Monday, 4 December 2017

It's Christmas in Disneyland Paris - Part Two, Disney Village & Disney Studios

 Before I start, I should probably give you a little link - head over here if you're more interested in reading about Disneyland Park!

  The first part of this post focuses on Disney Village, which is the Paris equivalent of Disney Springs and Downtown Disney. Of course, it is a fair bit smaller, but it has an enjoyable charm to it and is a nice place to spend a couple of hours.

 One of my favourite parts about these little areas is the fashion. I LOVE the Disney fashion. I find that they do a great job of making clothes with a good amount of Disney to it - but without it being tacky. I loved the above jumper, and pretty much the entirety of the Parisienne Minnie collection.

 The Christmas plushes were pretty awesome as well! I didn't really like the rest of the decorations - I thought the baubles DID look tacky and just looked cheap, but the plushes were adorable.

 When it came to food and snacks, we were disappointed. There's not a whole lot of variety, and what there is is pretty expensive. It's France! The variety of what you can buy from the stalls should be so much higher than this!

But overall, you're going to have a good time in Disney Village. It is what it is. The hotels and the areas lack the huge amount of theming that you'll find in the Orlando park (but I'd say the hotels definitely beat the California ones) but the Village itself has charm to it and is nice to spend time in and explore - just be prepared for the fact that food will cost you more than expect, and won't be at the standard you're hoping for!

Next up takes us to Disney Studios! This is the second park in Paris, and the one that I was most confused about before visiting. Pretty much every review I read about the park was terrible, but it also seemed to play host to some of the most well regarded rides.

 And, well, I would say the above description is accurate. It's just...not a very good park. There's not that much to do there and there was a grand total of one food area open when we were there meaning it was constantly rammed. The overall theming was lacking (It was a pretty consistent comment I overheard from people wondering why there was no Christmas or festive touches whatsoever) and the queues were long due to the fact that you were pretty limited on what to do.

 But, it wasn't all bad by any means. The Ratatouille ride actually made me feel quite ill, but was still a very enjoyable and interesting ride. Mickey & The Magician is a nice little show although you definitely miss some very important parts of it as the hat and Mickey exclusively speak French, which means you can't quite work out some of their conversations. It is very much a half day park, but I'd still suggest you do go. And if you're going in this season, do go and see the end of day show!

 I was pleased to see the car stunt show here! It's almost identical to the version that was playing in Orlando, but it's nice to see. I know these kind of setups aren't very Disney, but actually I enjoy watching them.

  If you followed my Twitter over this time, you'll probably also know I got briefly stranded at Disney! Our train went from being delayed by 15 minutes to 3 hours, and the station staff weren't in the least bit helpful. Luckily, there were a fair few of us there so over the hours we slowly met more and more people who had also now missed their Eurostar connection at Lille as a result. There was a lot of unclear communication over this. When we phoned Eurostar, they told us that on arrival at Lille we'd be getting a complementary hotel stay and dinner. Someone else phoned Eurostar and were told that they were putting on an extra train for us and gave us a number. When we asked the member of staff at the station, he denied this. When our train finally turned up (and then broke down again at the next station) we headed to Lille not knowing what on earth was going to be happening, but heard an intercom announcement for people heading to London. We followed the instructions to the Eurostar area and found that they were going to be giving a non-stopping train an extra stop so that we'd be able to get on it, and also gave us these food boxes. The food inside was really not nice at all and it was hilarious watching the expressions of everyone as we all cautiously tried it all, but it was a nice gesture and Eurostar were very helpful to us. We were also sat opposite someone from California and someone from Tokyo, so got a bit more of a comparison of all the parks!

 Overall, would I recommend the parks? Yes, I would, but I do think it's very important to tell you to lower your expectations if you're a visitor to the Orlando ones. It's just not in the same league. It's a nice park and it's very pretty, but it's not quite the same. That's not to say I won't return - I'd like to go and see how Halloween is at the park - but I'd still rank it below the Orlando and Californian counterparts. And we'll have to wait til March to see how the Tokyo offering fits in!


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