by Phyllis Larison, Family Travel Gurus Travel Consultant
Disney’s California Adventure has many popular attractions, including the newly opened Cars Land, but an area of the park that has smaller crowds and great entertainment is Hollywood Land. The Disney Animation Building on Hollywood Boulevard features wonderful interactive exhibits about the Disney animation process. As you enter the building you are surrounded by huge screens featuring film clips from classic Disney movies. The three big attractions in the building are the Animation Academy, Sorcerer’s Workshop and Turtle Talk with Crush. At the Animation Academy a Disney cartoonist works with you to draw a Disney character (kids are incredibly good at this!). Turtle Talk with Crush is simply amazing! Crush, the animated sea turtle from the film Finding Nemo, answers questions from kids in the audience and tells jokes; the character seems very real and children love this show. The Sorcerer’s Workshop focuses on animation special effects. There are a couple of live shows in Hollywood Land that are definitely worth seeing. Aladdin–A Musical Spectacular plays at the large Hyperion Theater. The lavish costumes, fantastic effects and pageantry in this show are of Broadway caliber. Disney Junior–Live On Stage is great fun for younger kids who can sing and dance along with popular Disney characters. Other attractions in Hollywood Land are Muppet Vision 3-D with live Muppet characters sitting in on the 3D film; Monsters, Inc. Mike & Sully to the Rescue, an imaginative ride through Monstropolis; and The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror where you can take a thrilling and spooky elevator ride through a haunted hotel. While you are in Hollywood Land, don’t miss the afternoon Pixar Play Parade which has all of the best Pixar movie characters on floats with music, dancing and entertaining special effects such as flames shooting from the head of Jack-Jack, the baby with super powers in The Incredibles .