The annual Lunar New Year Celebration kicked off this past Friday! This is always such a fun addition to slower season at the parks – gives guests something extra special to look forward to!
We spent our morning at California Adventure on Friday, checking out all the Lunar New Year fun. Read on for a recap along with details on what you can expect between now and February 18 (Lunar New Year Celebration’s last day).
Marketplace Food Booths
There are three marketplace booths in Paradise Park for the Lunar New Year Celebration – one offering Chinese cuisine, one with Korean cuisine and one with Vietnamese cuisine. There is also a new menu at Paradise Garden Grill during this time, offering some really delicious meal options until February 18.
Check out the full menu for all of these marketplace booths here!
On the left is the Banh Chu’ng – Sticky rice cake with pork from the Vietnam Marketplace Booth and on the right is the Banh Khoai Lang Tim – Purple sweet potato macaron also from the Vietnam Booth. Both are delish!
Banana Ooyu – Non-alcoholic Banana Milk from the Korea Marketplace Booth – WOW this was so good!
You can get almond cookies and Pork Bao at this little food cart located at Paradise Gardens, between the character meet and greet location and the Lucky Wishing Wall.
Complimentary Face Painting
Guests of all ages can get their face painted…FOR FREE! That’s right! Save yourself some cash and head over to the face paint booth located near the Little Mermaid ride’s line queue (closer to the Golden Zephyr). There are a few options to choose from, all honoring the Lunar New Year.
The special entertainment during the Lunar New Year Celebration is really amazing and worth checking out! See below for some of the limited time entertainment guests can enjoy.
- Mulan’s Lunar New Year Procession – Happens daily at 12:00, 1:00, 3:00 and 4:00 PM in front of Goofy’s Sky School. The best place to stand for this is between the churro cart and Jumpin’ Jellyfish, facing Paradise Gardens.
2. “Hurry Home – Lunar New Year Celebration” – a special 6-minute pre-show before World of Color every evening! Such a fun treat! Don’t forget that Fast Passes for World of Color can be picked up near the Little Mermaid ride – for best assigned viewing location, try to get your Fast Pass earlier in the day (like when the park opens). World of Color Fast Passes are “disconnected” which means you can pull attraction Fast Passes or book through MaxPass all day long without having an issue. For more reserved World of Color viewing, you can book a dining package or the dessert party package – to read more about both of these options (available to book all year long) – click here.
3. GuGu Drum Group at Paradise Park (across from the Little Mermaid ride, overlooking Paradise Bay) – performances at 11:30 AM, 12:30 PM, 1:30 PM, 3:30 PM, 4:30 PM and 5:30 PM
4. Special entertainment on the Paradise Garden Bandstand – grab your lunch or dinner at Paradise Garden Grill (new menu just for the Lunar New Year Celebration) or at Boardwalk Pizza and Pizza and enjoy some live entertainment special for the event!
Character Meet and Greets
Guests can meet characters like Mulan and Mushu, Mickey and Minnie, Pluto and Chip ‘n Dale (all dressed in their best for the celebration!) at Paradise Gardens. The characters start making appearances at 10:30 AM and end their appearances at 5:00 PM daily during the Lunar New Year Celebration.
The Disneyland app or the special event pamphlet doesn’t specify which characters will be out at certain times, so you just have to get in line and whoever you get is who you get! Of course, you can always get back into the line if you see someone out that you or your littles want to meet, but the line can be long, so just try to plan accordingly. Stopping by first thing in the morning when they start appearing at 10:30 is a good idea for a shorter wait. Chip ‘n Dale tend to wander around Paradise Gardens, so stopping to see them is an easy way to get a photo with a character without having to wait super long.
Annual Passholder Corner
Annual Passholders get to enjoy the benefits of a special photo backdrop, their own wishing wall and a commemorative pin (while supplies last) for the celebration! You can find the AP Corner located between Boardwalk Pizza and Pasta and Paradise Garden Grill.
Activities and Crafts
Stop by Paradise Gardens, right next to the Wishing Wall for crafts and coloring! They have preschool tables and chairs for the kiddos to sit down and get some quiet coloring time in – lots of fun!
There are some really cute items for purchase at the souvenir stand located in front of the Little Mermaid line queue (closer to the Golden Zephyr)! Guests will find things like shirts, brand new Minnie ear headband (see below), pins, plush toys and more! Also, starting in the afternoon, Lunar New Year balloons are available – don’t forget that if your balloon pops or deflates during your visit, you can take it back to the balloon vendor to get a new one FREE OF CHARGE! Balloon vendors take cash only.
Don’t forget to pick up your Lunar New Year guide map featuring Mulan and the Lunar New Year schedule when you enter the parks!