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Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disney California Adventure

by Leap on November 21, 2022 6 Los Angeles   Video

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Summary

We are so frogcited to celebrate Lunar New Year at Disney California Adventure in 2023! The growing festival leaps back to celebrate two animals this year — the Year of the Rabbit (for the Chinese zodiac calendar) and the Year of the Cat (for the Vietnamese zodiac calendar). We can't wait to see which characters come bouncing and pouncing in for some Lunar New Year Disneyland fun to celebrate with Mulan and Mushu, Mickey and Minnie, and of course, The Three Little Pigs! Plus there is a Lunar New Year procession, complete with characters, firecrackers, drummers and a dragon. The procession gets extended over the entire parade route this year! Never have we been so hoppy to begin a new year as we are this year!

Alvin and this chipmunks

Overview of Lunar New Year at Disneyland

Lunar New Year celebrates the traditional turning of the Chinese lunisolar calendar. Over the past few years, Disney has seen this festival explode (it's a firework thing) in popularity since it began. The Lunar New Year Festival runs from Jan. 20 to Feb. 15, 2023.

The number of days for the festival has expanded in recent years, and we have been toadally excited about the new food and entertainment. You can taste even more traditional food, beverages and sweet treats from Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese and other Asian cultures at two additional Asian marketplaces and other dining locations this year. While you nibble your treats, you can enjoy music and shows.

Entertainment at Lunar New Year at Disney California Adventure

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disneyland - Mulan waves from float

You will generally find festive Lunar New Year entertainment throughout the day and well into the evening. While all of the entertainment is frogciting, our favorite spectacle is Mulan's Lunar New Year Procession. The procession will now take over the entire parade route from Paradise Gardens through Hollywood Land.

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disneyland - Tigger joins procession in 2022

The float carries Mulan and Mushu with traditional drummers. Goofy dances and waves from the back of the float. The float is adorned with golden tasseled firecrackers and red and gold lanterns. Catch it again at night, if you can, because they glow! The streets are filled with a dragon along with Chip 'n' Dale, plus umbrella and fan dancers. The dragon looks particularly cool at night (and is even a different color).

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disneyland - Dragon dancers at night

Check the entertainment schedule for the procession, which takes place several times in the afternoon and evening. On the Paradise Garden Bandstand, listen for Melody of China performing Chinese folk, classical and contemporary instrumental songs. Take a seat in the afternoon to enjoy your festival food while you watch and listen to the trio play their traditional Chinese dulcimer (yangqin), lute (pipa) and fiddle (erhu). Downtown Disney celebrates Lunar New Year with a new Lunar New Year mural on the corner of the ESPN Zone building.

“Hurry Home – Lunar New Year Celebration” returns in 2023. This six-minute show takes place before World of Color. This story of family and friendship features Mulan and Mushu and is told with fountains, lights and music. The show follows a little lantern on its quest to reunite with loved ones for the annual celebration of good luck and fortune. Find showtimes on the Disneyland app.

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disneyland - Mickey and Minnie pose for pictures in their Lunar New Year garb

Characters at Lunar New Year

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disney California Adventure - Tigger waves to guests

You can meet Tigger, Mulan, Mushu, Mickey, Minnie and The Three Little Pigs, all dressed in their Lunar New Year’s best at Paradise Gardens. Hop in line in the morning for the shortest waits. Last year, Tigger jumped in for the Year of the Tiger. In 2023, it's the year of the Rabbit and the Cat so maybe Tigger can return again. We have a few Disney rabbits in mind who could possibly step up (or hop up) to host as well! The characters may rotate for photos, so you never know whom you'll get to meet! In 2023, the characters are more distanced from each other and guests (compared to past years).

Raya — from "Raya and the Last Dragon" — is back at Redwood Creek Challenge Trail beginning Jan. 20, 2023. You can find her in the forest of the Redwood Creek Challenge Trail. Being so popular, she is the trickiest character to catch because the line gets capped when it's full. She comes out every hour on the hour for about 30 minutes starting mid-afternoon. Once she heads back to check on her armadillo, Tuk Tuk, the line reopens and almost immediately fills. Then you will wait for her to return about 30 minutes later. Her area is beautifully decorated (especially at night) with colorful lanterns. She spends a lot of time with each party. Just follow the advice of the cast member in charge of the line to know when you should linger and hop in line at the right time. You need to be patient, able to act quickly and then be patient again.

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disneyland - Raya poses for guests

Lunar New Year Crafts and Activities

Before or after visiting characters, you can do free crafts. Complete a dragon's pearl coloring craft along the parade route. Experience Chinese calligraphy with local artisans. Be sure to write down your wishes and tie them to the Lucky Wishing Wall in hope of a prosperous New Year!

