Two things that I LOVE are Disney and traveling. When visiting Disneyland Paris became a real possibility in my life I had to make it happen! Once we booked our trip to France and my husband, Bryce, was convinced (the real magic!) to spend a day at Disney, the very next steps I took were buying park tickets and making our dining reservations.
Enjoy my 5 favorite things from the magic of Disneyland Paris, via this 'Fav 5' Travel Guide. If you ever find yourself in Disneyland Paris, I hope you'll enjoy visiting the best parts from my visit.
Disneyland Paris is about an hour's train ride outside of Paris proper. The park was originally called Euro Disney and it was the second Disney park to open outside of America, just after Disney Tokyo. Once I saw the Bucket List Family visit Disneyland Paris I knew I had to go! This was my first time visiting a park outside of America, while I've been to both Disneyland, in California, and Walt Disney World, in Florida, several times.
There are two parks making up the Disneyland Paris: Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios Park. My husband and I spent one day hopping back and forth between the two parks. Of all 5 Favs, only the Ratatouille ride and restaurant are from Walt Disney Studios Park. The other 4 are from Disneyland.
We considered staying at the Disneyland Hotel but the cost was nearly $1,000 per night!
My fav 5 from Disneyland Paris include:
1. Alice's Curious Labyrinth - a colorful "wonderland" maze and tea party
2. It's a Small World - larger and more colorful than the others
3. Agrabah Cafe - a lunchtime feast fit for Price Ali
4. Ratatouille - the ride, restaurant, and souvenirs
5. Sleeping Beauty's Castle - the classic castle with the unique 'la Tanière du Dragon' or den of the dragon
1. Alice's Curious Labyrinth brings wonderland to life though a fun and silly maze. The maze is colorful and the paths are wide, which is great for small kids and claustrophobic adults alike. There are surprises around every corner: dead-ends, the lurking Cheshire Cat, the Queen of Heart's Castle, and an elaborate tea party. The Mad Hatter's Tea Cups were closed when we visited so this little slice of Wonderland was greatly appreciated.
Can you believe I was wearing my Cheshire Cat socks the day we visited?
2. It's a Small World is my favorite ride in every park. The Disneyland Paris "Small World" ride exceeded my expectations when it turned out to be even better than the original at Disneyland (and it's inferior sister at Walt Disney World). The "Small World" experience in France is significantly more Parisian and more pink than the others. The ride's exterior is fantastically colorful with a brilliant gold Eiffel Tower of it's own. The indoor journey 'round the world is seemingly longer, sparklier, a just a little bit more magical. Going "around the world" and visiting the USA from France was so cool, it really is a small world...after all. As you can imagine, the soundtrack to the ride is exactly the same!
3. We ate lunch at the Aladdin themed Agrabah Cafe. The restaurant was perfectly and carefully themed, the buffet stretched for miles, and the food was delicious. Since I'm a pescatarian (meaning I eat fish but not meat) there are times where eating at a buffet can get really weird, like eating salad and mashed potatoes for lunch. Agrabah Cafe over delivered on the food options.The Middle Eastern menu is certainly generous to a variety of healthy foods. Agrabah Cafe had everything I could want to eat: fresh fruits, including more of those French apricots, hot and cold veggie salads, fish with cous cous, hummus, lentils, chickpeas, and so on. Plus they have espresso! I paid a little extra for a cappuccino and it was perfection.
Tons of fish and veggie options, plus espresso! Genie, what should my third wish be?
Dessert! Enough chatter about the healthy options, the desserts were the true star of the show. There had to have been nearly 20 dessert options, including a fig tart! I tried nine of them and loved the little nut-filled ones, like baklava, the best.
4. Ratatouille takes places in Paris so it was not a surprise to see Remy shining all over the parks of Disneyland Paris. He's got his own ride and restaurant, both located in Disney's Hollywood Studios Park, plus he's featured on souvenirs everywhere, as he should be!
Our dinner was at the adorable Bistrot Chez Remy, where you're "shrunken" down to Remy's size. The interior of the restaurant is the best themed experience I've ever seen, chairs are made of champagne bottle tops and corks, plates and Gusteau's cook book tower over adult's heads, and you dine under giant twinkle lights. [To be totally transparent, our meal was underwhelming. It was good, not great. Since we opted to spend more for the "second level" menu, it wasn't worth the price. See #3, Agrabah Cafe, for great eats!]
We timed things perfectly and walked out of the restaurant into the Fast Pass line for the ride, just next door. The ride was a favorite for both Bryce and I. You wear 3D glasses and scoot around the kitchen, with Remy, while trying to escape those pesky humans! It was funny and adorable. If the line wasn't so long, I'd ride it again!
Finally, Remy shines in the Disney merchandise all over Paris Disneyland. I tried not to buy too much, but took photos of everything!
5. Finally, the Paris Disneyland Sleeping Beauty's Castle is remarkable. While it's on the smaller side, it surpasses all of the other castles in quality. You can walk through the first floor of the castle, journey up to the second floor to relive the story of Sleeping Beauty, you can go outside on a little balcony, AND (!!) you can even descend under the castle into 'la Tanière du Dragon' aka the den of the dragon.
The first floor is a thoroughfare with stores on either side. The second floor is a magical journey with castle parts twisted into trees and colorful stained glass picture windows. The balcony experience is so unique and I loved looking out at the park from the castle. Down below the dragon comes to life, whipping his dragon head around with accompanying noises and smoke. It's incredible for adults while small kids run away screaming and crying!
Bryce and I explored every part of the castle as soon as we arrived. Later in the day we split up and I went back through, again, by myself. It's clearly the very best part of Disneyland Paris!
We had a great day at Disneyland Paris!
Next I'll share the differences between this park and our parks in the US!
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Hello, I'm Angela.
Figs and Flights is all about traveling near and far & eating great food both at home and away.