Holiday Photowalk Down Disney California Adventure Buena Vista Street

It’s hard to imagine there’s anything that could make the newly re-imagined Disney California Adventure (DCA 2.0) any more spectacular than it already is.  Then along came Christmas.

The park looks stunning all decked out in its holiday finest, with the newest lands offering the most impressive displays.  Today we’ll take a walk down Disney California Adventure Buena Vista Street, and see how Walt Disney’s first Christmas in Los Angeles might have been.

The Pan Pacific Theater-inspired entrance sets the mood.

As soon as you walk into the park, you’re greeted with the sights and sounds of the holiday season.  The exterior displays along Buena Vista Street are simple and understated; with swags of garland and wreaths, complimented by holly leaves, bells, and big red & gold bows.  Adding to the ambiance is the piped in music, featuring Christmas classics by the Andrews Sisters, Bing Crosby, etc.

At dusk, the garland is lit up with old-fashioned multi-color C-9 style lights, enhancing the ambiance even more.  The only disappointment is the excessive use of blue light bulbs.  With the LED lighting, the blue can be really over-powering, something I’m not certain they accommodated for in their planning.  Aside from that, the area looks festive & fun.

The holiday theme is carried out in each of the shop windows, which showcase both current holiday merchandise, as well as antiques to fit the era.  The windows are a small detail, but once you take a peek, it’s easy to get swept up in them.

Several of the Elias & Co. shop windows feature artwork from the Silly Symphony, ‘The Night Before Christmas’

Mickey greets guests, clad in 1920’s holiday attire!

Inside the shops on either side of the street is where the true magic lies.  Each store along Buena Vista Street is decorated to fit its individual theme.

Five & Dime Interior

Full-size Christmas tree filled with blown glass ornaments in the children’s clothing dept of Elias & Co.

Women’s dept in Elias & Co.

Men’s dept in Elias & Co.


The last section of Elias & Co. which normally sells jewelry, Disney Couture items and Dooney & Bourke handbags, has been transformed into a meet & greet with Santa Claus!  Another beautifully themed area, and I couldn’t help but think of “A Christmas Story” while browsing through here!

The shops across the street are just as well-themed

Trolley Treats is perfectly sweet

Julius Katz & Sons repair shop has a tree full of trinkets. Check out that topper!

Close-up of the topper



At the end of Buena Vista Street, Disney California Adventure’s larger-than-life Christmas tree is showcased, acting as the perfect complement to the Carthay Circle Theater.  This is a first for the park, given their tree has always been displayed in the back, by Paradise Pier.

This year’s tree is completely different from year’s past, and fits the area beautifully.  At night, however, the tree is filled with those lovely blue LED lights, giving it a blue glow in all of my photos.  Boo.

A tree lighting ceremony takes place every night at 5:00pm (subject to change):

Presents hidden under the tree


Over at Carthay Circle Theater, the decor inside is absolutely gorgeous!

We hope you’ve enjoyed our holiday tour through Buena Vista Street’s first Christmas!

Here’s a sneak peek at our tour through Christmas in Cars Land coming later:

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About Chrysty Summers

Growing up in southern California, Disneyland has always been a staple for my family. Today, my husband and I spend most of our free time at the parks, where you can usually find us soaking up the atmosphere of Buena Vista Street in California Adventure. We also love traveling to Walt Disney World as often as we can, especially during the Epcot Food & Wine Festival in the Fall! Find me on Twitter @PenelopePeach for live updates from around the parks.