* Prices may differ from that shown
Disneyland Paris first opened in 1992. It was originally called Euro Disney but the name changed in 1995 (for the better in my opinion). I have visited Disneyland Paris on numerous occasions - a couple of times in the early years and a few times in more recent years.
===Where is it? How do I get there?===
The Disneyland Paris Resort can be found in Marne-la-Vallée which is approximately 20 miles from the centre of Paris (so not Disneyland PARIS at all then!).
There are a number of ways to reach Disneyland Paris including plane (you can catch a train or shuttle transfer from Roissy/Charle-De-Gaulle airport), car and Eurostar. I have previously visited by car (via Euro Tunnel and ferry) but as I live nearby a Eurostar station I prefer to use Eurostar. Direct Eurostar trains take you straight in to the Disneyland Paris Resort (Marne-la-Vallée/Chessy train station) and I have always found the trip quick and convenient. The parks are just a couple of minutes walk away and there are free shuttle buses located outside of the train station to take you to your Disney hotel.
===What does the Disneyland Paris Resort consist of?===
The Disneyland Paris Resort consists of 2 Disney parks (Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios), the Disney Village (a strip of shops, restaurants and entertainment) and 7 Disney hotels.
There are 7 Disney hotels - Sequoia Lodge, Hotel Cheyenne, Hotel Santa Fe, Hotel New York, Newport Bay Club, Disneyland Hotel and Davy Crockett Ranch. They're all themed differently and have different star ratings. There are non-Disney hotels nearby (but not in the Disneyland Paris Resort) which are generally cheaper to stay at, however if you do stay at a Disney hotel (excluding the Davy Crockett Ranch) your park tickets and buffet breakfast are included in the price. There are also free shuttle buses which run to and from the hotels and parks. The buses are usually packed but are REALLY handy and run regularly.
The best and most expensive hotel is the Disneyland Hotel (which actually overlooks the Disneyland Park), followed by Newport Bay Club, Hotel New York and Sequoia Lodge. The most budget hotels are Hotel Cheyenne and Hotel Santa Fe (besides the Davy Crockett Ranch which are more like cabins than a hotel).
One day I would like to stay at the Disneyland Hotel (of course!) and Hotel New York (they even have an ice rink outside in the winter months). To date I have stayed at Sequoia Lodge (mountain lodge themed), Hotel Cheyenne (western themed) and Hotel Santa Fe (New Mexico themed). I have had good experiences at them all, however I would say that my least favourite was Santa Fe and maybe quite surprisingly my favourite was Cheyenne (I have written separate reviews of them both if you would like to know more).
I found that the downsides of Hotel Cheyenne were that it was pretty basic and the breakfast could have been a little better (very hectic, crowded and the food wasn't the best). However the upsides were that it was very well themed (good for kids and families), the rooms were adequate, it was good value for money and was in a great location (in walking distance to the parks and probably one of the nearest hotels to the parks). Hotel Santa Fe was located a lot further away from the parks, I didn't really like the lay-out of the place, it seemed a little run down and the breakfast wasn't great either.
If you stay at a Disney hotel you are also entitled to Extra Magic Hours which I would definitely recommend taking advantage of. It allows you in to the parks before the general public, which enables you to get on to certain rides without waiting in enormous queues. I normally use Extra Magic Hours to get on the most popular rides.
The Disney Village can be found nearby the entrances of the 2 Disney parks and is a strip of shops, bars, restaurants and general entertainment. Unlike the parks, it is free for everybody to enter. It has no rides and is strictly a place for shopping, eating and light entertainment. It is similar to Downtown Disney in Florida but MUCH smaller (it isn't very big at all). Most of the shops are Disney shops but the restaurants and eating establishments are a mix of Disney (Cafe Mickey etc) and random franchise restaurants (Rainforest Cafe, Planet Hollywood, Mcdonalds, Starbucks etc). This is where I prefer to do my Disney shopping as there is so much choice, plus it's easier not to carry my shopping around the Disney parks! My favourite restaurants in the Disney Village include Cafe Mickey (a must do if you have children), Rainforest Cafe (a rainforest themed restaurant) and Annette's Diner (a fifties style diner). It gets very busy in the evenings and I would recommend pre-booking evening meals at all of the restaurants. Disney Village is also home to a giant hot air balloon called PanoraMagique Balloon. The balloon floats up to 100 metres in the air and stays still rather than making a trip. It can carry up to 30 people at a time and stays afloat for 6 minutes but in that time you have enough time to have a good look over Disneyland and the surrounding areas, and get a few photographs. There is a charge to ride the balloon but the prices aren't too bad (12 euros for adults and 6 euros for children). There is also a Wild West show (which I have never seen so can't comment on).
The Disneyland Park is the original and most popular park. It is very similar to Disneyland in California and Magic Kingdom in Florida. If you're not staying at the resort a one day ticket to the Disneyland park costs £52.00 for adults and £47.00 for children (3-11 years). The park is split up in to 5 different themed 'lands' - Fantasyland, Discoveryland, Main Street USA, Adventureland and Frontierland. The Disneyland Railroad is a steam train that goes all around the outside of the Disneyland park. It stops off at all the lands, except Adventureland. The railroad is relaxing, charming and a good way of getting around the park without tiring your feet out. Every guest at Disneyland Paris is entitled to use the Fastpass service. Fastpass is a free service which allows you to 'jump the queues' on lots of rides (but not all). Just pop your park ticket into a Fastpass machine at the entrance of your chosen ride and you will issued with a Fastpass ticket which tells you a time to return to the ride - this is particularly useful for the very popular rides. You can pick up a park map at the park entrance (which I suggest you do) as well as character/parade/attraction timetables. There's a daily parade at the Disneyland Park which starts at Fantasyland and ends at Main Street. Parades change from time to time (you also get 'special' parades on holidays such as Christmas and Halloween) but on the whole are a must do. They're brilliant - full of characters, music and magic! Appropriate music is also played throughout every part of the park, which makes everything seem so much more whimsical...
Main Street USA is the first thing you will see when you enter the Disneyland park. It is situated at the very beginning and runs right through the centre of the park. You have to walk the length of Main Street USA to reach the other lands. Main Street USA is an actual street, with a road which runs through the middle and shops/restaurants on either side of the street. It has a turn-of-the-century theme but also has references to the 1920's - rather stunning (I especially love the brilliant window displays on Main Street USA). Sleeping Beauty's Castle can be found at the very end of Main Street USA. The castle is huge and BEAUTIFUL, a total spectical! The view of the castle down Main Street USA has become very iconic (the perfect photo opportunity). It's a really exciting sight, particularly for children as it symbolises the start of the magic! Main Street USA looks even more spectacular at night, when the street and castle is all lit up. Disney also make a special effort of decorating Main Street for special occasions such as Christmas and Halloween. There are no rides and attractions here. It's strictly shops and restaurants. Horse drawn trams as well as a number of victorian cars and vehicles drive up and down the street from time to time and I've also noticed that the more traditional and classic Disney characters can be found on Main Street (Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Pluto, Donald Duck, Winnie The Pooh etc).
Fantasyland is set up like a scene from a storybook, from the buildings to the walkways to the music playing throughout. It really is a land of fantasy! It is also the land that is primarily aimed at young children and toddlers (all of the rides are child friendly). It is largely based around childrens animated Disney classics such as Alice in Wonderland, Pinocchio, Winnie the Pooh and Dumbo. Rides and attractions include Mad Hatter's Tea Cups (where you sit inside tea cups and spin around. This is a fun ride that the whole family can enjoy and get involved in), Peter Pan's Flight (where you fly over Neverland in a ship. This is one of the most popular Fantasyland attractions and thankfully one you can Fastpass), It's A Small World (in which you sit inside boats and sail around to see children from all different countries around the world. It's lovely if not slightly annoying! This is another Fantasyland favourite and because each boat seats lots of people, the queue is never too long), Dumbo The Flying Elephant (where you sit inside your very own flying elephant. You can control how high/low you fly too. Usually has a long queue so it's best to ride first thing in the morning), Les Voyages De Pinocchio (where you ride around the story of Pinocchio. Not my most favourite ride and it's not very long, but it's worth a ride nonetheless), Le Carrousel de Lancelot (a beautiful, traditional and relaxing carousel ride), Snow White's Scary Adventures (a slow moving ride which takes you around the story of Snow White. It heavily features the Evil Queen and may be a little disturbing to very young children but certainly not enough to avoid the ride altogether), Le Petit Train Du Cirque/Casey Jnr the Little Circus Train (a surprisingly fun train ride on the Casey Jnr train from Dumbo. Not slow moving but I wouldn't say particularly fast either - great fun for little ones), Le Pays Des Contes de Fees/Storybook Land Canal Boats (a slow moving boat ride through different popular stories including Rapunzel, The Wizard of Oz, Aladdin, Beauty and The Beast and Fantasia. Not the most exciting but still a lovely ride that I definitely recommend) and Alice's Curious Labyrinth (a walk around maze that is Alice In Wonderland themed. Nice for kids and great for Alice in Wonderland fans - just don't get lost!). You can also explore the inside of Sleeping Beauty's castle and even see the LIVING dragon that lurks beneath the castle! There are some lovely shops in Fantasyland (and carts/stalls), as well as plenty of places to eat (I do believe 3 counter service restaurants, an ice cream parlour and a rather expensive but wonderful sit down restaurant with princesses - must pre-book). Characters make appearance throughout the day. We have met characters from Alice In Wonderland, Peter Pan and Cinderella in Fantasyland. The best place EVER for little girls is the Princess Pavilion where Disney Princesses make scheduled appearances. The only downsides are that you wont know which princess you will meet until you meet them, plus the queue for the Princess Pavilion is HUGE. My advice would be to get a place in the queue before it even opens in the morning! There is also a Mickey Mouse meet 'n' greet building (which we haven't yet visited).
The theme of Advenureland is hard to describe as it's quite varied. At one side of Adventureland there is a Middle East/Arabian theme, with a Moroccan influence (think along the lines of Aladdin). The rest of Adventureland appears to be an unexplored jungle land, with a heavy Indian influence. There are lots of caves, rocks and bridges and there are plenty of nooks and crannies to explore. In the centre of Adventureland is a lake where Captain Hooks ship is moored and a huge rock shaped like a skull, with water that flows out of it's mouth - a great photo opportunity. Rides and attractions include Pirates Of The Caribbean (a slow moving boat ride that explores pirate territory. Expect drops and skeletons! This is one of my favourite Disney rides), Indiana Jones and The Temple of Peril (this is an Indiana Jones themed rollercoaster ride which isn't amazing in my opinion, but it's not bad. Also has a small 360 loop), Le Passage Enchante d'Aladdin (a walk around attraction that takes you through different scenes from the film using moving models, complete with songs from the film in the background. It's rather charming and small children will love seeing their favourite Aladdin characters. There's never a queue and you're usually in and out within minutes. Not the most exciting attraction but worth a look), Pirate's Beach (a kids play area) and The Swiss Family Treehouse (another walk around attraction mostly situated in the treetops. We are usually too tired to do any more walking!). In Adventureland you can often find characters from the Jungle Book, Aladdin, The Lion King and even Jack Sparrow! There is one sit down seafood restaurant (where you normally need to reserve a table) and a counter service restaurant, as well as random food stalls/carts dotted about. The shops and stalls in Adventureland sell pretty cool and unusual stuff too!
