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  • Writer's pictureVanessa Valenti

Disneyland Paris: guide for a perfect day in the most magical park in Europe

I went to Disneyland Paris for my 10th birthday with my parents, and I had been dreaming of going back for years, while Enri had never been there. As soon as we decided to go to Paris for Valentine's Day weekend, we had no doubts about how to spend the day doing something different than usual: at Disneyland. So let's see how to organize the perfect visit to disneyland Paris and all the things to know before leaving!


Disneyland Paris, Francia

Disneyland Paris consists of 2 theme parks (Disneyland and Walt Disney Studios) and a shopping district (Disney Village) outside the two parks, just outside the Marne-la-Vallé train stop. Disney Village is accessible without a ticket, and consists of Disney shops, restaurants, and cinemas. Having only one day to dedicate to it, we decided to do only the Disneyland Park.


Disneyland Park

Inaugurated on 12 April 1992, it's about to celebrate its 30th anniversary and it's the most visited park in Europe. The park is divided into 5 thematic areas:

Main Street U.S.A.

Main Street U.S.A. is the first area you come across, after entering the park, and consists of a reconstruction of a 1920s Missouri town, full of Disney shops and restaurants. From here you can watch the unmissable Disney Stars on Parade which takes place every afternoon (when we went it was at 5:30 pm), go shopping in one of the many Disney shops or eat in one of the fantastic themed restaurants.


Frontierland

On the map, the Frontierland area is located on the left side of the park and it's inspired by the Far West of the 1800s with cowboys, sheriffs, saloons and mines. Among all the attractions present, I recommend you absolutely not to be missed:

  • Big Thunder Mountain

  • Phantom Manor

  • Indiana Jones And The Temple Of Peril


Adventureland

Adventureland is the area dedicated to adventure and here you can visit the tree house of the Robinsons family, set sail on the pirate galleon and become a real Indiana Jones. Super recommended attraction

  • Pirates of the Caribbean


Fantasyland

Fanstasyland is the area of ​​magic par excellence and Disney classics: here are the attractions dedicated to Pinocchio, Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland and Dumbo. It's the perfect kingdom for the little ones, but adults will also be able to indulge themselves. It's located just behind the Sleeping Beauty Castle and the attractions that we liked the most and that I recommend are:

  • Mad Hatter's Tea Cup

  • La Galerie de la Belle au Bois Dormant inside Sleeping Beauty Castle

  • Alice’s Curious Labyrinth


Discoveryland

Discoveryland is definitely my favorite part, the one dedicated to the future, located in the east part of the park. Here are the attractions dedicated to Star Wars, of which we are huge fans, so it was definitely the part we were looking forward to and it did not disappoint! So don't miss:

  • Star Tour: l’Aventure continue

  • Star Wars Hyperspace Mountain

  • Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast


Leaving the Star Tour, you must pass through the Disney Star Wars store: a real treat for fans, where you will find lots of specific merchandise. The prices of the gadgets in the Disney stores are as high as everything in the park, the problem is that everything is so beautiful that you would want to buy everything.

Mappa Parco Disneyland Paris, Francia

Walt Disney Studio Park

The Walt Disnet Studios Park is dedicated to the world of cinema and television and was opened on March 16, 2002. The park is divided into 4 sectors, or film production areas:

  • Front Lot: this area takes up the classic structure of the Hollywood movie studios of the 1930s.

  • Toon Studio: where classic characters from Disney and Pixar cartoons are celebrated.

  • Production Courtyard: entirely dedicated to the production of Hollywood films and its myths and movie stars.

  • Backlot: the area is dedicated to special effects.

  • Summer 2022: opening of the Avengers Campus

If you are on holiday in Paris like us and you only have one day to dedicate to Disneyland Paris, I recommend that you visit only one park, namely the Disneyland park. The Studios are smaller and I recommend them only if you have two days available: I was there when I was younger and they are very beautiful, but definitely not up to Disneyland.

Disneyland Paris, Francia

Here are some tips to make the most of your visit:

  • Buy tickets in advance on the official Disneyland Paris website;

  • Wake up early in the morning in order to be in front of the gates half an hour before opening;

  • Plan your day in advance, choosing which attractions and shows you absolutely don't want to miss;

  • You can bring bags and backpacks inside the park, which are checked before entering the parks and Disney Village area. Bags and backpacks are also allowed on the attractions, so you won't have to worry about entrusting them to someone;

  • Get organized for a packed lunch, in order to save time and money: you can bring food inside the park, including water; glass containers, alcoholic beverages, cooler bags and other bulky packaging are not allowed. Inside the park there are picnic areas. Bring a water bottle: you can fill it at the fountains in the park, saving on the purchase of bottles of water;

  • Do not miss the famous parade (when we were there it was at 5:30 pm but I recommend you check the time on the My Disneyland Paris app) and the final Disney Illuminations show at the closure of the park (currently suspended due to Covid);

  • Download the My Disneyland Paris app to be updated in real time on the length of the queues for the various attractions and to find out which ones are temporarily closed for maintenance;

  • At Disneyland Paris there is the WiFi network, free and accessible to all.


Opening Hours:

Hours: 9:30 - 20:00 Always check the timetables on the app or on the official Disneyland Paris website to avoid any inconvenience. Early opening at 8:30 for those staying in Disney Hotels.


