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A Magical Disney Christmas

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MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!🎄🎁🎊

I hope you’ve all had a wonderful break! So if you’re an avid follower of my  Instagram account you’ll know that I’ve not long returned from an AMAZING trip to the beautiful Disneyland Resort Paris with two of my best friends, Lauren and Tiffany, where I had the most magical time! Here’s some of the highlights from our Disney trip, as well as a lo-down on the parks, hotel, restaurants and attractions.. get ready to be mesmerised!

 

The Journey

We chose to travel the most convenient way possible to Paris and hopped on the fantastic Eurostar from St Pancras in the heart of London direct to the Marne-La-Vallee station at the entrance of Disneyland itself. The journey couldn’t have been easier! All it took was a quick check in at St Pancras, a smooth 2 and a half hour train ride between England and France and before we knew it we were on Disney soil! Don’t forget to check out the GIANT Christmas tree at the station made up of hundreds of Disney toys- so beautiful!

Our booking included the Disney Express option which was fantastic and well worth adding on if you’re travelling as a family. The option enabled us to check in to our hotel on board the Eurostar; Disney cast members registered our bags and handed out our park tickets and accommodation vouchers before we arrived at Marne-La-Vallee station. We then made our way up to the Disney Express stop to drop off our luggage, safe in the knowledge they would be waiting for us at our hotel later, and were then able to head straight to the parks for our first taste of Disney magic!

The Hotel

We stayed at the cosy 3* Sequoia Lodge Disney Hotel which was perfectly located right on Lake Disney just to the rear of the fantastic Disney Village. The hotel was impressive on arrival and, after a brief check in, we were taken to the outdoor luggage store to retrieve our bags and take them straight up to our room. As we had already ‘checked in’ on the Eurostar this usually painful process was nice and easy and super speedy!

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As there were three of us we had two comfortable double beds in a good size room which was clean and tidy and boasted a fantastic view across to Lake Disney. The bathroom was spotless and there was plenty of hanging safe along with a fully working safe to store our valuables.

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The cosy bar and onsite boutique store at the Sequoia made for excellent facilities onsite and we heard great things about the swimming pool – unfortunately it was closed during our visit but we would have loved to go!

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Breakfast was included with each day of our stay and we were treated to an unlimited continental feast of cereals, croissants, breads, meats and cheeses. We were seated in the Hunters Grill or Beaver Creek areas which doubled up as buffet restaurants in the evening- both looked lovely but sadly we didnt have chance to eat in the hotel!

Top Tip! Take some rolls and fillings and make your own lunch to take with you to the parks- this will save you a fortune on daytime meals throughout your stay!

Click here to read my Trip Advisor review of the Sequoia Lodge Hotel.

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Disneyland Park

The Park is split into 5 lands all filled with fun and adventure offering something different for Disney’s guests….

Main Street USA is where most of the action happens, including the many daily parades and character appearances. The star of the show is the beautiful Sleeping Beauty’s Castle which looks even more magical lit up for Christmas!

Fantasyland best for little ones, fly with Dumbo and Peter Pan or lose yourself wandering around Alice’s maze in Wonderland. There’s also plenty of opportunity for Meet n Greets and a chance to spot Royalty outside the Princess Pavilion!

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Adventureland best for boys who’ll adore the Pirates of the Caribbean theme and the rides/attractions that are in this section. There are also plenty of restaurants and cafe’s to choose from.

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Frontierland the Wild West theme runs prominently throughout this land and is reflected in the fantastic Cowboy shops, restaurants and attractions. Yee-hah!

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Discoveryland explore the sci-fi element of Disney and find your inner geek. The scariest ride in the park is also found in this land – Space Mountain Mission 2 is not for the faint hearted!

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Walt Disney Studios

Split into two parts, Front Lot and Back Lot, the Studios offer a wealth of fun and discovery and are a fantastic way to spend the day! There’s a whole host of top rides including Crush’s Coaster (scarier than it looks!), Aerosmith Rock n Roller Coaster and the terrifying Tower of Terror.

