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Theme Park:Disneyland Park (since 1995)
Euro Disneyland Paris (1994)
Euro Disneyland (1992 - 1993)
Part of the Resort Disneyland Resort Paris
Address:77777 Marne-la-Vallée
http://www.disneylandparis.de
Operated by:Walt Disney Parks and Resorts

Phantom Manor • Disneyland ParkDisneyland Park in Marne-la-Vallée near Paris, France is Europe’s most visited theme park. The theme park is the main park of Disneyland Resort Paris. Since 1992, the park has been delighting the public with a solid selection of family-friendly rides, shows and lots of street entertainment. Especially the show Illuminations (formerly Dreams), which is shown in front of the castle in the evening, is a very special event that should not be missed. 

Fun Fact #1: Despite its average of 10 million visitors per year, the park was in the red for a long time, which meant that few investments were made. After a buyout in 2017 the resort belongs to the Walt Disney Company.

Big Thunder Mountain • Vekoma Mine Train • Disneyland ParkFun Fact #2: With Les Pirouettes du Vieux Moulin, a small Ferris wheel once stood in Fantasyland. Due to its small capacity it was closed in 2002. The ride stood in the park for several years before most of the hardware was removed. Even today one can see traces of the ride behind the Old Mill.

Fun Fact #3: Since Europeans seem to like it a little bit wilder, the Paris version of the roller coaster Space Mountain is the only one that has several rollovers and one launch. Unfortunately we are also supposed to be very water shy, so we were spared the white water ride Splash Mountain.

Casey Jr. – Le petit Train du Cirque

Some years have passed since my last visit to Disneyland Park. During Easter 2010 we could do a lot of runs on all rides but the smallest roller coaster Casey Jr. – Le petit Train du Cirque was not available. This time in February, the roller coaster was open, but the biggest roller coaster of the park was not. When we arrived at Disneyland Park, we went down the fully renovated Main Street which was not quite as busy this time and then turned to the right at the Central Plaza towards the future. Unfortunately, the most beautiful area of the park is currently almost half closed off, which resulted not only in a lot of scaffolding, but also in the closure of the indoor roller coaster Space Mountain.

While the visionary car ride Autopia was dominated by a rather long queue, the waiting time in the remaining area was almost zero. Thus one could quickly travel to Endor using the airline Star Tours or prevent the villain Zorg from stealing the valuable energy sources with the help of Buzz Lightyear.

New to me was the legendary – but quite antigue – Michael Jackson 3D film Captain EO, which is being shown since the 2010 season in recognition of the artist’s death in June 2009. It replaced the only marginally younger film Honey – I Shrunk the Audience, on which the design of the theatre was based. Although the film was one of the most expensive productions at that time, it did not aged well. The story of a clumsy gang of losers in space who, with a little music and dance, liberated a whole planet from a borg-like society is just as trashy as the spongy 3D effects of that time. Even if Honey – I shrunk the audience didn’t look any better regarding the image quality of the film, it did entertain me a little bit more.

It is interesting to note that in the now 23-year-old history of Disneyland Park, only two 3D films have been shown in alternation, although Disney always attracts attention with successful short films.

In the themed area next door, the happiest cruise through our world was waiting to be completed with a catchy tune. In this sense: “It’s a small world after all, It’s a small world after all, It’s a small world after all, It’s a small, small world”.

The small, always peaceful, world trip It’s a Small World shows an ideal world from the children’s perspective. Especially in relation to Paris – which was still under the highest warning level at the time of the visit – a state of affairs that one quickly wishes for, even if this is very unlikely.

In the immediate proximity, but clearly belonging to Fantasyland, there is another boat trip with Le Pays des Contes de Fées. Here, one passes some fairy tale scenes, but their miniatures do not really stand out and/or their respective fairy tales are sometimes not so common in order to clearly recognize them.

A little bit above this attraction runs the track of the small circus train Casey Jr., known from the Disney movie Dumbo, which in contrast to the original version from Anaheim functions here as a roller coaster. At the beginning Casey Jr. breathes “I think I can”, but shows his true strength relatively fast and accelerates over the flat track. Especially in the back of the train, the inconspicuous track layout of Casey Jr. – Le petit Train du Cirque comes as a big surprise, especially if you do it backwards, while sitting in the back row.

With Casey Jr. – Le petit Train du Cirque the only Vekoma Powered Coaster can convince all along and not only because of the airtime that is rarely seen on this type of coaster. The possibility to ride a roller coaster both forwards and backwards is always a big plus and should be available more often, even if it’s only the last row.

