Firstly I'll address the elephant in the room...this is an overdue post we went in June (2019...cheeky). I have no excuses other than I'm crap.
Secondly I'll be clear from the beginning that our break was not a press trip, it was not gifted or discounted it was a family holiday fully paid for by ourselves and I'm blogging some details about it because you guys (my instagram fam) wanted some tips!
We've always said we'd like to take the children to the Disneyland Parks and as first timers as a family we decided on Paris first. (I've been twice before at 11 &17 and loved it both times! I'm a Disney girl.)
I normally like a 'sunny' holiday when we go away...I'm talking two weeks of 'nothingness' surrounded by food and ice cream...a swim up bar is a bonus but because of the children's ages (9&4) we decided 2019 was our year as it would still be magical for them both and I was going to turn 30 so we made it all about me...(joking!).
I'm not sure what the usual weather is like in Paris in June but we arrived in that heatwave (remember that?!) well whilst we were there the temperature varied from 38-41 degrees so it was preeetty toasty. If you do go in the summer then pack those hand held fans! The park was pretty good at creating shade/cool points but I think that was down to the extreme heat and not normal procedure.
If you read my last Stanley and Maud on tour blog post (Rome) you'll know I like a 'book in one go' holiday. I booked directly through Disney as I found it easier and there was more additional extras without charge (well not an obvious one!) At the time we booked (Christmas time) there was a 25% off and a half board meal plan if I remember rightly. We stayed in the Disney Hotel because as a child that's where I'd always wanted to stay and I'm so glad we did because it is just magical. It is more expensive but it included FastPasses, a premium meal plan and the option for character breakfasts etc also having extra magic time (all park hotel guests only) which allows you in the park earlier prior to opening the gates which is amazing for those busy ride queues!
Plan or not to plan your days!...We're pretty casual so took each day as it came especially because of the heat but I suppose it would depend on how long you were there for. We stayed for four nights and five days which for us was enough...we would have been fine with three nights to be honest but it gave us time to re do things and because it was so hot it was good not to rush.
We decided to fly because there wasn't a huge difference in price and again I'm all about ease! We booked a private transfer from the airport (45mins) as I didn't fancy sharing a coach as I'd heard the Disney Hotel was the last stop meaning we'd of been on the bus the longest...yes I know I'm a miserable goat. We used prestige transfer and they were just lovely...the children got to watch some Disney on the journey and they provide car seats if required.
So tips in a nut shell-
- SNACKS. Take snacks. There are a lot of places to buy food etc but they can get so busy and there's not really anything snacky so I took loads with us...cereal bars, crisps, haribo, raisins etc. anything to silence any whining in the queue. (I'm talking about B not the children...HA!)
- Take drink bottles with you, I used the fountains to top them up during the day and carried a couple of those mini squeezey cordial bottles. Jack really doesn't like fizzy drinks so it was a must as most stalls/restaurants are fizzy drinks or water.
- Find the 'Disney for brits' Facebook page. If you sieve through the repetitive questions (and the ridiculous ones) there's some realllllly good information there. There's tips on finding characters, apps for queuing, best places to eat etc.
- Book your meals and shows etc before you go. You can do this online, if you forget/have the calm approach about it (like I did for the meals) than your hotel can help you. If you choose to be casual then you could be queuing a long while...hence me running to the reservations manager on day two.
- Disney merch is cheaper here then there...don't let your children fall in love with an €80 outfit. You will starve for the rest of the week.
- Find the apps...we used the queue time one and it was brilliant and accurate. I didn't bother with the character queue ones as thankfully our two weren't overly fussed about queuing for character meets they were excited and happy enough to meet them at the character breakfast/walking around the hotel.
- Shows...it's personal preference as to what you fancy doing whilst you're there. We did a character breakfast, the princess lunch (on my birthday), Buffalo Bills Wild West Show and of cause watched the illuminations and the parade (both of which I would say is a MUST.)
Disney can be done on a budget and you can blow a house deposit there...look at what suits you and what you can afford, it truly is worth every penny. Even as an adult I find it just magical so I can only imagine as a child how exciting it must be especially if they love Disney.
I could ramble on and on and on but it is just my thoughts and as a family we loved it...it's not somewhere I could repeatedly visit but it was magical and I know our children will treasure the memories made forever.
"Happiness is the richest thing we will ever own." -- Donald Duck
Thanks for reading darlings!