Stretch the fantasies even longer by staying at one of the Disneyland Resort’s onsite hotels. Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa aims to replicate the soaring wood-and-stone styling of The Ahwahnee Hotel in Yosemite Valley. The central great room, with cushy oversize Craftsman-style chairs, a soaring stone fireplace, and live piano music, is a fantastic place to relax after a long day in the park. (Non-guests are welcome to dine in any of the resort’s five restaurants or simply enjoy its lounges, too.) The guests-only pool feels like an exclusive party, with poolside drinks and plenty of lounge chairs and fluffy towels, and enough room for kids and grownups to enjoy themselves. By appointment, the full-service spa is open to all (appointments required).
For a sleek, retro-modern getaway, book a stay at the nearby Disneyland Hotel, which also offers whimsically themed specialty accommodations, like the Mickey Mouse Penthouse or the sumptuous Fairy Tale Suites. Dining options offer something for everyone, from the upscale Steakhouse 55 to the kids-favorite Goofy’s Kitchen, often featuring strolling characters. The Monorail Pool, with two towering watersides, is wildly popular; for a quieter retreat, relax in a plush chaise at the adjacent E-Ticket or D-Ticket pools.
Paradise Pier Hotel captures the spirit of an old-fashioned beach boardwalk, with rooms tricked out to make you feel like you’re vacationing in a 1920s-era hotel. What’s the most popular spot? Check out the complex of rooftop pools and waterslides—complete with the upgrade option of poolside cabana suites offering deluxe services—and we’ll let you guess.