Discoveryland is futuristic/space themed. It is similar to Disneyland California and Magic Kingdom's Tomorrowland. Rides and attractions include Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast (this is a ride where you board a space cruiser and blast away at targets with your very own Astro Blaster guns! This is a great ride for kids and fans of Toy Story. It's very popular but can be Fastpassed), Space Mountain (which is an indoor dark rollercoaster ride set in 'space'. It's very fast, has inversions and therefore isn't recommended for younger riders!), Star Tours (this is a brilliant ride where you board a Starspeeder 3000 and 'fly' off in to space on a tour that goes slightly wrong! This is another one of my favourite rides and can be Fastpassed), Autopia (this is a 1950's highway themed attraction that allows you to drive your very own race car. It's on a track so it's suitable for children and is worth doing, however there are usually long queues and it cannot be Fastpassed), Orbitron (this is a similar ride to the Dumbo ride but you ride in rockets instead of elephants. Again this is one that has large queues and cannot be Fastpassed unfortunately), Les Mysteres Du Nautilus (better known as Captain Nemo's Submarine from the film 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea. This is a walk through attraction where you are able to explore the submarine. Certainly not the most exciting attraction but pleasant enough. It rarely has a queue and is suitable for all ages) and Captain EO (which is a 3D film with special effects and is considered to be one of the first 4D attractions ever made. It stars Michael Jackson and originally ran between 1992-1995 before being brought back in 2010. It was made in the eighties and is extremely retro, plus the pre-show is really long and boring. However the attraction itself is good fun - it's like an all singing, all dancing Star Wars!). I'm sure there are characters to meet in Discoveryland but I don't think we've ever seen any there. Most of the rides have pretty good shops at the end of them and there are a couple of places to eat (no table service restaurants though, just counter service and food to takeaway).
Frontierland is wild west themed (1880s American West). It is home to cowboys, pioneers, saloons, red rocks, wagons and an old steam train. It is also home to a big river and the colour scheme is very much brown and red/orange, due to the large amount of wood and rocks. Rides and attractions include Big Thunder Mountain (which is a runaway mine train ride which reaches speeds of up to 35 mph and is suitable for slightly older children and adults. I wouldn't call it scary but it's quite thrilling! It's one of my 6 year olds favourite rides. It usually has a big queue but can be Fastpassed), Phantom Manor (set inside a big eerie house on top of a hill. You ride around in carts of up to 3. It's slow moving and there is no height/age restriction. It's not scary but might seem quite spooky to very young children - my daughter hasn't been scarred by it!), Thunder Mesa Riverboat Landing (this is a huge Mississippi riverboat and is a focal point of Frontierland in my opinion. It takes you around the lake and is slow moving, relaxing and suitable for everybody), The Chaparral Theatre (a theatre that puts on random shows, although we have never watched any shows here) and Pocohontas Indian Village (this is an outdoor childrens play area which my daughter enjoyed playing at whilst I put my feet up for 10 minutes!). Woody's Roundup Village is a great place to meet characters - is it tucked out of the way and was virtually empty during our last visit. It is a small western village, half of which is themed around Woody's Roundup. We found Daisy Duck and Pluto outside during our last visit. We then made our way through the themed houses where we met Goofy, Minnie Mouse and Mickey Mouse. At Woody's Roundup we met Woody and Jessie, as well as seeing a lifelike statue of Bullseye (the horse) and Stinky Pete! Frontierland has 3 counter service restaurants, a table service restaurant and a buffet restaurant (that also has characters and usually needs to be pre-booked). There are plenty of Frontierland themed shops and shopping carts too.
===Walt Disney Studios===
The Walt Disney Studios is situated next door to the Disneyland Park, you can't miss it. It takes a matter of minutes to walk between the two parks. Look out for the Twilight Zone Tower Of Terror and the 'Earfel Tower'! Unlike the Disneyland Park the Studios has one clear theme - cinema and television. It largely focuses on 'behind the scenes' - think film sets, acting, props, stunts and special effects. The park is split into different 'studios' which include Front Lot, Toon Studio,Toy Story Playland (which is AMAZING!), Production Courtyard and Backlot (although in my opinion this isn't particularly apparent when you are inside the park). I like the fact the Walt Disney Studios is dedicated to cinema and television as not only is this a fun and interesting theme, but it's where Disney all started so it makes perfect sense. The Studios is very visually pleasing with movie set backdrops and props at every turn. There are also quite a few attractions that tie in with the cinema and television theme but isn't overdone and has plenty of somewhat unrelated and exciting attractions. If you're not staying at the resort a one day ticket to the Walt Disney Studios costs £52.00 for adults and £47.00 for children. It is a lot smaller than the Disneyland Park which means it's easier on the feet and you can usually see and do everything in one day (which is virtually impossible at the Disneyland Park). I've also found that the Studios tend to have slightly smaller queues than the Disneyland Park. Despite being smaller than the Disneyland Park I couldn't really describe it as 'small' as the Walt Disney Studios covers a large area and is home to plenty of rides and attractions. There is a daily parade (which is currently Stars 'n' Cars) which is definitely worth checking out if you have kids, not quite as spectacular as the parade in the Disneyland park but still GREAT! Lots of different characters wonder around the park. There are specific areas to meet Monsters Inc characters and Toy Story characters. A Ratatouille ride is due to be opened in 2014. I don't think there is a table service restaurant but there are about 3 counter service restaurants and a buffet restaurant. As expected there are a few nice little shops and shopping carts too.
Some of my favourite rides and attractions include The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror (which is probably my all time favourite Disney ride. The ride takes place inside an eerie old hotel where you are taken up 170 feet in an elevator before being DROPPED to the ground! The height restriction is surprisingly small for this ride so most children can ride if they are brave enough - my daughter is terrified of this ride and loves it!), Crush's Coaster (this is a mostly indoor rollercoaster that I highly recommend. It doesn't go upside down but is very fast and the restraint requires a lot of upper body strength so isn't suitable for young children - this is disappointing as it's fun AND Nemo themed), Stitch Live (this is an interactive show that uses real-time animation and digital puppetry. It's a fun and clever attraction in which guests can actually talk and communicate with Stitch), Animagique (an indoor show which is set in total darkness. It features Donald Duck and Mickey Mouse, as well as characters from The Little Mermaid, Dumbo, The Lion King and Jungle Book. It has a great story, is extremely entertaining and very clever), Moteurs... Action! Stunt Show Spectacular (a brilliant stunt show that is filmed live and played back to the audience to show how stunts and special effects transfer from real life onto the big screen. Expect cars, motorbikes, guns, fire and lots of crazy stunts!), Rock 'n' Rollercoaster (an indoor dark rollercoaster ride that accelerates 0-60mph in just 2.8 seconds and plays Aerosmith through the headrest in your seat! Can be Fastpassed), Armageddon - Les Effets Speciaux (the concept of this attraction is to demonstrate set effects and special effects used in movies. After a LONG pre-show you are led to a reproduction of a space station from the film Armageddon and invited to take part in shooting a new scene for the film in which a giant meteor is heading towards your space station. Expect lots of steam, fire, water, wind and other surprises) and Studio Tram Tour: Behind The Magic (a tram ride takes you past a number of genuine movie props and film sets. Most peoples favourite part of the Studio Tram Tour, including mine, is called Catastrophe Canyon where you get to experience a simulated earthquake which involves fire and LOTS of water).
Other rides and attractions include Art Of Disney Animation (see and experience how the Disney classics were made), Cars Race Rally (a spinning ride themed on the Disney-Pixar film, Cars), Flying Carpets Over Agrabah (ride your very own Aladdin themed magic carpet where you can fly and tilt the carpet yourself), Toy Story Parachute Drop (where you sit down inside a parachute and are elevated high above the ground before slowly being dropped back down. Based on the Toy Story soilders), Slinky Dog Zig Zag Spin (where you spin around inside Slinky Dog from Toy Story), RC Racer (ride inside RC Racer from Toy Story up and down a half pipe. Quite fun although queues can be long), Cinemagique (a clever show which is half cinema screen and half real life) and Disney Junior Live On Stage (a live show featuring realistic looking puppets of Disney Junior favourites from such shows as My Friends Tigger and Pooh, Handy Manny and Little Einsteins. Expect surprises such as bubbles and 'leaves' falling from the ceiling! Very entertaining for little ones).
Now I'm going to try to summarise everything up in just a few sentences! Disneyland Paris is MAGICAL, mostly for children but definitely for most adults too! There's no doubt about it, it's a brilliant family holiday.
HOWEVER the weather can be a big downside. The magic just doesn't seem quite to magical when it's freezing cold and raining (I once visited in the winter and would never return in the winter again). I also find that Paris has unpredictable weather much like the UK, I never really know what clothes I should be packing! The American parks can be relied on for almost all-year-round good weather. Another comparison that I can't help making between the Paris park and the American parks is the staff. I don't like to generalise but in my experience the Paris staff are no where near as happy and as 'Disney' as the American staff. Most of the American staff that I have come across have gone above and beyond my expectations, they're so welcoming and friendly. The French staff seem to have a more 'relaxed' approach to customer service (although in my experience there isn't much of a language barrier as most of the staff speak pretty good English. A lot of the speaking characters are English too which is nice - my daughter wouldn't be convinced by a French speaking Rapunzel!). I'm not overly keen about a lot of other visitors at the parks either - a lot of them seem to be lacking in common courtesy in my experience. I have encountered people openly pushing in queues, people pushing and shoving to meet characters and people acting like animals to get a seat on the bus (we were OFFERED seats in Florida!). One thing that I HATE about Disneyland Paris is that a lot of the characters that walk around don't have a proper queue to meet them - this sadly results in pushing and shoving (of children too!) and lots of waiting around whilst others push in. However I recently read that Disneyland Paris are changing this so that each character has a proper queue - I REALLY hope this is the case. Another downside is that it's SO expensive. The price of staying at the Disneyland Resort doubles, sometimes triples, in the school holidays - I would advise visiting in term time if possible (it's also VERY busy during school holidays and therefore less enjoyable). You will need to take a lot of spending money with you as absolutely everything is overpriced. The last time we visited we spent more in 3 days than we paid for the holiday! As we didn't have a car we felt a little bit 'trapped' inside the Disneyland Resort and like we had no choice but pay the extortionate prices to eat.
