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Disneyland Magic Morning - When to Use and When to Avoid

by Leap on August 1, 2021 39 Los Angeles

A note from Leap: Disneyland Extra Magic Hour and Magic Morning are temporarily unavailable. You can, however, enter the park a little early each day and be ready to ride as soon as the park officially opens. Hop over to our Disneyland reopening post for the latest news, including details about Genie+, which replaces the retired FASTPASS and MaxPass services in fall 2021. 

Tips for Disneyland Magic Morning & Extra Magic Hour - PinterestEach day at the Disneyland Resort, one of the two parks opens an hour early for registered Disneyland hotel guests. For three days a week, Disneyland Park opens one hour early for select ticket holders. For all of the years we've been Disney frog-natics, we've learned the best ways to get the most from these early entry hours. We also have a few tricks in our froggy packs on how to avoid heavy crowds during these times. Disneyland has two categories of early entry: Disneyland Magic Morning and Extra Magic Hour. These hours affect everyone, so even if you do not have early entry privileges, it is important to read our tips for maximizing your time in the parks by working around them.

In early 2020, the virtual queue for the brand-new Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance attraction brought up a few questions and logistical issues with using Magic Morning and Extra Magic Hour at Disneyland. We'll address those under How Does a Virtual Queue Affect Early Entry?. Let's get hoppin'!

The Ins and Outs of Disneyland Magic Morning and Extra Magic Hour

Disneyland Magic Morning - Early Entry Main Street, USA

What is Disneyland Extra Magic Hour?

During their hotel stay, registered Disneyland hotel guests have the privilege of entering one designated park one hour before opening. Only select stores, restaurants and certain lands of Disneyland may be open during this hour. Guests need to show their hotel room key to get access to the park. There are designated turnstiles to enter for Extra Magic Hour. Other park guests may use the regular turnstiles to enter the park early, as well (usually about 30 minutes early). But they cannot make it past the ropes until the park officially opens for the day. When the park opens, the ropes drop and all guests have full access to the parks. Park ticket admission is required for Extra Magic Hour. Extra Magic Hour is available each day of your hotel stay. It's valid even on check-in day if guests arrive early enough!

Disneyland Magic Morning - When to Use and When to Avoid - Park Opening Line

Disneyland Extra Magic Hour currently falls on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, with access to Fantasyland and Tomorrowland attractions. You cannot gain early access to Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge with a Disney hotel reservation. Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge is not available during Extra Magic Hour or Disneyland Magic Morning. If, however, you have a reservation for Oga's Cantina, Savi's Workshop or Droid Depot right at park opening, you can enter the park early so you can get to your reservation. Arrive about 25 minutes early with your reservation confirmation. Look for the special turnstiles (they may be all the way to the left, about turnstile number one) where you can enter.

Disney California Adventure Extra Magic Hour currently falls on Sundays, Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Usually, all of California Adventure is open during the Extra Magic Hour, including Cars Land. During certain peak times, such as Christmas week, both parks might offer Extra Magic Hour on the same day to accommodate crowds. Occasionally, other events in the park may affect the Extra Magic Hour schedule, such as the CHOC Walk, so be sure to check the Entertainment Schedule and park hours before your visit.

What is Disneyland Magic Morning?

Disneyland Magic Morning also allows people who are not staying on-site to enter the park an hour before opening for one day in the duration of their multi-day ticket or pass. This is only valid one of three days of the week for Disneyland Park, usually Tuesdays, Thursdays or Saturdays. Disneyland Magic Morning occurs at the same time as Extra Magic Hours those days. Therefore, you can can expect longer lines for entering Disneyland Park those days. To get Disneyland Magic Morning, you can purchase a valid 3+ day Disneyland theme park ticket in advance of your resort arrival or at the main entrance ticket booth. There is no Magic Morning access to Disney California Adventure at this time.

How does early entry affect crowds?

