The ULTIMATE GUIDE to Disneyland Paris

Including reviews of EVERYTHING we did, advice and recommended day plans.


Overall thoughts:

My husband and I went to Disneyland for the first time in August Half term 2017 for two days and had an incredible time! I’ve seen loads of recent one star reviews on Tripadvisor that are simply baffling. The only reason anyone could possibly hate this magical place is if they don’t plan their trip properly and leave their brains at the turnstiles as they enter the park. So by reading my guide to DLP I really hope you come back from your trip as happy as we were.

The experience we were after is probably different to yours, so although I will go into so. Much. Detail. Go and do research on your own of things you would really like to do. The main differences will probably be that we weren’t too bothered about actually meeting characters and we weren’t all that excited about the Star Wars area in discoveryland. We wanted to have a nice explore, go on some rides and feel some Disney magic that you wouldn’t get in other theme parks.

Advice for getting the best experience:

Firstly, do your research. You’re paying about £100 a ticket, why on earth would you go if you don’t know anything about it? But to be honest, if you’re reading this guide then you are researching, so I don’t need to explain that too much.

One of the main things we learned is to not get too bogged down with your plans. Don’t be afraid to wander from land to land as you find the best waiting times. Most importantly, don’t stick with your original plans if that would mean queueing for too long or joining a queue for a ride that’s broken down (we did see people do this which is just crazy!). Just go with the flow, set yourselves limits and be sensible.

Also, arrive EARLY!! Get there an hour early. If you don’t, you will miss out on getting into the park when it actually opens and therefore miss out on getting the best waiting times for the most popular rides. Yes, you will need to queue to get into the park no matter when you enter. The best thing to do is get the train because it pretty much lands you slap bang in the middle of the two parks. Or get a Taxi or stay near the parks. Just please, please, don’t. Drive. Judging by the bad reviews on Tripadvisor, most of the worst experiences start with “we drove in and got to the entrance at 10am”.

We went for 2 days, for us this was enough. More than that and we would’ve been Dinsey’d-out. What was really worth it was going to Paris for a day in-between. We actually went to Paris the day after our second day in Disneyland as well. This is so nice as you get to see some amazing sights and you have a good break from all the ruckus. To do this, we got a week train ticket which was about 30 euros each (well worth it) and a hotel halfway between Paris and Disneyland. Doing this was perfection!!

I’m not going to put the full guide here because it’s like 15 pages long… So instead I’ll put a set of links here to the other parts of the guide and you can decide which parts to read if you don’t want to read them all 🙂

Answers to questions we had before visiting the park

Day plans based on our thoughts and what we did.

Reviews of the places we ate at

Shortcuts and bad weather walkways (this post isn’t mine, it was just very useful to us so I’m linking it here. Thanks to Laura for writing this! You made our trip much easier!)

Rides and attractions- ratings and thoughts 



Rides and attractions at DLP- what to expect

Rides and attractions- ratings and thoughts (contains minor spoilers, I will warn you when a review has a spoiler, don’t worry!)

* = It was awful, don’t do it!

** = You might as well do it

*** = Worth seeing but not worth long queue times

**** = Should be a high priority on your list

***** = A must see attraction.

Something you should know: I am a big wimp when it comes to rides, I don’t like sharp turns or going upside-down so if I like a ride, it doesn’t do any of that 🙂 I will also say if a ride does anything that I found remotely scary in another way.

Pirates of the Caribbean: ***** AAAAAAH I cannot express how perfect this ride was!! Okay so it’s not the most thrilling ride in the world… it does have small moments but it’s no roller coaster. The best bit is obviously the theme. You need about a million eyes to catch everything, even the smell is reminiscent of being out at sea. If you’re familiar with the films you really cannot miss this.

Big thunder mountain: ***** If it wasn’t for Pirates, this would be my favourite ride in the park. It’s thrilling without being scary, the theme is great and the views it gives you of the park are incredible. Also, it’s much longer than loads of other roller coasters I’ve been on (but to be honest, this is true of every ride at DLP apart from the kids rides).