I feel like I have really concentrated on the negatives but I have only done so because there are a lot more positives than negatives and I would be writing for even longer if I delved in to all the good bits (in fact the majority of this review has been based on the 'good bits')! Both of the parks are both fantastic. I favour the Disneyland Park slightly more than the Walt Disney Studios but I expect the Studios will be expanded in coming years to rival it. There's so much to see and do, you need at least a few days to fit everything in. There's a good mix of attractions to suit all ages and all of the parades/shows/character meetings are so magical. There's plenty of places to shop as well as varied places to eat. I enjoy staying at the resort and really appreciate the little added extras such as free buffet breakfast (even if it is chaos!), free shuttle buses and Extra Magic Hours. I thoroughly recommend a visit to Disneyland Paris.
spent 2 nights in Newport Bay Club Hotel, was disapointed with the overall state of the place.bathroom very grubby, took pics to prove it, mould on tiles in shower area and around floor in corners, looked like a build up of many months, sink wouldnt hold water, outside by lake look liked it needed a re paint and green areas were in need of a gardener. Not to drastic a complaint but not expected at disney as my wife was there some 20 years ago and doesnt look like a franc or euro spent on it since.that said food was good.went to the late night dispaly was fantastic (eventually) cant quite work out why they delayed the start due to adverse weather ? if it had been on time the deluge we had half way through would have at least allowed us to see it all.
I went there two days ago with my daughter (16 y.o) and grandson (6 y.o), they both hated it! There were absolutely no parades or shows, and trust me, I triple checked with staff to see if any were on that day. There were very few rides, the ones that were open weren't available for the younger ones. There were many, many shops which were massively over priced, they defiantly upped the prices (£100 for a cowboy outfit!). The staff, costumed and un-costumed were both rude and inactive with my grandson. The only character around was Mickey Mouse and you had to pay to take a picture with him! The food was overpriced and there was only fast food; on top of that I paid to stay at the 5* hotel on the park but they mixed up our reservation so I ended up paying for a more expensive room after waiting an hour. Seriously. Worst holiday ever!
We went to disneyland paris in March 2011 and i found it truely magical. My 2 children (ages 4 and 2 at the time) absolutly loved it. We stayed for 3 nights and 4 days and to be honest i didnt think it was enough time to do and see everything.
We arrived by the eurostar which takes you directly into disneyland paris which takes alot off your travelling away to start with, if you do go by the eurastar i would suggest you have the express baggage so you can go straight into the parks without worrying about waiting to b able to check in so you can drop off your bags. The train station was very hetic though and you do have a wait if you want to take the lifts due to baggage or pushchairs.
The only thing that really shocked me was that there was armed soldiers outside the train station and as you can imagine they was very intimidating, luckly the children didnt know anything about it really so they wasnt scared at all but if you had children a little older then they would be able to take note and may be a little scared. I would like to add that the armed soldiers was only there on the day we arrived and they was on the train station on the day we left.
It was very busy to say it was out of peak season but you could still walk around and feel comfortable. The amount of shops was unbelievable but they pretty much sold everything the same. you may be lucky and find something different in one shop but it is unlikely. Its very brightly coloured and lit up really nicely. The village has the hot air balloon ride next to the lake and there is also many restaurants and bars. Cafe Mickey is also located in the village and anyone can go to the village even if they are not visiting the park.
the disney parks are very strict on security i must admit. Whilst we was trying to get through to the parks they check all your bags and pushchairs to make sure your not carrying weapons of any kind, infact they checked my baby changing bag through the bag machine and they told me to go to one side because they thought i had brought a knife when infact there was nothing in there that looked like a knife but i still had to have my bag properly searched.
There is so much to do inside the parks it is unbelievable. The princess castle is inside which you can walk through and underneath to see the dragon that moves and breaths smoke. The castle also has its own shops. The main park is broken up into different sections i.e princess, woodys wild west, pirates and the main street. Characters are contasntly coming out to meet and greet and we saw lots of different characters throught out stay. There are parades all day with the main parade at 5pm but i do warn you to arrive at main street at around 4.30 otherwise you get stuck at the back and cant see a damn thing. There are shops, restaurants and little cafes and diners all throughout the parks but they are pricey. It cost us 45e for 3 hotdogs, 2 cokes, 3 fries and a coffee.
The hotels are not far from the parks, around 10 minutes walk for a couple of them, straight down the canel. It is easier to walk to the hotels than it is to catch the shuttle bus because they are packed and not pleasent at all. We prefered to walk and it also tired the kids out ready for the night because they did get up early.
I would recommend this to anyone who loves disney, you dont have to have kids to enjoy the experience and who doesnt love having a cuddle from the one and only Mickey mouse.
Luckily we collected the Sun tokens so we got there for not a lot (ferry, 2 nights at Cheyenne and park entry for 2 adults and 1 child) £220.
This was the third time we have taken our eldest now 8 and it is the fifth time i have been and each time it has got progessively worse!
First off our hotel:
1. The heating was not working in our room and had to call twice to get it fixed;
2. The all you can eat buffet was expensive at 25E and every piece of food that should have been hot was cold or barely kept warm under a light bulb - recipe for food poisioning.
3. A bottle of beer in the bar was 4.5E - take your own and a bottle opener!
1. Insufficient number of restaurants for the number of visitors and booking a table was virtually impossible!
2. 6E for a half litre glass of beer in King Ludvigs and 25E for a couple of sausages, a spud and half a ton of sour crout
3. There are huge holes in the pavement now most of which are large enough for you to fall down and seriously hurt yourself!
1. Continual queue jumpers (French) and they think that you are stupid enough to believe them when they say they are with the people in front of you.
2. Hardly any characters in the park to have you photo taken with, didn't see a single one all day!
3. The number of staff that appear to speak English has dropped significantly and they do not appear to be that friendly
This was definitely our last trip, next time we are going to the US, atleast there you will get a decent meal at a very reasonable price, everyone will speak English and the service you receive will be second to none!!!
I have been to Disneyland Paris four times and I or shall I say we all love it! I went once with the school back in 1997 which we only had a day there, not at all long enough!
We've then been back three times in the last 3 years.
I have a daughter that has a lot of energy and her energy is buzzing constantly therefore my relaxing, quite hloidays are over! Myself and my husband needed a break and at that point my Uncle asked us if we fancied going to Disney with them.
This was perfect for Madeline (our daughter) even though its not a relaxing holiday for us we did see it as if shes entertained then we will get some rest!
We first went as a family when she was 18 months old and NO this isn't too young, she got to enjoy rides, parades and seeing some of the characters.
We have stayed there on a 2 night 3 day and a 3 night 4 day and I have to say you never get to see everything on the shorter holiday and even the four day one isn't enough I think we would possibly think about a 4 night 5 day one when we next go!
We stayed at a Disney hotel called "Santa fe" which comes with continental breakfast. We also stayed here on our third visit as Cheyanne was booked up :-(
We drive to Dover and get the ferry which is 70-80 minute crossing and cost usually around £25 for a car load so a bargain! The drive from Calais to Paris is very easy pretty much one road all the way down with lots of petrol stations a rest stops. Just be careful when you get in to Paris that you watch the Disney signs as there in french and theres more than one turn off depending on what hotel your staying at!
You can also fly or get the euro tunnel to Paris and catch the train that takes you right in to Disney village and they will have staff there to take your luggage to your room (you don't get that privilege if your go by car). This we will do next time as you don't loose time (going by car takes a day) and is extremley tiring.
When you check in at your hotel they will give you all breakfast passes for everyday that your there with selected times. If you miss you're selected time don't worry you can still go there as long as its open! Just a tip try and make sure you go in on time they have selected as breakfast is crazy! Breakfast they supply should suit all tastes. They have:
Variety of Fruit juices
Variety of Coffee and Teas
Ham and Cheese
Variety of Croissants
Lots of variety of cereals
Variety of Jams
I think the breakfast are very good considering the amount of people they have to cater for! The croissants are nothing like the real ones, these ones are a little stale!
This is the cheapest Disney hotel and the building has a theme of "New Mexico". In our hotel room was two double beds, tv, telephone, draws, cupboards, toilet and bath/shower. All very clean and fresh and decorated nicely with a navajo design. There is often a character at the reception to greet you as you come to check in or out.
The second time we went shes was nearly two (only 5 mths later!) and we stayed at hotel Cheyanne, this is a fantastic hotel! It still meets the budget and I think its like £20-40 more than the cheapest hotel Santa fe.
This hotel is based on a cowboy theme and it really feels like your on a western film set! It has a western themed buffet resturant and a saloon bar right on the complex. The hotels look like western buildings apart from inside it looks like a hotel but they do have a cowboy border, horse shoe on the doors and a cowboy boot lamp in the rooms!
The rooms have a double bed and bunk beds for the kids!
Horse rides are available at certain times my daughter loved this and she had a long time riding up and down this path. They have big Indian tepees around the hotel area too.
The other hotels are;
David Crockett (self catering) need to have your own transport though as there is no shuttle bus!
Newport Bay Club
Hotel New York
And of course Disneyland hotel!
*Distance to Disney park*
The furthest hotel from the disney parks is hotel Santa fe and Cheyanne and would say its a 15 minute walk into the Disney village and another 5 minutes to Disney parks. To be honest this didn't phase me as the whole trip is about walking! They have a beautiful wide path along a man made river and I found this really pleasant to walk to and from the parks.
You can get a free shuttle bus to and from the parks at allocated times (we found it a slight nuisance) not the right times etc...
The first thing you start to see as you leave your hotel is "The Panoramagique Balloon" A ride that takes you up 300 metres a perfect way to see Disney! This is a ride you pay for as the things in Disney village is other peoples business's not Disneys. We never did this and I wish I did especially first time as you can get an idea of how big Disney really is.
Disney village is where everyone usually comes to eat after they've finished the parks. You can eat there casually or get dressed up go for a fab meal then go to there nightclub or go and watch a film at the cinema (this is a proper cinema with 15 screens!).
A useful tip: In the morning on your way to the parks book your evening meal as you walk through the village, it gets so busy that we were left to eat where ever we could get in!
The restaurants are:
Buffalo Bills *A must see*
Cafe Mickey *A must do*
New York style sandwiches
The only ones we got to experience were Cafe Mickey this is where you have breakfast, dinner or lunch with the characters! Its worth the money and is something you need to book before hand either at the cafe or at your hotels reception.
