I really enjoy the diversity you can find at Disneyland. This shot is of a simple enough subject, the Haunted Mansion FastPass queue, but it’s easy to feel like you’ve stumbled onto a statue hidden in a Savannah woodland. There are so many worlds within worlds at the park, it’s an adventure discovering what’s next! I know black & white is not what we typically offer, but it seemed to fit this one rather well. Hope you enjoy!
New Orleans Square
“Is this haunted room actually stretching? Or is it your imagination, hmm?” What suspense and build to having the pants scared off of you with a hanging body illuminated by lightning storming overhead. I love trying to get pictures inside the Haunted Mansion. It’s such an amazing ride and getting halfway decent shots is such a challenge. Maybe that’s what the ghost host should say, “I offer you this chilling challenge – to take a good picture!” Of course, there’s always my way.
From a child, I have loved tunnels. There was just something extraordinary about them. Traveling into the mysterious unknown gives you such a sense of freedom and I think that really fed the wonder and curiosity of childhood for me. This shot is one I have wanted to get for a long time, a train in the New Orleans Station at night, lighting the tunnel behind the Haunted Mansion. I sat at the station for a while on the night that I took this just enjoying the trains come and go, listening to the voice come through the speaker, “The Disneyland Limited now approaching…” The Disneyland Railroad is still one of my favorite parts of Disneyland. I love seeing it when I approach the entrance, walking under it through that magical tunnel to Main Street U.S.A., and riding it for a grand circle tour of Walt Disney’s Original Magic Kingdom.
I don’t know if you would call this a nook or a cranny but this spot in New Orleans Square really caught my eye. It’s the space between the Pieces of Eight shop and the Nightmare Before Christmas store and certainly somewhere I’ve overlooked on many a trip to Disneyland. It was a gloomy day and something about that atmosphere really brought the faded bricks to life. I spent a good chunk of time taking it in. Sometimes I wonder what people must think when they see me staring into a corner.
The Blue Bayou opened on this day, forty-four years ago. Alongside Pirates of the Caribbean, it changed New Orleans Square and Disneyland. Not only does it offer fine dining in a theme park, but it does so in the atmosphere and presence of one of greatest rides of all time for a truly unique and magical experience. Happy anniversary Blue Bayou!
I guess no one ever told these two that it’s not polite to stare. It’s not your imagination; once you make it out of the haunted room that is actually stretching, it’s all they do. They don’t care if you move left, right, up or down. It’s one of those little touches that slowly chips away at your comfort in the Haunted Mansion so that by the end you are questioning whether one of those hitchhiking ghosts will actually follow you home!
The Blue Bayou Restaurant in New Orleans Square is a seriously delicious place for a meal at Disneyland. While other restaurants around the park also feature intricate theming, the Blue Bayou offers an ambiance on par with its culinary caterings. We were walking past late one night, on our way out of New Orleans Square, when we noticed that the doors were still open and the lobby empty. We asked a cast member if we could step inside and take some pictures and to our delight were approved.
I think part of what makes New Orleans Square so different than other areas of Disneyland at Christmas is its rich, jewel tone color scheme. I love the way those colors dance across everything in their reach, especially the ground. The night it rained while we were there, it seemed a no brainer to get a shot of the wet pavement glistening from jewel tone Christmas lights aglow. Every time I look at this picture I hear Louis Armstrong singing “It’s Christmas time in New Orleans”. Between Louis and Disneyland, I can’t help but succumb to the joy they both give with a smile. Now all I need is a good ol’ creole beat.