For years we’ve been talking about taking the girls to Disneyland Paris and finally – finally! – we got around to doing it. On reflection, they were just about the right age; the perfect combination of young enough to be excited about it but old enough to keep up in the evening to go out to eat.
The trip wasn’t without its mishaps as you’d expect when travelling with children; within five minutes of arriving at the station Jessica managed to spill the entire contents of a bottle of orange juice over her brand new suitcase, which we had to try and mop up with nothing more heavy duty than coffee shop napkins while surrounded by unsympathetic morning rush hour commuters.
Once on the Eurostar the journey was very smooth and we arrived early afternoon, ready to hit the rides. It has to be said that by this time I was quite possibly more excited than the girls, screaming “Look, look!” at the first sighting of a Disney character, while they were all “Oh yeah, that’s Mickey.”
We all enjoyed the rides though, and the faster the better as far as the girls were concerned. The Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast deserves a special mention just for the fact that you get to shoot aliens as you go round – how cool?!? The railroad rollercoaster Big Thunder Mountain was also a family favourite; we’re obviously all secret thrill-seekers. By the third day we were fastpassing like pros, the best tip I could give anyone thinking of visiting. My personal favourite was Crush’s Coaster, which had me screaming like a teenager; TOTALLY worth the hour long wait (including breakdowns) for our second go.
My expectations of the food were pretty low, having talked to people who’d been and read online reviews, but while it was undeniably expensive, there were some memorable highlights (oh yes Mickey nutella brioches, I’m looking at YOU). The girls discovered all-you-can-eat buffet breakfasts and we wholeheartedly embraced the junk food on our last day when we had half an hour to wolf down pizza before our time slot on the Buzz Lightyear ride. I have to tell you people, that pizza was so bad it was good.
I enjoyed it so much more than I expected to, more than our first visit let’s-not-think-about-how-many years ago when we didn’t have two kids in tow. But then I guess that’s the point; Disney is essentially for kids, so maybe you can’t expect to experience the full magic without them around.