So you were one of the lucky ones who managed to get your hands on a BlizzCon 2018 ticket before they sold out? Now that your place at the annual gaming convention is confirmed, it’s time to put the finishing touches on your trip.
BlizzCon 2018 will be held at the Anaheim Convention Centre in Anaheim, California. The city is best known as the home of Disneyland, the original theme park created by legendary animator Walt Disney.
Anaheim is set up to appeal to the endless flock of families that head there each year. However, the city offers plenty of entertainment for the more mature traveller too.
If you’re heading to Anaheim for BlizzCon 2018 this November, here are the best places to sleep, eat, drink and play during your trip:
Where to sleep
Hotel Indigo Anaheim
Located in the heart of Anaheim, the Hotel Indigo places you in walking distance of Anaheim’s top spots. You will be a stone’s throw from the city’s main attractions, and just a short walk from the convention centre.
This InterContinental hotel has just three stars to its name, but its guests rate it far higher. According to reviews on review website TripAdvisor, Hotel Indigo is the best in the city. Guests rate it highly for its location, cleanliness and friendly staff.
Price: Standard rooms available from $390.70 a night
If close isn’t close enough, the Hilton Anaheim sits just behind the Anaheim Convention Center, meaning that there won’t be too far to walk after a long day on your feet at BlizzCon.
The Hilton Anaheim is the largest hotel in Orange County, with capacity to house 1,570 groups, meaning there will likely be plenty of availability as gamers flood the city.
Better yet, with the Hilton name you know that that you will get good service and a clean, comfy bed.
Price: Guest rooms available from $214 a night
Fairfield Inn Anaheim Hills Orange County
If you’re travelling to Anaheim on a budget, the Fairfield Inn is a great option at a cheap price. While you will find many motels dotted around the city for better prices, the Fairfield Inn provides all the luxuries of a high-end hotel without the astronomical costs.
However, you will have to compromise on proximity. Located out in the Anaheim Hills, you will have to spend 25 minutes travelling back and forth between the convention centre. If you plan on driving during your trip, then the $100 savings will be worth the extra travel time, but those relying on taxis will likely spend what they save on travel.
Price: Guest rooms available from $110 a night
Where to eat
You can’t head to Anaheim without stopping off at the Disneyland Resort. If you’re not one for rollercoasters or shows, tick it off of your list at the Napa Rose restaurant.
Located inside Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, Napa Rose offers upscale, five-star dining. Pair duck breast with roasted fingerling potatoes, cooked to perfection by the award-winning Andrew Sutton, before washing it down with a bottle from the restaurant’s extensive wine list.
There aren’t too many options to choose from, but you will undoubtedly find something for everyone, with Californian classics and everyday dishes making up the menu at Napa Rose.
Price: $74 for a starter, main course and side
Tru Grits offers classic American dishes with a Taiwanese twist, including chicken and waffles, mac and cheese, and a good old steak.
This isn’t your typical fast food franchise or quick-fix diner. All food at Tru Grits is locally sourced and cooked fresh each day, meaning that you’re guaranteed an excellent quality meal with every visit.
Located just a short drive from the Arnheim Convention Centre, you won’t have to go too far to fill your stomach at the end of a long day.
Price: $34 for a starter, main course and beer
Baci di Firenze Trattoria
Despite having to compete with the city’s richly-backed chains and star chefs, Baci di Firenze Trattoria is Anaheim’s most popular restaurant. This family owned establishment does Italian fine dining like few others, with a relaxed environment that helps customers to feel at home.
Baci di Firenze Trattoria has been voted as the city’s best restaurant out of more than 700 establishments, with diners regularly recommending the tiramisu, piccata and clams.
Price: $43 for a starter, pasta main and glass of wine
Where to drink
House of Blues
House of Blues is Anaheim’s go-to venue for live music and incredible nights out, having previously been voted as the city’s best live music venue, best rock club, and best night club in Orange County.
The expansive venue houses four areas to explore, depending on what you’re looking to get out of the evening. The House of Blues Restaurant and Bar is good for a quick bite and something to wash it down. The Foundation Room offers a luxury bar with an extra side of quality service. The Parish is the perfect place for gig-goers, and the Music Hall brings all of their best elements together.
Concerts, karaoke and club nights are frequent occurrences at House of Blues, so this is the place to head if you’re not sure where you want to end up at the end of the night.
Price: Varies depending on event
Noble Ale Works
Noble Ale Works is about an hour’s walk or 15 minute taxi ride from the convention centre. However, this craft brewery is worth going out of your way for.
There are few places in the city centre where you will get close to two litres of craft IPA, ale or stout for $20. However, Noble Ale Works provides a good selection of good beers at a good price. Prices and sizes ranging from $2 for 4oz to £20 for 64oz.
Price: From $2 to $20 depending on size
Keeping an eye on the battlefield is an important part of many video games. Being aware of your surroundings will help you to travel across Draenor in World of Warcraft, or avoid your enemy’s attacks in Overwatch. For the good look at the map in Anaheim, you will have to head to The FIFTH. This lofty venue is city’s one and only rooftop bar and restaurant.
Open until the early hours, The FIFTH offers a good bite to eat, followed by an assortment of craft cocktails and live music.
Located just a short walk from the convention centre, the Disneyland park, and many of the city’s best hotels and restaurants, you won’t have far to go to take in one of the best views in the city.
Price: Cocktails from $12, beers from $9, wine from $7
Where to play
Stopping off at Anaheim’s Angel Stadium is a must for sports fans.
Home to the Los Angeles Angels, a team competing in the top-tier Major League Baseball league, you will be treated to some of the best action that the sport has to offer.
Holding more than 45,000 fans, The Big A promises an electric atmosphere at every game. With restaurants and bars lining the perimeter and passionate locals cheering on their team, Angel Stadium is the place to go for a true taste of American living.
Price: Tickets available from $9
The GardenWalk is Anaheim’s open-air shopping mall. This spacious complex puts the best of shopping, dining, drinking and entertainment that the city offers within a short walk of each other. Where else could you buy luxury jewellery and a Harley-Davidson before partaking in a game of virtual reality?
The restaurants and bars that the Anaheim GardenWalk offers range from the world-famous Bubba Gump Shrimp to the Fire + iCE interactive grill and bar.
However, entertainment is where the GardenWalk excels. Venues include the Go VR Gaming virtual reality centre, the Bowlmor bowling lanes, and the Mission Escape Games escape room experience.
Price: Free to enter
A trip to Anaheim isn’t complete without a visit to Disneyland Park. It’s the only theme park totally designed and built to completion by the film studio’s legendary founder, Walt Disney.
This is the perfect stop for those with kids, or a great place for adults to unwind and reminisce. With rides, shows and experiences featuring iconic Disney characters both new and old, Disney fans of all ages will find some way to stay entertained at this 84-acre theme park.
Ride the Monsters After Dark, a big drop themed on Guardians of the Galaxy. Then venture under the seas on the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage. Alternatively, take a trip on the iconic Space Mountain ride, before venturing off into the Star Wars universe.
Price: From $97 for a one-day ticket