Planet Hollywood, the food is yum! The price is affordable but worth the money as the food is absolutely fabulous and the restaurant is buzzing with great stuff!
Rainforest Cafe is not for kids that are scared of the dark! Every 15-20 a thunder storm happens where it goes dark with clashes of thunder and lightening and animals making noises. Its a fun restaurant though so different and nothing I have ever experienced before! The food is good and they do some lovely cocktails!
Sports bar is great for cheap drinks and cheap food! If you eat in any of the other restaurants your looking at spending £70-120 a night on your family so this sometimes is a good one! They do pizzas and chips and loads of other type quick snack foods that are actually substantial for a dinner.
I never got to experience the Buffalo Bills restaurant this is a show that comes with BBQ food they book up quick so make sure you get in there!
There are two parks Disneyland and The Studios. Disneyland takes 1-2 days to get around as it has 4 parks inside! And The Studios takes a good day to get around.
The park opens at 10am the first thing you should do is go on the railroad on main street USA this will give you an idea of the park and the attractions to see and not miss as a few rides are hidden! This is also a good form of transport to get you around the park if you don't want to walk one end to another.
In this park you have Adventureland, Frontierland, Discoveryland and Fantasyland.
Big Thunder Mountain, height restriction 1.02 metres, Frontierland
Space mountain, height restriction 1.32 metres, Discoveryland
Star tours, height restriction 1.02 metres, Discoveryland
Indiana, height restriction 1.40 metres, Adventureland
*Buzz lightyear laser blast; sit on ride where you move around slowly shooting shots with your laser gun.
*Honey I shrunk the audience; Professor Szalinski demonstrates his shrinking machine "seeing is believing!
*Orbitron; flying in your spaceship through orbit.
*Autopia; For children, car rides.
*Aladdin; A ride through Aladdins story.
*Captain Hooks Pirate ship; A big pirate ship for everyone to enjoy and explore.
*Pirates of the caribbean; A boat ride through the story of pirates up and down some slopes and quite low lighting.
*La Cabane des Robinsons; a very tall tree that you climb up and down.
*Adventure Isle; Kids playground.
*Phantom Manor; a sit in ride thats slowly moving showing you a spooky journey of the manor.
*Thunder Mesa Riverboat; A journey around a river on a old paddle steamer.
*Legends of the wild west; kids playground.
*Pocahontas indian village; kids playground.
Small world; a great slow boat ride indoors that takes you on a journey around the world of different cultures.
*Peter pans flight; a rickerty ride flying in the dark over london into the journeys of peter pan.
*Alices curious labyrinth; an adventure for all enjoy Alices maze.
*Sleeping beauty castle; Disneys big castle, everytime we've been its always closed!
*Mad hatters tea cups; a fun ride in the tea cups and you get to go as fast as you want!
*Dumbo the fying elephant; enjoy a fying ride in dumbo you get to steer up and down!
*Les voyages de pinocchio; pinocchio's story.
*Le carrousel de lancelot; a huge carrousel!
*Le pays des contes de fees; A small water ride on a boat great for little ones.
*Blanche-neige et les sept nains; Snow whites story.
*Casey Jr.- le petit train du cirque; Fun low speed rollercoaster for toddlers.
*La Taniere du dragon; a firey dragon beware!
*THE BIG THRILLS*
* The Twilight Zone Tower of Terrors; height restrictions 1.02 metres.
* Rock n Roller Crushs Coaster; height restriction 1.20 metres, this is a finding nemo fast, water ride.
* Cars race rally; racing cars yourself!
* Art of Disney animation; shows you the tricks of the trade and learn how to draw animations!
*Animagique; fabulous Disney movie live, magic of all characters on stage with all the classics.
*Flying Carpets over Agrabah; Fantastic flying carpet for little ones.
* Cinemagique; movies that come to life!
* Armagedon special effects; Help save the world as you experience being in the control room!
* Playhouse Disney live on stage; real people on stage showing you a great adventure of the playhouse.
*Stitch live; Watch stitch live on stage.
* Studio tram tour; shows you how they create effects this is so worth while it is bloody brilliant!
Constantly throughout your day you'll see characters, parades and shows its full of entertainment that everyone enjoys!
They have a lot of fast food resturants and resturants in the parks but don't be fooled its all the same food! All rubbish junk food! Can't get a decent salad or sandwich anywhere in the parks. The fast food takes forever to order and the price is disgusting! We're not talking about a tasty burger you get from Macs its school type burgers! Yuck!
As I have written above there is now a sandwich shop in the Disney village so it might be worth stopping there in the morning or going there at lunchtime if you don't mind the treak!
Mac Donalds is in the Disney village to and is pretty horrid there to be honest my hubby doesn't think so though! Its ok for a chocolate muffin but I am sure my nuggets were still pink! There breakfast consists of a croissant and a beer! Its all in french and they don't seel it like they do here, very strange. They do salad though so again it might be worth walking there to get lunch.
All the shops that sell all the Disney goodys are the same and sell the same stuff but some sell stuff that you've not seen in other shops so shop wisely and don't drag your goods around alday also the shops will take your goods back to your hotel room if you wish and charge you later when you leave Disney!
I believe this whole experience is the best the only thing they do need in there rooms is a safe for all your personnel, important documents.
Thank you so much for reading this and I hope this has helped you and if your heading to Disneyland, Paris have a fab time! :-)
DisneyLand Resort Paris
My family and I have just returned from a 4 nights/5 Day day break to Disneyland Resort Paris. Below are my thoughts on our trip, and hopefully some useful information for you.
I will break it down into a brief rundown of the trip and then more specific details.
We stayed at one of the Disney Hotels - The Sequoia Lodge, which is on the site.
There are two parks Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios Park also there is Disney Village which basically is full of restaraunts and shops. Our ticket/pass allowed us to use both parks as often as we liked.
We dined at several restaurants during our stay both in our hotel and in the park itself.
Date of trip 19-23 Dec 2009.
Subjects Covered In More Depth
Travel to Disneyland Resort Paris
Walt Disney Studios Park
Travel to Disneyland Resort Paris
We left Exeter Airport (Flybe.com) and arrived at CDG in Paris at around 1100hrs. The flight was smooth and on time. CDG Airport is possiby the most confusing airport in the world! Its a concrete maze and thats being kind. There was a delay with the luggage which means it took us 2 1/2 hours from landing to get out of the airport and onto a shuttle bus!
On leaving the terminal to get transport to the resort you are constantly pestered by people trying to get you to take a taxi/bus ride with them.
Rather than the recognised agents. I would advise that you use the recognised agents for two main reasons.
1. Security, I would strongly advise against using an unregistered taxi service.
2. Cost, they charge the same prices as the agents but, they charge for children under 3 which the agents dont.
That said, the cost to the resort is very, very expensive. For 2 adults and 2 children it cost Euro 120 for a return journey. The journey is approx 40 mins each way. This I think is expensive.
Before you get the coach to the resort you have to get the shuttle bus from the terminal to the coach departure point, this is a free service!
We stayed at The Sequoia Lodge( Main Hotel), in the Yosemite Lodge building. This for me was one of the most dissapointing aspects of our stay and indeed reinforced my opionin that Disney are just out to make as much money from you without giving good value or service.
They hotel Reception area itself was clean and presentable. Effort has obviously been made for initial impact purposes. However once you are sent to your respective lodge the difference is clear.
Our lodge was stuck in some time warp. The decor was terrible, my Gran had better decor than this! There are no facilities to make tea/coffe in the rooms, If you want a kettle you have to hire one.
The baths are small, and the toilet is in the same room as the bath, yet the sink is is not.
A family room has 2 x double beds which are comfortable. The room is quite large and adequate. The TV has preset channels, the English channels are a Disney Channel and BBC World News. We asked for a cot on our booking which was not present on our arrival, we had to ask again twice before the cot was delivered, poor customer service.
The entire lodge was tired and very dated. It is in need of serious modernisation throughout. I know that you are there for the parks but, they should provide adequate accomodation.
The Hotel has the following facilities:
* Quarry Pool and Health Club
* Kit Carson's Arcade Room - 1 token is Euro 2! This is the price for all activies in the Arcade, whichPictures of Disneyland Paris
Castle an night is itself very small.
* Little Paraire Childrens Corner - This is basically an area where the staff leave crayons, balloons and the Disney Channel is playing on the TV.
* 24 Hour Reception
* 24 Hour Luggage Room
* Concierge Desk - This is a very useful facility, you can book meals for any of the resaraunt within the entire Disney complex.
* Shop Northwest Passage - Has limited items, mainly stocks soft toys. Bottled water 500ml is almost Euro 5, a can of lager is Euro 4, Crisps Euro 4 for a 45g packet. Again all very expensive.
* Hunters Grill - Buffet Restaraunt/International cuisine. We dined here the first night, the food was adequate but again very expensive. Euro 20 for a burger and Fies, the portion sizes were very small.
The childrens menus was excellent. For Euro 13 it was all you can eat and the quality of food was very good. Its a shame I was not 13 again!
* Beaver Creek Tavern - Table service Restaraunt/International cuisine.
Redwood Bar and Lounge - A very nice relaxing area, however at Euro 7.50 for a beer and Euro 10 for a Gin and Tonic not to mention Euro 4 for a bag of crisps its expensive.
Transport is provided free of charge to the park from the hotels. The transport runs approx every 15 mins. We used the transport twice, it was crowded and constantly stuck in traffic jams.
We decided to walk from the hotel to the park, it takes less than 10 mins and is a pleasent walk, we passed Disney Lake and through Disney Village. I would advise everyone to walk rather than suffer on the bus service provided.
This is of course the main attraction. I will list the attractions, and the attractions we used and a short note on each.
You will note that its impossible to see all shows/spectacles and visit all the rides for 2 reasons;
1. There are too many shows/spectacles & rides.
2. The queues are just to long. expect to queue for around 60 mins for a 45 second ride.
We decided to concentrate on the shows for 2 reasons, we have small children so we eliminated the more adult orientated rides, we also feel shows etc are what Disney does best.
The queues to get into the park are to be honest expected. What is not expected is for them to have only 2 people searching bags prior to getting to the main entrance. This added considerable time to actually getting into the park.
Once you get to the entrance they are 12 gates to get through, again not all are open, I cant understand this, as this just added to the wait to get into the park.
Once inside the park the scenery and buildings are amazing. You really do travel into a childrens paradise.
The are 5 Lands within Disneyland:
1. Main Street USA
Main Street USA
This basically is a street full of shops etc, again all to entice the Euro from your pocket but hey ho. There a few rides here.