@undercovertourist Lunar New Year at Disney California Adventure came 𝑟𝑜𝑎𝑟𝑖𝑛𝑔 back for the Year of the Tiger! 🐅 #lunarnewyear #dcalunarnewyear #undercovertourist ♬ original sound - undercovertourist

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disney California Adventure - Chinese calligraphers give free souvenirs

Disneyland Lunar New Year Merchandise

We love seeing the exclusive Lunar New Year Disneyland merchandise. The cups, ears, clothing and more can help you celebrate the Year of the Tiger. You can purchase some souvenir Mickey Mouse red envelopes to bring home to family, filled with wishes for good fortune and happiness in the coming year. There are red lanterns, T-shirts, themed Minnie Mouse ear headbands, spirit jerseys, a tumbler, plushes and all kinds of goodies to help you celebrate Lunar New Year Disney-style. The Lunar New Year red balloons bobbing around always add to the festivities.

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disney California Adventure - 2022 merchandise

If you're a Magic Key holder, hop by the Magic Key area under Sully Symphony Swings for a free Lunar New Year button from 1 to 7 p.m. daily. There is a special photo-op there as well. Magic Key holders get a discount on the Sip and Savor pass, as well as a decorated lanyard with it.

Lunar New Year Festival Food

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disney California Adventure - A Selection of festival booth tastes

One of our favorite parts of Lunar New Year at Disneyland is trying delicious foods. Several restaurants offer Asian-inspired menu items during the event, and the four Festival Marketplaces offer Asian dishes with a Disney flair. Pick up a Sip and Savor Menu to help you make your choices before ordering. Items can be purchased individually, or you can purchase a Sip and Savor Pass, which comes with six tabs to be exchanged for select food and nonalcoholic beverage items.

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disneyland - Sip and Savor PassThe Sip and Savor Pass was $43 ($40 for Magic Key holders) in 2022. The 2023 pass can be used through Feb. 15, 2023, and can be purchased at the Sip and Savor Cart, Seaside Souvenirs, Lunar New Year Marketplaces and the Merchandise Pergola. The lotus flower glow cube is not on the Sip and Savor pass.

Here's a look at the 2022 Lunar New Year food and beverages (offerings change each year). The bottom line is everything tastes better when shaped like Mickey! We'll update when we know more about 2023's menus!

Festival Marketplaces

The following festival marketplace themes return in 2023. Plus, there are two new booths — Bamboo Blessings and Wrapped with Love. There are so many new choices this year!

Our favorite way to save time is to find the food booth with the shortest line. Order several of your foods at once and take your receipt to each booth to collect your food. We love skipping lines! Just don't lose your receipt! You'll find plenty of seating where you can enjoy your treats in the Paradise Gardens festival area.

Here is a look at 2022 menus. Hop back for the delicious 2023 details closer to the event start. Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disneyland - Woman with food and free craft fan poses in front of Lunar New Year sign

Lucky 8 Lantern

  • Shrimp fried rice with garlic bacon edamame
  • Smoked beef bulgogi short rib on rice with green onion salad (a Frog Family favorite)
  • Peach Yuja-Ade (alcoholic beverage)
  • Kloud Brewery (alcoholic beverage)
  • Lotus flower glow cube

Longevity Noodle Co.

  • Garlic noodles (has real chunks of garlic and was a hit with our tadpoles)
  • Spicy Port Dandan noodles (we got this twice and the second one was spicier than the first!)
  • Salted pistachio cold brew
  • Young Master Brewery (alcoholic beverage)
  • Lotus flower glow cube

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disney California Adventure - Mickey Chinese hot dog bunProsperity Bao & Buns

  • Mickey Chinese hot dog bun
  • Char siu BBQ pork bao
  • Prosperous Tiger (alcoholic beverage)
  • Lychee Celebration (alcoholic beverage)
  • Panda Pool Party Bamboo Lager (alcoholic beverage)
  • Lotus flower glow cube

Red Dragon Spice Traders

  • Spicy three-cup chicken on jasmine rice (pretty spicy!)
  • Impossible Lion's Head Meatballs (a great plant-based choice)
  • Mickey purple sweet potato macaron with creme fraiche (fun and yummy!)
  • Dancing Firecracker
  • Master Gao Brewery (alcoholic beverage)
  • Lotus flower glow cube

Disney California Adventure Restaurants with Lunar New Year Offerings

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disney California Adventure - Green tea and raspberry parfaitThis year brings many more Lunar New Year food locations around the park and even inside Disney's Grand Californian Hotel (on select days)!

Paradise Garden Grill Restaurant (Smaller tasting portions are available and are on the Sip and Savor Pass. However, if you want to purchase full sizes or not use the tabs for items at this location, you will get your food a lot faster through Mobile Order.)