There’s a Toy Story village for kids (yeah we definitely didn’t go on those rides… ;)) as well as animation shows and Stitch Live over on the Disney Junior stage. Although the Studios no longer hosts a daily parade, there are plenty of Meet n Greets throughout as well as restaurants, kiosks and Disney stores.

Disney Village

The Village is an additional bonus and a great way of extending the Disney magic way into the evening after a long day of exploring at the parks. The Village is home to a number of popular restaurants, bars and cafe’s as well as a large range of Disney Stores for hours of endless shopping!

We chose to go on the fantastic Panoramagique, a hot air balloon ride, which took us 100ft up in the air for the most magnificent views across the parks and the rest of Marne-La-Vallee. The cost was just 12 euros per adult and this was a great way to end our last day at Disney!

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Disney Attractions

If the parks and studios aren’t enough to keep you entertained and you’re still wanting MORE you’ll be pleased to know that Disney runs tonnes of extra shows and programs throughout the year and Christmas is no exception! We were truly mesmerised by the incredible lights show, Disney Dreams of Christmas, an illuminated musical extravaganza bringing the magic of Disney (and Christmas) to life with water fountains, glittering lasers and spectacular fireworks!

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During our stay there was also a host of other shows on offer throughout the week, including a Frozen Sing-a-long show at the brilliant Chapparel Theatre (kids will love it!), a special Frozen parade, and a Royal Christmas Wishes show on the Castle Stage featuring all your favourite Disney Princes and Princesses. We caught this show twice throughout our stay and it was beautiful. The Disney Magic On Parade runs daily through the park and is not to be missed!

We also bumped into the Princes and Princesses walking through the parks just after the shows had finished, and we caught them at the start as well just before they went on stage! Little finds like that just add to the magic and we were so pleased to have seen the shows. At the end of each day there’s also a Magical Tree Lighting Ceremony with Mickey & Friends where the giant Disney tree is spectacularly illuminated- don’t miss it!

Eating Out

Our stay was offered with a free Half Board Meal Plan which I had never used before, I’ve previously only stayed Bed and Breakfast but the Meal Plan worked surprisingly well! Our standard option entitled us to breakfast and dinner as well as an afternoon Tea Time Treat (soft drink and sweet snack) on each night of our stay. The Meal Plan limits the restaurants you can eat out in for dinner, so booking ahead is strongly recommended. Don’t do what we did and leave it til the day otherwise you’ll miss out!

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We ate in the Silver Steakhouse in the Disney Park, the Empire State Lounge in Hotel New York and the superb Cafe Mickey in the Disney Village. For lunches/afternoon snacks we ate in the parks outlets including Bella Notte, Toad Hall and Casey’s Corner as well as Annette’s Diner in the village. The food was expensive when we weren’t using our vouchers so money wise it’s a great option to have the meal vouchers included!

Disney Characters

We were on the lookout for plenty of characters throughout our stay and we certainly weren’t disappointed- we saw LOADS! Christmas was a great time to see extra characters in additional parades and there were lots of Meet n Greet locations set up between the two parks. My friend Lauren brought an autograph book and we were like little children running around chasing all the characters for their signatures!

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We queued for over an hour to meet Winnie the Pooh, Marie from Aristocats and, the stars of the show, Mickey & Minnie themselves. We also met Pluto, Goofy, Chip n Dale, Gepetto from Pinocchio and Rafiki & Timon from The Lion King as well as glimpsing the Princes and Princesses and lots of other characters in the fantastic parades.

For us, character interaction was a massive part of our trip and the highlight was the incredible Cafe Mickey, an amazing dining experience for adults and children alike. Located in the Disney Village, the menu is pricey but it is worth it to have the interaction with the characters!

The likes of Mickey, Minnie, Tigger, Eeyore, Goofy, Pluto and many more come round to each table to spend time and have photos with each guest making you feel truly special whilst enjoying your meal. I’ve been three times throughout my life at different ages and I have just ADORED every single visit, I’ve had wonderful experiences which will always stay with me!

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about my amazing Disney trip.. I can’t wait to go back to my happy place in the not too distant future! Have you been to Disneyland before? Or have you been to Walt Disney World in Florida? How do the two compare? I’d love to find out!

Hope you’ve had a magical Christmas!

Love Jess x

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