Hollywood Tower of Terror: ***** So I was really nervous to go on this ride but honestly, it’s delightful! Obviously if you don’t like drop rides, don’t go because that’s literally all it does. However, the ride technically isn’t a drop ride as it actually pulls you down faster than gravity which sounds scary but isn’t. This effect lifts you from your seat giving you a completely different ride experience from drop rides and although the drops were high they didn’t feel long because of this. The story is really good and the feeling it gives you is very pleasant. It left me giggling with delight all the way through and wanting to go back on… which we did!

Ratatouille: My husband’s rating: ***** My rating: **** The only reason I rated this lower than my husband is because Ratatouille is his favourite disney movie (drawing with Tangled- he has good taste!) and I didn’t like the actual ride as much as him. This ride is all about perspective as you’re shrunk down to the size of a rat and have an experience similar to what happened to Remy throughout the movie. I found some bits a teeny tiny bit scary but felt very safe the whole time, the ride is really smooth due to it being trackless and the visuals are absolutely stunning. It’s also good to have so much “interaction” with the characters as you’re kind-of being taken through the ride by them. My husband hugely enjoyed this ride and said he would give it 6 or seven stars if he could!

Seeing Maleficent: **** So if you didn’t know, something that it exclusive to DLP is that you can go under the castle and see Maleficent in her dragon form. It’s really cool to see and very unique.

Swiss Family Robinson tree house: **** This is a great little bonus if you’ve seen the film. (We watched the film especially so we would get the references and I would recommend this). It’s also open for a long time and incredibly beautiful in the dark.

Crush’s coaster: **** Duuuude, how could you not love a ride that has Crush in it? This ride has a great queue line, beautiful introduction, and a thrilling middle and end. I found that it was just at my limit as it was quite dark for the scarier parts which I didn’t really appreciate. But it really feels like you’re going down the e.a.c. and was very smooth and pretty overall.

Buzz Lightyear’s laser blast: ***.5 (couldn’t decide between 3 and 4 stars) A great ride for big kids, really nice interaction throughout the ride. The scenes it takes you through are very well done. The reason why it’s got 3 stars is because neither of us found it as interesting and cool as some of the other rides. Also the ride kept on stopping whilst we were on it which I know is usually unavoidable in a theme park and probably won’t happen to you but it did down-grade the experience somewhat.

Peter Pan: *** Peter pan’s ride was the biggest -and pretty much only- disappointment we had. The theme is lovely and very well executed, but we didn’t think it deserved all the hype it gets from other guests. The ride itself felt bumpy, jerky and uncomfortable. Considering that you’re meant to be flying in a ship, it didn’t make any sense to us why Disney wouldn’t update it to be a smoother ride for a more immersive experience. The other downside was the length, compared to the other rides it was pretty short and for a 40+ minute waiting time (it broke down whilst we were waiting in the queue) it just didn’t feel very worth it in the end.

Aladdin’s passage: *** If you did have to wait for this, it wouldn’t be worth it but you pretty much never have to wait which is nice. I actually really loved this, it’s a short walk-through with moving displays depicting different scenes from Aladdin’s story. It was just really nice to have a break from being in the hot sun and looking at interesting displays of one of our favourite Disney movies.

Studio Tram tour: *** THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS. A good word for the tram tour would be “dated”. It looked like it hadn’t changed since it was first made. Something about that had an odd sort of charm to it though. Also really interesting if you like the ins and outs of how some bits of movies are put together and like to see props from movies.Elisabeth’s warning for wimps going on the Studio Tram tour:

I might’ve been fine on Tower of Terror, I definitely wasn’t fine on this! The tram tour rocks you back and forth at one point and is quite disconcerting of you don’t like surprises. It feels like you’re going to get tipped off the road and I cried the whole time and was very shaken up!

Pirate beach and galleon: *** This was a nice thing to do for a bit of fun but it wasn’t overwhelming. It was just cool to be actually in a story instead of looking at it.

Sleeping Beauty’s castle interior: *** I feel like me and my husband would’ve enjoyed this a lot more had we seen Sleeping beauty recently. It takes you through the story with pretty pictures of certain scenes and was nice but not overly interesting.

Alice’s curious labyrinth: *** This was a fun and whimsical walk through/maze. I say walkthrough/maze… you can’t reeaally get lost in it. Everything looks fresh and pretty and the castle at the end is also quite interesting.

