A Day at Disneyland Paris; January 2014

Hi everyone. First of all, sorry for the lack of posts this week! If you hadn't already picked up on from the title - this week I went to Disneyland Paris for the day with my good friend Charlotte (whose fabulous blog you can find here!) It meant I've sort of been internet free for a good couple of days while recovering so I wasn't able to get up a Disney wishlist post like I had hoped but yes, Disneyland Paris! I still can't quite believe we made it and all in the space of less than 24 hours. Its pretty surreal and crazy but as my Disneyworld Diaries always seemed to be pretty well received, I thought i'd do a similar thing here!



So our tale begins with Charlotte making the journey to my house and staying overnight so we could get the 4.30am ferry to Calais. I'm based quite near Dover so for me, its pretty easy to get a ferry across to France. We had to get up at a very early 2.30am which was surprisingly easy when you are as excited as we were. The ferry was pretty darn awful, with me feeling like I was gonna barf (how lovely) many times. The weather conditions weren't ideal and as a consequence we could barely stand up on the ferry due to choppy waters. But after a perilous journey we finally made it to Calais in one piece and began our journey to Paris!

Paris is roughly a 2-3 hour drive from Calais. Charlotte did incredibly well as our driver (I wish I could have picked up the slack a little bit, but i'm pretty sure that would have been illegal without my license!). We made it to Disneyland Paris with only one small hiccup, grabbed our tickets (which we bought on the boat as they were cheaper than at the gates) and headed to Magic Kingdom!




The first thing I noticed about DLP is the actual entrance is visually stunning. The Disneyland Hotel which envelopes the main gates is a work of art and I am literally dying to stay there. You also have the Fantasia gardens just before that, with gorgeous fountains, trimmed hedges and hedge sculptures depicting characters from Fantasia, it really is pretty and sets the mood perfectly. I imagine it would be even prettier in the summer, but with the weather being incredibly rainy and overcast, the pictures really do not do it justice.

As soon as we grabbed our tickets and wandered into Disneyland Park we noticed just how dead it was. Barely any people pushing past us unlike Florida, loads of room on Main Street, it was wonderful! Throughout the day we managed to walk onto pretty much every ride bar one, which had a 20 minute wait. January really is a great time to go if you can stand the cold. The first thing we noticed was Goofy, Minnie and Mickey at the sides of Main Street taking photos! We managed to snap pics with Goofy as his queue was so so low (less than 5 minutes!) but decided we would come back for Minnie and Mickey as we were itching to do some rides. 



We briefly admired Sleeping Beauty's castle, which while it is smaller than its American counterparts, is beautiful in its own way. I love the colour scheme and quaintness of it and the fact you can go upstairs and explore the tapestries and stained glass windows. We headed to Discoveryland first and conquered Space Mountain 2 - which by the way is SO much better than its Florida equivalent, this bad boy goes upside down, as well as Buzz Lightyears Laser Blaster and Star Tours before heading to Fantasyland. We also met Goofy and Minnie in their Discoveryland costumes which was cool! One thing I noticed was the characters here spend a lot more time with you if you want. It was nice and we caught some brilliant moments with kids which was really special and touching.




We headed through the castle at this point, exploring the Christmas shop and upstairs before doing some more rides. We did the carousel, Dumbo's flight and Its a small world and then headed into the Alice in Wonderland maze to explore. Little did we know, this thing is actually a maze and it took us by surprise. I particularly love how much effort went into it, with a miniature castle for the Queen of Hearts which offered greats views of Fantasyland and just little details which made me very happy indeed. I wish I had taken more pictures, but silly me forgot her gloves and I couldn't bare for my hands to leave my pockets.
We also went on Peter Pans flight which was my first time! This attraction always has huge queues at WDW, so I never had the opportunity prior to this, but it was a cute ride!







