Friday 10 February 2017

My Top Tips For Disneyland Paris

We've just returned from our second visit to Disneyland Paris in 6 months - upon our return last time I published a list of the tips we'd found most useful before and during our trip which you can read here, but this time I discovered a few more key tips that really helped to make our holiday run more smoothly so I'm back with a second installment!

(if you'd prefer to see this in video format, please take a look at the video linked below)


Never in my life have I looked as poorly put together as I do when I'm in Disneyland Paris, but if I've learnt one thing whilst visiting it's that COMFORT COMES FIRST!

You are literally on your feet for around 10-12 hours per day (well, you are if you're in the park from opening until closing like we are!) and you spend most of that time walking around or standing in queues - by the end of the week our feet were THROBBING all day long, so comfortable shoes are an absolute must.

It's also worth noting that it can get very slippy in places when its been raining, so shoes with grip are best - I spent most of this trip in my ugg boots but found that even those became uncomfortable and I was so glad to have my horrible-but-comfortable cheap trainers in my suitcase! They were a lifesaver!

It's also important to make sure that you wear layers as you can quickly go from freezing cold to really hot due to all of the walking and all of the standing around, I found leggings and t shirts with hoodies over to be the best outfit choice - something I would NEVER wear at home but trust me, in Disneyland nobody is looking at you!!


Especially if you're staying in a Disney hotel as you HAVE to make use of Extra Magic Hours (the park opens 2 hours early for Hotel guests giving you access before the general public - this is a brilliant time to get on rides without queuing and meet characters with minimal queues too) - as tempting as it is to spend the evening drinking Glowtinis in the bar all night, you won't like yourself for it when you're getting up at 6 am to head to the park!

We also found it very difficult to get the children to settle down to sleep because they were so over excited, so we found it best to start TRYING to get them to bed about an hour before we actually NEEDED them to sleep.

Tip Number 3 - Soldes Means "Sales" in French

If you learn no other French....learn this!! You'll see the big red "Soldes" signs around the shops, those are the areas you want to be heading to! Bargains galore, especially in January!

Tip Number 4 - Make A Plan, But Be Prepared To Change It

Every evening before bed, I got out my park guide and programme (both available on entry to the parks, be sure to pick some up!)  and looked through to see what we still wanted to do - I made a note of any meet & greets the kids wanted to do, I noted down which rides we wanted to do and I noted down where and when we planned to eat.

I then drew up a rough plan of our day, mapping out the best route to take around the parks to get it all done.

In theory, the plans work brilliantly and I DO think you need to make one or else you'll never get everything done (the meet & greets all run at different times, and queues can be long so a plan helps you to make sure you hit them all and get there early!) - but the problem is that in Disneyland, things quite often run behind schedule.

On one particular day my tight schedule meant that we should have been able to see the Stormtroopers march and have 20 minutes left to do a ride before heading for reality, the march was around half an hour later than advertised which meant no rides and a quick sprint to the restaurant to make our dinner reservations.

So be sure to plan....but be ready to change the plans too!

Tip Number 5 - Queuing

 Speaking of character queues, for the scheduled meets listed in the programmes try to arrive around 15 to 20 minutes before they start - we did this for Jack Sparrow and were second in the queue. Whereas when we arrived to the Donald Duck meet and greet after the start time, we were around 30th in queue - it makes a big difference.

The one time this rule does not seem to apply is for Princess Pavillions - we joined the queue at 9.30 which was half an hour before it opened, there were already 40 people in front of us in the queue and we waited an hour and a half before getting in to see the Princess.

We then noticed that later on in the day, from around 1.30 pm - the queue had dropped down to 40 minutes - I definitely wish we'd waited!

Tip Number 5 - After Hours Entertainment

The Lego Shop in the Disney village is a GREAT place to visit with kids after the park closes!

They have lots of little play stations for the kids to build lego, and it is basically free entertainment if you can stop them from wanting to buy everything - my 3 year old asked every single day if he could go and play in the Lego shop, it was one of his favourite parts of Disneyland - it's especially good as a place to wait indoors if you have dinner reservations in the Village.