Disneyland Magic Morning - Rope Drop

Disneyland Extra Magic Hour and Disneyland Magic Morning do affect crowd levels, although not as strongly as Extra Magic Hours do at Disney World (more on this below). Quite simply, the park that holds the early entry is more crowded at park opening and throughout the day than it is on days that it does not have an early entry option. The early hour is not crowded, but people without park hoppers flock to that park and stay there, so it just happens to draw more people. Once regular ticket holders enter the park, it fills faster than the other park. The California Adventure Extra Magic Hour may not be as crowded as Disneyland Park, because only Disney Resort hotel guests have access during that hour.

While resort guests do not have to head to the park with the Extra Magic Hour, many think that is where they are supposed to go. And if you are a resort guest, you can do a lot within that morning Extra Magic Hour if you ride the most popular rides with the shortest durations. After all, it is the least busy hour of the day!

Disneyland Magic Morning - When to Use and When to Avoid - Turnstile Sign

For those of you who are familiar with Extra Magic Hours at Disney World, it is important to note that the Disneyland Extra Magic Hour and Magic Morning do not have as much impact on crowds. There are several reasons for this. First, there simply aren't that many official Disneyland hotels, and thus not as many Disneyland hotel guests. Second, because park hopping is cheaper at Disneyland (especially for multi-day tickets) and the parks are right next-door to each other, many more people hop between parks versus staying in one park per day. Third, because there are so many other LA attractions, and Disneyland has only two parks, many people visit for a day or two versus the three required to qualify for the Disneyland Magic Morning benefit.

An exception to this is during times between mid-January and about mid-May, when locals can purchase a Southern California 3-day pass that gives them one Magic Morning. Also, the presence of a virtual queue, such as the one for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, greatly affects morning crowds.

How does a virtual queue affect early entry?

Disneyland Magic Morning - When to Use and When to Avoid - Virtual Queue Crowds

Disneyland added its first virtual queue for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance in early 2020, and it led to large morning crowds during Disneyland Magic Morning and Extra Magic Hour. It's likely that we can expect changes to the virtual queue after the COVID-19 closure. Keep hopping back because it's possible that the following tips and information from before the closure could need modification after the reopening!

Before the closure, the only way to access the Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance attraction was to join a Boarding Group as soon as the park officially opened to everyone. You must have entered Disneyland Park to join a Boarding Group. That meant people with early entry had easier access to getting into Disneyland — as long as they arrived early for early entry. (We are talking an hour earlier than early entry!) There were a lot more people outside the gates of Disneyland waiting to get in during the hour to hour and a half before park opening. (The line often stretched to the gates of Disney California Adventure!)

During the time of the pandemic, people cannot gather in the kinds of crowds we experienced before the closure. Disney's Hollywood Studios at Disney World made modifications to the way people join Boarding Groups, and it's likely Disneyland will also make adjustments before reopening. At Hollywood Studios, park visitors no longer need to be inside the park in the morning to acquire a Boarding Group. Then there is an afternoon opportunity to join a Boarding Group for guests who are inside the park. If a similar system is in place at Disneyland, it will help decrease morning crowds. The following tips are based on mornings before the COVID-19 closure.

On Magic Morning and Extra Magic Hour days, which are usually Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday mornings at Disneyland, you have huge early entry crowds along with the regular crowds. People without Extra Magic Hour or Magic Morning access may have an easier time getting in the park by avoiding these early entry days for Disneyland. But that is only the case for early arrivals.

You want to find the correct entrance for you. And the turnstiles offering early entry aren't always in the same place. Look at signs above the turnstiles. Some of them will be marked for the Extra Magic Hour and Magic Morning guests. These are usually the right half of the turnstiles. After the bulk of the early entry guests enter, many of those lines switch over to allow in the many guests trying to enter before park opening to get a Boarding Group. This may happen about 30 minutes before park opening time (it can vary, so be flexible and keep your eye on it). Lingering near that area can mean getting a jump on the shorter lines once the cast members make the switch and open more turnstiles to guests without early access. It may not happen at all if the lines stay long until park opening.

