Tavis L. January 21, 2022

@ Disney California Advanture Park

Lunar New Year at Disney California Adventure

P.1 From family dinners and red envelopes, to firecrackers and lion dances, the Lunar New Year is celebrated by many East Asian cultures and people around the world in various distinct ways. Recently, we had the privilege to visit the Disney California Adventure Resort, where the park is presenting the holiday with their own magical Disney twist. Filled with rich sights, sounds, and flavours, this annual festival highlights the vast assortment of new and returning festivities for guests to enjoy. This year, Disney’s Lunar New Year event takes place from January 21 to February 13, 2022. It highlights Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese cultures with new changes and additions to the park’s robust cast of characters, its immersive cultural experiences, and the unique cuisine.

P.2 Making her first appearance ever at any of the Disney parks is Raya from Walt Disney Animation Sutdio’s film Raya and the Last Dragon. Guests arriving at the Redwood Creek to meet Raya will find themselves traversing through a trail filled with blooming Kumandran flowers and colourful lanterns that light up the sky at night. Anticipating the release of the film, I had streamed the movie as soon as it was released on Disney+ and it quickly became one of my top Disney favourites. I am certain fellow fans of the film will especially come to appreciate the thought and care put into the decor and effects. Ushering in the year of the golden tiger, Tigger is making a spotlight appearance at the park this year. Additionally, characters returning for meet and greet include Mulan and Mushu, the Three Little Pigs Fiddler, Fifer, and Practical, and Micky and Minnie. Even as an adult, I found it magical interacting with characters I grew up with. All the characters were dressed in bright festive attire and I personally adored Tigger’s cute, little hat. What’s great is that guests can also match their favourite characters by picking up some new and limited time t-shirts, headbands, tumblers, toys, and much more!

P.3 Mulan and Mushu is also making return appearances at this year’s ceremonial procession, joined by Tigger, Goofy, Chip and Dale, and an entourage of Chinese-style dancers and drummers. The procession features a brand new float which looks amazing when lit up at night. I had the opportunity to speak with Disney Resort Ambassador Nataly Guzman who told us a bit about the inspiration behind the procession and the new float design: “Our designers collaborated very well with our cast members—they’re very passionate about their own culture but wanted to make sure they got the authenticity of the cultures represented here.” Hearing about it is one thing, but I had to experience it for myself. I had a chance to watch the procession both in the day time and at night, and I was in awe of how genuine it was and all the energy that came from the music and dancing. The dragon was lit up neon blue and moved in beautiful patterns, very reminiscent of the lion and dragon dances I have seen back in Hong Kong. This is a must-see for all guests visiting the park during the Lunar New Year event, however, the entertainment and cultural experiences do not stop there! The Paradise Garden Band Stand features traditional music played by live bands that also teach the audience about their instruments and history. The Paradise Garden also hosts an area for calligraphy art and even a Lucky Wishing Wall.

P.4 When thinking about a full Disney experience, it is not complete without first taking a look—and a taste—of the park’s thematic and appetizing cuisine. The brilliant mind behind the delectable flavours and presentations is the park’s own Culniary Director Jeremiah Balogh. As we listened to him share about his research and inspiration, there is no doubt his passion contributed to the success and popularity of the event’s cuisine. Many types of Asian dishes are known for its strong spices and savoury flavours, and the park did not fall short in delivering just that. I had the chance to try a few spicy food items including their Pork Dandan Noodles and Kung Pao Tofu which included familiar ingredients like soy sauce, sichuan peppers, and peanuts. As someone who is not too heavy on meats, I enjoyed the vegetarian options they provided and just how well the flavours blended together. A classic item is the Char Siu BBQ Pork Bao. The thinly sliced pork is sweet and savoury, balancing very well with the sweetness and acidity of the pickled red onions and the heat from the Jalapeños. The park also offers some fun-shaped food items such as the Mickey-shaped Sweet Potato Macaron and the Mickey-shaped Chinese Hot Dog Buns. Lastly, we must not forget about dessert! Amongst the myriad of options from Mango Pineapple Pies to the Tiger Boba Milk tea, I had decided on trying the Green Tea-Raspberry Parfait, which was definitely a highlight of my day.

P.5 The magic of Disney is that it’s constantly expanding with new characters, ideas, and fun activities for guests to take part in. There is so much to experience and it wouldn’t have been possible without the help of Disney’s helpful and caring cast members. I’d like to give a big shoutout to Disney Cast Members Khoi and Amie for efficiently guiding us through the park and making sure we were able to cover everything we needed to share with you all! They went above and beyond in helping us as well as other guests in having the best experience possible at the park. Whether you enjoy meeting Disney characters, experiencing festivities, or even trying new food, there is something for everyone at the Disney’s Lunar New Year event. The last day of the even is February 13th, so be sure to check your calendars, take some time off, and take part in the awesome grandeurs of this festival! May each of your visits be unique, memorable, and magical.

Special thanks to my hosts of the day, Khoi, Amie making my Disney experience even better!!!




Mickey’s ToonTown太好玩啦!