Disneyland parades are one of the most magical experiences at the parks and a perfect change of pace from riding the attractions. There are several different parades offered throughout the year, each featuring favorite Disney characters, music, spectacular floats, and talented performers.

Securing an ideal spot for these popular parades can take some work, and there are a few things to consider for parade viewing at Disneyland to make the most out of the experience. We will cover our top 5 Disneyland parade tips that you will want to consider for your next visit!

1) If you want to get the best viewing for the parade, you’ll need to plan ahead and stake out a spot. We recommend getting a spot an hour before the parade starts for the best viewing, or 90 minutes before it starts if you want the best viewing on Main Street U.S.A., especially during peak times of the year. Guests will usually be able to start reserving spaces around two hours before the parade starts, and prime spots like curbs and benches will always go first. If you aren’t as picky about viewing, we recommend trying to be in your spot 30 minutes before the parade begins.

2) Bring a blanket to the parade. This will help you to stay more comfortable while waiting on the ground for the parade, and it will also help you reserve spots for your party so that others don’t start to crowd into your space. You can bring portable blankets that fold up to fit in your bag, which will help you block off the space you’re saving. If you are one person reserving space for a bigger party, these blankets can come in especially handy. While one or two people stay to claim the spot, others in your party can go get a snack, enjoy a ride nearby, or explore the shops in the area.

3) Pack a picnic or snack. One of the most difficult things can be passing the time before a parade begins, and having something to eat can do wonders, especially when waiting with kids. You can either plan ahead by packing a picnic ahead of time that you’ll store in a locker and bring out to enjoy while waiting for the parade (see everything you need to know about bringing food to Disneyland and our best Disney snack ideas), or you can get some great Disneyland food nearby the parade route to enjoy while you wait.

4) Opt for a Plaza Inn Dining Package if you would prefer to have reserved seating for the parade. This will ensure that you will get great viewing and save you the hassle of having to go early and stake out a spot! Especially if you were already planning on eating at Plaza Inn, this can be a convenient option that will allow you to get two birds with one stone. Don’t forget that you can save on offerings like this with discounts on Disney gift cards.

You’ll enjoy a meal at the restaurant and be given a voucher for a reserved viewing area. If you want to secure a front-row seat in the viewing area, we recommend arriving when the viewing area opens. As for other Disneyland dining packages, reservations open up 60 days in advance.

5) Be considerate of other parade viewers. This means you won’t want to stand in a sitting zone, put kids on your shoulders, or do anything else to obstruct someone else’s view. While it is tempting to put your kids on your shoulders so that they get the best view, this isn’t fair to the guests behind you, so we recommend taking the time to arrive early to secure the best viewing for your kids or going to one of the less crowded viewing areas for the parade.

For even more tips on Disneyland parades and more information about the parades offered throughout the year, be sure to see our full Disneyland parades guide.

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 MouseFanTravel.com for all your Disneyland Resort travel planning
Fill out the form below for a free,
no obligation quote from MouseFanTravel.com
Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.
Gavin Doyle
Gavin Doyle is the founder of MickeyVisit.com 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.