After this we flitted across to Frontierland. While a lot smaller than WDW, we waited in brief 5 minute queues for Phantom Manor and Big Thunder Mountain before making our way across to the second park - Walt Disney Studios. 
One really good thing about DLP is its very compact. Everything is nice and easy to get to and within walking distance. While Charlotte and I ended the day completely knackered, I think that came down to lack of sleep rather than too much walking. The parks are small and easy to walk around, whereas at WDW, Magic Kingdom is a 2 sometimes 3 day operation to get everything done, we managed to do it in DLP within a day. Granted we didn't do all the rides available, you would only need a couple of days to get everything done. For WDW you would need a good couple of trips. I'm on my 4th trip and have yet to do everything at WDW!






Upon entering Walt Disney Studios, we headed straight to Rockin' Rollercoaster, my favourite ride. With high speeds, loud music and bright lights, this is a real treat and because of barely any queue (we waited less than 5 minutes) we rode it twice! We then took Charlotte to the Tower of Terror, her favourite ride. She had to ride alone, as this is the only ride I can't stomach but I was happy waiting 10 minutes, snapping some pictures and people watching. Walt Disney Studios was actually a lot of fun, as we browsed I noticed they had a Ratatouille restaurant which I can't wait to venture into when me and my boyfriend go later this year. There is also a Pixar Place, with rides I had never seen before. We went on a completely new ride to us called Crushes Coaster, a twirly rollercoaster in the dark which we both really enjoyed as it was something completely new to us.




We decided we was a bit peckish at this point and went to grab a bite to eat. I'm currently on a strict meal plan as I'm trying to loose weight, but eating healthy at Disney doesn't exist (but it should!) so we both settled for burgers. After a brief slip up with my order we sat down to eat our burgers, fries and fruit pots. I had heard dining at DLP wasn't great, but I didn't expect to have 5 bites of my burger and spit out the fruit from my fruit pot! The fries were good, but both me and Charlotte were thoroughly disappointed with the food but it filled a small gap I suppose. 

Did I mention we met Mickey mouse?!
After all this, we finally took some time for shopping. This was one of the aspects of the trip that disappointed us, as the merchandise was really just dire. Pretty much everything is available on the UK Disneystore website and we all know how I feel about that! With such a limited selection, both me and Charlotte had money burning holes in our pockets that we really could not find much interest in spending. Charlotte actually ended up buying a snow globe, but I took home nothing which was pretty disappointing. It was getting dark by this point, so we resolved to go back to Magic Kingdom, go on a couple more rides and sat to wait for Disney Dreams. I hadn't seen Disney Dreams yet, but it really was a fantastic show. It differed so much to Wishes at WDW, incorporating more lights, lasers and water effects. The story was very cute indeed and I love how it included French characters (I did a little squeal when Remy popped up!). The show finished at 7.30pm and we ran our cold little booties back to the car where we started the journey home!





And that was our trip! We drove to another country, did 2 theme parks, met numerous characters and rode various attractions in all under 24 hours! It can be done and quite easily too (and cheaply, we did it under £100!) and I really did have the best day! The only unfortunate thing is now my hunger to go back to WDW is doubled, I'm feeling very homesick indeed and need to book another trip asap!


Let me know if you've ever been to Disneyland Paris and share your adventure with me down in the comments!

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Comments

  1. Sounds like you had a lovely day, bringing back memories of my trip there a couple of years back and I can't wait to do to Disneyworld next year.

    Rosie x | www.eatreadglam.com

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    1. Ahh jealous that you're doing WDEW next year! We are also looking to go but atm can't book anything! Hope you have a great time :)

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  2. I went to Disneyland paris when I was 11, but i went with the school i was at at the time, and i was being badly bullied so i didn't really enjoy it! id love to go again, and actually enjoy it this time :)

    Catherine x

    www.beautyisintheeyeofthebeholder.co.uk

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    1. Aww thats a shame, you should definitely try again! I bet you'd have a much better time without all those horrible bullies. It makes me sad you didn't enjoy it the first time as Disneyland is such a happy place!