Phantom Manor: *** THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS. If you’re afraid of getting serious spooks on this ride, don’t be. Nothing jumps out at you and the ride doesn’t do anything crazy. It’s just a tour of scenes from a kind-of story with general halloweeny things like cobwebs, ghosts and skellingtons. The effects and visuals are very well done though and I enjoyed it as I love spooky things.

Thunder Mesa: *** Just a very pleasant, slow boat ride. It does have little things that you can’t see if you don’t go on which gives the experience some added value. The boat itself also looks lovely!

Hyperspace mountain: *** Unfortunately for me, this space mountain is the only one in any disney park that goes upside down so I didn’t ride. My husband did however, he said that it would’ve been quite good had it been in any other park but as it was in Disneyland, it failed in comparison to the other rides in terms of theming. If you’re only going on it for Star wars, don’t. You don’t see many Star Wars characters or things, it’s just ships shooting and some stars here and there. Also not the most comfortable of rides.

Rock ‘n’ Roller coaster: *** This ride goes upside down so I didn’t ride but my husband did. Again, he said that in any other park it would’ve been good but because it didn’t have a strong theme it’s just not as good as the other rides. This was your typical launch coaster experience, in the dark with aerosmith music playing. Also not the most comfortable of rides.

Le pays des contes de fées: *** This was delightful, the only reason it’s got 3 stars was that it’s not extremely interesting. It’s just very serene and you get to see some things that you wouldn’t see on Casey Junior. It’s was nice to see some scenes from lesser known Disney movies and very refreshing to not see any Frozen things for once! Also, there are some scenes that are just from fairy tales that weren’t made into films which was lovely and surprising.

Carouselle: ** I went on this at night which was just magical. The music on this ride is fantastic, playing traditional carouselle covers of disney princess songs. It made me feel very warm inside! But it’s a maximum of 3 minutes long which is sad as when you get on you feel like you’re more or less getting straight off again… so, if it’s got a short queue, do it but if it’s a long wait, just watch it from the railings and listen to the lovely music.

Mad hatters tea cups: ** This is also beautiful at night, all the lanterns are lit and the mirrored ceiling gives it a really nice look. Sadly, this ride is about the same length of the carouselle or shorter so again isn’t worth long waits.

Les Mysteres: ** We didn’t have any clue what this was about so we weren’t very interested. However, if you know the background I think you’d have much more appreciation for it. It was just nice for us to get out of the heat and look at good displays.


You may have noticed that nothing we went on has a one star review. I find this extremely impressive even for Disney. We thought that everything had a good place and was entertaining and worth it in some way. To be honest, I think this is one of the only parks that I’ve thought that literally everything was worth doing to props to you Disney!

recommended plan for the best 2 days at DLP

This is our day plan of Disneyland Paris edited to what we did in the parks and what we thought of each thing. Some of it is in a different order than what we actually did due to rides having technical issues or long queuing times. You should note that every time it says “meet character” here, we didn’t actually meet them, we just stared awkwardly and took pictures of them between seeing other guests. I go into these experiences more in my questions and answers post.

* = Worth seeing if you’ve got spare time

** = Very good, worth seeing

*** = Must see

Day 1:

9:00am Queue to get tickets- make sure you exchange anything you have for actual tickets which is what we had to do as we only had a pre-paid voucher. If you’re unsure, it’s always better to ask to avoid any disappointment when queuing to get in.

10:00am Enter Walt disney studios park- we were lucky in that the whole park and all the rides opened at 9:30. This also happened at Disneyland but anything that hadn’t been opened for early magic hours  was shut until 10. However, it is still worth it to wait at the short cut 1 entrance to Frontierland for half an hour to get to Big Thunder mountain (day 2).


Head over to Toon studio

                                                     Popular ride: Crush’s coaster *** Go straight there, don’t look back, don’t get distracted! Some people run… don’t do that. If you don’t go here first you’ll end up waiting for over an hour at all times of the day without fail.