Not quite as psychedelic as in Blackpool Pleasure Beach is the influence of Alice in Wonderland in Disneyland Park. With the extremely clumsy Mad Hatters Tea Cups and the stylish Labyrinth, it’s not so easy to resist a drug trip par excellence and the cuckoo waltz.

The rest of Fantasyland is based on classic Disney movies with three smaller dark rides, a compressed air carousel and a classic horse carousel, and can score points for the Disneyland Park’s landmark, especially at night. During the 20-minute long show Disney Dreams, this serves as a projection screen for the sequences, which are accompanied by fireworks, music, laser and fire effects. The only disturbing factor during the show are the children who are always taken onto the shoulders of the parents without consideration for other people. It’s amazing how timed this play takes place and how few alternatives you have. Camera-loving children are certainly an advantage if you want to take good pictures of the show.

In Adventureland, little has changed since my last visit – at least visually. At first sight, you simply cannot spot a difference in the completely renovated Temple of Fear. Also the ride itself hadn’t changed at Indiana Jones et Le Temple du Péril, although the loop was completely replaced.  Just the train seems to be much more comfortable than before.

Since we could not afford a binge with the Pirates of the Caribbean anyway, we looked for cheaper alternatives. Since the pizza in Colonel Hathi’s Pizza Outpost seemed to be too small, we looked for something edible in Frontierland and found it in the Cowboy Cookout Barbeque not far from Big Thunder Mountain.

Before the coaster closes for more than a year, we had to spend some time at this coaster as Big Thunder Mountain is without doubt one of the best of its kind, although with the newly acquired constitution of the Colorado Adventure mine train roller coaster from Phantasialand it has gotten much harder to keep on the throne.

The old abandoned manor house on the edge of Frontierland will not lose its morbid character so quickly. Welcomed by extremely elegant ladies, we descend one floor into the realm of the dead. Seated in the doom buggies, accompanied by eerily beautiful music, we set off on a journey of discovery through the cursed estate of Phantom Manor and its history.

In contrast to previous visits – which I always made at Easter – February proved to be the ideal time for a visit to Disney, as the waiting times at most rides were less than 20 minutes at Disneyland Park, only Big Thunder Mountain, Casey Jr., Autopia and Peter Pan had longer waiting times, but even these were always within reasonable limits. Of course, some rides were closed due to refurbishment. A few laps on Space Mountain would have made the visit purely awesome.

 

What are your thoughts about the French theme park Disneyland Park and its roller coaster Casey Jr. – Le petit Train du Cirque? Just write it here in the comment field below the report or visit our social media channels:

 

          


Visiting Mickey Mouse

Having arrived in Disneyland Park, it feels as if you have been transported back a few decades, since you are now in an American main street at the beginning of the twentieth century. Oldtimers and carriages are waiting for their guests and also the park railway has its main station here. There are also some shops and most of the parade route runs along this path, which is fairly long and leads to the entrances of the remaining four themed areas.

In addition to the tramway we also tested the park railway in this area. It runs along the edge of the park and belongs to one of the more crowded Disneyland Park rides, where you can queue for up to an hour. As we got a good opportunity we didn’t have to wait. The 40 minute round trip is definitely worthwhile.

If you walk down Disneyland Park’s main street, you are walking towards the landmark of the Fantasyland. The castle, inside which you can see the story of Sleeping Beauty, is not as big as it seems from some angles.

If you cross the castle, you find yourself on a place with a horse carousel – where it was quite difficult to climb the horses –, as well as the two dark rides Pinocchio and Snow White. The second one reminds of a very trippy ghost train, while the journey of Pinocchio was wonderfully staged and belongs to one of the best dark rides of the continent.

Nearby are the Dumbo carousel and the teacups. Two lanes which can show an incredibly long queue quite fast. An influence on the rotation of the teacups is unfortunately hardly possible, but the ride remains a wonderful attraction to avoid a very heavy downpour.

The labyrinth next door shares the same theme as the tea cups. Like Alice in Wonderland, you pass through this somewhat bizarre labyrinth, whose exit is unfortunately quite easy to find.

You can also find the most popular attraction of the park in this area. It is Peter Pan’s Flight, a dark ride with too few scenes and a very bizarre ride system. If you are planning a ride, you should get a Fastpass-Ticket, as this is the weakest ride in the whole park and the capacity is simply too low.

A little off the beaten track, but always present, lies the wonderful dark ride It’s a small World. Remarkable and somehow strange is the number of boats which give this ride an enormous capacity and very short waiting times. The happiest cruise of the planet should therefore not be missed, even if the music is one of the greatest catchy tunes in the world.