To learn even more tips for joining a Boarding Group, hop over to our Galactic Guide to Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge at Disneyland. If you have Magic Morning or Extra Magic Hour, you will be allowed past the ropes to enjoy parts of Disneyland for that one magical hour before rope drop. But if you want to join a Boarding Group, be sure to set an alarm on your phone about five minutes before the published park entry time and get yourself to an outdoor spot with a good cell signal. That way, you will be ready to join the queue at the right time. These groups fill within seconds, and backup groups are full within minutes. If you are on a ride or deep in a building at that time, you will miss out!

 What is Extra, Extra Magic Hour?

Sometimes, Disneyland Resort offers an Extra, Extra Magic Hour at the end of the day for Disneyland Resort hotel guests. It is rare, but when it occurs, it is during a peak time such as summer or after a new, popular attraction has opened. They offered Extra, Extra Magic Hour in summer 2017 for hotel guests to ride Guardians of the Galaxy — Mission: BREAKOUT! after the park closed for the day. In 2019, there were a few opportunities for Annual Passholders to stay in Disney California Adventure or Disneyland on certain nights for one hour after park closing to ride a certain ride.

When to Use Disneyland Magic Morning or Extra Magic Hour

If you are concerned about getting to the front gate early enough, at times, some of the hotels on Harbor Blvd. across from Disneyland allow you to park in their lots (for a fee similar to Disneyland lots). It's subject to availability, but can save you a lot of time.
  • Use if you can get there early. There is no benefit to showing up to a park early if you don't actually arrive early. If you're taking advantage of Magic Morning, remember to allow extra time. You need to park, take buses or trams and get through security bag check. Make sure you can take advantage of your full hour. The parking structures and lots open 90 minutes before the earliest published park opening, so plan to be in line to enter before the garage opens.
  • Use if you are park hopping. Having early entry AND a Park Hopper ticket is the best of both worlds. In this situation, you can go to the park with Magic Morning/Extra Magic Hour during that hour and then hop over to the other park when it opens and get another very uncrowded first hour in that park.
  • Use if you want to get a jump on collecting FASTPASSes. Disneyland now allows guests to collect some FASTPASSes during the Disneyland Magic Morning or Extra Magic Hour. There are two ways to acquire FASTPASSes: You can collect them physically from a FASTPASS distribution machine or reserve a FASTPASS from your phone with Disney MaxPass through the Disneyland Park App as soon as you enter the park. Not all rides may be distributing FASTPASSes during early entry. The selection depends on the day. However, early entry gives you the advantage of starting to reserve FASTPASSes. Only guests with early entry benefits can collect a FASTPASS in person. Other guests may enter the park and wait behind the ropes. MaxPass gives all guests an advantage. Any guest with MaxPass who enters the park before the official opening may start reserving rides and shows during early entry. MaxPass users can see all available attractions before reserving. That saves time and a walk to the kiosk to find out. We love saving time with MaxPass! The FASTPASS return windows begin once the park is officially open. Priority ride FASTPASSes would be Space Mountain at Disneyland or Radiator Springs Racers (note the new distribution location in Cars Land) and Toy Story Midway Mania at Disney California Adventure.
  • Use to collect show FASTPASSes for World of Color and Fantasmic! Show FASTPASSes run out quickly. You can now reserve these nighttime extravaganzas through MaxPass (which is especially helpful to park hoppers) as soon as you enter the park.
  • Use if you want to eat breakfast in the park. There are a surprising number of locations to eat breakfast in Disneyland parks. If you are the type of family that does not like to eat right away, you can hop out of bed, take advantage of early entry and then take a break to refuel by having breakfast in the park. Our Frog Family recommends the Mickey Mouse pancakes or breakfast burritos!

