Disneyland Park is a theme park located in Anaheim,
California, owned and operated by the Walt Disney Parks and Resorts
division of the Walt Disney Company. Known as Disneyland when it opened
on July 18, 1955, and still almost universally referred to by that name,
it is the only theme park to be designed and built under the direct
supervision of Walt Disney. In 1998, the theme park was re-branded
"Disneyland Park" to distinguish it from the larger Disneyland Resort
Walt Disney came up with the concept of Disneyland
after visiting various amusement parks with his daughters in the 1930s
and 1940s. He initially envisioned building a tourist attraction
adjacent to his studios in Burbank to entertain fans who wished to
visit; however, he soon realized that the proposed site was too small.
After hiring a consultant to help determine an appropriate site for his
project, Walt bought a 160-acre (65 ha) site near Anaheim in 1953.
Construction began in 1954 and the park was unveiled during a special
televised press event on July 17, 1955.
Since its opening, Disneyland has undergone a number
of expansions and renovations, including the addition of New Orleans
Square in 1966, Bear Country (now Critter Country) in 1972, and Mickey's
Toontown in 1993. Disney California Adventure Park was built on the site
of Disneyland's original parking lot and opened in 2001.
Disneyland has a larger cumulative attendance than any
other theme park in the world, with close to 600 million guests since it
opened. In 2010, 15.98 million people visited the park, making it the
second most visited park in the world that calendar year.