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Disneyland in the Rain: What it’s Like and What to Do

Sunny southern California is the perfect place for a year-round outdoor theme park. It’s no wonder that it is the birthplace of Walt Disney’s original Magic Kingdom. The Disneyland experience is virtually the same across the board with the exception of some hotter days during the summer. However, there are a few days where visiting guests must adjust to the experience of Disneyland in the rain.

Disneyland in the Rain

When it rains at Disneyland, the day is far from ruined, but it definitely throws a wrench into your plans. Sometimes it’s best to just avoid going and postpone your trip until another time. Other times, that might be an impractical solution and you have to just work with the weather.

Here are some things to consider before you visit Disneyland in the rain.

DIsneyland In the Rain is Not Like WDW Florida Rain

If you’ve visited Walt Disney World you may already have built-in ideas of what it’s like to visit Disneyland in the rain. Florida has a tropical climate, which is very different from the desert climate of southern California. It rains there often, but Walt Disney World showers differ greatly from what they’re like on the West Coast resort. The rainfall in Florida is often sporadic and short-lived. Even in Hurricane season, you can go from rain to sunshine in a matter of minutes.

In California, when it rains it really rains. It’s less frequent, but once the floodgates open (sometimes literally), the downpour can extend for days at a time with no signs of slowing. Ducking out for a few minutes to let it blow over isn’t usually an option.

Another thing about California rain vs. the rain in Florida is that it’s cold. Rain at Walt Disney World is often warm and oddly relaxing. Especially when it’s only a brief shower. There is nothing pleasant about a rainstorm at Disneyland and it can greatly impact the enjoyment of your stay.

Ride Closures When it Rains at Disneyland

The first big letdown when you find yourself at Disneyland in the rain is the closure of some rides. This is less likely to happen in Florida, where rain is anticipated on a more regular basis. At Disneyland you will find reduced options for what attractions you can experience because they are affected by the weather. Even operational attractions have outdoor queues that no one wants to stand in.

The benefit of Disneyland in the rain when it comes to rides is that there may be fewer crowds to contend with. Lots of local guests will cancel their plans. If you don’t mind getting soaked, or come prepared with a poncho, you could take advantage of dispersed crowds as other guests look for shelter.

Indoor Dining at Disneyland while its raining

Even with reduced crowds, the guests who do visit Disneyland in the rain will funnel into congested indoor spaces. Shops are difficult to navigate and it’s difficult to find an indoor table if you want to stop for a meal. Outdoor dining spaces are useless in the rain, so you may find that you have trouble finding a convenient place to eat.

If you don’t have reservations anywhere and you can see that in-park dining is going to be a problem, try taking a short break from the park and trotting over to Downtown Disney. You can take the monorail from Tomorrowland to the Downtown Disney terminal to avoid a long sloshy walk.

Outdoor Entertainment is usually Cancelled in the rain

The absence of atmosphere entertainment in the rain has the biggest psychological impact on your overall Disneyland experience. Disneyland relies heavily on atmosphere, so the missing characters and performers only augment the dreariness of a rainy day at the park. Rain also has an impact on huge draws such as parades and fireworks, which even further diminishes the experience.

If you encounter rain at Disneyland be prepared for cancelations and have a plan B so that you aren’t too disappointed when this happens.

Note: When visiting with kids, be aware that rising waters are of a bigger impact to them. A couple of inches is a big deal to little ones who don’t reach the height requirements posted at some of the rides. Be prepared to slow down and stop frequently and make sure they have plenty of layers on and changes for soaked clothes.


There are plenty of things to do if you decide to stay in the Parks despite the rain! Throw on a rain poncho and hit your favorite rides! Like Disney California Adventure, the shops are connected so it’s easy to roam through and shop or watch the candy makers do their thing. Hunt for the penny press machines to fill your pressed penny collection book with or for some of the hidden mickeys that are all over!


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