When to Avoid the Park with Magic Morning or Extra Magic Hour

Disneyland Extra Magic Hour and Disneyland Magic Morning - Radiator Springs Racers

There are certain circumstances when you should avoid the park with Disneyland Magic Morning or Extra Magic Hour. Here are those times:

  • Avoid if you do not have access to the early entry hour. Since you won't be able to go on any rides during Disneyland Extra Magic Hour or Magic Morning, we recommend avoiding the park that has them and the crowds that come with them. The other park will be less crowded in the morning. Sometimes, you visit a park with the Extra Magic Hour because it's the only day you'll be able to see a special show or parade. During crowded times, it's especially good to enter early, have a solid touring plan, and use your FASTPASSes wisely. Priority FASTPASSes at Disneyland include Space Mountain (and Splash Mountain in summer or Haunted Mansion Holiday in the fall). Priority FASTPASSes at California Adventure are Radiator Springs RacersGuardians of the Galaxy: Mission — Breakout! and Toy Story Midway Mania. Keep in mind that you can still enter the park early without having access to the attractions. You will be restricted to certain areas. At Disneyland, it is a great time to visit the many characters who are out greeting guests. Then, before the official opening, you can make your way to the rope drop. There is not much going on in California Adventure before rope drop. That's why you do not need to get there until closer to rope drop. People line up at the ropes nearest to the attractions they want to visit first. It's a good time to grab some coffee or breakfast snacks before rope drop.
  • Avoid if you want to do highly popular things. If your speed demon wants to ride Radiator Springs Racers at California Adventure with the shortest line, but you do not have early morning access, visit on a day it isn't happening in that park. We once arrived early on a day that was not having an Extra Magic Hour. We were able to hop right on Radiator Springs Racers with no wait.
  • Avoid if you are not morning people. Let’s face it: Some families are not early risers. If your family takes some time to get going or really needs a solid, sit-down breakfast before getting moving, an Extra Magic Hour might not be worth the stress and frustration. If you are a night owl, you might benefit from staying extra late in the park when crowds tend to die down a bit.
  • Disneyland Extra Magic Hour and Disneyland Magic Morning - Peter PanAvoid if you really don't like crowds. In our opinion, we try to avoid the park with the extra hour. We find that entering the other park before opening gives just as much benefit and has the lowest crowds all day. For example, we find Sunday mornings at Disneyland Park to be very quiet for the first hour or two. We recently encountered an empty Fantasyland on a Sunday morning. We got to hang out with the rarely-seen Peter Pan and Captain Hook! You can usually enter the parks 30 minutes before opening any day. Usually, an entrance is designated for early entry guests and the other lines are for regular guests. Regular guests who enter early have access to characters and shopping, but not rides. The lands are roped off. But once the opening announcement is made and the rope is dropped, you are free to walk anywhere you want. That first hour is delightfully uncrowded. On the other hand, if you show up at rope drop at the park with early entry, you’ll encounter lines and crowds right away. It isn't always worth dealing with the bigger crowds brought on by Disneyland Magic Morning and Extra Magic Hour. We toadally love starting at Disney California Adventure on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
  • Avoid if you do not have access and you are trying to join a virtual queue at park opening. You can expect bigger crowds and longer lines to enter the park on these days, and if you have not entered the park before opening, you will not get a spot in the virtual queue.

Tips for Maximizing Disneyland Magic Morning and Extra Magic Hour

  • Confirm the Disneyland park hours for Extra Magic Hour and Disneyland Magic Morning days before your visit.
  • Disneyland Resort recommends arriving at the entrance gate an hour and 15 minutes before the park’s official opening. During the virtual queue period, we recommend getting to the gates an hour before early entry start time — otherwise, you may spend your hour waiting in line to get in!
  • Attractions and lands are subject to change, so be flexible.
  • Add plenty of time to park, take shuttles (if you are staying off-site) and get through security. Walk to the park if your hotel is close enough.
  • You can find all park hours and early entry hours for the month listed here.
  • Use the entrance to Disney California Adventure through the Grand Californian if you are staying there. (It is usually reserved for guests of that hotel until about 11 a.m.)
  • Buy a Park Hopper ticket. It allows you to take advantage of Early Entry in one park and lower crowds in the other.

