california adventure

Over the past few years, California Adventure at the Disneyland Resort has been undergoing a huge overhaul/makeover. Some elements opened early (like The Little Mermaid dark ride, World of Color, and most of Paradise Pier) but the major pieces like Buena Vista Street and the totally new addition of Carsland opened this past June. We held off on checking it out for a few months since the opening was right at the beginning of peak summer season. But curiosity finally got the better of us and we visited the park in late August — on a really intensely hot day. OY.

We hit Carsland first and I was IN AWE as we turned to head down the main thoroughfare. It’s incredibly immersive. I loved it. And I’m not really a huge Cars fan — I never even saw the second movie.

First sight! I realize this picture is crap. It does NOT do it justice.

There are only three rides in Carsland and we figured we should try them all! We started with Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree where you’re swirling all around in a tractor. It was a cute kiddie ride but because it throws you around from side to side, it HURT!

Next up was Luigi’s Flying Tires. You’re in a HUGE tire and in order to move, you need to shift your body in the direction you want to go. We got the hang of it pretty quickly and had a good laugh figuring it out but I’m not sure it’s worth the long wait times.

The marquee ride at Carsland is Radiator Springs Racers. It’s phenomenal — definitely a new favorite.

AND it’s amazingly GORGEOUS.

Look at the CUTE ride cars!

Here’s our ride photo with me in the middle. LOL.

After the rides we spent some time just soaking in Carsland…

I ADORE the Cozy Cone area.

OMG. The attention to detail is evident everywhere.

For lunch we decided to try out the new Carthay Circle Restaurant.

I was a *little* disappointed in our entrees but the ceviche appetizer we had was YUMMERS. I definitely want to give it another chance. But next time for dinner. I’ve read fantastic things about some cheddar biscuits, which sound right up my alley.

After lunch we strolled around Buena Vista Street. So lovely! Such a massive change from the lifeless Sunshine Plaza, which occupied this space before.

Love LOVE love the Red Car Trolleys. They add such great character to the area.

California Adventure’s version of the Partners statue.

A few weeks ago we went back to see Carsland all lit up. It’s even MORE beautiful at night with all the neon lights.

Looking forward to many more days and nights spent at California Adventure!

Fore more pics, check our Flickr here and here.