For those of us who smash all rides into one day or power through the parks from rope drop to close, we often find ourselves drained yet so hyped on adrenaline that we refuse to leave the parks. Even if you find yourself casually roaming through the parks, there’s no denying that a trip to Disneyland Resort is EXHAUSTING.
Sometimes we need coffee. Other days, we need naps. More often than not, we need both. No matter your preference, you can fit both in during your trip. Inspired by my husband, who falls asleep nearly every time we go to the Enchanted Tiki Room, here are the best nap spots at DLR.
Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room (Adventureland)
Just look at all the comfy seating begging to be napped on. | © D23
The birdies have their fling. You hear the flowers sing. Tikis play the drums. And maybe you’ve had your nap. This is one of the best spots to snooze if you don’t mind missing some of the best entertainment the parks have to offer. With the AC blasting, dim lights, usually empty and cushioned benches, you can have yourself a relaxing nap. Just grab yourself a spot in the back to rest your eyes -- ideally, not with a Dole whip in hand.
Tom Sawyer Island (Frontierland)
More like #deadatdisney | © Mark Eades, Orange County Register/SCNG
There’s truly no better place to escape the crowds in Disneyland than at Tom Sawyer Island. The lush trees and landscaping provide shade and seclusion as you nap away on a bench made from logs. You have less of a chance of being disturbed if you make your way to the back of the island, or go high toward the treehouse. I’d just recommend not sleeping in a cave. It’s not worth the struggle or nightmares.
While taking a round trip around the magical kingdom (w/e the narrator says), you may pass Tom Sawyer Island and see someone napping and think Hey, what a wonderful idea. According to a local Disneyland Nap Enthusiast™, passing out on the train for a few trips around the park does the trick. The CMs are probably too overworked to notice you anyway.
it’s a small world (Fantasyland)
What we actually want to do on this ride. | @ Cassie Ann
If you can get past the tune, this attraction makes for wonderful naps. Bonus points if you’re riding with someone whose shoulder you can use as a pillow. The AC and gentle rocking of the boat could put anyone to sleep, which is probably why it’s an attraction so cherished by parents of little ones.
Any random bench
Folks who have the right idea and came prepared. | © Orange County Register
For those who are just flat out exhausted and don’t want to wait in a queue or need a longer snooze, just plop down at your nearest bench. Wipe away the churro crumbs and sweat from the seat, and you’ve found yourself a new bed. It’s better if you can find benches that aren’t out in the open, so avoid main street benches or any benches in primary walkways.
Honorable bench mentions:
Benches in the former smoking session
Benches on the Fantasy Faire/Frontierland path (My personal favorite)
Benches near Pooh Corner
Literally any bench at Tom Sawyer Island (see #2)
The Disney Animation Building (Hollywood Land)
Hang right for some of the best spots | © GetAwayToday
If you’re more of a comfy couch person than a bench person, the Animation Building is where you want to go, specifically the comfy cushions at the entrance to Turtle Talk with Crush. Here you’ll find the perfect spot to doze after you’ve had just a little too much wine in 100 degree heat. (I’m looking at you, Cassie.)
Frozen Live at the Hyperion (Hollywood Land)
It's dark. It's cold. It's perfect. | © Charlotte Perkis
Pro-tip: go all the way up to the top balcony, where you will have all the dim light and privacy you need. Sit back. Relax. Let Kristoff serenade you to sleep. However, this show is truly incredible, so make sure you see it twice: once to experience and twice to nap.
Great Naps with Mr. Lincoln (™) (Main Street)
I find President Lincoln to be one of the most terrifying presidents, even more so in animatronic form. Great guy, but there’s just something about him that’s nightmare inducing. His ghost perhaps…? Anyway, if you can get past that, this is arguably the best place to nap in the parks. It’s usually empty, the A/C is incredible, the seats are comfy, and honestly, the show is pretty boring. Once you experience it, you’ll understand why DLR Nap Enthusiast Damion Rosby has deemed the Opera House ‘Great Naps with Mr. Lincoln.’
This is what heaven looks like after a long day at DLR (Trader Sam's not included). | © Trivago
This one is a no-brainer. If you’re any sort of a logical human being, you’ll choose the hotel over any of these spots. You can’t beat a big comfy bed with all the comforts of home. It’s best to leave the parks when they start getting packed in the early afternoon, and come back after the afternoon parade or when families start heading to dinner.
Special thanks to my husband, who invariably falls asleep nearly everywhere, for inspiring me to write this listicle. Also, shout out to Damion Rosby for your nap tips for those of us who can’t hang (I’m looking at you, Cassie).