Back in the day, there was nothing for me to do except to fantasize and live in a world where it is all fun and adventure. As the years passed by, though, this realm vanished when life happened. 30 years later, even with all the technological distractions, my kids are living in their fantasy world. It is the same world I once knew, and that led me to ponder. What would it be like to live in Disneyland Paris?
The city of Paris is a lot of things to different people. Love, art, culture, food, it is a dynamic city where one can see it one way and another view it as something else. But for the residents of the city, Paris is home. It is also home to the world that once existed in my dreams.
The more I pondered, the more it feels like life has come to a full circle. I was once a young child who thought Disney was the whole world. Because of that, I can understand how much it would mean to the little ones if I could take them there. In the process, I would also be rekindling my childhood fantasies. More than that, it also means I would be revisiting my old refuge.
One Week in Disneyland Paris
Visiting Paris is not the same as going to the different islands in the country. By now, many people have heard of Condé Nast Traveler naming Boracay as the best island in the world – again. Visiting the paradise island is as simple as booking a flight and going to the airport. Not Paris, though. It is half a world away. Hence, it calls for careful planning.
Looking at the flight time, I had to remind myself that if this thing pushes through, it is for the kids. Spending some 16 to 19 hours up in the sky does nothing but dampen the mood. Not to mention, these flights have a stopover. All in all, travel time alone both ways takes three days.
Because of cost and limited time, it is imperative to get from point A to B in the least amount of time. I want to arrive in Paris and be on the way to one of the seven hotels in Disneyland.
As always, whenever traveling, the first thing I do is to look for a home. Hence, it pleases me to see that there are seven properties to choose from in Disneyland Paris. Although they are expensive, they also offer a unique experience. Not to mention, they are within 20 minutes walking distance to the park.
- Disneyland Hotel
- Disney’s Hotel New York
- Disney’s Newport Bay Club
- Disney’s Sequoia Lodge
- Disney’s Hotel Cheyenne
- Disney’s Hotel Santa Fe
- Disney’s Davy Crockett Ranch
After taking a look at all the hotels, I was no closer to deciding on one. So, I decided to choose one based on proximity. At the top of my list are Disneyland Hotel and Disney’s Hotel New York. Both these properties are only up to ten minutes walk to the park.
Convenience aside, choosing to stay in Disneyland is akin to immersion. Instead of warping in and out, the kids and I are living in the fantasy realm.
Flights to Paris
I did not think booking a hotel is much of a problem. All the seven properties are excellent. Regardless which one the family ends up in, it will always be the right choice.
Flights are another matter. As far as I have checked, there are no direct flights from Manila to Paris. Depending on which airline, some land at Charles de Gaulle (CDG) while others land at Orly (ORY).
From experience, public transportation may be convenient, but there are always moments of confusion. After spending over a day, I am pretty sure that my family will want nothing better than to get to the hotel as soon as possible. I can almost imagine the kids exhausted and whining, “All I want is to be in Disneyland Paris.”
I reckon then that it is prudent to book a taxi from the airport to Disneyland Paris ahead of arrival.
From Charles de Gaulle, Piyocab charges €65 to take our family of four to the Disneyland Park. If we are to land in Orly, Top Paris Transfer costs €70. I suppose there is a degree of comfort in knowing exactly how much I have to pay for transfers.
The whole Disneyland Paris covers an area of almost 20 square kilometers. It also houses two theme parks – Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studio Park. With only a week, I doubt if we can visit all the attractions.
After talking with the kids, we decided to pick two sites each day. Of course, on paper, it seems straightforward. Deep in my guts, I doubt if we can stick to our itinerary.
Walt Disney Studio Park
Walt Disney Studio Park is the less interesting of the two parks. Don’t get me wrong. I am pretty sure it is fantastic, but it seems everyone likes Disneyland Park more. Hence, we should reserve the best for last.
There are four locations here.
- Front Lot
- Disneyland Studio 1
- Production Courtyard
- Studio Tram Tour: Behind the Magic
- The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
- Armageddon: Les Effets Spéciaux
- Meet Spider-Man
- Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster starring Aerosmith
- Café des Cascaudeurs
- Toon Studio
- Art of Disney Animation
- Cars Quatre Roues Rallye
- Crush’s Coaster
- Les Tapis Volants – Flying Carpets Over Agrabah
- Ratatouille: The Adventure
- RC Racer
- Slinky Dog Zigzag Spin
- Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop
One full day at the Walt Disney Studio Park to see all its attractions. One day to remember once again the magic of Walt Disney and the world he conjured in the minds of children across generations.
Mickey Mouse was a good friend, most of the time that is. He was there to comfort me during times of sadness. But he was also there to distract me from studying and everything else I needed to do. He was the first Disney character I came to know. Through the years, there were others.
Here at the Disneyland Park, worlds collide when the fantasy worlds of the kids and mine come into one.
- Main Street U.S.A.
- Discovery Arcade
- Disneyland Railroad
- Horse-Drawn Streetcars
- Liberty Arcade
- Main Street Vehicles
Of course, going to Disneyland Park means passing through Main Street U.S.A. So, the plan was straightforward. We will take our time at each location instead of hurrying to cover as much as possible.
- Big Thunder Mountain
- Phantom Manor
- Pocahontas Indian Village
- Rustler Roundup Shootin’ Gallery
- Thunder Mesa Riverboat Landing
- Adventure Isle
- Indiana Jones and the Temple of Peril
- La Cabane des Robinson
- Le Passage Enchanté d’Aladdin
- Pirate Galleon
- Pirates’ Beach
- Pirates of the Caribbean
- Alice’s Curious Labyrinth
- Blanche-Neige et Les Sept Nains
- Casey Jr. – le Petit Train du Cirque
- Dumbo the Flying Elephant
- it’s a small world
- La Galerie de la Belle au Bois Dormant
- La Tanière du Dragon
- Le Carrousel de Lancelot
- Le Pays des Contes de Fées
- Les Voyages de Pinocchio
- Mad Hatter’s Tea Cups
- Meet Mickey Mouse
- Peter Pan’s Flight
- Princess Pavilion
- Sleeping Beauty Castle
- Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast
- Les Mystères du Nautilus
- Star Tours: The Adventure Continue
- Star Wars Hyperspace Mountain
- Welcome to Starport: A Star Wars Encounter
- Star Wars: Path of the Jedi
One Week in Paris Disneyland Park
After spending a day doing nothing, I imagine arriving in Paris exhausted. But on the way to Disneyland Park, there is no doubt in my mind that the kids will be very excited.
Walking in the park, even after kilometers, the kids are not likely to feel tired. Instead, they would be up and run to the next attraction.
It is a mystery, isn’t it?
How can children be exhausted sitting idly and sleeping, and yet be hyper even after walking for hours?
Such is the magic of Walt Disney.
After all, it is about fun and adventure.
For the little ones, it is for them to live their fantasies. As for me, it is about revisiting the past. Together, it is to share the experience.