9.03.2014

Our Disneyland Paris experience

We just had the most amazing, magical weekend ever.
We went to Disneyland Paris.
We had spend the week before in Belgium visiting family and friends and wanted to take advantage of already being on the mainland. So after a week of being really excited we finally left destination Paris. The drive itself was quite straight forward and including two stops took us just under 4 hours. 
We arrived before 10 and immediately booked into our hotel which was Hotel Cheyenne.
I loved this western style hotel and the staff were all so friendly.
We couldn't actually check into our room until 3 pm so after booking our lunch and dinner at the hotel reception we headed straight for the parks.
The kids were so excited on the short bus ride over to the park.
Their faces were literally alight with excitement.
Once through the gates we walked toward the pretty castle where we visited the dragon cave. 
Emily couldn't get enough of the dragon! He actually became a daily must to visit!
I'd forgotten to grab a map at the park entrance but did remember a great ride from a previous visit many years ago, Thunder Mountain.
The queue was about 40 minutes but actually went quite fast, there were just so many interesting things to see. We were lucky and got to sit at the very front of the runaway train, which was probably a good thing as the front moves a bit slower than the back, but oh boy did we move! As we climbed out of the ride Emily said she must have had a heart attack and dramatically announced she did not like fast rides.
As we continued walking we found ourselves near the Haunted Mansion.
Both kids did not like the look of the house or the "creepy music" but decided to go on anyway. The ride itself was great and the effects amazing but the kids weren't too convinced. Maybe a bit too scary for them.
Since we'd done two scary rides we thought it would be nice to do a few quieter things so we visited the Swiss Family Robinson's tree which was so cool and we also went on the Dumbo ride and It's a small world. 
Afterwards Dylan and Simon went on Space Mountain, Emily was still too small so we explored Discovery land and then met them at the exit. Dylan's reaction to the ride was hilarious and he couldn't stop talking about it!
Time goes fast in Disneyland and before we knew it we had to head back to our hotel where we had booked our dinner. While we were there we also picked up our hotel key cards. 
We had a bit of a problem with our first room (REALLY bad musky smell) but after informing the staff we got moved to a lovely new room. The kids were really excited about the bunk beds and all the Far West style decorations, yay!
As soon as dinner was finished, which was a lovely buffet with plenty of choice, we headed back to the parks. We decided to spend our evening at the Walt Disney Studios. The kids really wanted to go on the Ratatouille ride but the queue was 130 minutes!!! Fast passes weren't available anymore so we decided to leave that one for the next day.
We loved walking around the Disney Studios and so did the kids. Most of their favourite characters were there and the rides were pretty amazing too. Dylan loved the parachute drop and Emily the Slinky ride.



By the time we headed back to the hotel it was dark and the Studios Park was closing. We wanted to stay for the fireworks but we were all just way too tired.
After a nice rest we got up early to have breakfast which was at Mickey's cafe in The Village.
We surprised the kids with having breakfast with the characters, something we had kept a secret from them!
Dylan's face when we walked in and he noticed Mickey Mouse and the other characters was priceless.
Emily on the other hand was a bit starstruck and shy. She didn't dare go up to Mickey to have her photo taken. We also met Pluto and Tac the chipmunk. It was such a great experience and seeing the kids excited faces was the best!
After breakfast we headed back to the park where Simon walked around Fantasy land with the kids while I went to queue up to get a ticket to meet a princess.   It was a bit of a wait but well worth it as we got to meet Snow White. Emily had already changed into her princess Anna's dress (her early birthday present) and Snow White was really pleased to meet a fellow princess. 
It was quite funny actually because a lot of the staff members all over the park greeted Emily with "oh hello princess". We told Emily to curtsy every time someone greeted her and it was so cute.
After meeting Snow White we went back to the Disney Studios to pick up our Ratatouille fast passes and we ended up meeting Buzz Lightyear!
 We were also just in time to see the Stars n Cars parade where the kids got to meet a few more characters. Pinocchio was the funniest and full of energy, he even gave Dylan a head rub!
We did a few more rides and the most amazing one was Crush's Coaster. What a ride!
Definitely a family favourite.
Something we definitely didn't want to miss was the Disney parade so we headed back to Main Street to get a good space and it was just so magical. Emily (or little Anna) even got a wave and wink from the real Anna, it made her day even more magical! 
We had dinner at the Plaza Gardens in Main Street and I couldn't recommend it enough! It was buffet style and we were spoilt for choice. The staff were friendly and the kids loved it because it was a bit of a "fancy" restaurant, it made them feel very important.
 After dinner it was finally time to go on our long awaited Ratatouille ride.
It is the parks newest ride and definitely worth the wait. It's all in 3D so you get to wear some funky glasses. The kids loved this ride, and so did we!
We left again as the park was closing and day 2 had been a very successful day.
We started day 3 by meeting Donald just outside our hotel! The kids said he gave the best cuddles as he was so soft.
 We entered the park really early and we headed straight for Discovery land. I love those 2 extra hours hotel guests get as it's far less crowded and there are hardly any queues. In those 2 hours we went on Buzz's laser blast which was so much fun, the Orbitron, Autopia and Star Tours.
We then went back to Fantasy land to go on the Peter Pan ride, Pinocchio ride and Snow White's Forest ride.
In the afternoon we were lucky enough to meet some more characters, Captain Hook, Mr Smee, Peter Pan and Wendy. They were all so much fun to meet.
We then queue for the pirates of the Caribbean but just before we were about to get on the ride broke down, oh no! Not sure what had happened but everyone queueing up had to leave and the ride closed. Hmm, I wouldn't have liked to be the ones stuck at the top of the hill!
Later in the afternoon we also met Minnie and Rapunzel. Both meet and greets were happening at the same time in different locations so Simon and I split up . The queue for Minnie was shortest so I told the kids to stay with me to meet her first and we would then walk back to daddy to join him queueing for Rapunzel but Emily wasn't convinced and even after assuring her she wouldn't miss Rapunzel she still didn't want to chance it.
Dylan meeting Minnie was the cutest though and he even got a kiss from her!
We then rejoined Simon and Emily and met pretty Rapunzel who told us her hair took forever to brush.
I love how all the characters we met were so amazing! They all interacted with the kids so well, they all had their special little poses and mannerisms and they were all just perfect and really sweet.
It was nearing Parade time again so we decided to watch it one last time before heading back home.
I think we were all a bit sad to leave.
Our weekend was truly magical and we made some amazing memories.
We can't wait to go back again!
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