Disneyland Magic Morning - FASTPASS Distribution

  • Take advantage of being in the park early to get to the front of the line (at park opening) for FASTPASSes for popular shows and attractions. Please note that Radiator Springs Racers' FASTPASS distribution is now in Cars Land behind Flo's V8 Cafe.
  • If you have MaxPass, make your first FASTPASS reservation as soon as you go though the turnstile. You won’t be able to use it until the park opens to everyone, but you can likely book your second FASTPASS just after park opening. (And possibly your third shortly after that, depending on your waiting periods and how quickly you use the first FASTPASSes.) Reserving ASAP gives you a great head start on your day.
  • Whenever you enter the park before it opens, visit characters like Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Pluto, Donald Duck, Daisy or any of their friends. They are usually out early, and lines are shorter than later in the day.
  • The early morning is a great time to capture those iconic shots. There is less demand for PhotoPass Photographers just after park opening. So get those professional shots while you all look fresh (you know, before rollercoaster hair sets in).
  • Use Extra Magic Hour to ride rides that do not offer FASTPASSes but tend to get long lines (if they are open). These include Peter Pan's Flight, Dumbo the Flying Elephant, Alice in Wonderland or Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage. The Pixar Pal-A-Round or Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind are great options for the morning at Disney California Adventure.
  • Delay riding the most popular attraction until the last 10 minutes of the Disneyland Magic Morning or Extra Magic Hour. Many of the other early entry guests will head there first thing and then will have moved on to other areas of the park by that point, leaving you with a short wait just before park opening.
  • If you book character dining at the Plaza Inn at Disneyland during Disneyland Magic Morning or Extra Magic Hour, bring your confirmation with you and use the "Character Dining" turnstile to enter the park.
  • If you have an early morning reservation in Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge right at park opening, arrive about 25 minutes early. Bring proof of your reservation and use the special turnstile to enter the park early so you will be on time for your reservation. This is usually the first turnstile, all the way to the left.
  • The Monorail usually opens for Extra Magic Hour and Magic Morning in Disneyland Park. However, it does not open for Extra Magic Hour at Disney California Adventure because it does not stop there.
  • You can use Extra Magic Hour each day of your hotel stay, even on the day you check in (if you can arrive early enough).
  • Before rope drop (whether you were in the park for early entry or not), assess which areas of the park were open for Extra Magic Hour. At rope drop, head to a land that was not open. There will be no lines. So let’s say Tomorrowland and Fantasyland are open for early access. Head to Frontierland or Adventureland for the lightest crowds.

Finally, here’s a fun fact: Pay attention to the morning music, especially just after rope drop. Disneyland plays fast marching music to get you moving quickly into the park. If you stay until the evening (especially after fireworks), note the slow lullaby-ish music encouraging you to slow down and linger and shop before leaving. It’s a fun Disneyland mind trick.

While we've covered a lot of ground in a short amount of time, you'll be well prepared to pick a park the next time you visit Disneyland. Have a tip for using Disneyland Extra Magic Hour or Disneyland Magic Morning? Share in the comments below. And be sure to get a jump on saving on a 3-day+ Disneyland Resort ticket with a day of Magic Morning by purchasing from your favorite frogs at Undercover Tourist!

Related: How to Take Disney MaxPass to the Max!

Related: Guide to Disneyland FASTPASS Service

Related: The Ins and Outs of Disneyland Dining Reservations

Keep hopping!

Keep hopping, Leap!
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Jun 14, 2021 at 7:19 p.m. Gwen Says...

Is the Extra Magic Hour valid on the day I check out from the Disney hotel (check out is 11 am)? Thanks,

Jun 14, 2021 at 2:28 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Gwen!