Prices:

Tickets can be purchased online on the official Disneyland Paris website: it's very simple, tickets will be sent to you by mail and you just have to download them. You can access by showing the QR code of the ticket directly on your phone or possibly in paper format if you prefer to print them. Ticket prices vary according to the season and the number of parks and days you choose for your visit: 1 or 2 parks, from 1 to 4 days.

If you choose more days, obviously the price of the single ticket will be lower.

If you are looking for a less crowded period, midweek days are the most suitable (therefore from Tuesday to Thursday): the parks are less crowded and waiting times for attractions or restaurants will be reduced. The recommended months for less crowds are from mid-January to mid-March and from mid-April to mid-May. Organizing the trip during the off-season could also be a good solution, but during this time there may be fewer shows and some attractions may be closed for maintenance. The busiest periods are certainly:

  • weekends, during which occasional visitors are present, but also the French;

  • French holidays and school holidays;

  • themed seasons: Christmas, Halloween or Pirates and Princesses (in 2022 also the celebrations for the 30th anniversary that will start on March 6).

Purchase options:

  • dated tickets, from 1 to 4 days for 1 park of your choice or for both parks;

  • undated tickets: 1 day costs € 99 for 1 park, € 119 for 2 parks (tickets valid for one year);

  • dated tickets with shuttle included from Paris: 1 day 109 € 1 park, 129 € 2 parks.

If you are staying in Paris I do not recommend purchasing the option with the shuttle included: public transport is very comfortable and much cheaper: later we will see how to get to the Park from the center of the French capital. We chose the option for a dated one-day ticket and spent € 78 per person as Valentine's Day is considered medium-high season. Despite the uncertainties arising from the Covid situation, we felt comfortable buying tickets in advance as dated tickets can be canceled up to 3 days before arrival (including the day of arrival) by canceling them at no cost and getting a refund of the ticket. For this reason, if you already know the dates of your travel, I advise you to buy dated tickets, which are always cheaper, at worst cancel and they will refund you the full amount. Dated tickets vary in price according to the season and the number of parks:

Acquisto biglietti Disneyland Paris
Acquisto biglietti 1 Parco 1 giorno

Acquisto biglietti Disneyland
Acquisto biglietti 2 Parchi 1 giorno

Where to stay

If you decided to stop at Disneyland Paris for a few days, you may be wondering where to sleep: inside or outside of Disneyland Paris? Both times I have been there, I stayed in Paris and moved within the day: it's certainly the most convenient option in terms of spending. The prices of Disney Hotels are very high: they allow you to save time and avoid traveling, but honestly I had a great time anyway. It's easy to organize from Paris, cheap and also quite fast. Staying in Disneyland can be a good idea if you are traveling with children, to let them fully experience the cartoon atmosphere. Disney hotels are splendid and themed, otherwise I do not recommend it. Possibly, a compromise that can be evaluated, are the hotels that have agreements with the parks around the area (Selected Hotels), a little cheaper but still not cheap. If you are interested in staying at the Disney or Selected Hotels or just want to just take a look at them, I refer you to the official Disneyland Paris website to get an idea of ​​what to choose and prices.

How to get there

If you are staying in Paris, you can easily reach Disneyland Paris by train by taking the RER line A towards Marne-la-Vallé - Chessy (which is also the terminus of the Disney complex). The RER line A can be taken from Nation or Gare de Lyon from around 5.30 am to midnight, with trains every ten minutes. The train journey is included in the Paris Visite. The ride costs € 15.2 round trip and takes about 35-40 minutes to get you to your destination. I do not recommend the shuttle included in some options for purchasing tickets to the Parks: it's much more expensive than public transport and also slower. If, on the other hand, you decided to stay in a Disney Hotel, the shuttle to the parks is included in the price of the accommodation.

Disneyland Paris by night, Francia

App: MY DISNEYLAND PARIS

The My Disneyland Paris app is a valuable tool to help you organize and make the most of your visit to the Parks. It's free and will allow you to:

  • check opening hours and show times;

  • create your own personalized adventure with a Wish List that allows you to add attractions and tick them off as you visit them;

  • book a table in the 21 themed restaurants up to 2 months before arrival and consult the menus;

  • easily find your way around the Parks and observe the travel times between the attractions on the interactive map;

  • check waiting times for attractions in real time;

  • skip the line for some of the most famous attractions thanks to the queue dedicated to Disney Premier Access (fast access to attractions) starting from € 5: I always advise you to check because the prices vary from attraction to attraction and according to the days.

app My Disneyland Paris

Another useful tool during your visit is the following link: Live waiting times at Disneyland Park Paris We have used it often, it allows you to know in real time the waiting times for the various attractions and those closed for maintenance. It's a valid alternative to the official app.

I would say that you are now ready to go on an adventure and immerse yourself in the enchanted world of Disneyland Paris! Trust me, it is really worth dedicating a day of your Paris vacation to this beautiful enchanted park, even for adults!

Check out the other posts on Paris to plan the perfect holiday: - How to plan a perfect weekend in Paris - 2-3 days itinerary in Paris - What and where to eat when in Paris Have fun (:



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