There’s so much to take in at the original Disney park—it can be completely overwhelming. Whether you’re not sure if you should grab a FastPass or simply want to know the current standings of your favorites, we’ve pitted every bonafide ride against each other for the ultimate ranking of Disneyland attractions. (All forms of transportation—Disneyland Railroad and Monorail included—are omitted, too, so you can get to the fun as fast as possible.)
The sad truth is that you can’t do it all in a day, so be sure you board the very best on your next trip to Disneyland.
1. Splash Mountain
Clocking in at 10 minutes long, Disneyland’s take on the classic log flume is well worth the wait. Sure, the source material for the Br’er Rabbit and Br’er Fox characters is buried in the Disney archives for good reason, but the ride itself remains thrilling and iconic. Rich with story, rife with anticipation, and home to the best on-ride photo in the park, it truly has everything—including a complimentary shower, if you’re lucky enough to get soaked to the bone.
2. Indiana Jones Adventure
Equal parts exciting and immersive, Indiana Jones Adventure shows just what Disney is capable of when flexing their creative muscle. If the fire explosions, collapsing bridge, and rolling boulder weren’t enough to feel realistic, the jostling all-terrain transport vehicle puts guests shoulder-to-shoulder with the action. Channeling the most treacherous parts of Dr. Jones’ journey with every turn, it’s hands-down the most thrilling ride on property, made all the better with its interactive temple queue.
3. Pirates of the Caribbean
There is perhaps no ride more quintessential of Disneyland’s growth than Pirates of the Caribbean. The seaside trip through pirate dalliances has expanded from a daring boat ride with a catchy soundtrack to the source material for a multibillion-dollar blockbuster movie franchise. Whether or not Johnny Depp is integral to the attraction is moot point—to this day, it remains steadfastly original as when it first blew audiences away in 1967.
4. Matterhorn Bobsleds
Walt Disney’s rendition of the famed Alps peak—which comes with a pair of toboggan-style steel coasters—has been enthralling guests since it was introduced in 1959. The recent addition of a red-eyed Abominable Snowman enhances the journey, but its true charm comes in its dated touches with herky-jerky turns and often unexpected splashings.
5. Haunted Mansion
Both humorous and haunting, the ghost-led tour of the property’s happy haunts holds one of the more cult-like followings among fans,—and for good reason. Offering an ideal blend of whimsical characters and macabre delights, Haunted Mansion is made even better by its can’t-miss The Nightmare Before Christmas seasonal overlay.
6. Mad Tea Party
Whirling around on this Alice in Wonderland-themed spinning ride can be as quintessential to a Disneyland trip as enjoying a churro. Though it appears at other Disney parks throughout the world, all others pale in comparison to this open-air rendition. Effervescent as could be with a with a too-cute color scheme, it remains as good on Instagram as it is in person.
7. Space Mountain
Tomorrowland’s best adventure takes guests on an otherworldly trip to the stars at rapid speeds.The pitch-black indoor coaster is a fan favorite for its sudden drops, hairpin turns, and out-of-this-galaxy theming. These days, with its seasonal Halloween and Star Wars overlays, it offers up a refreshed ride on most visits.
8. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
This rough and tumble ride over a southwestern mountainscape is a joyous trip the whole family can enjoy. With its dark caverns, intricate mining camps, and inexplicable dinosaur bones, gold mining has never been so much fun.
9. It’s A Small World
Though the never-ending jingle can be overwhelming to some, It’s A Small World is nonetheless a delightful ride indeed. International cultures represented amidst happy-faced dolls, eye-popping colors and literal pounds of glitter are made all the better come Christmastime, when the boat journey through the nations undertakes an explosion of holiday glee.
10. Jungle Cruise
It’s not just sailing through lush landscapes and the backside of waterfalls that keeps guests coming back for more. Jungle Cruise is truly the only attraction that relies more on Disneyland’s charismatic cast members than the mechanics of the ride, making it that much more enthralling.
11. Peter Pan’s Flight
There’s a reason the line to board Peter Pan’s Flight is perennially long: it’s as classic as you can get. Flying over the lights of London is pure magic for young ones, but remains delightfully entertaining for older guests, too. Its overhead ride system makes the presence of the Darlings and Captain Hook feel undeniably real, with lighting gags and appearances by Tinker Bell that only enhance the magic.
12. Star Tours — The Adventures Continue
The redux of Disneyland’s original motion simulator remains one of the park’s more exciting attractions, thanks to its immersive 3D effects and an up-close visit from C3PO himself. By utilizing a sequence of random events, the ride is different every time. Until Disneyland’s Star Wars experience opens, its simulated jaunts to Jakku and Hoth are as close as Jedi wannabes can get to truly experiencing the films.
13. Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage
Though the ride was retrofitted to a decades-old Tomorrowland attraction, actually being submerged while taking in the story of Finding Nemo is more transportative than you may expect. The low-key underwater journey is made enjoyable thanks to individual porthole-style windows, allowing everyone to have the very best seat on the sub.
14. Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters
Though guests in this blacklight shooting gallery are intended to work as Buzz’s recruits to bring down Evil Emperor Zurg, it’s more a gleeful competition between passengers, gaining points from hitting targets while twirling two-seat vehicles around with a joystick. Become a high-scoring Galactic Hero and you, too, could rack up a score that goes to infinity and beyond.
This Disneyland classic is newly refreshed, courtesy of a futuristic overlay and updated design that came with its Honda sponsorship earlier this year. Zooming through the park in tiny cars is undoubtedly thrilling for kids, but not the same for adults who just endured freeway traffic to get to the park. Still, with its secluded trails, lovable signage, and Matterhorn views, Autopia remains a gem.
16. Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride
Whether you adore the subdued inappropriateness of the subject matter—beers twirl through the air, for example—or simply want to visit each time so Disney keeps it intact, Mr. Toad is legendary for more than being one of the better dark rides on Disneyland property. Sure, the cutout characters and painted decor feel oddly temporary, but that’s not important—the fact guests can marvel in this still-standing attraction is.
17. Dumbo the Flying Elephant
At its core, it’s the same as Astro Orbitor, but Dumbo’s whimsy and enlightening backstory give it a ratings boost. The blue elephant floating across the sky is deeply iconic, but the nostalgia alone isn’t enough to make this roundabout worth riding—and enduring its lengthy wait—sans children.
18. Alice in Wonderland
Brilliantly executed and nearly better than the original movie, this ride through Alice’s trip down the rabbit hole is solidly entertaining, yet one of its most enjoyable parts—popping outside the ride before heading back in—only serves as a reminder of more exciting rides you could be on instead. (That is, if you don’t still find the Queen’s section to be downright scary.)
19. Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin
The mechanics of this spinning Who Framed Roger Rabbit-themed ride are well-regarded, but the other-era animation and plot lines are likely to be lost on most guests who ride it. Cartoonish and deeply ‘90s, it feels more like an attempt at a Disneyland ride than actually being one.
20. Astro Orbitor
Plagued by too-small rocket pods and reliably lengthy sun-soaked waits, at a minimum, it’s dizzying; at it’s best, it barely provides a slight view of the castle. With its stunning orb-topped tower providing a stately entrance to Tomorrowland, this one truly is best enjoyed from the ground.
21. Gadget’s Go Coaster
There’s only so much you can do with a kid’s coaster, but the theming on this one is great: oversized and colorful, like its surrounding ToonTown. Attention-grabbing with its massive soup cans and thread spools, the only complaint is that Chip ‘n Dale’s ride doesn’t last longer—which isn’t much of a complaint at all.
22. Storybook Land Canal Boats
It’s worth riding once for the joy of passing through Monstro the Whale’s mouth, but beyond that, this slow-paced drift past shrunken-down versions of fairytale settings feels somewhat trapped in time.
23. Pinocchio’s Daring Journey
Built as a homage to the classic animated film, Pinocchio’s Daring Journey remains a bit too intense for children and dull for those all grown up. It’s a fine ride, in the end, but deeply average when compared to the rest of what Disneyland has to offer.
24. Casey Jr. Circus Train
The most entertaining part of this homage to Dumbo’s circus transport is the adorable train itself, whose seats are inside wild animal cages and gilded cars. Huffing and puffing over hills, it provides a remarkably slow journey, proven to be more enjoyable from the walkways of Fantasyland than actually on board.
25. King Arthur Carousel
This stately attraction’s low ranking is only testament to Disneyland’s prowess, a park imagined by Walt while sitting outside a similar ride. Elsewhere, a carousel with white horses would shine like a rare gem, but amidst the park’s other unique and beloved options, it’s somewhat forgettable.
26. Snow White’s Scary Adventures
The ride is intended to be from Snow White’s perspective, but when guests didn’t understand that at first, she was later inserted into the ride—making the pitch-black journey with random appearances by the witch pointlessly scary. With frightful crows cackling and no real resolution at the end, it simply doesn’t deliver on any of the beloved portions of the classic Disney film.
27. The Many Adventures of Winnie The Pooh
Hidden so far back in the park, this dark ride has its high points—particularly Pooh’s dream-state encounters with Heffalump and Woozles—but is so lackluster it almost makes guests question if it’s worth the walk. When the treats sold in the adjacent gift shop are the real attraction and there’s never a line, it’s clear this one is nobody’s first choice.