Currently, Extra Magic Hour offerings have been temporarily suspended, but yes, it normally covers every day of your hotel stay.

Keep hopping!


Jun 15, 2021 at 4:14 p.m. Gwen Joan Mah Says...

Many thanks!

Jun 15, 2021 at 11:23 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

You're welcome, Gwen! Hoppy to help :)

Keep hopping!


Oct 31, 2020 at 8:58 p.m. Bonbon Says...

Any tips on finding the correct line for Magic Morning entry? The last time we went to DL we were there an hour prior to open, hoping to use our Magic Morning. The lines were already hundreds of persons deep! There was no roped off line, or cast members, or a sign, or any indication where the end of the Magic Morning line was. I know it says Magic Morning above one of the turn styles, but there were so many people already in the lines, we could not see from far away which one was the correct line. I'm sure people just got into any line regardless... Any suggestions (besides get there 2 hours early)?

Nov 3, 2020 at 10:39 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Bonbon!

We know those morning crowds that were related to people coming early to access Boarding Groups for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance! They were so confusing and stressful to all of us. The Magic Morning turnstile locations did vary, but if you could split the turnstiles in half, the Magic Morning turnstiles were generally all on the right half of the Esplanade from the middle over towards the stroller rentals. The back of those lines reached the Disney California Adventure gates too! We have no magic ball, but we are predicting (hoping) we will not see those kinds of lines again (outside of holidays). Disneyland has not made any announcements about changes, but we know that Disney World is testing a new system for acquiring Boarding Groups that does not require guests to be in the park. If that system comes to Disneyland, most people will not arrive that early to be in the park. Plus, reduced capacity in the parks will limit crowds for an unknown period of time. Until Disneyland reopens, we will not know exactly what will be in store for those morning, but we will be there to figure it out and come up with the best solutions for beating the crowds at that time.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Feb 20, 2020 at 6:35 a.m. Andie Says...


We bought our four day passes for one park per day at the gate assuming that one Magic Morning was included with our admission as on our previous trips. To our dismay we do not see anything listed on our tickets that says we get one Magic Morning. Did Disneyland Resort change their policy and only passes purchased online get one Magic Morning?

Feeling very disheartened. Thanks.

Feb 20, 2020 at 3:22 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Andie!

All 3- 4- and 5- day tickets come with one Magic Morning. Check the schedule and arrive early for Magic Morning that day and it will automagically be electronically tied to your ticket when you scan in. Hope this helps!

Keep hopping!


Jan 16, 2020 at 12:38 a.m. Bonnie Says...

Hi, We have had multi day tickets with magic morning hour, but when we arrived at the park entrance (1 hour early) the lines were already long and we could not figure out where to go, in order to use our Magic Morning admission and get through the gate without rudely cutting through other people in line (who may also have had early admission, for all we knew) So: how do we actually get IN, as in, Through The Gate, when there are already lines formed? Is there a special Early Admission Gate and segregated line somewhere that doesn't fill up with regular ticket holders? We want to try Magic Morning hour again, but are worried all the gate entrances will be crowded even earlier when Rise of Resistance opens. Thanks for any info.

Jan 21, 2020 at 4:20 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Bonnie!

There are turnstiles just for Magic Morning! Look to the sides (this week, they've been to the far right hand side). If you cannot find them, have a cast member point you in the right direction. There are a lot of people right now, but you should be able to get in from the sides and there should be a sign above the turnstiles to help guide you.

Keep hopping!


Sep 12, 2019 at 6:53 p.m. Kim Cobb Says...

If checking into the Disneyland Hotel on a Monday can you take advantage of the Extra Magic Hour at California Adventure Park that day as well?

Sep 12, 2019 at 4:18 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kim!

Extra Magic Hour is good every day of your stay, including the day of check-in! You'll need to coordinate with the front desk before hopping to the park to get your key card. While your room may not be ready, the bell desk will be hoppy to keep your luggage.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Jul 14, 2019 at 8:27 p.m. Angela Says...