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  3. *all the emotions*
    It looks much better than I thought it would, I'm hoping to go this year to keep my Disney cravings slightly under control.
    So glad you both had a lovely day.
    Loved reading this!xx

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    1. Ahhh you should so go, it didn't really satisfy my cravings, in fact it made them stronger but it was still a lovely enjoyable day :)

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  4. I really want to go to Disneyland Paris, but I'm so afraid of being disappointed as I've heard such mixed reviews, and mostly bad ones sadly. The low que times for rides would be nice though!

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    1. You won't be disappointed, its a great day out! Its so beautiful in its own way! The only disappointment was the food and lack of stuff to buy! :)

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  5. I went to Disneyland Paris when it was newly opened. I was really disappointed because I didn't see any of the characters and everyone was speaking French (haha!!). It actually put me off for life but this has changed my mind. I definitely want to go again now!

    Becky
    xx

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    1. You should definitely try again Becky, there was lots of characters (might be because its off-season) and they spent a lot of time with all of the guests and stayed out for quite a long time.

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  6. I've not ventured to DLP yet (it's on my wish list!) but it looks so cute and teeny in comparison to WDW! I've just booked my 3rd trip to Orlando (in 2015 though) and I might try and visit DLP before I go to fill a small hole.
    Looks like you both had a wonderful day!
    Louise
    xx

    www.confettiletters.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Do it! It didn't really fill an hole, in fact it made the urge to want to go back to WDW stronger x10 but it was still SO lovely to be down mainstreet again and in front of the castle :) Its realy beautiful in its own way as its so small and quaint, very romantic and parisian :)

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  7. I love Disneyland Paris and it's more easy for me to go because I'm french :)
    xo

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    1. Jealous!! I'd love to be in the same country as a Disney park!

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  8. This is making me want to go to Disneyland! I haven't been to DLP or WDW mainly because I'm not a big rides person (I know, I should just get over the fear and do it!) but it looks like you had a really good trip.

    Laura | Cherry Soda

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    1. You shouldn't worry about the rides aspect, there is plenty of "smaller" rides and boat rides which are scenic. And there are plenty of other things to do and see, more so at WDW as its bigger but still plenty at DLP too! Its all about finding those hidden gems, like the Alice in Wonderland maze for example :)

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  9. Ahh I wanna go back! I have major hair envy btw, it's so long! I don't think the merchandise from DLP was available on the Disney Store website the last time I went so I thought it was all pretty good, but if you thought it was a bit lacklustre then I can't wait for Florida's offerings :)

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    1. Haha I changed my hair about 5000x during the day, it was so wet and windy and drizzley and then I bought a hat so... it was a nightmare having long hair tbh! lol! OMG you are gonna die at the amount in WDW Amy! I do think EU Disney needs a new merch team, its been dire for months!

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    2. Ooh you need to go back in September! Think it was about 21-23 degrees when we last went and the crowds were quiet too, only big queues were for rides like Dumbo & Peter Pan :)

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  10. Your trip looks amazing! Disney parks really are the most magical of places :) I'm excited for the Tarzan show to start back up in April, it's one of my Disney favourites (other than festival of the lion king and mickey's magical map!)
    Im considering an annual pass as flights and a hotel (a little outside disney) for 3/4 nights only comes to £150ish each for two!
    xox

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    1. It was such a good trip Jane! You should do it! Charlotte and I were also thinking of Annual passes for the year, just so we could do about 4 trips! For £100 (£60 of which was the ticket itself) I think its well worth it!

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  11. I went to disneyland paris last february for my 18th birthday and had such a great time! Your pictures are lovely! Seeing your pictures makes me want to go back again now!

    Glad you had a lovely time!
    http://bellamomento.blogspot.co.uk
    xxx

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    1. Haha I get like that when I see photos of WDW! It makes me yearn to go back even more!

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  12. I didn't even know there was a Disneyland in Paris, but how amazing that there weren't so many lines and crowds! Sorry to hear about the food and shopping. Nothing worse than when you actually WANT to spend money and just can't. Sounds like you guys had a really nice time though. Loved seeing the pictures of Sleeping Beauty's castle :)

    - Jess
    The Mod Mermaid

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    1. JESSICA! YOU NEED TO BRUSH UP ON YOUR DISNEY PARK KNOWLEDGE!! Haha. It was a really lovely day apart from those two things but hey, at least I didn't spend a tonne of money and get to change the euros back into pounds!

