Downtown Disney re-opened about three weeks ago. I did not go on opening day or week…I waited. Why? There were three main reasons: COVID cases were surging in Southern California, I couldn’t handle my anxiety, and I wanted to make sure it was safe.

I am an annual pass holder and have been one since about 1999. This is the longest I have ever gone without going to Disneyland and it has been so hard. Disneyland is my happy place. I literally forget all my problems when I am there and always have the best time. The parks have been closed since mid March and I just happened to renew my pass the week before the closure. I know…poor timing but I would have never guessed COVID was going to be this intense.

I had a lot of reservations about going but I did a lot of research before I went. I watched countless vlogs on YouTube, stalked people on Instagram stories, and talked to personal friends to see what their experience was like. I honestly was leaning towards waiting it out for the parks to open but to be honest…my soul was needing some Disney magic. I needed something to make me feel happy so I decided to go.

I got there around 10 a.m. and it wasn’t crowded at all! I got to walk straight into World of Disney and had a pleasant shopping experience. I was probably in there for about thirty minutes. After I got some snacks (because who doesn’t need a churro?) I walked right into the Dress Shop and the Disney Gallery. I waited about ten minutes in line for the confectionary store. I grabbed some lunch at Naples (also no wait to get seated) and was comfortable (far enough away from other parties) to take off my mask. This was the first time I had eaten at a restaurant since quarantine started. I spent about two and a half hours in Downtown Disney and on the way out, there were definitely a lot more people coming in.

Was it worth it? For me, yes it was. I loved walking around in a familiar place hearing Disney Park music everywhere I went. I stood in front of both gates and soaked it in. I definitely felt a little emotional being so close and not being able to go in but happy because I was there. I think that if you are planning on eating and doing some shopping it is definitely worth it. If you are just going because you miss Disneyland it might not be but it is totally up to you! I felt very safe. There were countless amounts of sanitizing stations and they were controlling how many people were in stores.

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