While we were in Paris we had to take the opportunity to visit Disneyland Paris (formerly known as Euro Disney Resort). It’s only a half hour ride on the metro from the center of the city so we had to go. We both love Disneyland in Anaheim but have never been to any of the other resorts across the word, including Walt Disney World. Now that we’ve gone to two of them it would be great to visit the other four. We went the second day we were there, a Thursday, because we knew it would be much less crowed than on the weekend. Unfortunately we had no idea that there was a four day holiday weekend in France starting on that Thursday. What would normally be a fairly light day in the park ended up getting super crowded by the afternoon. That combined with our jet lag caused us to leave in the late afternoon (something we would never do at Disneyland normally). Even so, we had a great time and are glad we went. Next time we’ll just have to be extra careful there isn’t a holiday happening that we don’t know about.
Walking onto Main Street for the first time when we got there was really weird. It was like we had been there many times before but everything felt a bit off. That feeling followed us throughout the day as many areas of the park are very similar to Disneyland but also very different. It was fun noticing all the differences in the park and attractions. Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant (translated: The Castle of the Sleeping Beauty) was incredible. I’ll always love the original Sleeping Beauty Castle in Disneyland but the one in Paris might be the best looking Disney castle. It feels like a more fully realized version of the original. Taller, grander, and more closely resembling the castle from the movie. Main Street was also great. Similar to the original but set in the 1920s rather than the turn of the century. One of the coolest things was the arcades (arch covered walkways) tucked behind the shops on each side of the street. They provide alternate access to each of the shops, ease congestion on Main Street during parades, and offer cover from the more frequent rainy days in Paris. The entrance to Adventureland was amazing. Much more grand and detailed than in California. The land also felt more Arabian than tropical jungle. Space Mountain had a very cool steampunk theme to it inspired by the French author Jules Verne. The ride starts in a giant steam canon on the exterior of the building. The ride cars are launched into space through an opening in the roof. Once inside, the ride is much faster with several loops as well as giant planets and asteroids. There were many other things we noticed, some we liked some we didn’t. All in all though it was all great it its own way.
We also visited Walt Disney Studios Park. It’s based on Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Florida where we’ve never been, so we didn’t get to look for similarities or differences. It did feel a bit like going to California Adventure though. Tay’s favorite ride there is the Tower of Terror so we had to ride the French version which is pretty much identical. We were most excited for the Ratatouille ride which was great. It features a trackless design that shrinks guests to the size of a rat using giant movie screens as well as oversized physical locations. The exterior of the ride is built like a mini section of Paris. It also features a restaurant made to look like you’ve once again shrunk down in size. If we ever make it back eating there will be first on our list.