On the Disneyland website, they had information on the Happiest Haunts Tour. It looked interesting, and I figured for $85 it must be a special tour… so I called guest services and grabbed the 1:05 tour for October 21st. As an annual passholder, I did get a discount (came to $144 for 2 people) and I had to prepay the tour. No refunds or exchanges, so I had to choose carefully.
On the day of the event, we arrived early to grab some lunch. We went to the Pizza Port in Tomorrowland and had the Halloween special: The Cosmic Chili Pasta, which was wagon wheel pasta, with cheese sauce, chili and corn chips on top. After lunch we still has a little time before check in, so we took advantage of the photo opportunities.
I was told to check in 1/2 hour before my tour (so 12:35 pm) and good thing I did, as the queue took a while. I received 2 pre-printed name badges and a headset (to be used on the tour). Guests were encouraged to bring their own headphones, but I forgot. Our tour guide was Jaymeanne (pronounced Jamie-Ann) and she led us around the Magic Kingdom telling us well, silly stories of spooks and ghosts while maneuvering our group though a crowded theme park.
There were some interesting facts provided in the tour, such as the Pumpkin tree that paid tribute to Ray Bradbury, but for the most part, it was campfire type stories which would have been much better at night. We did get a front of the line pass to the Haunted Mansion Holiday attraction, and after, went to the Rancho del Zocalo area to see the Dia de los Muertos (day of the dead) exhibit, and was given a day of the dead bread to snack on during our brief break.
After our break, we made our way back to the Tour Garden for a very special treat… probably the one highlight that made this worth the $75… a photo opportunity with the Hitchhiking Ghosts. This model was kept in the back room where only those who paid for the tour got to see. I am not sure if this is here year round, but it was a pretty cool.
The tour continued to the Disney California Adventure side, where Jaymeanne pointed out the detailed Halloween decoration throughout the Buena Vista Street, the tale of the Headless Horseman, and the Car-stumes in Cars Land. At the end of the tour, we were given a “treat” of pumpkin fudge before heading back to the Tour Garden to get our commemorative Disney Key.
Overall, I would not recommend this tour unless you were a “die hard” Disney person, who wanted to collect the commemorative pin for your collection, or to say you’ve taken a photo with the Hitchhiking Ghosts. It was just too crowded to get the sense of spookiness, and definitely not worth the price.