  • Spicy kung pao tofu with zucchini, yellow squash, broccoli, red peppers, peanuts and fried rice garnished with garlic deep-fried chips (Sip and Savor portion available)
  • Pork belly Bahn mi (Sip and Savor portion available)
  • Korean-style BBQ chicken — half chicken with steamed white rice, kimchi, pickled cucumbers and sesame seeds (Sip and Savor portion available)
  • Whole fried fish with sweet and sour sauce, steamed rice, stir-fried vegetables and chicken soup (served family-style for two)
  • Green tea raspberry parfait — green tea mousse, raspberry jelly, white sponge cake, white chocolate mousse and candy pearls
  • Sides of steamed or fried rice
  • Tiger milk tea with brown sugar boba (this was so refreshing in the afternoon!)
  • Soju cocktail with Soju, ginger beer, lemon, basil, Fresno chile and lychee flavor-filled boba
  • Mulan Sipper with choice of fountain beverage at the time of purchase
  • Lotus flower glow cube

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disney California Adventure - Mickey MacaraonParadise Gardens Special Events Cart (items available on the Sip and Savor Pass)

  • Gochujang Wings — chicken wings in a spicy gochujang sauce
  • Asian-style street corn — corn on the cob rolled in spicy gochujang sauce
  • Korean-style BBQ nachos with bulgogi pork belly, cheesy corn sauce, gochujang crema, fresh radish and spicy cucumbers on house-made chips
  • Orange-flavored cotton candy
  • Mango-pineapple pie
  • Mulan sipper with assorted bottled beverage water
  • Puffed Rice Pale Ale

Seasonal Cart in Redwood Creek Challenge Trail

  • Brown sugar steam bun topped with blue cream cheese icing
  • White hot chocolate: Blue white chocolate topped with toasted marshmallow whipped cream and purple sugar
  • Warm apple cider cocktail with spices, and cinnamon whiskey garnished with a cinnamon stick and a caramel rim (alcoholic beverage)

Studio Catering Truck (available through March 1, 2022)

  • Hoisin pork sliders: Marinated pulled pork on Hawaiian rolls with apple slaw
  • Green tea slush with almond milk, green tea, and vanilla
  • Lemongrass-ginger lemonade with lemongrass, lemon juice, ginger and mint

Lucky Fortune Cookery (items available on the Sip and Savor Pass)

  • Hong Kong-style milk tea: Black tea sweetened with condensed milk served over ice
  • Mulan sipper with fountain beverage at the time of purchase, Hong Kong-style milk tea or Vietnamese iced coffee
  • Lotus flower glow cube

Cappuccino Cart (items available on the Sip and Savor Pass)

  • Baked char siu bao
  • Mango-pineapple pie (this pie may sell out early)

Lamplight Lounge

  • Korean-style BBQ nachos with bulgogi pork belly, cheesy corn sauce, gochujang crema, fresh radish and spicy cucumbers on house-made chips
  • Kung pao bao with Kung pao-glazed crispy pork belly, chili peanuts, steamed bao bun, red pepper and green onion slaw
  • Oolong donut — Oolong-dusted beignet donut served with oolong crème anglaise and orange soy pudding dipping sauces
  • Lunar cocktail —Baiju Chinese liquor, smoked orange syrup, orange bitters and lemon juice garnished with orange peel (alcoholic beverage)

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Disney California Adventure - Woman places wish on the wallDisney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa

The GCH holiday cart opens only on select days in the hotel this Lunar New Year for the following treats (as well as Valentine's treats) through Feb. 15, 2023:

  • Lantern whoopie pie filled with vanilla buttercream and dipped in pearl sprinkles
  • Assorted tiger-striped chocolate pretzel sticks
  • Mickey-shaped tiger sugar cookie dipped in red chocolate with gold Mickey-shaped tiger
  • Mickey-shaped tiger-striped sugar cookie dipped in red chocolate with gold tiger stripes

Goofy's Kitchen

Chef Goofy added some spicy chicken and pork belly bao buns to the menu for Lunar New Year at Disneyland!

Downtown Disney

Keep an eye out for festival0inspired dishes at Downtown Disney restaurants.

Whether you usually celebrate Lunar New Year in your home, or you want to know more about this holiday, you will love experiencing Disneyland Lunar New Year at Disneyland. We learned a lot about the celebration over the past few years, and we always enjoy taking part in the festivities. Hoppy Lunar New Year! We wish you health, peace and prosperity this year!

Have you celebrated Lunar New Year at Disneyland? Let us know in the comments if you've joined in on this festive celebration, and what your favorite activities were. Start the new year off with the most bang for your buck with hoppin' deals on discount Disneyland Resort tickets

Related: Complete Guide to Disneyland Events

Keep hopping!

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Feb 2, 2022 at 1:55 p.m. Anne Says...

Thanks for sharing this and happy Chinese day

Reply
Feb 2, 2022 at 8:11 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hoppy Lunar New Year, Anne!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 4, 2022 at 9:44 p.m. Anne Says...

Thank-you for this Chinese New Year of tiger

Reply
Feb 4, 2022 at 6:03 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hoppy Lunar New Year, Anne!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 25, 2020 at 3:11 p.m. Susan J Henry Says...

What about fireworks??

Reply
Jan 27, 2020 at 3:06 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Susan!

The only Lunar New Year themed nighttime entertainment is the precursor to World of Color - "Hurry Home, Little Lantern."The Disneyland Park fireworks will be operating as usual but are not themed for the holiday.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
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