* Disneyland Railroad - This is a ride around all the lands within the park. It takes approx 30 min. Some of the scenery is fantastic, they have added tunnels with various features inside. I would reccomend this ride.
* City Hall - Information, brochures etc.
* Horse-Drawn Streetcars - Not in use due to weather conditions.
* Statue of Liberty Tableau - Not Seen
Legends of the Wild West - Not Used
River Rouge Keelboats - Basically up down and round and round!
Phantom Manor - Not Used
Thunder Messa Riverboat Landing - Not Used
Rustler Roundup Shootin' Gallery (Charges apply) - Not Used
Big Thunder Mountain - Not Used - Adult Ride
Pocahontis Indian Village - Not Used
The Chapperal Theatre - Mickeys Winter Wonderland, this was an excellent show and is the thing that Disney does best. Well woth seeing!
Woody's Roundup Village - Not Used
La Cabane Des Robinson - Not Used
Pirates Beach - Not Used
Le Passage Enchante d'Aladdin - Not Used
Indian Jones and the Temple of Peril - Not Used
Adventure Isle - Not Used
Pirates of the Caribbean - Not Used
Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast - Not Used
Orbitron - A pleasent ride suitable for all ages. Basically up down and round and round! (Picture included)
Videopolis - The African Tam Tam and Cinema Mickey, basically just continous cartoons.
Arcade Alpha - Amusements
Star Tours - Not Used
Honey I Shrunk the Audience - This is brilliant its interactive 3D. Well worth visiting. Last around 30 Mins.
Space Mountain Mission 2 - Not Used - Adult Ride
Sleeping Beauty's Castle - Basically its the main view as you enter the park. There is a chance to go into the dungeon and see the dragon. Nothing special to write home about.
Les Voyages de Pinocchio - This is an excellent rides for children. You travel through a tunnel and the story of Pinocchio is played out. Well worth visiting.
Les Carrousel de Lancelot - what it says on the tin, its a Carrousel fun for small kids really.
Peter Pan's Flight - Another great ride much the same as the Pinocchio ride above. This time the car is suspended from the ceiling as if you are flying. A great ride!
Fantasy Festival Stage - Winnie the Pooh and Friends Too! A great show for kids and adults alike, its well worth a visit.
Dumbo the flying Elephant - Basically up down and round and round! Suitable for small children.
Alice's Curious Labryinth - Basically a maze, its not really worth the time being losts as time is of the essence in the park.
Mad Hatter's Tea Cups - Basically up down and round and round! Suitable for small children.
Its a small world - A cruise ride around "The World" this is a great ride, it shows all the different cultures and people of the world. excellently done by Disney.
There are of course many places to eat and shop within Disneyland, all I will say is that nothing is reasonably priced.
Walt Disney Studios Park
I personally think this is the better of the 2 parks.
Armegeddon - A special Effects show, unfortunately this was closed due to a techinical problem. - Adult Ride
Rock and Roller Coaster starring Aerosmith - Not Used - Adult Ride
Moteurs.... Action - BRILLIANT!!! This is a fantastic show fro young and old alike. You are treated to the secrets behind stunt scenes involving cars/motorbikes etc. Lots of stunts,Jumps, flames, Car chases. All performed with in depth commentary and then you get to watch the footage and the secrets are reveled. This best attraction on the park in my opinion!
CineMagique - A great show which combines new and old film usings the latest special effects. Well worth a visit.
Playhouse Disney Live on Stage - Not Seen
Stich Live - Again brilliant. An interactive show, the audience participation is a real winner.
The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror - Not Used - Adult Ride
Studio Tram Tour - Not Used
Animagique - Brilliant, a great show. All the major disney films are acted out live on stage. Well worth a visit.
Crush's Corner - Not Used
Flying Carpets of Agrabah - Basically up down and round and round! Suitable for small children.
This park is much smaller than Disneyland but in my opinion it offers just as much if not more. it also tends to be less packed than Disneyland.
This is basically an area where you eat drink and be merry. The restaraunts are located here for meals in the evening ( including McDonalds). There are also shops a sports bar and indeed a nightclub. There are no rides or attractions in Disney Village.
One point that again reinforced my opinion that the whole site could do with modernisation us that the Planet Hollywood is stuck in the 1990's. The pictures on the outside of the building are of Patrick Swayze, Mel Gibson, Danny Glover. They really should make an effort and get into this millenium!
More information on this area in the catering section of my review.
=== Catering/Dining ===
Well, this is an area were my wife and I are in total agreement! For a Change!!!!
We ate at 3 restaraunts in Disney Village and at our hotel. The review for the hotel is above.
Extremely expensive and poor quality food. You simply are paying for to have the characters prancing around the restaraunt. ***This can not be booked through the concierge at the hotel. You must book at Cafe Mickey.***
A Steak was over Euro 30, Burgers were Euro 26. Again the portions were terribly small. There are less fries in a portion here than in a small protion from McDonalds in the UK!
Childrens meals were Euro 18 , for Pasta and 3 meatballs or a small burger or small fish and chips. Far to expensive!
A beer was Euro 7.50!
A meal here of poor quality cost over Euro 130 for 2 adults and 2 children with a drink for just 3 of us.
Again very expensive and average quality food. This is slightly cheaper than Cafe Mickey. The atmosphere of the rain forest is great, the occasional thunder and lightning or calls from the animals is a real treat from the kids. This alone is unfortunately does not compensate for the overpriced food. We had to send a meal back here, they were helpful and replaced the meal without any fuss.
This is the restaraunt that I was most looking forward to dining in.
The prices again shocked us or though by now we should have been expecting it.
A steak was Euro 35! and yet again the same tiny portions fries/salad etc. We had booked for 2100hrs, we were left waiting in the bar area for 30 mins. When we did sit down we again were left waiting for around 30 mins for our drinks order to be taken, then we then waited for our food order.
To be served 2 courses and eat them took 2 hrs 30 mins. Not great when you have children. Customer service was poor here, the staff were friendly but very very slow.
In all these restaraunts you are NOT allowed to take a pushchair to the table, this resulted in us having to wake our daughter up on several occasions which annoyed me no end. Not very family friendly Disney!
We have no problem with paying an average cost of 100 Euros for a meal for 2 adults and 2 children. What we do object to to is recieving a sub standard small sized meal worse than a fast food outlet. It again is poor service as you have no choice than to dine within the resort. Shame on you Disney.
Everything in the Disneyland Park and Disney Village is vastly expensive. The arguement regarding the current exchange rate just will not wash, but however its a small factor.
Prices for all items/servicesare massively inflated as they have in effect a captive audience. Unless you have a car its almost impossible to get to a local shop. You are basically in a Disney prison!
I am all for paying a fair price for a fair product/service and up to a point a little bit over the odds for the experiance/pleasure but there is little to offer in the resort that represents good value for money.
The amount of money which is required to be spent to have a truly enjoyable stay is in my opinion much more than the average family can afford. Also lets be honest its not cheap to get there in the first place. Its hard to tell a child no and Disney play on that fact. Shame on you Disney.
This is an area where who you get depends on your view. Some people are rude and some are not. I found the majority of the staff friendly and helpful, the characters are less friendly. Many times when the kids were asking for an autograph ( another shameful money making scheme) they simply walked off and ignored them.
As alluded earlier in my review, it took 3 requests for them to place a cot in our room.
Disneyland Resort Paris, is a poor cousin to the Disney Parks in the USA. They have a captive audience and they exploit it.
The shows and rides for the children are fantastic, they do there level best to facilitate the needs of children. There is room for improvement, but then perhaps I am just being picky.
The entire resort could do with being brough into this millenium, its dated. The hotel we stayed in is lost in somew time warp.
It is massively overpriced. Every single thing they do is geared towards the maximum return for the minimum expenditure, I would have happily bought more if it was not so overpriced. Its a shameful exploitation of parents in my opinion. The biggest expenditure is for food, its simply so expensive to eat at Disneyland Paris. All our evening meals cost at least £100 for poor quality food.
I certainly will not be visiting Disneyland Resort Paris again unless they change the way they operate drastically. I cant see that happening. So bye bye Disneylad Paris.
I went to Disneyland Paris last Halloween with my friend for a week. We stayed at one of the Disney Hotels - The Sequoia Lodge which is on the site. This made it very conviniant to go to and from the parks. There are two parks and your tickets let you go between them as many times as you like. The prices of food and drink in the park was a bit expensive so we used to have a big breakfast which was offered at the hotel and was included in the price. Then there is a shop in the station which is right outside the park where we bought some snacks to see us thru the day and would then go to one of the resturants in Downtown Disney. There are some really nice places to eat but they do get very busy so it is best to eat either early or later than 6/7pm. Because there are a lot of families with small children so it empties out a bit later in the evening
At halloween they put on great parades and shows and the whole park is decorated, it looks brilliant! They also have a special halloween party in the park that is open til late on halloween night and lots of people go in fancy dress.
Disneyland Paris is the ideal place to go for a short break with a young family. We came back from this trip on Saturday and after sitting down and thinking about everything we did in such a short time frame, realised what a great place it is.
We decided to go to Euro Disney after receiving an offer of a package from a small travel company, for the Bonfire Extravaganza Party, which offered a return crossing from Hull to Zeebrugge, coach transfers, a 3 night stay in a Disney Resort hotel (Newport Bay), and 2 day tickets to both parks (Disney land Park and Walt Disney Studios Park) for just over £600 for myself, my husband and our 3 year old daughter. We also added a few extras, which were recommended to us, which were the Character Tea and a prepaid meal at Planet Hollywood (to avoid queues).
Once we arrived at our hotel (which I have written a separate review on), and made our way to the Disney land park, we realised we were in for one big queue, and a massive credit card bill. This is to be expected, you are in Disney, which is known for being busy and very expensive. As we walked through the main gates of Disney, we were instantly hit by the magic of it all. My daughter just started squealing (!), and as we went round the corner and saw the castle up ahead I thought she would explode. The main area you walk through is called Main Street and is basically a load of Disney stores, all selling near enough the same thing, with some having themes such as Buzz Lightyear or Star Wars. This is also the main area to meet the Disney characters, and we actually found Mickey Mouse here tucked around a corner with one person queuing to see him, as nobody realised he was there. The queue to meet Mary Poppins was massive, and there is Mickey Mouse with no one around him!!! I got slightly excited and bolted towards him, autograph book in hand, while my husband and daughter looked slightly bemused and thought I'd lost the plot! This is also the area where Minnie Mouse starts her train with loads of other characters on and just parades around the street singing - you will know she is coming, trust me!
