Disneyland Resort Paris Trip Report
27th of November until the 1st of December 2008
Arriving back from Orlando on my Virgin Atlantic flight to London Gatwick around 7.00 am in the morning. I collected my luggage and headed straight to the Coach Station to get a National Express Coach over to Heathrow Airport. Transfer time took about an hour. As I would be flying with British Airways, I stopped off and Terminal 5 the newest Terminal building at Heathrow and earlier this year that was at the centre of major criticism, due to loosing thousands of bags on its opening week. I checked in using one of the DIY check in booths, but was unable to check my bags in until 2 hours before the flight.
So just sitting around I brought a few magazines and a copy of the Express newspaper from WH Smith and purchased a Sausage Sandwich in some cafť. The building while an improvement on some of the pre existing buildings at Heathrow like Terminal 3, still did not blow me away, and I have seen much better Airport Terminals in parts of Asia. Finally I was allowed to check in luggage and go though to the departure gate. Terminal 5 is also home to Gordon Ramsay’s latest Restaurant, so perhaps worth checking out if you have time.
The flight was late leaving due to ground staff checking in someone who due to an injury was unfit to fly, but argued his case. Finally leaving 25 mins late we had a short 40 min flight landing at CDG Airport around 16.00 pm. I was planning to catch the VEA Shuttle to the Santa Fe, but could not see any signs for it, so with little interest to start looking, I just got a train instead, which took 10 mins. Arriving at the station I walked over to a bus, which took me directly over to the Santa Fe. Check in was easy with no queue and I was given my pack with room key, and park tickets. The Castmember than spent a few minutes with me going over the basics like extra hours, before pointing out the hotel room. I took a good 10 minutes trying to find it to no luck so ended up going back to reception. The Castmember got his jacket and came out with me to look, and it turned out I had misread his 1 for a 7. This Castmember than made sure I got in the room alright and felt I didn’t have enough light in the room and insisted he would get maintenance on to it right away. Before leaving he pointed out that the park had a special parade on tonight not to be missed. Of course he was talking about the Fantaillusion parade and so I grabbed my camera and made my way to a coach that by luck had just turned up.
Reaching the gates around 6.00 pm I could hear the Enchanted Candlebration ceremony so ran up to the top of Main Street to see the show. Fantastic show featuring a number of good lighting effects including the Castle looking its best for the holiday season.
After the show I popped into Coke Corner to buy a foot long Hot Dog which DLRP still sell unlike the Magic Kingdom, in fact on the whole the cuisine at DLRP despite my heavy criticism in the past, is still much better than the crap served up at WDW most of the time. And at least DLRP has yet again improved on the selection since my last trip. Including selling the Mickey Shaped burgers that were made famous by TDR.
Checking out all the decorations I noticed people were starting to find places for the Parade, so after following the advice of board members I decided to see it from the Castle area. While waiting it suddenly hit me on how cold it was at the park, compare to Orlando whose climate I was a bit more used to, after having just spent 10 nights there.
Also interesting to note was just how lite the crowds appeared to be tonight, a good alternative to what I witnessed on the Weekend. This was my first experience seeing Fantaillusion which I actually enjoyed quite a bit. Much better than Spectromagic, with the floats being far more advanced from a technical stand point and larger in scale. That’s not to say I don’t like Spectromagic either but I felt Fantaillusion was a better parade, I only wished I had a chance to see the full version that played out in Tokyo.
Leaving the park I really could not be bothered with the Village so waited
about 10-15 minutes to get on a over crowded bus back to the Santa Fe, before heading to the room to sleep. The time difference between Europe and the US can be a killer for a traveller.