Great info! Thank you!

On the days of Oogie Boogie Bash in DCA, is the park slower on those mornings because those who purchase the Bash tickets can't arrive until 3pm or so?

Jul 15, 2019 at 4:19 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Angela!

The morning will definitely be slower than the afternoon when party guests start to mix in. There may be fewer people visiting in the morning because 1-day ticket buyers may avoid that park that day due to the shorter regular hours. Enjoy!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Jun 29, 2019 at 9:42 a.m. Mike Says...


If you are in Disneyland park during magic morning and are intending to hop over the DCA after the first hour (or two), with maxpass, can you reserve rides in DCA whilst you are still in the Disneyland park?

Many thanks


Jul 1, 2019 at 11:38 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mike,

Yes, you sure can! Enjoy!

Keep hopping!


May 20, 2019 at 11:25 p.m. Jen A Says...

Question about extra magic hour/magic morning. Once you get through the turnstiles I understand ght people with MM and EMH go one way and other park guests wait at rope for rope

Drop. But how do they keep track of who has EMH and MM after they go through turnstiles? Who monitors that and how? Just curious. Coming in sept and staying at GC. Can’t wait

May 22, 2019 at 9:35 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jen!

Everyone can walk into the park and then into Disneyland at the Hub (where the entrances to lands are), and at Disney California Adventure at different points on the streets to each land there are ropes. People with the Extra Magic Hours and Magic Morning (with either hotel keys or the appropriate tickets) can get past the ropes. Other guests cannot. When the park officially opens there will be an announcement and the ropes will “drop” or be pulled back and everyone else can enter the lands. Hope this helps! Have a frogtastic trip!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Apr 27, 2019 at 3:20 a.m. Melanie Says...


Heading to DL in August. Wanting to get a photo infront of the castle with the least amount of people. Do you think a Magic morning or a morning without MM and EMH will be less busy?

So if we go on a Sunday (without MM and EMH) but arrive 30 mins prior to park opening... would this be as good as a magic morning?

Really after that castle shot without people in it! Thanks!

Apr 30, 2019 at 2:43 p.m. Devon Donell Says...

the castle is currently being worked on pics have been kinda lame

just letting u know

Apr 29, 2019 at 1:56 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Melanie!

You can go for a Magic Morning or a regular day at Rope Drop. A Sunday without EMH and MM is a great idea — Just be in the park before Rope Drop and be one of the first people past the ropes and you should have a clear shot. That is the emptiest time of the day for the castle.

Keep hopping!


Nov 19, 2018 at 12:50 a.m. Jenn D Says...

We have a magic morning with our 3 day pass. We want to save our magic morning for the last day. How early can we enter the parks the other two days without "triggering" the magic morning feature?

Nov 29, 2018 at 6:13 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jenn!

No worries. Magic Morning is only triggered if you enter through a Magic Morning turnstile before park opening. Since they sometimes let both Magic Morning and regular park guests in during the 30 minutes before park opening (but regular park guests stay behind a rope), just be sure to look above the gate where you enter and do not go in through the Magic Morning entrance the other two mornings. I wouldn’t hurt to specify that to the person who scans your ticket just to be sure.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Aug 4, 2018 at 3:26 p.m. karisa Says...

Are you able to get fastpasses during extra magic hour? Or are they not available until the actual park opening?

Aug 7, 2018 at 12:02 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Karisa,

Yes, you can reserve FASTPASS during Extra Magic Hour, although the first available return times seem to be once the park officially opens. But it’s great to get a head start on them because you can book your second and third passes before and just after park opening as well. Park Hoppers can reserve for either park, even if the other park is not open for EMH yet!

Keep hopping!


Jun 30, 2018 at 3:03 a.m. David Says...

Are all attractions available during later August weekdays when California schools have already started? Also, are "Magic Morning" crowds still an issue during those days?

