Disneyland Resort temporarily halted ticket sales at both of its Anaheim theme parks Tuesday because of massive crowds, and visitors complained of slow traffic and especially long lines.
Disneyland stopped selling tickets about 10 a.m., and visitors were diverted to Disney California Adventure. By 1 p.m., both parks were closed to new visitors, with Disneyland announcing via its Twitter page that access was "temporarily limited."
California Adventure was reopened later in the afternoon, spokeswoman Betsy Sanchez said. She said she was not sure whether ticket sales would resume for Disneyland for the rest of the day. It was the second straight day ticket sales for the parks were temporarily halted.
Sanchez said she could not discuss attendance figures or the parks' maximum capacity, but one expert estimated that between 75,000 and 100,000 people went there Tuesday.
"The crowds are huge," said Al Lutz, who edits the Disneyland website miceage.com. "They're close to 100,000 between both parks — that's the record. I think they hit it [Monday], and they're hitting it again" Tuesday.
Lutz said the holiday season has surpassed the summer months as the busiest time at Disneyland Resort. Steady rains during the days before Christmas "shifted all the traffic to this end of the holiday period," Lutz said. "Normally this would have been spread out over two weeks; it's all pent-up demand."
Mark Hanna, a 19-year-old student from Los Angeles, said he and his family had expected a typical day at Disneyland, but they sat in traffic for 45 minutes at the Harbor Boulevard exit from the 5 Freeway.
"There were flashing lights saying 'Disneyland tickets sold out,'" he said in a telephone interview. "I've been here many, many times, and this is the most crowded I've ever seen it."
Because the family had pre-purchased their tickets, they were able to enter California Adventure, Hanna said. But "the lines are really long," he said. "The minimum wait time is about two hours, and people are very frustrated."