Earlier this week my family and I went on a little day trip to the place where magic gets real; Disneyland Paris. It wasn’t my first visit, but nevertheless I was super excited to be there. The first time I visited the park was when I was still a little Freija! And even now I still remember the beautiful Christmas decorations back then. Nobody does the holidays like Disney right?! The second visit was ten years ago for my friend A’s bachelorette and I’m honestly still freaking out about that Space Mountain ride she made go on… I wanted to go back for a while now, and Disney’s Halloween Festival seemed liked the perfect occasion to do so. And guess what… I was right! The environment completely transformed to make Disneyland even more magical. This ending up providing us with a whole new experience as if we were visiting Disney for the very first time.
Our train arrived at Disney’s Marne-la-Vallée station about 9.15 AM, which gave us just enough time to stop at Disney Village to buy Minnie ears and make our way to the entrance. As it was still a bit misty out, we decided to check out some attractions first. Being the total daredevils that we are (#not) we went on our way to Fantasyland and one of my favorite attractions ‘It’s a small world’. Knowing that I would be stuck with the song in my head for the rest of the day, we set sail to explore the seven continents in ten minutes. It truly is a small world after all, right?!
We went off to Wonderland and enjoyed a ‘crazy’ ride on the ‘Mad Hatter’s Tea Cups’. The next attractions we wanted to check out were ‘Snow White & the Seven Dwarves’ and ‘Peter Pan’s Flight’, but at that point the lines were quite long, and as we didn’t feel like waiting we skipped that and further explored Fantasyland. While doing so, make sure to spot Cinderella’s chariot at the Auberge de Cendrillon.
We also didn’t want to miss the first Disney parade of the day, so while heading back to Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, we ran into a dangerous-looking Maleficent.
Disney’s Halloween Festival
Disney’s Halloween Festival is this year taken place from the 28th September to 3rd November 2019. During this period, Disneyland is exploding with gorgeous Halloween decorations. The park is adorned with pumpkins, cobwebs and all kinds of things we love during the scariest time of year. You’ll see beautiful fall colors like orange, red and yellow popping up everywhere. As you stroll down Main Street, you’ll be amazed by hundreds of carved pumpkins.
The special events and shows that take place during Halloween time are the best way to fully interact and enrich your trip with lasting memories. Twice a day, at 12.30PM and 1.50PM to be precise, Mickey and his friends are giving the very best of themselves during Mickey’s Halloween Celebration parade. We arrived have an hour early at the seating area at the Castle stage and were rewarded with front row seats, spectacular views and great photo’s.
After that our plan was to go for lunch at Pizzeria Bella Notte and enjoy a Mickey-shaped pizza, but once again the lines were so long that we didn’t feel like waiting and decided to go elsewhere.
Normally I’m a big fan of Fantasyland (that’s where the princesses are you know), but this time it was Frontierland who made my inner kiddo jump for joy! The Halloween decorations were amongst the best I have ever seen and I also really loved that they dedicated a huge part of Frontierland to Coco and the celebration of ‘Dia de los Meurtos’. Truth be told I only saw Coco recently, but I couldn’t help falling in love with the story and songs. As we still hadn’t eaten we figured we try our luck at the Fuente del Oro Restaurante, but it was also very busy there. At that point I was very hungry, so we decided to eat our sandwiches and fruit on a bench near the restaurant. And honestly we didn’t mind, because we were treated by a concert from Miguel (main character from Coco) and a Mariachi band. Ole!
Disneyland for foodies
Doing my Disneyland research I came across some delicious looking foods. I’ve seen Mermaid cupcakes, Mickey shaped donuts and macaroons. Unfortunately when I clicked upon the pictures I found out that these weren’t exactly taken in Disneyland Paris, but in the other Disney parks. A bit disappointed I turned to the biggest Disney fan I follow on Instagram; @sofiespinnoy, and she suggested I’d go to ‘Delicious Sweets’ upon Main Street and ‘Victoria’s Home-Style Restaurant’. So thanks Sofie for the tips! Delicious Sweets is primarily a candy store, but there’s also a little bakery inside where you can buy Mickey Meringues, Mickey cookies (plain and chocolate chip), Mickey marshmallows and Mickey marshmallows with chocolate dipped ears sprinkled with coconut. Obviously I choose the latter!
At Victoria’s Home-Style Restaurant you can eat Disney themed cakes and Mickey waffles. I decided to go for the Mickey-shaped waffle with Nutella and hazelnuts, which was absolutely delicious.
After my splurge with Mickey treats we went to the Castle stage once again. This time to enjoy the life show ‘Are you brave enough’ performed by the Disney villains. I’m pretty sure that this encounter with the Queen of Hearts, Ursula, Captain Hook, Gaston, Jafar and Cruella de Vil will give you the chills… and possibly plenty of laughs too.
Adventureland & Discoveryland
As it was my uncle’s first visit to Disneyland we wanted to show him the rest of park too, so we walked around Discoveryland to catch a glimpse of Buzz Lightyear and Star Wars. However as attractions like the Star Wars Hyperspace Mountain aren’t really for us, we quickly made way our way to Adventureland where we discovered a ‘whole new world’ and explored the city of Agrabah with Aladdin and the genie in the Aladdin Passage. If only we could do this on a flying carpet right?! Haha!
During a previous visit I loved the Pirates of the Caribbean attraction, but as fall isn’t exactly the season to get splashed, we skipped that and wandered around Pirates’ Beach looking for treasures and Johnny. No luck though!
Disney Stars on Parade
Every day at 5.30PM you can enjoy all your favorite Disney characters during a magical parade. We figured we head back to our spot half an hour early, but that trick didn’t work as this parade draws a lot more Disney fans. The views we had, were still pretty good, but I didn’t get any pictures (people and threes blocking my camera), which was a pity, as all my favorite Disney princesses were there. Nevertheless a great experience and ambiance!
After the parade a lot of people were going home, so we tried to fit in a few more attractions and went back to Fantasyland. We were able to ride a mine cart through the magical land of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. However the lines at the other attractions weren’t exactly better as before and we hated waiting. We decided to check out a few more shops at Main street and buy some souvenirs, before heading back to the train station. We had a wonderful day! Once again all the proof you need; you are never too old for Disney.
- We booked our train tickets with Quigo, a much cheaper alternative for the Thalys. Trains leave multiple times a day from Tourcoing (just a cross the border from Moscron) and get you to Marne-la-Valée station in 1,5 hour.
- Tourcoing is only a 45 minute drive from Ghent. We parked our car at Parking Saint Christophe and only paid € 5,80 for the entire day.
- We booked our Disney tickets on the Disney website.