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  • Writer's pictureAnna Wildish

How to Find Your Favorite Characters at Disneyland

Updated: Aug 25, 2023

Finding Disneyland Characters at Disneyland and California Adventure on a Disneyland Vacation

COVID has changed the way you can see your favorite Disney characters at Disneyland.

And I LOVE it!

You may not be able to hug them right now, but you can see still them, talk to them, interact with them, and they will interact right back. It’s great!

They aren’t located in their traditional locations so you may have no idea where to look on your family's next Disneyland vacation.

Don’t worry. I got you covered.

Here is a list of who and where you’ll find your favorite characters at both Disneyland Park and California Adventure Park.

I’ve even thrown in some tips and tricks to making the most of your time and increase your chances of running into them.

Let’s go!

Disneyland Park

The Steps of the Main Street Train Station

Here you’ll find all your classic favorites throughout the day: Goofy, Donald, Pluto, Chip and Dale, and of course Mickey and Minnie Mouse.

Along Main Street USA

Throughout the day Character Cavalcades pop up and head down Main Street. They are like mini parades featuring some of your favorite characters and they are so much fun! You won’t know when they are going to happen, you’ll suddenly hear music and there it is.

Tip: When you need a break or a snack head to Main Street and just relax anywhere on the side, making sure you have a good view of the street. There is a good chance you’ll catch one of the cavalcades!

Fantasy Faire

Just to the left side of the front of the castle is Fantasy Faire. Here you’ll find your favorite Disney princesses rotated throughout the day.

This was one of our favorite locations for character sightings. Not only is it in the shade, but you go through a line just a few at a time so you have a private audience with the princesses. They spent a great deal of time talking to my daughter, asking her questions, responding to her answers, and taking pictures. My princess-loving daughter was in heaven!

Pirates of the Caribbean

Be sure to look up at the steps above the queue for Pirates of the Caribbean. Here you’ll find Jack Sparrow and the Red Lady.

Galaxy’s Edge

Chewie, Rey, Kylo Ren, and more make appearances throughout the day in Galaxy’s Edge. They are most likely found around the vehicles and starships you can find all over Galaxy’s Edge. You may even catch Chewie doing some work on the Millennium Falcon.

Haunted Mansion

Right now, during the fall and Christmas holidays, Jack and Sally are making appearances on the balcony of the Haunted Mansion.

California Adventure Park

Cars Land

No changes to the way they do character meet-n-greets in Cars Land! You’ll still find Mater and McQueen by the Cozy Cone Motel ready to pose with you.

Avengers Campus

So. Many. Characters. Here

Spiderman does a show and then meets with you.

Dr. Strange does a magic show and then meets with you.

Thor and Captain American make appearances. Oh, and Iron Man, Captain Marvel, Black Panther, Black Widow, Ant-Man, The Wasp, The Guardians of the Galaxy. You also have the chance to train with Black Panther’s bodyguards, the Dora Milaje.

You will be in Superhero heaven!

Pacific Wharf

Look out for Goofy and Max to be fishing off the back of the Pacific Wharf, just across the walkway from the Trattoria. In true Goofy fashion, they aren’t fishing in the traditional way.

Finding Disneyland Characters at Disneyland and California Adventure on a Disneyland Vacation

Pixar Pier

The Incredibles hang out along the pier edge across from the Incredicoaster entrance. You may even get a wave from them when you are waiting for Dash to send you off on the Incredicoaster!

Joy, Sadness, Woody, and Jesse can be seen on the Pixar Band stage in between Bing Bong’s Sweet Stuff store and the Games of Pixar Pier.

You could also catch Woody, Jessie, and the Green Army Men walking around Pixar Pier throughout the day, waving hello. (This is California Adventure’s version of the character cavalcades.)

Tip: When you need a break, grab a snack, a drink, and grab a seat at the outside tables near Paradise Garden Grill. Make sure you have a good view of the walkway. You may just catch the characters on their walk!

Finding Disneyland Characters at Disneyland and California Adventure on a Disneyland Vacation

Paradise Gardens Park

In between Goofy’s Sky School and Paradise Garden Grill is a little area set up where you may catch Lilo and Stitch and Miguel from Coco.

Near The Little Mermaid – Ariel’s Undersea Adventure

Judy Hops and Nick Wilde from Zootopia set up shop in the alley way between Ariel’s Undersea Adventure and Embarcadero Gifts.

The Fountain in front of Carthay Circle

Mickey, Minnie, Daisy, Elsa, Anna, Oswald and more will be hanging out and even dancing over at this fountain.

Special Tip: Make a reservation to dine Alfresco at Carthay Circle Lounge. Ask to be seated along the railing and you’ll have LOTS of character sightings while you eat. The characters make their entrance into the park just past the restaurant and must walk past it on their way to the fountain. You’ll have some unique 1:1 interaction with the characters for sure!

Near the Park Entrance

Near the very front of the park, right outside the Los Feliz Five & Dime you could catch Clarabelle Cow and Horace Horsecollar. Now that’s a unique character sighting!

Finding Disneyland Characters at Disneyland and California Adventure on a Disneyland Vacation

The character locations could change at any time, but this will give you a good place to start looking for your favorites.

Did I miss one? Post the character and location in the comments!

I am a travel agent with Magical Vacation Planner. I make it easier for you to plan an unforgettable vacation with your family. Click here to schedule a Magical Vacation Discovery Call to learn more and get your free, no-obligation quote.

Or head here to request access to my exclusive Disney Vacation Planning Vault, full of worksheets and resources you can use to plan your next Disney vacation.


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