Once you have made your way through the main street, the park starts to fork off in different directions with Adventure land, Fantasy land and Frontier land. We chose to head straight through the castle, which you can actually walk up, and out onto the balcony. If you make your way underneath the castle too, there is a fire breathing dragon underneath which is very realistic! I don't think many people actually realised this was there, as you go through a glass blowing shop and out the other side (keep an eye out for a glass replica of the castle inside the shop, which is on sale for a mere 25,000 euros!).
There were many rides availalable as you would expect, but to be honest in the two days we were there, we only went on three (and those were flying dumbo, spinning teapots, and the carousel!), as our daughter was too small for most rides, and she was far more interested in meeting the characters and watching the parades. The park does offer what they call a baby swap service (which isn't what it sounds like!!), whereby if you have small children you can queue for a ride by yourself, then when you have been on the ride, your partner can then queue hop and go on the ride, so nobody misses out. We decided that neither of us particularly wanted to go on a ride by our self, so didn't take advantage of this service, but we still thought it was a good idea. It's also worthwhile knowing that if you are a guest of one the Disney hotels (on the Disney site - not one of the external ones), then you will get a free VIP Fast pass, where you can get a time to come back on the ride and not have to queue.
Disneyland park is open from 10 am to 7pm each day, although on our last day we were still in the park watching a dance by Mickey mouse and a load of cheerleaders at 7.25 so I'm not sure if they mine the rides stop at 7.
Within Euro Disney, there is Disney Village, which includes shops, restaurants, cinemas and live entertainment. This is just outside of the main parks, and you will walk through this area if you are staying in one of the main hotels. There is a new show called Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, but we couldn't get tickets to this as it had sold out. This would have cost in excess of £150 though for the three of us (which did include a meal), so you have to ask yourself if this is really worth it.
The one thing I am going to mention, is the character tea. We paid £59 for the three of us, and to say we were disappointed would be an understatement. I won't go into every detail, but the main reason for our disappointment, was the actual tea. This comprised of a tiny little cardboard plate, where you could pile it high with food from the..... sweet section or pan au chocolat section! This is at 5pm, when everywhere else is fully booked, so this was our tea! You could see the faces of the parents, as if to say - you want me to feed my chid this?! The good part was that Mickey Mouse came to sit at our table, but because it was so dark and dingy we couldn't take any pictures anyway! There was no kind of show or anything, it was just 3 characters walking around, and you were lucky if one came to your table. Maybe I expected too much, but I just felt utterly ripped off!
There really is too much to write about with Disneyland, and I haven't mentioned the Studios as it absolutely threw it down before we got chance to go to that park, so never made it there. The thing I would say about Disney, is make sure you take lots of money. For example, face painting was £12, a bottle of water was £3, even the McDonalds within Disney Village was double the prices we pay in the UK.
While we were there, there was a massive fireworks party on lake Disney (all the Disney hotels face out on this), which really was spectacular. If you can make it to next years, I would thoroughly recommend it.
Enjoy yourself, but be warned on the expense!
Disneyland Paris is a holiday resort in Marne-la-Vallée, a town in the eastern suburbs of Paris, France. Disneyland Paris has two theme parks, a retail, dining and entertainment district, and seven Disney-owned hotels. The resort opened in April 1992 and was the 4th Disney Park around the world. The resort is the leading destination in Europe. The park when opened was called Euro Disney Resort but was changed to Disneyland Paris in 1995. The second theme park Walt Disney Studios Park opened in March 16, 2002.
Disneyland Resort Paris and contains theme parks, resort hotels, a golf course and a railway station.
The Disneyland Park is based on the same design as the original park in Anaheim and Walt Disney World Florida. The park is the largest Disney park based on the original Disney in the world. Walt Disney Studios Park is also another copy. This time its the Disney Hollywood studios in Walt Disney World. The park uses the same concept and a lot of the same rides.
The Disney Village entertainment district contains a variety of restaurants, bars, shops, Buffalo Bill's Wild West Dinner Show, and other venues and stays open after the parks close. This is a great area for the family after the park and goes in the small hours for the adults. The resort also has a couple of 9-hole and 18-hole courses.
The resort features seven hotels. The Disneyland Hotel is located over the entrance of the Disneyland Park and is marketed as the most prestigious hotel on property. The others are Disney's Hotel New York, Disney's Newport Bay Club, Disney's Sequoia Lodge, Disney's Hotel Cheyenne, Disney's Hotel Santa Fe and Disney's Davy Crockett Ranch. A free shuttle bus provides transport to all Disney hotels and parks.
A railway station is located by the 2 parks. There are daily services from London on the Eurostar and a new TGV line that services Europe.
The resort is very good but I have been spoilt and have been the Walt Disney World in Florida which is better. But for a Resort in Europe it as the best I have been to. I would say 3 days is all you need here and the prices are a bit expansive.
Being a huge Disney Fan, naturally i enjoyed my trip to Disneyland Paris.
However the downside is that i have been spoilt by many many trips to the amazing Disney World Resort in Florida. Whilst it is true that the 2 really dont compare aslong as you take Disneyland Paris at its face value then i found it to be a very enjoyable place to visit.
We went for Christmas one year, we were fortunate enough to get a great last minute deal travelling out Christmas eve for 3 nights. Which meant we had what i was expecting to be 3 of the busiest days in the parks. I was pleasantly surprised that the parks didnt get busy until well after lunch on any of the days. Plus it was a really beautiful time to go, with all of the decorations up everywhere and everyone being full of the Christmas spirit so i would definately consider going at Christmas again if the price is right!
Disneyland Paris has 2 parks and a Disney Village. The first park - the main park is Disneyland Park. Its essentially a smaller version of the Magic Kingdom in Orlando. The castle is smaller and more colourful which some people have commented on as tacky but i thought it was quite pretty - especially when it was done up for Christmas. The park is seperated into several lands such as fantasyland, discoveryland and frontierland. Each section has several attractions shops and restaurants. The highlights for me are Space Mountain which in my opinion is far far better than the Orlando version and Its a Small World - which is a classic disney ride! Many of the attractions are narrated in English which was really helpful for us as i dont understand a great deal of french.
The second park is Disney studios and is themed as a working film studio. Although a lot smaller than its Orlando equivelent it has some fantastic rides such as the tower of terror, rock n rollercoaster and a studio tram tour which is a "backlot" tour and great fun.
The Disney Village is an entertainment district that has restaurants, bars and shops aswell as Buffaol Bill's wild west dinner. It stays open quite late after parks close. There is often a lot going on and its nice to have a stroll through in the evening prehaps on the way to dinner or something.
Disneyland Paris is quite a lot smaller than Orlando but it still has that Disney magic, and the great atmosphere. The onyl negatives is that is pretty expensive - especially with the Euro rate being quite bad. I also thought a few area's could do with a lick of paint here and there to freshen things up - but then i did visit in the winter so prehaps its done in the summer?
Its a great place to take kids of all ages! I had a great time and would definately go back one day soon!
Disneyland Paris, just the words make me all excited! I've reviewed both the main park and the studios park here, as there didn't seem to be any distinction between the two in the product list. However, I've put sub-headings so that you don't have to read the whole review if there's just one aspect you want to know about, as this could get quite lengthy!
We stayed at the Disneyland Paris Camp Davy Crockett for our stay, and so our tickets for the park were included in the package. However, individually tickets are about 37 euros per day, which gives you access into both the main park and the studios park. If you are a day visitor, you'll also need to take into account car parking expenses, which are free for those staying in a Disney hotel. At the moment, P & O Ferries also have a promotion where they are giving a free day ticket to the Disneyland Paris park with crossings to Calais.
Booking on the Disneyland Paris website is a pleasure as it is simple and informative and accompanied by nice atmospheric music and sound effects! The most difficult thing is finding the best offers and getting dates where you can combine them - this can be quite confusing and frustrating!
The prices on the website were, if you go at the right times, very reasonable and you also have the option to add transportation, such as Eurostar or a P & O Ferry crossing. However, I found these additions quite expensive, although if you have a child under seven, there is sometimes an offer where they travel, stay and play free, which means they don't have to pay travel, hotel or park entry costs.
If you go with Eurostar through Disney, you can also have your luggage taken straight from the train (Eurostar goes straight from London to Marne Le Valle, which is the on-site train station right outside the park gates) and are also met by Disney characters, which is less stressful and a nice touch if you have the money!
Over Christmas, the main offers with Disneyland Paris are kids under 7 stay and play free, plus free meals for guests, although times like Halloween, Bon Fire Night and Christmas seem to be more expensive (you can go on Christmas day, but this is apparently very expensive!), as are half term and summer holiday times.
Arriving At The Park
If you are a day visitor or are staying at the self drive hotel Camp Davy Crockett, you will arrive to the park by car and use the car parks, which are free for those staying in a Disney hotel, otherwise I think it is about 6 euros. The car park is vast and you need to try and get there quite early in order to get a good parking spot, which is more important on the weekends really as these are very busy (and can make queuing inside the park horrific also), otherwise you'll have quite a long walk before you even get to the park. However, there are moving side walks which take you from the car park to the park and make it less tiring, especially for youngsters.
If you are staying in one of the other hotels, you'll be able to walk to the park or get a free Disney shuttle bus from your hotel to the park bus station, next to the car park, from which it is simply a short walk in to the park.
You'll notice already a great atmosphere at the beautifully presented park, with water fountains to drink from, leaping fountains, a floral display of Mickey's face as well as a clock on the Disneyland Hotel, which forms the entrance into the park, along with vendors selling Disney balloons and small name engraved flags forming the paths leading up ton the park entrance, all before you even get in to the park!
There is a bag search before you get to the ticket booths, and you're not supposed to picnic in the parks, but from my experience, they don't bat an eye at picnics in your bag and are more concerned with more serious contraband.
After the quick bag inspection you arrive at the ticket booths and purchase or show your ticket to gain access; there is always someone to help if you have difficulty.
Finally, The Park!
I won't go in to details of all the individual areas of the park, as there are separate reviews on each of them specifically, however, at Main Street USA, you can take the Disney Railroad, which takes you around the entire perimeter of the park, giving you the option to get on or get off at the various lands, which are: Frontier Land, Fantasy Land, Adventure Land and Discovery Land. Each of the lands has a different theme with different adventures and rides to discover!
My Top Ten Rides
10. The Flying Dumbos (Fantasy Land) - Family friendly
9. River Paddle Boat Steamers (Frontier Land) - Family friendly
8. Disney Railroad (Main station on Main Street USA) - Family friendly, though there is a dark tunnel
7. The Haunted Mansion (Frontier Land) - Was quite dark and my five year old nephew was quite scared, but it depends on the individual.