Fast passes needed: Ratatouille the adventure *** (we did single rider, really worth it if you can’t get a fastpass)

Mickey and the Magician*** (lasts 20mins)


Head over to Backlot

Fast Pass needed: Rock ’N’ Roller coaster * (this is my husband’s rating as I hate rides that go upside down.)

Meet Spiderman*


Go to Production courtyard

Fast Passes: Twilight zone Hollywood tower of terror *** (to be honest, you don’t usually need a fastpass for this because the wait time doesn’t usually go above 30 mins)

Meet Captain Jack (or friends) ** (we didn’t actually go and see him at all but I know I would’ve enjoyed to at least see him from a distance)

Studio Tram Tour * (see rides reviews for a warning about this ride.)

3pm consider leaving Walt Disney studios park


Enter Disneyland!

Do anything that either has good waiting times or is something you really want to see. (Just in case you miss it on day 2.) We went on and saw: Pirates of the Caribbean, Peter Pan’s ride, The Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse, the Pirate area in adventureland, the castle and underneath and just had a general explore.

An hour before the parade head over to where you want to stand for it. The best position is on the corner just before the finish (near Fantasyland).

5:30pm Parade *** We LOVED the parade!!! Really worth going twice, the second day we got a front row view!

Explore round the park.


Suggestion- A night ride on the Carousel **– quite short but very magical! Only really worth it if 20 mins or under waiting time.

10pm Head down in front of the castle for the lights show

Suggestion- sit on a bench and when the show starts stand on the bench! We didn’t do this but apparently it’s allowed (stated by a guest online). We were lucky, on this day everyone stayed sat down so we all got a good view.

11pm (Park close, this happens at different times depending on when you go in the year) Light show *** DO THIS TWICE! It’s soooo beautiful and you may get better seats or a different view the second day.

If you leave with the crowds, you may get a chance to wave at Mickey who might be standing on the balcony of the Hotel. If you stay where you are until most of the guests leave you can get really good pictures of the castle at night but may miss Mickey. We did both!



Day 2

9:00 am get tickets and queue at entrance

10:00 am enter Disneyland!

Head over to Frontierland and get to Big thunder mountain as fast as possible, get on or get fast passes. We did this and waited about 10 minutes! You WILL NOT get on if you go ANY later than the park opening… Unless you want to wait for over an hour!!! (See shortcut number 1 in shortcuts section)



Fast Passes needed: Big thunder mountain ***

Forest of enchantment musical adventure (20mins) ** (we did this in the afternoon- check the times)

Phantom Manor **

Thunder Mesa River Boat **

Meet Woody * on the way to the train station

If you can get the train from here to Fantasyland, it’s lovely and there’s a cool surprise at the end!



Sleeping beauty’s castle *** and see maleficent *** (For good pictures of you and the castle with no one else in shot go to the left of the castle, there’s a photo op point that’s usually empty)

Alice’s curious labyrinth **

Le pays des contes de fées **

Carousel **  (at night is best)

Popular rides: Peter pan ride *

Mad hatters tea cups * (In the evening it might be five minutes wait. If so, then it’s worth it!)

Meet Queen of Hearts *


Fastpass needed: Buzzlightyear **

Les Mysteres under sea tour *

Fast Passes Needed: Hyperspace mountain * (This is my husband’s rating as I hate rides that go upside down.)



Popular rides:  Pirates of the Caribbean ***

Swiss family treehouse (worth visiting again when it’s dark, sooo pretty!)***

Pirate beach and pirate galleon! **

Aladdin’s passage **

Meet Peter Pan (and/or friends) *

Meet Aladdin (or friends)*


An hour before the parade head over to where you want to stand for it. The best position is on the corner just before the finish. (near Fantasyland)

5:30pm Parade *** (your time may be different)

After the Parade, we headed back to the Studio park to do two of our favourite rides: Tower of Terror and Ratatouille. We entered back into Disneyland at around 7:30 and explored Main street.


Suggestion- climb the castle in the evening light. -We didn’t do this but apparently you get a lovely view of the park. We thought the Swiss family Robinson tree house was better for a pretty sight in the dark.

10pm Head in front of the castle for light show

Suggestion- sit on a bench and when the show starts stand on the bench! -We didn’t do this but apparently it’s allowed. (stated by a guest online)

11pm- Light show ***