This is a Where in the World Wednesday post. Our where today is Disneyland Paris.
Last summer I had the opportunity to take a vacation to Paris. In addition to site seeing the many attractions, I wanted to visit Disneyland Paris. It took about an hour by train to get there from where I was staying in Paris. Having been to Disney World in Florida more times than I can count, I thought it would be great to experience it in a different country. I knew that it was going to be much smaller than Disney World. Similar to Disneyland in California, but having never been there, I couldn't compare it to that.
Regardless of the size, it is still the most Magical place on earth! Employees were just as friendly and helpful to you. I think that it must be a requirement to have in order to work for Disney! Even though neither of us spoke French, we were able to get by for the most part. Many signs were in English as well. When we arrived at the gate, there were even maps of the park that were in several languages ( just like at Disney World).
Most of you know that Disney World, is the largest (World, opposed to Land) which has 4 theme parks, Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Epcot, and Animal Kingdom. In Disneyland Paris there are only two theme parks, Disneyland Park, which is their Magic Kingdom and Walt Disney Studios, similar to Hollywood Studios. In Magic Kingdom in Disney World Cinderella's Castle is the focal point. In Disneyland Paris, it is Sleeping Beauty's Castle. Disneyland Park, just like Magic Kingdom has four lands inside the park, Frontierland, Adventureland, Fantasyland, and Discoveryland. In each land, many of the attractions are the same as at Disney World, some with a slight variation. In Frontierland we rode Big Thunder Mountain. In Adventureland we did Pirates of the Caribbean and watched Indiana Jones. Of course we couldn't miss riding It's a Small World in Fantasyland, the happiest cruise that ever sailed around the world! In Discoveryland we tested our laser gun skills as we rode Buzz Lightyear trying to aim at the targets throughout the ride. We also rode Space Mountain, my personal favorite! I thought the Space Mountain in Disneyland Paris was faster and had more twists and turns during the ride. You could easily have spent a whole day inside Disneyland Paris, but we only had one day so we wanted to do both parks. We purchased the Park Hopper to experience both Disney Parks in the same day with unlimited access.
Walt Disney Studios was our next stop. In addition to the Park Hopper, the Parks also offered Fast Passes that shortens the waiting time to some of the popular rides, which came in handy when trying to do more than one park a day.
Another nice thing about Disneyland Paris, because it is smaller, we could walk to Walt Disney Studios. No waiting for the bus or monorail that you have to do at Disney World. Walt Disney Studios was broke up into different sections as well, Back lot, Front Lot, Production Courtyard, and Toon Studios. In the Back lot we watched a Stunt Show Spectacular, inspired by Pixar Cars 2. This was an action packed show that was quite loud. This was the original Lights, Motor, Action stunt show that made its way to Hollywood Studios in Disney World.
Afterwards, they showed the audience their secrets in performing such stunts that look dangerous and how to do them safely. Also in the Back lot was where we experienced the Rock and Roller Coaster starring Aerosmith. This ride went from 0-60 within seconds. If you got a need for speed, then this is your ride! In addition to the speed, there are speakers right next to your ears that have music blaring the whole time. But don't worry, the ride goes so fast that it's over before you know it.
Keeping up with the speed, we went to the Tower of Tower in the Production Courtyard. This thrilling elevator ride drops from 13 stories faster than the speed of gravity! My suggestion is to not eat lunch before these two rides.
Moving onto Toon Studios, we rode Crush's Coaster, based on the movie Finding Nemo. In Disney World the Crush attraction is not a coaster and the Finding Nemo attraction is a moving ride that follows Nemo through his adventure. So because I'm a huge fan of roller coasters, this ride was much more fun. Now this ride is no Rock and Roller Coaster, but rather a spinning turtle shell ride that takes you on twists and turns. This is a great ride that children would enjoy. This was a very popular ride that had a long line. We didn't mind though, since the parade was going on at the same time, we were able to enjoy that while passing the time in line.
In Paris, it rains a lot. I think it rained everyday at some point, while we were there. The only day it did not was when we went to Disneyland. We could not have asked for a more beautiful day to visit a theme park. To celebrate their 20th Anniversary, Disneyland offered extended hours to both theme parks, which meant more time to experience the magic of Disney. You can never have too much! If you are a fan of Disney (which we all are) and love to travel, I highly recommend putting this on your bucket list!
1. Experience both the awesome Rock and Roll and Space Mountain Roller Coasters
2. Enjoy a tasty treat at Fantasia Gelati
3. Take on new heights at Tower of tower(before your gelati)
4. Arrive at the parade early to get a good spot
4. Visit the Backlot at Disney Studios to watch many stunts and specials effects
5. Make sure you wear comfortable shoes because you will be doing a lot of walking and waiting in long lines.
Have you visited any of the Disney theme parks out of the United States (Paris, Tokyo, or Hong Kong)?
Thanks for reading. ~L