6. Run Away Mine Train (Frontier Land) - Probably not the best for very young children.
5. It's A Small World (Fantasy Land) - Family friendly
4. Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast (Discovery Land) - Family Friendly ride which is similar to a ghost train except that you shoot at the targets with a little light beam gun.
3. Star Tours (Discovery Land) - Is a bit erratic and jolty
2. Peter Pan's Flight (Fantasy Land) - Family Friendly
1. Pirates of the Caribbean (Adventure Land) - Quite poorly lit and has two smallish dips.
Other rides included Indianna Jones and the Temple of Doom and Space Mountain, however, we don't have the stomach for these and so I can't really comment! Certainly not for the little ones though, where as most of the other rides are fine. Finally, there are also the Mad Hatter's Spinning Tea Cups, Alice's Curious Labyrinth (a simple maze), the Carousel and The Adventures of Pinocchio. Finally, check out the dragon underneath Sleeping Beauty's Castle!
For busy days and popular rides, there is the option to use your ticket to get a 'Fast Pass' which gives you a designated time to go on the ride so you can just queue jump to the front! You can only possess one fast pass at a time though.
Parades and Shows
Once Upon A Dream Parade - The first parade that we saw was the Once Upon A Dream Parade, however, as it was a Sunday, it was uncomfortably crushy and busy; you have a much better chance of seeing the parade in all its glory on a weekday. The parade itself is fabulous; always accompanied by magical music, each float has a theme and is usually divided into two films, for example, in this parade there is one float which is half Peter Pan and half Mary Poppins, and each float has appropriate music for its film.
As well as the characters on the floats, which sometimes get down and interact with the crowd. For example, when I was there, there was a little girl dressed in a Cinderella dress and the 'real' Cinderella came over and shook hands with her, made a bit of a fuss of her, which was nice. As well as the main characters, there are also dancers walking in between the floats.
The music is quite loud from the various speakers along the par, so everyone can hear the music, adding to the atmosphere, and people start to line the parade route a good half hour before it starts. It is cordoned off and supervised so that people don't get too close to the floats, but you can sit on the curbs and take pictures, film, etc. We found a good place to watch from was the Main Street USA train station.
Electric Lights Parade - Also in the winter months, as it goes darker earlier, there is the electric light parade, which is truly something to behold. Pretty lights! Although it can be quite cold so wrap up warm.
Honey I Shrank The audience - We really enjoyed this show. It's basically a 3D show based on the film Honey I Shrank The Kids, where the audience are taken into a room where on stage they witness a demonstration of the shrinking machine. Of course it all goes wrong and the audience are inevitably shrunk where they encounter some nasty incidents! I won't reveal too much, but it is interactive in the sense that you feel a part of the experience, definitely worth seeing. However, the queuing time was quite ridiculous and then once you get into the attraction, there is first another room where you are subjected to about 20 minutes worth of Kodak (the attractions sponsor) advertisement. The attraction seems to be shown in English for every performance with audio for those speaking different languages.
Last time we went to Disneyland Paris, in September 2009, there were far more Disney characters hanging around than I had ever noticed before, which was nice. There are designated photo opportunity points throughout the park where characters will be at a scheduled time. We saw Mickey and Minnie, Tigger and Pooh, The Queen of Hearts, Alice, The White Rabbit and Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum and Captain Jack Sparrow amongst others.
There are many shops in the park where you can buy souvenirs, costumes, autograph books and trading pin badges, etc, as well as hats and other items which you might find yourself needing on unexpectedly cold/hot days.
Cafes and Restaurants
From the very expensive to the less expensive (none are cheap!) there are a variety of restaurants to eat at, for example Buzz Lightyear's Pizza Planet and the Videopolis (where there is also a cinema showing old Mickey Mouse cartoons) in Discovery Land and Cowboy Cookout Barbeque in Frontier Land. There are many, many, many more catering for all different styles and tastes. However, we had fish and chips (I know, how daring of us!) at the Toad of Toad Hall restaurant in Fantasy Land, and they weren't cheap, but they were really horrible, but that was few years ago now. The Blue Lagoon restaurant always looks lovely too; dining there, you get to see all of the boats going through the Pirates of the Caribbean ride as you're on the shore of the canal, if you will, which is nice, and you get service from people in pirate era costumes. It's quite dim and the restaurant is in atmospheric candle light. I would love to eat there one time, although I believe it's very expensive, but I bet it's an experience!
There are also numerous fast food vans around where you can buy snacks and drinks.
Finally, there are stylish ice cream vans dotted around the place and Ben and Jerry's ice cream parlours on Main Street, where you can also buy drinks and cakes, etc, and sit outside if you wish.
Disney Studios Park
You'll need to use your ticket again to get into the Disney Studios Park, but no more bag searches - yay! As you enter, you go through an indoors area which has a sky and the 'Hollywood' sign at the end with little beam lights shining over it. The theme of this park is, of course, movies, and the atmosphere here as you walk through the indoor area is amazing. There was a swing band playing when we went, and there are cafes and shops in there.
Then when you emerge from this area, there is a statue of Mickey and Walt infront of another 'Hollywood' sign and you can see - eek! - The Tower Of Terror! I can't think of anything worse than free falling a hundred feet in an elevator, but different strokes for different folks I guess!
But we gave that a miss and headed straight for the studio Tram Tour. This takes you around memorabilia from films like Pearl Harbour, as well as a collection of cars from films, such as Cruella Devil's car. There are also some movie affects you get to experience along the way, which I won't spoil, but they are impressive, although there was fire which scared my nephew a bit.
We also went on the Pixar Cars ride, which is like tea cups and saucers, but in cars, and they spin you around quite fast! But you can see a model of Lightning McQueen and Mater there, and the queuing area is done up like radiator springs (Flo's Diner) and they even play the cars soundtrack - nice touch.
My nephew also loved the Aladdin's Flying Carpets, which like the flying dumbos, just take you around in a circle and you can choose how high you want to go and can also tilt your carpet forwards and back. They seat four.
The rollercoaster here is the Rock n Roll-a-coaster, which blasts you around while blaring Aerosmith down your ears apparently. Sounds like good fun!
And the new addition is Crush's Rollercoaster, based on the Finding Nemo film, but we weren't totally sure what it entailed as it was enclosed, but from reviews I've read, it's not as tame as you might think. If you like roller-coasters, I'm sure it's very good though.
Shows and Parades
The big parade here was the 'Stars in their Cars Parade', which has popular Disney characters, such as those from Toy Story, Monsters Ink and Mulan, but in cars rather than on floats, and again, people line the streets for this.
Moteurs Action Stunt Show Spectacular is a fantastic stunt show with villain cars chasing a hero car as the audience join a huge film set to witness the filming of stunts for a new movie. A must see (pyro technics are very hot so don't get too close to the front and be aware that small children may be frightened by the fire - there's quite a lot!)
Stitch Live! - This was a big favourite with us. It's a new interactive show where Stictch actually appears on screen before the audience and is able to communicate with them, with the help of his human assistant. It's amazing how they achieve this, ut Stitch can pick out people in the audience and ask their name and repeat it back, and have conversations with them. Very humorous! Children can sit on a special carpet together at the front, but many are wary of this, although they have more chance of being spoken to by Stitch there. The plot is that the audience must help Stitch, who has got into trouble with the intergalactic authorities!
Cinemagique and Animagique - Cinemagique is a very good production starring Martin Short. It is basically a film in which a man finds himself passing through several different movies from different times with disastrous consequences!
Animagique is something similar except with Donald Duck and Disney films!
Armageddon - This is another interactive thing where the audience pretend to be actors as you experience a meteor hit! A bit scary for youngsters, but not actually anything frightening, just pyro technics, etc.
Here we saw Sully patrolling, amongst others, especially Winnie The Pooh characters. There is a designated Monsters Inc area where you can have your picture taken with a model of Mike in front of Boo's door and test out your screaming abilities on the scream-o-meter! Which is fun if not a little noisy!
Cafes and Restaurants
Again, not cheap, but there are ice cream parlours and presumably restaurants, although we never used any here, so I can't really comment!
The Disney Village
Again, a very atmospheric place, especially at night! Here there are shops, restaurants and even nightclubs (you don't have to be staying at Disney to go to the village). You can eat at Planet Hollywood (you can see famous handprints ad signatures on the wall outside) or the Rainforest Café (look out for the alligator outside; it literally made my nephew jump into my mums arms!) or there's always good old reliable, MacDonald's! There's also Annette's Diner, where there are shows on.
You can also go to the cinema here or go and see Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, where you get a dinner as well, but it's VERY expensive. Some of the food though is cheaper if you book before you go or get food vouchers.
There are many gift shops and some arty shops.
There seems also to be shows outside, not to mention a new hot air ride, where you are taken up in a giant tethered balloon to get what I imagine would be an amazing view!
Other than those mentioned, I would like to add that, although they have a no picnicking policy, we ate out own sandwiches in both parks and no one said anything to us, just as they didn't seem to be bothered by people having picnics in their bags. However, there is also a designated picnic area just outside the parks, which looked nice too.
There is something for everyone here, and adults love it as much as the children do, many chasing characters around for pictures, etc, so it really is a family holiday! Prices there are not cheap, but it isn't necessary to buy much if you're organised enough.
Very nice and friendly staff who are amazing linguists!
A great, magical atmosphere!
Always people to be seen sweeping up litter; it doesn't stay around for long
Plenty of toilets everywhere!
Plenty of water fountains also where you can get a free drink.
In my opinion, there was too much smoking going on around the park. I think considering it is children orientated, there really should be a no-smoking policy, or have clear smoking designated areas. However, people weren't allowed to smoke indoors or in queues. But still, I can imagine it would be easy for a child, or anybody, to get caught by a lit cigarette in the business of the place.
The prices are extortionate really, and I feel they would sell much more food if it were a bit cheaper, although many people still end up buying food any way.
That's it really! It can seem harsh that they don't let people on to the grass areas, but I guess they want to maintain that pristine appearance they have, and you can't really blame them for that!
We took our little one last Halloween me, the hubby and my mother and I am begging my other half to go back! Thinking back now i think my daughter was a little too young (2) to really enjoy it, she wont probably will not remember it, but the look on her face when she saw Mickey Mouse was worth every penny!
We actually booked through Disney itself, booking 3 nights and then getting one free! our total cost included 4 nights and 5 days tickets to both parks. We stayed at the Newport Bay...more on that later and booked our flights seperatly through easyjet. We found we got it for £500 less than what the local travel agency had quoted so my advice go to the disney website as they have some great offers, or ring they we're so helpful when I called to ask for a cot in the room and a quiet room too as i didnt request it at the time of booking online.
