Visiting Disneyland in May: What to Bring, What to Do, What to Expect

May is the last month before summer officially begins at Disneyland and it's a popular month for many guests. Visiting Disneyland in May can often be the sweet spot for guests wanting to enjoy the perks of summer while also avoiding the hottest months in Southern California.

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Everyone has personal preferences to consider when planning the date of their Disneyland trip. Each season will have its pros and cons and guests' choices will vary based on those. Make sure to read our Disneyland crowd calendar to get an idea of what to expect when picking a date to visit Disneyland.

Keep reading for everything you need to know about visiting Disneyland in May including current events, what weather to expect, crowd level predictions, and what to pack!

Disneyland Events in May

Star Wars Galaxy's Edge preview concept art for Disneyland for Disneyland in May

Every year in May and June, Disneyland hosts Grad Nites for the local graduating high school students. These events bring big crowds to Disneyland and Disney's California Adventure park especially later in the evening. Certain areas of the park, usually in California Adventure, will also shut down specifically for these recent high school graduates. If you can, it's best to avoid visiting on a day that Grad Nites is being offered. If you can't avoid it, it's not a big deal- just arrive early with a plan in place.

This year's May Grad Nites dates are May 10, 11, 17, 17, 21, 22, 28, 29, 31.

A popular offering in the Spring months is the Disneyland After Dark series. This May brings Disneyland After Dark: Heroes Assemble to Disney California Adventure park which will take place on May 1st from 9PM-1AM. Often a popular event for local annual passholders, tourists may get lucky to secure tickets for one of these coveted events if they plan ahead.

May the 4th be with you! Enjoy Star Wars celebrations on May 4th in Tomorrowland like the transformation of Space Mountain into Hyperspace Mountain, meet Captain Phasma and her storm troopers and enjoy Star Wars themed souvenirs and food options.

Every year Disneyland hosts a theme celebration which often includes specialty food items, souvenirs, and entertainment offerings. This year's celebration is in honor of Mickey Mouse's birthday! The Get Your Ears On- A Mickey and Minnie Celebration includes Mickey and Minnie inspired food, souvenirs, the return of the popular Mickey's Soundsational Parade along with a new nighttime dance party and light show- Mickey's Mix Magic.

And hands down the biggest date on the calendar for Disneyland in May: Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge opens on May 31st with a reservation only period that will run until June 23rd. On-site hotel guests automatically get a reservation during this time period and off-site guests will be able to make their reservations beginning May 2nd at 10AM via their Disney account.

Disneyland May Crowd Calendar

Child watching fireworks over Sleeping Beauty's Castle

This year the crowd levels for Disneyland in May will see a higher than average shift towards the end of the month as guests come swooping in for the opening of the much anticipated Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge on May 31st.

In the past, May can still be a pretty popular time for guests to visit Disneyland with holidays like Cinco de Mayo and Memorial Day draws local crowds and tourists. Combine those holidays with the Grad Nites dates and some days can get pretty crowded. We may also see higher than normal crowds in the beginning of the May as many guests try to squeeze in last minute visits to Disneyland before Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge opens.

Since Disneyland has a large population of Annual Passholders, it can be helpful to check the Annual Pass Blockout Date calendar on Disney's website. This year the most common tiers of AP holders are blocked out from visiting Disneyland Fridays-Sundays in May. That means that weekdays might bring higher crowds as locals plan to visit the parks before their passes are blocked from visiting Disneyland for the summer. This year Disney has blocked many AP holders from visiting Disneyland during June-August and restricted their passes to only Disney's California Adventure. So it's a safe bet that many AP holders will take the time to visit on weekdays to get their Disneyland fix before the summer. Memorial Day can be especially crowded as many locals will have the day off work and some AP holders aren't blocked from that day.

It has also been a common trend lately for Mondays to be the most crowded weekday as many guests use Tuesdays as a travel day due to the discounts airlines offer for Tuesday travel. Locals also commonly visit on Mondays since many Annual Passholders are blocked out Friday-Sunday and Mondays are easier to take off work. So it's common to see a larger wave of crowds on Mondays as guests visit the parks one last day before they fly home.

