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Bountiful Valley Farm

Bountiful Valley Farm

We begin our journey through The Golden State at Bountiful Valley Farm - a small display of farm equipment made by Caterpillar highlights this tribute to the California farm community. You'll find real crops being grown here - with helpful Cast Members waiting to tell you all about it. You'll learn how farmers match their methods with the different growing environments that are found in California. It's all right in front of you to watch as they tend to and occasionally harvest the crops grown right there in Disneyland! And some of those crops are served to guests at the nearby restaurants.


It's Tough To Be A Bug

The first attraction we visit here is the "Its Tough To Be A Bug" 3D theater where our friend Flik from Disney-Pixar's "A Bug's Life" takes us down into the world of the creepy-crawly things that help make things grow and why humans need to appreciate insects. Much like the "MuppetVision 3D" show, this one combines a 3D movie with animatronic figures to entertain you. But this show has a special surprise waiting for you at the end - something like "Honey, I Shrunk The Audience" but different enough to entertain even hardened Disneyland veterans. Everybody loves the Pixar movies, so you can see this attraction with your kids and not feel like you're making a sacrifice.

Its Tough To Be A Bug

Mission Tortilla Factory

Up at the "top" of this area are two attractions that teach you about two popular varieties of food from the California culinary experience. The first is the "Mission Tortilla Factory". That's right, it's a small factory that actually makes some of those fabulous Mission Tortillas right before your eyes. Everyone's into sandwich wraps and the like these days, so I think you'll enjoy seeing this attraction more than you might expect. The walk-through attraction begins with a bank of small video displays that show how Hispanic families traditionally made tortillas (neat 3-D effect here - don't miss it!). Then you follow a corridor walking by the machines that turn the dough into the flat round delicacies that are then baked and ready to be served... which they do, just outside.


Mission Tortilla Factory movie   Mission Tortilla Factory interior

Mission Tortilla Factory

Boudin Bakery

The Boudin Bakery

The second walk-through attraction is a guided tour of the "Boudin Bakery" where they bake luscious loaves of the world-famous San Francisco sourdough bread. Above the walkways are TV screens that show a film starring comedians Rosie O'Donnell and Colin ("Whose Line Is It Anyway?") Mochrie who explain how the early pioneers made sourdough bread and how its made today in modern mechanized bakeries like the one in front of you. Once again, you'll have an opportunity to taste their wares in one of the outdoor restaurants. The picture here shows the large ovens with glass doors that let you see the myriad loaves of bread baking as they turn on the carousels inside. It was more interesting to see how those wonderful sourdough treats were made than I expected. The tour was long enough to let you see all you wanted, and short enough so that the youngsters wouldn't get bored silly.


There are many other places to eat in Golden State, places such as the "Cucina Cucamonga Mexican Grill", "Earborn Popcorn", "The Pacific Wharf Cafe", "Sam Andreas Shakes", the "Taste Pilots Grill", "The Golden Vine Terrace", and "The Lucky Fortune Cookery". The center of the park will certainly be your center of attention when it comes to mealtime when you're visiting Disney's California Adventure there in Disneyland.


And now we come to the rides!


Soarin' Over California

Soarin' Over California

Our next stop takes you on an exciting adventure that lets you fly over California. It's called "Soarin' Over California", and it's like you're riding in a powered hang glider. You're belted into one of three tiers of about 8 seats that lift you up to 40 feet off the ground in front of a parabolic screen that shows you a bird's eye view of the spleandor of California's land and seascapes. You zoom along at tree-top level past skiers and mountain tops. You feel the wind in your face, and the pull of the G-forces as you accelerate up and down. You can even smell the pine trees as you fly past the forrests and the cool damp San Francisco fog as you carom over the Golden Gate bridge. It's a thrilling ride, but not so thrilling that your older kids couldn't share it with you. This is bound to be one of the most popular rides in the park. For the most realistic ride, try to get in row A or B. If you're with younger kids, stick with row C for a ride a bit closer to Terra Firma. If you or your kids liked the feel of a flight simulator like "Star Tours" in Disneyland, you'll like this ride, too!


Grizzly River Run

The centerpiece attraction of The Golden State area is the water raft ride "Grizzly River Run". It's the longest, tallest, and fastest white-water river rafting ride in any Disney park and takes you on a giant inner-tube ride down the river rapids that flow from the top of the 150-foot high Grizzly Peak mountain. Definitely not for the youngest or the faint of heart, the ride includes a 22-foot drop. And, yes, you're going to get wet. Really wet! Seriously Soaked! But it's a ton of fun and sure to be one of the highlights of your vacation!

Grizzly River Run

Golden Dreams

Golden Dreams

The film "Golden Dreams" is shown in a theater next door to the replica of the San Francisco Palace of Fine Arts Rotunda. The film is based on a Portugese novel and stars Whoopi Goldberg as Califa, for whom the state was named. It tells the story of the history of California, and the people who have made it what it is today.


Redwood Creek Challenge Trail

"The Redwood Creek Challenge Trail" is "an interactive obstacle course" that combines cable slides, rope bridges, rock climbing and more. A map posted at the entry will guide you through the different sections, including Tunnel Treet Crawl-Thru, the Hoot-N-Holler Logs, Pine Peril Bridge, Cliff Hanger, Hibernation Hollow, and the Sequoia Smokejumpers Training Tower.

Redwood Creek Challenge Trail
Redwood Creek Challenge Trail Ahwahnee Camp Circle

"In the center of the Redwood Creek Challenge Trail is the Ahwahnee Camp Circle. Here, split logs and tree stumps serve as the seating area for guests to enjoy an Indian storyteller who share tales of the California wilderness, the animals that inhabit the areas and the ecology of the land. Animal demonstrations, campfire singalongs and ghost stories also entertain wilderness visitors."