayou Restaurant and Lamplight Lounge. 

There are also Valentine’s Day-themed character greetings and photo opportunities with Disney couples like Mickey and Minnie, Snow White and Prince Charming, and Peter Pan and Wendy.

2. Are there any rides or attractions that are especially romantic on Valentine’s Day? 

Many couples find Peter Pan’s Flight, Storybook Land Canal Boats, and the Matterhorn to be particularly romantic rides.

Some also enjoy a nighttime ride on the Monorail for stunning views of the park lit up.

3. Do I need to make reservations for anything on Valentine’s Day at Disneyland? 

Reservations are strongly recommended for special dining experiences and character greetings, as Valentine’s Day is a popular time to visit the park. 

It’s also smart to consider Genie+ or Disney MaxPass to optimize your wait times during busy periods

4. What is the weather like in California on Valentine’s Day?

California’s weather varies depending on the location. 

Generally, the coast has mild temperatures, while the mountains and deserts can be colder. 

Be sure to check the forecast for your chosen destination before making plans.

5. What are some tips for making the most of your Valentine’s Day in California?

– Book reservations for restaurants and events in advance, especially if you plan to visit a popular destination.

– Pack for the weather and be prepared for crowds, especially in popular tourist spots.

– Most importantly, relax and enjoy your time with your loved one!

Featured Image: Thatcouplewhotravels.com

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