Tip Number 6 - Be Prepared For The Smokers!

There's not much you can do about this one, but it's best to be aware - people in France smoke a lot, and they don't seem to care where they're doing it.
Smoking is banned in Disneyland apart from in the designated smoking areas but, despite the best efforts of park staff, people continue to smoke everywhere - on numerous occasions we had to ask people to please move their cigarettes away from our babies face and they looked very confused about why we were so concerned! I thought one woman was going to burn Noah's nose with her cigarette, she was holding it that close to his pushchair!

Tip Number 7 - Be Sure To Book Your Restaurants

You should make sure that you make reservations for any restaurants you want to eat in BEFORE your trip. You can make reservations from around a month before you travel I believe, and the reservation phone line is open 24 hours a day. We found it best to call late at night as there was no holding, we got straight through.

 You can make all of your reservations for the week on one phone call and you can call the same number to change reservations too.

We had no problem in January getting tables with a weeks notice, but I believe in peak times that you need to make the reservations weeks in advance.

The most popular restaurants such as Cafe Mickey, Inventions, Auberge De Cendrillon, Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show and Chez Remy in particular will book up early.

But don't panic, there are many fast food outlets across the park and the restaurants in the Disney Village (Annette's Diner, Planet Hollywood, Rainforest Cafe, McDonalds, etc)  don't accept reservations anyway so you will always be able to get a table somewhere - you just may have to wait.

Tip Number 8 - The Best Shops Are In The Village

There are lots of lovely boutiques dotted around Main Street and Walt Disney Studios, and they all sell some beautiful things but they can all get very busy. I personally find the shops in the Disney Village to be best - World Of Disney in particular sells some beautiful items, and the Disney Store in the village is fantastic for kids as they have Build Your Own Lightsaber station, a Pick N Mix Mr Potato Head Toy Station and many more quirky and unusual interactive gift ideas.

Tip Number 9 - Arrive Early For The Shows

You want to be sure to be near to the front for the best interaction and people do start arriving around 20 minutes early. If you arrive early for the Disney Junior show you get to play with characters like Sofia the First, and if you want to get a good spot for the Frozen show aim around the blue seats in the centre (the blue seats are reserved for children in Frozen fancy dress, FYI!) - this is where you'll get snowed on and get to interact most with the props etc.


I hope these tips are useful to you, if you're interested in more be sure to check out my video below or take a look at my original Disneyland Tips post for more ideas and don't forget to take a look at my other Disneyland posts below!


  1. Ooh, looks amazing! Great tips :) #SundayBest

  2. I went to Disneyland when I was about 9 years old and remember it being such a magical place to visit. My daughter is almost 2 years old, so I think we'll wait until she's a bit older until we visit. It looks like you've had an amazing time :) #SundayBest

    Helen x

  3. Brilliant post and so glad I read it. Lots of really practical advice so anyone thinking of going xxx #sundaybest

  4. Brilliant post - I dream of taking my children one day! #sundaybest

  5. We have done Disney three times in the States- stop on tips.

  6. Absolute lifesavers, these brilliant tips❗️❗️✨❤✨❤✨❤✨

  7. ❄️🌟Also wanted to add how clever the special-seats-for-Frozen-dressed children tip is❕😍

  8. It looks great! We are planning to go at Easter! #SundayBest

  9. Fantastic tips for new visitors! I didn't know soldes meant sales!!
    Also - we love the Lego store too!! A young chap working there was playing Lego with kier doe about 15 mins ha!

  10. I love that they let you have free run of the park before it actually opens. That would be great. No crowds! #SundayBest

  11. These are some really good tips. Ive been before but never with a child so when we take Ben at least I can put my parent hat on! #sundaybest

  12. They are great tips! I've only ever been to Disney as an adult so missed out on all the queueing haha x

  13. Would love to go. I found the smoking in France too much. Every meal time we were surrounded by people eating and smoking at the same time. Ewww #sundaybest

  14. We're here at the moment and these are great tips, thank you. Really wishing I'd brought some comfy trainers with me, my feet are killing me! xx


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