I’ll admit, before discovering I was with child, I would roll my eyes whenever I saw pregnant women at Disneyland. I mean, what is the point, ladies? You can’t go on any of the cool rides, all you do is waddle around all day, and more often than not, it’s a day of baking in the Southern California sunshine.
And then I got knocked up. Is there really any way that I, a self-proclaimed Disney addict, could go nine months without visiting my favorite place in the whole world? Um, no. I had to majorly adjust my Disney expectations (bye-bye California Adventure beer cart), but I knew I would find a way to enjoy myself. And what have I discovered? You can have fun at Disneyland, even while pregnant! Just follow these easy steps:
1. Know going in that the “fun” rides are off limits. Space Mountain and Tower of Terror are just not going to happen in your pregnant state. But that’s okay! There are still lots of other cool rides you can enjoy. In California Adventure, check out Toy Story Midway Mania and Soarin’ Over California. If you’re a fan of Ariel, The Little Mermaid ride is also a cute option. Across the way at Disneyland, you can rock many of the classics like Pirates of the Caribbean and Haunted Mansion. Jungle Cruise is always a crowd pleaser, and you can still battle the evil Dr. Zurg on my personal favorite, Buzz Lightyear Astroblasters.
2. Come prepared. First and foremost, wear comfortable shoes. I used to dress for cuteness at the parks, but now I wear good sturdy socks and my running shoes. You will not make it through the day wearing my former go to’s like flip flops and Chucks. Second, bring lots of water with you. You will need it, no matter what the weather is like (and more often than not, it is hot). With all the walking around, it is super important to stay hydrated and you don’t want to get stuck paying the Disney standard of $3 for a bottle of water. You also might want to bring snacks to munch on in between meals.
The New Balance Disney themed running shoe collection; I need them all!
3. Know where the bathrooms are located. If you are not a frequent visitor to the parks, make sure you get a park map and note the locations of the bathrooms. There are ample locations throughout the park, so if you know where to look, you are never more than a few minutes away. But there is nothing worse than feeling that pressure in your tummy and having no idea where to find relief.
4. Take lots of breaks. There are tons of places in both parks where you can sit and relax and enjoy one of my favorite aspects of the Disneyland experience: people watching. At California Adventure, I like to grab a waterside table at the Cove Bar. Overlooking the pier, the bar gives you a great view of the Ferris wheel, and depending on your timing, you may even be able to catch one of the many water shows that takes place during the day (and don’t worry, even though it’s technically a bar, there are plenty of non-alcoholic options available). If you’re at the Happiest Place on Earth, grab a seat at the Tomorrowland Terrace and listen to some live music. Or kick up your feet and watch some of the awesome live entertainment at the Fantasyland Theater or the new Princess Fantasy Faire.
5. Enjoy the food. Churros and pretzels and Dole Whip, oh my! Disneyland is home to some of the yummiest junk food on the block, why not use your expecting state as an excuse to indulge in some tasty goodies? If you are sticking with the healthy stuff, there are many places to get fresh fruit (and pickles!), but don’t be afraid to stop by the Ghiradelli Soda Fountain and Chocolate Shop in California Adventure for dessert. You deserve it!
6. Do some baby shopping. There are enough cute kids clothes in the stores at the parks to make even the hardest of hearts squeal with delight. Feel free to poke around and maybe even purchase a onesie or two…or ten.
Whether this is your first pregnancy or your tenth, there is no need to let your unborn child keep you from the awesomeness that awaits and Disneyland and California Adventure. Be prepared, set your expectations, and most of all, enjoy your day at the Happiest Place on Earth.