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  13. It looks so good, I'm going to Florida in October and cannot wait but now i want a quick trip to Disneyland Paris, how did you manage to keep it under £100? If it's that cheap I really want to go now haha xx

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    1. We did a ferry crossing from dover which was £12.50 each and then roughly £30 petrol each and £60 for tickets! Pretty darn good huh?!

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  14. So glad you put up this post! I have always wanted to see pictures of Disneyland Paris. (Obviously I can look up pictures on Google, but I prefer seeing personal photos). I have only been to WDW as I live somewhat near there and love it!

    The Paris Disneyland looks very quaint and would love to visit it one day!

    Des | Simple Charm Beauty

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    1. Ahh I'm glad you enjoyed looking at them :) It is indeed very quaint, cute and romantic. Everything is smaller than WDW which has its own charm I think. Its definitely worth visiting especially if you are a Disney lover (one to tick off the bucket list!) I'm SO jealous you live near WDW. I would literally be there all the time!

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  15. Ah looked like you both had a great day and for under £100, you must tell me your secrets :D I desperately want to go to Disneyland - but always thought it would costs loads, even for just the day. :O

    xxx

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    1. It was £12.50 each for the ferry, £60 for tickets and £30 petrol (maybe a bit more as we had to fill up on the way back quite near Calais) but generally yes, very near the £100 mark! It can be done! :)

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  16. I never realised it was this easy to get to Paris and visit Disneyland all in 24 hours! I really want to go now. It looks like you had the most awesome day :)

    Liam and I were looking to visit DLP for my birthday at the end of february but it ended up costing too much, I might mention this 24 hour idea to him and see what he says!x

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    1. You should do it Leona! You'd have a great time!! Its definitely do-able and if you could somehow stay over in Dover (there is a travel-lodge nearby) it might be easier as you have quite far to travel! :)

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  17. Haven't been to Disneyland Paris since I was a teenager, I'll have to take a trip soon, it looks like so much fun!

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  18. Thank-you so very much for sharing the pictures of Disney World Paris. It was fun to see what things look like!! I live in Florida and am 1 hour from Disney World. I've been there many times but always wondered what Paris was like. It's beautiful. :)

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  19. Ooh, thanks for this little tour of DLP! I didn't know they had Sleeping Beauty's castle instead :) I'm going to WDW Magic Kingdom later this year (to see the new areas) and I'm going to get pictures of my little girl with all the characters I can find ^.^

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    1. BTW I think you really ought to consider becoming a travel blogger, too! I always feel as though I've gone on your trip with you after reading your travelogs :) That's a rare talent!

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  20. How fun! Looks like you had an amazing time :)

    -Jen

    www.vibrantbeautyblog.com

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  21. OMG I cannot believe you guys did it in under 24 hours! That's so crazy! Worth it for the Disney fix though obviously - we did it in May 2012, but got the eurostar from London at 6.40am or whatever and back on the last one but it was so exhausting and we certainly weren't up at 2.30am :L I do love DLP, it definitely is a nice gap filler for when you're between Florida trips! <3

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  22. I'm so jealous! One day I will get to go xx

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  23. Looks amazing and at such a good price too! x
    fiveonecouture.blogspot.co.uk

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  24. Ahhh I love this post so much! Glad you had such a good time. I absolutely love DLP and can't wait to go back soon x

    lamourjosie.com

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  25. I've been to Disneyland Paris and it was amazing, so much fun and everything looked amazing. Can't wait to go back! Sounds like quite the adventure!!

    Claudia xx | Beauty and the Chic

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  26. Oh I'm dying to go to Disneyland! I live in Newcastle though so it's like £250 for flights alone :(
    It's a shame that the food is pretty dismal, but it still looks like a fantastic day out!

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