The one thing we do regret doing is booking the 'disney bus' operated by VEA what a nightmare!!!
We did it the week before we flew, you print of your tickets and it worked out about £15 per adult one way (we needed a taxi return as our flight was so early) ok fine...the info stated we would look for the signs at CDG airport for the 'VEA Disney Bus' the info shows what the bus looks like etc so you know what your looking for. The buses which arrive every 20 odd mins, fine we thought hey its Disney they'll be well sign posted erm NO THEY ARE NOT. we spent an hour and a half looking for where these buses went from, not just us but several families as well. and if you've flown to CDG you'll know what a hectic airport it is!
When we did finally find the bus stop (turn left out of departures and walk as far as you can its by the toilets just before Burger King) we got onto a bus which then took us to ANOTHER bus and then it was a pretty reasonable 40 min journey to the disney hotels....too much stress for me i like an easy life, plus we had to load and unload our luggage onto the buses twice and with a baby hubby and mother it was not worth the hassle. It Was 90 euros for a taxi back to CDG for us which was expensive but I think id rather do that...hubby may disagree though.
My friend however has just returned and she did the Euro Tunnel which takes you right into Disney! you come out right outside Disney village so if your staying at the disneyland hotel, Newport bay or sequoia lodge id say that was ideal and i think thats what we will try next time.
Ok The Newprot Bay..wow what a building! its set in a 'new-england' nautical theme, and outside is all whitewashed wood with shutters and beautiful lights in the trees outside i thought it was probabaly one of the prettiest looking of the Disney hotels from the outside.
We arrived at 3pm checked in straight away and left our luggage with the concierge so we could get straight out! its only a 15 min walk to Disney village and you walk past the lake and we thought it was a really pleasant walk, so we didnt bother with the free shuttle bus.
We thought the staff we helpful, some, not all but you'll get that anywhere sadly even at Disney! the beds we're comfy, rooms to a good standard if a little worn and breakfast was great! You MUST book a time slot this is the biggest hotel and conference centre in europe apparently so you can imagine how busy it gets!
We booked for 7.30 and never needed to Q we had plently of fruit, yoghurts, pastries, cereals toast etc plus a good selction of cheese and meats you go up and help yourself to pots of tea coffee juices etc. you can pay extra for a hot american breakfast but we didnt bother.
The bars in the hotel were expensive! BUT in hindsight when we all went to the Disney hotel itself for drinks we paid the same price, so maybe its a standard rate in all disney hotels?
The Newport bars get busy but to be honest but we didnt really mind, if you get a table the views are over the lake so its a lovely atmosphere, its table service and if you've got kids its so nice to see all the little ones in their new dressing up outfits running around!
They're we're some miserable old blokes sat next to us who moaned about noise but hey its disney!its going to be full of kids, book with saga next time...
After breakfast we hit the parks straight away, for me there is nothing more magical than stepping onto main street usa! as it was halloween it was all done up in orange with ghosts and funny characters everywhere! nothing too scary for the kids obviously...as our little one is only 2 we stuck to Fantasy land first! Her face on the dumbo ride was beautiful, and its a small world and peter pans flight and the mad hatters tea-cups all stood out to us she loved them all, and i'll be honest the Q'ing wasnt that bad i can imagine it is manic in school hols but we never q'd for more than a few minuites.
sadly sleeping Beautys castle was shut for renovation, you could go into the little shop (where its always xmas) and see the dragon (which scared the life out of her poor poppett) but thats all.
Onto Frontier land and Adventure Land where my hubby was dying to go on indianna jones and no-one would go on with him, poor thing. We did go on big thunder moutain -twice i loved it! and pirates of the carabian though which was also excellent...that is the good thing about taking your mother with you is it meant we could get on the rides! obviously its not like this for everyone so disney do offer a service where one of you can Q for the ride and then you swop and the other one can go pretty much straight to the front. This is what we we're told by several people im not 100% sure how it works but it is worth bearing in mind.
We also went on the swiss family robinson tree house which was great fun and aladians cave which was slightly disapointing. No-one was brave enough to venture into the phantom manor arent we wimps haa!We all really wanted to go on the steam boat which looked amazing, but sadly we didnt get the chance.
The one thing i'll say about Frontier land and Adventure land is that nearly ALL the eating places were shut, apparently as it was off season?but it halloween so it was a 'holiday' of sorts so that was a pain as we had to traipse back to main street usa.
A good tip for autograph hunters...now on main street usa and fantasy land especially the charcters come with bodyguards and you must Q for an autograph, yes really, maybe someone has a score to settle with Donald who knows! but if you go to frontier land and make your way past the big thunder mountain towards the back to cowboy cookout bbq they have a stage where charcters mill about and a little childrens farm yard where also lots of characters hang out. We got woody, Jesse, Pinochio, chip and dale and lots of other autographs and pictures here.
Onto Discovery land which i found to be a bit of a bore im afraid! my husband loved it though, we went on the star wars tour which even i like and space mountain which literally shook me to death im still coming to terms with wether i should forgive hime for dragging me on!!and these were the two longest Q's about 30-40 mins each. we also took in the Lion King show here which was amazing!i havent seen the london show but honestly the perfermonce wouldnt be far off i bet we all really enjoyed it.
Eating here was mainly Buzz's pizeria which was just a large buzz lightyear themed cafeteria i thought nothing special at all.
In fact all the food is pizza, burger and fries in Disney park and expnsive too. We struggled for anything healthy to give our daughter so we took things in with us (naughty i know)
However the eating places in Disney Village were great! we ate at Rainforest Cafe which is a must!!its set in the Rainforest (ahem obviously) and all the animals come to life every half hr, they also have a thunderstorm too its really magical. The food was good and the childrens menu was great veggies and fruit included as options.
The best meal was at the chicago steakhouse for us, it was expensive thought but worth every penny! we also ate at anettes andcafe mickey which were ok and ludwigs castle. Ludwigs castle was very disapointing the service was terrible, and my daughters shepards pie literally was potato and gravy!
In terms of the shops, well they all pretty much sell the same thing but you cant resist going in! i thought the dressing up outfits were extortionate compared to what you pay in the disney shop back here!
We loved our stay, even my 62 yr old mum! if you want fine cusiene and intellectual conversation, culture and local architecture then this is not for you. If you want somewhere magical to forget your worries, walk a lot, smile a lot, spend a lot of money and encounter a lot of pushy tourists then it is! but you know what id go back tomorrow and do it all again..
oh we also visited Disney studios but as ive rambled on a bit here i'll review it seperatly!!
Disneyland resort, Paris is a holiday destination not to be missed by any age. It really does make the magic come alive.
Disneyland can be reached by bus, train or car. for miles around you see signs of disneyland before you even arrive, signs everywhere and hotels in theme, you cannot miss it. As you pull up to DisneyLand you see the magic immediately. There are huge colourful signs and decorations, there is music and celebration, oh and how could I forget the crowds flocking to Disneyland, you almost get swept away in them. As you walk towards the area you have disneyland park right in front of you, then walt disney studios to the left of that and then disney park village to the left of that. Disneyland park is the biggest of the three and has most of the main rollercoasters. It is open all day and late into the night in peak seasons. There is plenty to do, rides for young and old, parades, shows to go to, you name it you can do it. Of course it is packed with merchandise outlets too.
Disneyland park is a magical fun day out for all the family, children and adults of all ages will be entertained throughout. I would recommend meeting the characters, although you do have to track them down and battle to the front of the queue. The only downside is the price of the food and merchandise when you are there. There is not much to chose from except fastfood and you have to pay quite expensive prices for it, so I hope you are not hungry!
Disneyland Resort Paris, formerly known as Euro Disney, consists of 2 parks: the main Disney Park with the castle (Sleeping Beauty's) and the Disney Studios park. The studios park is very similar to the one in Florida and last year opened the Tower of Terror. The main Disney Park is smaller than its Floridian counterpart and has 5 themed lands as opposed to 7 in Florida.
MAIN STREET USA
Here you will find the Walt Disney Railroad, an old fashioned train that goes around the whole park, horse drawn carriage rides and plenty of shops. At the top of Main Street is the Sleeping Beauty Castle.
Rides here include It's a Small World (with probably the most annoying song ever) Peter Pan and the Dumbo Flying Elephants. It's A Small World is a boat ride with models "singing" It's A Small World in just about every language possible. You'll be singing it for weeks. Peter Pan is a gentle ride over London where you fly off to Neverland and the Dumbo Flying Elephants just go round and round and round, slowly. I've been on once and was very sick when I got off! This area is geared towards very young children.
My favourite ride is located here: Big Thunder Mountain. This is perfect if you like a thrilling ride but do not like going upside down! This ride is fast, twisty and throws you about enough without being too scary. I love it. Another popular ride here is Phantom Manor, a ride through a haunted house. Many people I know think this ride is exceptionally boring but the effects are very good.
Indiana Jones and The Temple of Peril is here if you like the big scary rides. This is a proper roller coaster which goes upside down, forwards and backwards. I didn't go on this so can't say what it's like. Pirates of the Caribbean is here too and this has always been one of Disney's most popular rides, even more so since the films. I don't know if this has been updated to include Captain Jack Sparrow like the Florida version, but if it hans't it probably will be before too long.
Rides here include Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin, where you have to shoot targets, Star Tours, which is a Star Wars based simulator complete with R2D2 and C3PO, Space Mountain and a great 3D show called Honey I Shrunk the Audience. Here, you don 3D specs and watch a show where the audience "you" gets shrunk; all kinds of funny things happen and you can see people in the seats in front of you trying to dodge whatever's coming out of the screen.
WALT DISNEY STUDIOS PARK
This is a smaller park than the main one but still has some good attractions. The Rock 'n' Roller Coaster starring Aerosmith is here along with the newly opened Tower of Terror. There is also a Backlot Tram Tour which shows you various film props, backlot scenery etc.
A scaled down version of Florida's Downtown Disney, this is the place to find all your restaurants and shops, located right by the 2 parks. Restaurants include The Rainforst Cafe (a Disney franchise) and a themed dinner show called Buffalo Bill's (a wild west type show with horses, cowboys etc.)
Disneyland Paris is a great place to visit for maybe 3 days. I don't think you'd need any more than that. The on site hotels are very good and have shuttle buses to take you into the parks. We stayed at the Sequoia Lodge which was a 3 star. Like all of the hotels, you often see Disney characters in the dining room when you're having breakfast or dinner. The hotel also had an on site shop for any last minute bits and bobs but this hotel does not have a pool.
This place is also good if you're a Disney addict and want a bit of a fix! You can pop over to France in a couple of hours from the UK - you can't do that with America!