«

»

Top Tips for Visting Disneyland Paris & Walt Disney Studios

IMG_7260

If you are thinking about a trip to Disneyland Paris, check out our planning tips from where to stay to how to book your meals.  You can also see our review of the Davy Crockett Ranch, an official Disney hotel about 15 minutes from the park.  Today we bring you, what to pack and what we managed to squeeze in to 3 days in Disneyland with a 5 and 2 year old….

  • Take a buggy!  I was convinced that our kids would refuse to get in a buggy, but we borrowed a double, and we are so glad we did.  We bribed them to get into it on the first morning, and they were happy to be chauffeured from one ride to the next throughout our trip.  Even if you take it easy, there’s a LOT of walking involved.  You can hire buggies there but it can work out expensive if you are there for a few days, plus they looked really bare and uncomfortable.  We just left the buggy by the side of each ride, usually with our rucksacks on it (although we always kept our valuables with us).  I was recommended to take a buggy lock but we didn’t end up using it.
    IMG_9092
  • Wear comfy shoes and easy layers.  We walked and walked all day long, and the sunny days were interspersed with showers.
  • Take fancy dress for the kids.  Our kids loved being dressed up as their favourite characters while we were there.  You can purchase plenty of fancy dress on site, but it’s incredibly expensive.  
  • Bring snacks. 
  • Download the Disneyland Paris app and make a plan – at least for your first day. 

Here’s what we did over the course of three days…

Day 1 

Morning:  8am start for Early Magic Hours rides: Dumbo, teacup ride and the carousel (all in Fantasyland) and Buzz Lightyear and Orbitron (in Discoveryland).  The only other ride that was open for Early Magic Hours was Pinocchio, and our kids found it really scary.  It’s also a good opportunity to do character Meet & Greets at this time as the queues are shorter, but our kids weren’t fussed about this.

IMG_9094

Once the park is open to all, the queues grow a little longer.  The app shows you queuing times at all the rides and performance times for all the shows, so it’s great to help you to save time.

Lunch: Pizzeria della Notte in Fantasyland (decent pizzas and salads, probably our cheapest meal in the park).

Afternoon: It’s a Small World, took the park train and headed home for the pool.

Dinner: Davy Crockett’s Tavern

On our first evening once the kids were in bed we checked out the map and show times to sketch out a rough plan for our second day.

Day 2 

Morning – Rushed into Early Magic Hours again, and then headed out of the Park to our prebooked breakfast.  With hindsight, this was too much too early, and we would have been better off giving ourselves a lie-in and just going straight to breakfast at 9.30am.

Breakfast – Character breakfast at Café Mickey in Disney Village (booked via our travel agent)– a fairly basic breakfast buffet.  The food and setting were nothing special, but it was amazing for our kids to meet so many characters.  Each one stopped and spent time with each table, and we took plenty of photos.  It meant that we didn’t feel the need to spend time queuing up to see the characters in the park itself.

Then we went into Walt Disney Studios, dashed to pick up a FastPass for Ratatouille (at 10.30am the FastPasses were already set for 2pm), did a few rides (Slinky and Cars Quatre Roues Rallye) the Studio Tram Tour (which we all found pretty boring) and then saw the Mickey and the Magician show.  The show was a real highlight, and even our 2 year old was transfixed.

IMG_7199

Lunch – Planet Hollywood in the Disney Village (we were underwhelmed by the food there – very average burgers and fries etc).

Afternoon – Back into Disneyland Park for the Frozen singalong show, a few more rides and then home to collapse on the sofa.

Dinner – Snacks in our lodge, too tired to take the kids out to eat!

Day 3 

Morning – Early Magic Hours for the rides in Fantasyland and Discoveryland.  Straight into the queue for Autopia in Discoveryland for when it opened at 10am.

Then across to Walt Disney Studios (grabbed a FastPass again for Ratatouille) and watched the car stunt show.

Lunch – buffet at Restaurant des Stars (nice selection of food, not much Disney ‘atmosphere’ but a light and airy room).

Afternoon – Stitch show, a quick ride on the Cars Quatre Roue Rallye again, and then Ratatouille again.  Back into Disneyland Park for a ride on It’s a Small World

Dinner – Early dinner at Plaza Gardens (nice buffet with an upmarket feel).   Was fully booked in the evening but we managed to get a table for an early dinner just before the parade.

Caught the end of the parade and then home to pack.

Would we go back to Disneyland Paris?

Without a shadow of a doubt.  This was probably the first time that we have really thrown ourselves into a holiday that was ALL about the kids.  It was exhausting but we absolutely loved it.  I had some reservations about taking our 2 year old as I was worried that it would be wasted on him, but he adored the characters, shows and rides.  I felt incredibly nostalgic about my own family holidays to Disneyworld as a child, and it felt like a privilege to pass on these happy memories to our own children.

IMG_9093

 

Packing List For Disneyland Paris with a 5 year old and a 2 year old

*For kids

Clothes – Daytime (vests, t-shirts, shorts, jumpers, underwear), Pyjamas, Lightweight rain jackets, Sunglasses, sunhats, fancy dress

Shoes – Daytime shoes and Sandals

Toilet – Nappies (day and nighttime), nappy sacks, wipes, hand sanitiser

Sleeping – Comforters, Gro clock, sleep nappies, Cot cover (Cot Canopy Breeze), Bin bags and sellotape to improvise blackout, Torches, Cot duvet

Toiletries – Shampoo, toothbrushes and toothpaste, medicines, nappy rash cream, suncream

Swimming – swim nappies, UV sunsuits, swimming costumes, goggles,  swimming towels

Buggy and cycle lock

Ipads and headphones

Activities to keep kids happy on journey and in queues!

*For us

Clothes – Daytime (shorts, t-shirts, underwear, socks, jumpers, dresses), Pyjamas, Lightweight rain jackets, Swimwear, Sunglasses, Sunhats, Shoes

Toiletries – Shampoo, Conditioner, Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Shower gel, First aid stuff (Calpol, Thermometer, Plasters, Hairbands, Insect repellent, Bite cream, Antiseptic wipes, Paracetamol), Suncream, Face wash, Moisturiser

Kindle Headphones Adaptors Chargers

* Food and drink

Milk, Cheese, Raisins, Pom Bears, Dinosaur snacks, Fruit, Yoghurts, Salad, Tuna tins, Mayo, Bread, Granola, Oil, Butter

Sippy cups Antibacterial surface wipes

Freezer bags and ice packs

Basic cooking supplies – clingfilm, Tupperware, washing up liquid, cloth, tea towel, chopping board and knife, tin opener, corkscrew   Hand wash

Water and bottles Teabags, cafetiere, filter coffee

To have in hand luggage for the car journey

Travel documents Comforters Ipads Snacks

Nappy changing Hand sanitiser Packed lunch

Leave comment