Jul 6, 2018 at 12:40 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi David!

All the attractions (as long as they are not undergoing refurbishment) are still available through September 3. It’s possible for Haunted Mansion to close before then to get it ready for Halloween time, which starts September 7. Magic Morning is not a terrible issue normally, and it will probably be about the same as it normally is through the end of August.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Feb 23, 2018 at 2:30 a.m. AbleRiot Says...

Question: Visiting in May for 2 days for the first time. Planning to do day 1 at CA and Day 2 at DL, since my folks will meet up with us that day, which so happens to fall on a Thursday. Since we do not have early entry, can we still book a character breakfast at Park Inn at DL before the park opens to us (and everyone else?). Or we will not be permitted to enter the DL and book breakfast until official park opening to the general public?

Mar 5, 2018 at 1:52 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there!

You will be able to enter the park early if you have a dining reservation.

Keep hopping!


Dec 14, 2017 at 5:02 a.m. Jlg Says...

I'm so confused! We've never done Disneyland (have done Disney World countless times) do we not get magic bands with all of our tickets, reservations, fastpasses etc? Talking about "keys" and specific fast pass locations has me all jumbled! We're stopping in LA on our way to Aulani. Staying at Grand Californian and doing one day of park hopping. We'll be there on a Thursday in July, which from the sound of it, may be horribly crowded? Where do we start? What are the CA must do attractions? I don't want our experience to be a bad one! This just seems so different from Florida! Thanks for any help you can offer!!!

Dec 19, 2017 at 12:06 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there,

MagicBands are not used at Disneyland Resort. Paper tickets are still in use there! It will be crowded in July because schools are closed and many people are on vacation, so that just means you need to do some planning! Hop over to our Disneyland park plans to see what FASTPASS reservations we recommend and how you should plan out your day.

Keep hopping!


Nov 15, 2017 at 4:16 a.m. Vanessa Says...

Magic morning question;) we are a fam of 5...two kids 4/6 and my littlest is 2. As he is free, and the rest of us have tickets, he’s fine to come in early with us on the magic morning too correct? I read somewhere only those with a ticket and that got me worrying ...

Sep 29, 2017 at 12:01 a.m. Cindy Edwards Says...

Such great info! Thank you! We just booked a trip for February and I have a couple questions... We'll be staying at a Disneyland hotel and want to take advantage of the Extra Magic Hour. Is there a place for hotel guests to line up? Do you cut in front of people who don't have extra magic hour? Or do people without the extra magic hour don't generally line up that early? All you have to do is show them your room key? Do they scan it to make sure you're currently staying there? Does each person have a key or one key per room? Thanks for the help. A successful trip is all about knowing the ropes! Ha ha!

Sep 28, 2017 at 8:12 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Cindy,

Generally, non-hotel guests will not be lining up. There is usually a designated Extra Magic Hour entrance. Have a room key handy and keep your group together.

Keep hopping!


Sep 29, 2017 at 1:21 p.m. Cindy Says...

You're the best! Thank you so much!

Jan 17, 2017 at 12:36 a.m. Shelly Says...

Have you tried using the DCA entrance at the Grand Californian? The line gets insanely long if you aren't there early. We found it faster to walk around to the park entrance.

Jan 16, 2017 at 6:43 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Shelly,

Great tip. We're always looking for ways to "leap" lines.

Keep Hopping!


Dec 21, 2016 at 6:20 p.m. Stephanie Colclough Says...

Loved the tip about the fast to slow music! I'll try to listen for that. Im an eastcoaster who frequents WDW orlando. We want to do Disneyland soon, but I'm a little confused...above it says "there is no magic morning access to California Adventure." Then later it says..."The California Adventure Magic Morning days may not be as crowded as Disneyland because only Disney Resort hotel guests have access in that hour."?????

Jan 17, 2017 at 9:48 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Stephanie

Whoops. We meant to say "The California Adventure Extra Magic Hour.

Keep Hopping!


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