If you follow the paths of the Fantasyland, you will find the entrance to another dark ride in Adventureland. Even the queue is a feast for the eyes, which is rarely trumped. Of course we are talking about the Pirates of the Caribbean, a dark ride using the same boats as in It’s a small World, which leads to a fantastically high capacity among other things. The music is a catchy tune that gets you in the mood for binge drinking. The only point of criticism is the way too loud chain at the lift, but this can be overcome during such a great ride.

The area itself is beautiful, but also unfortunately somewhat underpopulated by rides. Therefore we visited the temple of fear. A very beautifully themed queue prepares one for the following experience. In the station of the roller coaster, we get into the wagons in which we take the route.

During the curves of the Indiana Jones et le Temple du Péril you often get to know the shoulder restraints when you are sitting in the front car. The rest of the track is as great it should be: Intense with a touch of airtime in front of every block brake, which is great for blowing mouse ears into the air. From the outside this Indiana Jones ride also looks very attractive and should be ridden in any case, even if it gives some people a different picture of the manufacturer Intamin.

In addition, you can find a long suspension bridge, some caves and Robinson Cruseo’s tree house – a walktrough where you can queue a little longer –, in this area of Disneyland Park.

If you follow the circuit of Disneyland Park, you will at some point enter the Wild West with its landmark the Big Thunder Mountain. The size is trivial, but the ride is as loud as a thunder roll. The Big Thunder Mountain offers a station for normal visitors and fast passers. For this reason it can take quite a long time until the next train appears on your side. The ride itself doesn’t offer many daring curves, but a lot of beautiful straights, strange lifts and cool tunnels. Everything is rounded off by the harmonious and always present theme, which makes the ride together with Colorado Adventure of Phantasialand and El Diablo of Port Aventura one of the best mine trains in Europe.

An attraction that goes around the island and over the first and last tunnel of the roller coaster Big Thunder Mountain is the three-storey steamer. It is recommended to look in the direction of the Big Thunder Mountain, as the surrounding area is beautiful but offers little variety.

From the steamer you can see an old manor house. It looks deserted, just like the garden you have to pass through to approach this house. In the house itself one is greeted by strange figures who are able to speak languages that no Frenchman or Englishman would describe as grammatically correct. They send you into a room that turns out to be an elevator with nice pictures on the wall. After you have left this part of Phantom Manor behind, you enter a corridor, which you have to walk along in order to take a seat in your doom buggy. The ride is harmonious and offers a continuous storyline. A scary beautiful melody accompanies you to the cemetery, where it is briefly replaced by the Grimm Grinning Ghosts and you finally come to the end of the ride which is clearly one of the best dark rides out there.

The final theme of Disneyland Park is Discoveryland, which is largely based on the work of the French writer Jules Verne. As a contrast to this, Star Wars is here too – something that really doesn’t fit in here.

The Space Mountain hall is a visual feast for the eyes. On its second mission you fly to the supernova and back again. The Columbiad cannon shoots the train towards space and a completely mad route is taken. The cars are similar to those of the Rock ‘n’ Rollercoaster, comfortable and well padded. The launch is noticeable, although not particularly intense due to the location. Inside the building some curves and inversions appear where you wouldn’t expect them. The ride characteristics range from very good to well, depending on the time you get on the ride and how loaded the train is at that time. In any case this is an experience not to be missed, especially as this concept coaster is still unique.

One of the older attractions of this area is Star Tours. A beautiful large-capacity simulator where, starting from an intergalactic airport, you can experience a tourist flight through space. Of course with an inexperienced pilot, who brings you into very risky situations. This simulator is just a cult classic.

In the cinema next door you can watch the movie Honey, I shrunk the Audience, a very old 3D movie with some predictable effects. A negative aspect is the poor quality of the image, which takes some time to get used to. Even the cinema itself is not the best due to its flooring, as you can quickly fall if you don’t pay attention.

Also to be found in this area is the multi-lane car ride Autopia, which can be controlled very poorly from my point of view. Perhaps it was also due to the fact that I had to drive on the right lane and thus had the steering wheel on the right. However, it could also be simply due to the fact that I am used to drive other things. However, it is a ride worth driving.

The last major attraction of Disneyland Park is the interactive dark ride Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast by Mack Rides. In this highly recommended attraction you travel to planet Z to put a stop to the evil Zurg and bring back the energy sources (in the form of batteries) and score some points. Thanks to the rather unfavourable capacity due to all the intermediate stops, a fast pass is definitely recommendable here.

In addition to the submarine attraction, which was closed at the time of the visit, and the mostly crowded ride next door, there is also a musical show theatre in this area, which unfortunately did not host any shows due to the low season and instead showed some cartoon classics.

 

What are your thoughts about the French theme park Disneyland Park? Just write it here in the comment field below the report or visit our social media channels: