Disneyland Paris hotels
Delightful Disneyland Paris
Disneyland brings with it a lot of preconceptions, both good and bad. Con – it’s run by a money-grabbing corporation. Pro – it’s a magical kingdom. Pro – Mickey Mouse is a cartoon pioneer. And the con of all cons – Donald Duck doesn’t wear pants!
Disneyland Paris (formerly EuroDisney) was initially deemed a failure but has since risen from the ashes to become a genuine attraction in Paris’ outer suburbs. From the shopping in the Disney Village and the roaring success of the Lion King Stage Show to the cowboy fun fair of Frontierlandand Legends of the Wild West, there really is something for everyone. Whether you’re a cynic, a child or a child at heart, Disneyland Paris is so well done it becomes utterly compelling. You may laugh at it as well as with it, but you can’t deny there’s some magic in the air.
Disneylandd Paris’ Top 10
10. The Blue Lagoon A restaurant situated at Pirates of the Caribbean. Prices are steep but the joy of watching people get spooked on the ride is priceless.
5. It’s A Small World This sweet-as-sugar trip down memory lane is the perfect introduction to Disneyland.
9. Disney Village The best choices for affordable food, plus some not-so-affordable memorabilia.
4. Pirates of the Caribbean One of the most recognisable rides thanks to Johnny and Orlando, it’s filled with surprises and skulduggery.
8. Star Tours A ride that shamelessly rides the Star Wars bandwagon. Kids will love the virtual space trip, while adults will enjoy the subtle humour.
3. Space Mountain One of the most divisive rides in Disney history, you’ll either love it or loathe it. It’s over pretty quick, but you won’t forget it in a hurry.
7. Crush’s Coaster Based on the Finding Nemo favourite, this turtle-themed sea ride is a little gnarly if you’ve eaten a cheeseburger before jumping on.
2. The Dragon Cave Beside Sleeping Beauty’s castle is the cave that the best animatronic beast that never lived calls home.
6. Phantom Manor The narration is in French, making it a little spookier for Anglophiles who aren’t warned of their impending doom.
1. The Castle Tacky and overdone, but it’s what Disney is all about: Childhood, nostalgia and a healthy dose of fun. The fireworks above it at the end of each night are simply spectacular.
Disneyland Paris History
- Château de Vaux-le-Vicomte – The previous home of Nicolas Fouquet, superintendent of finances for Louis XIV. Check it out if you are at Disneyland Paris.
- Meaux – A medieval town where you will find gothic art, the Bosset Garden designed by Le Notre and a museum with historical exhibits.
- Moret sur Loing – A 12th-century medieval town that was home to many famous artists such as Moret.
- Château de Fontainebleau – A UNESCO World Heritage Site that has been around for 700 years.
- Provins – A UNESCO World Heritage Site. This used to be the Counts of Champagne capital that hosted the fair.
Disneyland Paris Art & Culture
- Walt Disney Studios Park – This part of Disneyland Paris features a few rides and mainly cinema shows.
- Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show – A two-hour show focused on presenting unique aspects of the Wild West.
- Cityrama – Take a tour of Paris by coach and see the Opera House, the Notre-Dame Cathedral and other famous sites.
- Buisson Farm – Located just outside Paris, this art centre has a theatre, exhibitions and cinema films.
- Billy Bob’s – A three-level bar that features live country music concerts.
Disneyland Paris Shopping
- Disney Village – Contains a variety of themed shops and restaurants in Disneyland Paris.
- La Vallee Village – A shopping area where you will find small houses that sell clothing and house wares.
- Espace La Vallee – A cultural centre with contemporary art by local artists for viewing and for sale.
- Walt Disney Studios Store – A great place to get Disney souvenirs to take home.
- Val d’Europe Shopping Centre – A shopping mall with designer retail stores on the interior and outlet stores on the exterior.
Disneyland Paris Gay & Lesbian
- Gay Days – An annual occurrence, usually in the fall, set aside for gays and lesbians to enjoy the park.
- Banana Club – One of the most popular GLBT clubs in Paris.
- Las Champmesle – The oldest lesbian bar in Paris with a friendly crowd and Wi-Fi.
- Gym Louvre Sauna – The first-ever gay gym in the city in case you are going to Disneyland Paris.
- Le Gai Moulin – A gay restaurant that has been there since 1981 features cabaret every Tuesday.
Disneyland Paris Outdoor
- Disneyland Park – An outdoor park filled with roller coasters and other outdoor activities.
- Sea Life Centre – A great aquarium where the whole family can go observe a variety of sea animals.
- Treetop Adventure Trail – A treetop adventure where you explore the area by swinging, jumping and climbing trees at Disneyland Paris.
- PanoraMagique Balloon – Get a view of the whole area by taking a hot-air balloon ride.
- Fontainebleau Forest – This forest covers 28,000 hectares of area and is a great place for nature lovers.
Disneyland Paris Sport
- Spend time putting 27 holes at Golf Disneyland.
- Play a few hours of tennis at the Disneyland Resort tennis courts.
- Go ice skating at the year-round ice rink at Disney’s Hotel New York.
- Take the family for pony rides at the Disney Davy Crockett Ranch in Paris.
- Participate in water sports at Lake Disney.
Disneyland Paris Events
The Disney characters go green for St Patrick’s Day in March, performing their usual shows, but with a Celtic edge.
Mickey’s birthday falls in April, when Mickey’s Magical Party gets characters from all the Disney movies to participate in this giant celebration.
Disneyland turns orange in anticipation for Halloween, when treats are just as plentiful as tricks.
With dramatic fireworks and a spectacular floating bonfire, the celebrations of November’s Bonfire Spectacular are a great family night out.
Lasting over two months, Christmas is the most extravagantly decorated event on the Disney calendar. The tree is the highlight.
When To Go
- July and August are summer holidays in Europe, meaning long queues.
- The low season means some of the attractions of greater Paris are closed down, and the ones that are open are dreadfully cold.
- In autumn crowds are low, meaning airfares and hotel prices dip.
- Everything is within walking distance in Disneyland.
- If you want to get around and avoid the rain (or sun), there’s a train that circles the park and stops at every section.
- Free buses travel to the resort hotels. Be warned, though, they get more crowded than the Paris Metro at peak times.
The town of Marne-la-Vallée, a short train ride east of Paris proper, is a bit of a marvel. What began in 1965 with 150 km2 of relatively empty land has now become a city of close to 300,000 people. The crown jewel in this radiant exemplar of urban sprawl? Why Disneyland Paris, of course. The most popular tourist attraction in Europe now welcomes more than 15 million people per year - almost double the annual gate of the Louvre.
The former EuroDisney was not always an unmitigated success however. After close to a decade of financial hardship, poor attendance and bad press, the massive theme park began to inch toward respectability at the turn of the century. While still heavily in debt, recent additions such as new thrill rides, family-centric entertainment, restaurants and nightlife have been a collective hit. For the millions upon millions who visit Disneyland Paris every year, that's clearly all that matters.
Attractions & Activities
Restaurants & Nightlife
With a maritime climate and four distinct seasons, the weather in Disneyland Paris is no different from the city itself.
- Winter (November to February) 3-11°C
- Spring (March to May) 6-20°C
- Summer (June to August) 14-25°C
- Fall (September to October) 11-22°C
Disneyland Paris official guide
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