Today we’re going to be talking about the 10 things that can make or break a Disney vacation. Here are my park bag essentials for visiting Disneyland and California Adventures theme parks.
Let’s take a second to talk about the bag itself. This is going to look like a lot of different things for a lot of different people. Big, tiny, cross-body, backpack, fannypack, whatever is the right size for you. Personally, I like to take a cross-body bag with an adjustable strap that’s approximately this size. After plenty of trial and error, this is just what works best for me and what fits on the rides.
2. Sunscreen (and lots of it)
Sunscreen is so important no matter what time of year you’re visiting the parks. I prefer to take a miniature spray with me for an easier reapplication process, but any kind of sunscreen will do.
If there’s one thing you’ll learn very quickly, it’s that your feet and legs are going to hurt. A lot. Ibuprofen will take the edge off throughout the day. (I would recommend putting a few pills into a tiny ziplock baggie instead of taking the bottle in with you. That is, unless you enjoy sounding like a human baby rattle all day.)
4. Your wallet (duh)
I love this super skinny wallet from Target. It’s perfect for travel, especially when you only need to bring your debit card, some cash, and your park ticket.
5. Plastic bag (for water rides)
Want to go on Splash Mountain or Grizzly River Run but don’t want to get your bag full of electronics soaked? Bring a plastic bag with you and tie your purse inside of it for the water rides. You’re welcome. (Bonus tip: bring a disposable poncho to keep your clothes dry. If you don’t want to wear it on the ride, you can at least sit on it to keep dat booty dry.)
6. Hand lotion (or deodorant or body spray)
Basically, bring something with you so that when you start sweating (and stinking) you can freshen up (and de-funk yo self).
7. Portable phone charger
You do not want your phone to die while you’re at one of the most photo-op vacation spots in America. This cute little charger and USB are both from Walmart and were less than $25 all together (they have even cheaper ones, I just wanted the cute one #storyofmylife).
They don’t sell gum in the parks, so if you want some, you’d better bring it in with you.
9. Lip balm
Make sure you bring a lip balm that has SPF in it. The last thing you need is to get crusty sunburnt lips.
10. Sweat defense (hair tie and oil blotting sheets)
Make sure you bring a hair tie to get your hair off your sweaty neck and some oil blotting sheets to mop up the oil on your face. California is hot year round, people. Be prepared.
11. Park maps
Bonus item: make sure you grab the free park maps. Although you don’t technically need them anymore now that you can use the Disneyland Park app, it’s still such an awesome souvenir (and nothing beats navigating Disney with a good old fashioned paper map).
Make sure you don’t forget your cell phone and some comfortable walking shoes (your desire for cute footwear will disappear after about 3 hours of walking your butt off). Most importantly, make sure you get your hands on a water bottle once you get into the park (or bring one with you to begin with). Dehydration is lurking right around the corner when you’re walking around in the heat for hours on end.
Other than that, just remember to have fun. Make some memories and enjoy the happiest place on earth.