Top 5 Tips for Enjoying Disneyland During the Spooky Halloween Season

Halloween at Disneyland is one of the best times of year to visit as the parks feature spooky decor, characters in fun costumes, special attraction overlays and entertainment, and much more!

Disneyland Park will celebrate the Main Street Pumpkin Festival with hundreds of pumpkins on display (including the giant Mickey Mouse pumpkin)—no two of these Disneyland pumpkins are the same! From special themed foods to overlays like Haunted Mansion Holiday and Guardians of the Galaxy – Monsters After Dark, there is so much to do and see during this celebration.

This year, the separately ticketed Halloween party Oogie Boogie Bash is returning with more nights than ever before, the Haunted Mansion will be reopening with a virtual queue at the start of the Halloween celebration, the “Mickey’s Trick and Treat” show will become a daily offering at Disney California Adventure, and there will be a new seasonal breakfast and brunch Character Dining experience at Storytellers Cafe!

There are so many great reasons to visit Disneyland during the Halloween celebration, and we will break down our top 5 tips for visiting during this time of year!

1) Visit Disneyland early on in the Halloween season if you are able to. Disneyland has extended the Halloween season this year, so you can enjoy the celebration starting August 23. We recommend visiting as early as you can in the Halloween season during late August and September as crowd levels will be significantly greater in October, even rivaling the holiday season.

You can still enjoy everything the Halloween celebration has to offer while avoiding the worst of the crowds during the busy month of October at Disneyland. See our Disneyland crowd calendar and best dates to visit for guidance on when to plan your Halloween trip!

2) Plan around Oogie Boogie Bash party nights if you are not attending. Before you plan your Disneyland Halloween visit, make sure to look at the park hours for Disney California Adventure, as these will be impacted on Oogie Boogie Bash nights. On these days, the park will close early at 6 pm and all guests who do not have tickets to the party will need to leave. You don’t want to be caught off guard by this and unexpectedly have to cut your Disney day short.

See all of the party dates in our guide to early closures at Disneyland. On these days, we recommend planning a 1-day itinerary at Disneyland Park only or getting a Park Hopper ticket so that you can hop over to Disneyland Park after Disney California Adventure closes.

3) Arrive early or stay late. If you’re visiting during a more crowded time in the Halloween season like October, it’s important to make good use of the morning hours at the parks. You’ll want to arrive in time for morning rope drop and prioritize the most popular attractions at the parks while wait times are shorter before they begin to climb in the afternoons. If you’re not a fan of getting up early for park opening and prefer to stay up late, you can also enjoy the rides with much lower wait times in the evening before the park closes as well. Look ahead of time at the Disneyland hours to see how late the parks will be open during your visit.

4) Place your mobile orders early. A fun part of the Halloween celebration is the limited-time themed food offerings that are available throughout the resort! Many of these items are offered at quick-service locations where you can use mobile ordering. Disneyland mobile ordering is a great time-saver that allows you to select a pickup window and skip the ordering lines at restaurants that will often be long during peak times. You don’t want to delay putting in your orders on days when the parks are more crowded as return times can quickly get pushed later into the day.

Peruse the Halloween food guide to see the offerings that look interesting ahead of time, and if have your heart set on certain Halloween treats, we recommend putting in the orders as soon as you arrive at the park and selecting your desired return window.

5) Have a solid plan for seeing all of the Halloween highlights. With so much to do and see during the Halloween season, combined with the potential for higher crowds, you’ll want to make sure you come in with a solid plan of attack for your park day rather than playing it by ear.

Before your trip, look ahead at the seasonal offerings that are most appealing to you (ride overlays, themed treats, photo ops, etc.) and make a list of priorities. For example, if you have your heart set on the popular giant Mickey Pumpkin photo op, we recommend doing that first thing in the morning on your way down Main Street at rope drop before the lines get longer during the day. You can see our full Halloween time Disneyland touring strategy for more tips on how to experience all of the highlights of the celebration!

You can see more of our top Disneyland Halloween tips, highlights of the celebration, and more in our full guide to visiting during Halloween at Disneyland.

At Mickey Visit, we share the most important tips for planning your trips to Disneyland, Walt Disney World, Disney Cruise Line, Universal, and beyond. Each week, we’ll share some of our top tips here on Laughing Place.

Laughing Place recommends for all your Disneyland Resort travel planning
Fill out the form below for a free,
no obligation quote from
Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Gavin Doyle
Gavin Doyle is the founder of and the best-selling author of “Disneyland Secrets”. Mickey Visit has been featured by Travel+Leisure, ABC, the LA Times, OC Register, Forbes, and more and reaches millions of readers planning Disney vacations each month. Over 100K subscribers receive their free email planning newsletter.