Don't fear- high crowds are more manageable than ever at Disneyland with the addition of MaxPass. Make sure to read our guide on how to handle crowds at Disneyland here if you find yourself visiting on a day with large crowd levels.

Disneyland Weather in May

Soarin Over the World view at California Adventure

The Disneyland weather in May can be quite pleasant with an average high temperature of 75 degrees and an average low temperature of 66 degrees.

As Spring begins to come to a close in Anaheim, the chance for expected rainfall is highly diminished with rain happening rarely throughout the month of May.

The sunshine begins to stick around longer in May with the longest day in May allowing guests to enjoy 14 hours of sun at the parks.

May can be muggy at Disneyland with higher humidity levels steadily increasing as the month goes on and gets closer to the summer months.

Tips for Visiting Disneyland in May

Disneyland in May :Pixar Pier lit with a pink sunset behind it

When it comes to visiting Disneyland in May, we have some tried and true hacks for having a magical time when you visit the parks this time of the year.

What to Wear 

One of the most frequently asked guest questions is: what should I wear to Disneyland? The first thing to do is to take into account the weather for your visit. As you get closer to your trip date, you can see the forecast for the days that you will be in Anaheim and plan accordingly.

Generally speaking, May brings hotter and humid days than you experience in the Spring so it's good to be prepared for warmer weather. Plan on shorts, tank tops, and cooler clothes that you find comfortable for warm weather. It's also a good idea to dress in light layers as the mornings and evenings can cool off once the sun goes down mixed with the humidity from the ocean. The weather can be much more moderate in May than the summer months so dressing in layers is the key to staying comfortable.

What to Pack 

Guests should pack for summer weather as Southern California will be moving right into those sunny and warm days in the month of May. Bring weather appropriate clothes that are comfortable and cool in warmer weather. You can never go wrong with layers!

Make sure to pack necessities so you're well prepared for your vacation. Items like sunscreen, portable fans, cooling towels, and other favorite hot weather items will help keep you cool in the parks if the days do get hot. If you find yourself without these items you will pay a hefty penny for them in the parks or local area hotels.

You can read our giant packing list here to make sure you show up prepared for literally anything you might need while you're visiting Disneyland.

What to Expect

There are a few things you should expect when choosing May as your month to visit Disneyland:

  • Prepare for possible refurbishments and ride closures- May is the last month before the official summer season begins so there may still be some attractions under refurbishment. Spring is a typical time for ride and entertainment refurbishments at Disneyland and some may still be finishing up in May. Check Disneyland's website prior to your visit so you know in advance of any refurbishments.
  •  Look out for any ticket or hotel specials- Disney will often offer ticket discounts in the Spring months to entice guests to travel during what used to be known as an ‘off season.' Many of these promotions sometimes will run through May so it's good to watch for any special ticket deals you can find. Check our our discount Disneyland ticket page to save money on your tickets.
  • Check your hotel dates- hotel prices will likely be higher on popular weekends like Memorial Day or Cinco de Mayo- play around with your dates if you have flexibility to secure the best deal.
  • Plan Around Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge- this year May in Disneyland will look different than those in the past due to the opening date on May 31st. If you want to avoid the crowds coming to parks to see the new land, plan your trip for earlier in the month. If you're visiting close to the opening date and you don't plan on visiting the new land, then show up early in the morning with a plan in place.

But most of all, make sure you plan in advance so your trip goes as smoothly as possible at the Happiest Place on Earth!

Plan Your Disneyland Vacation!

Keep reading our blog to keep you updated on everything you need to know to prepare for a Disney Parks vacation! We have a team of writers working hard to keep you updated weekly on events in the parks and tips for navigating the magic. Subscribe to our free deals newsletter to receive helpful planning information, exclusive Disney deals, and access to the lowest priced Disney tickets anywhere. You can find more information on planning your vacation here:

Disneyland in May

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