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Photo TR - Disneyland Resort Paris


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My wife, Rebekah, and I spent a few days at the end of our England-France vacation at the Disneyland Resort Paris. We were both fascinated and dismayed by many of the differences between this group of parks and their brethren across the ocean. We spent a total of 3 days at the resort and hopped between the parks quite often. For sake of simplicity, I am posting the pictures in park groups

 

Note: pictures are reversed... so it's best to start at the bottom and work up.

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Current park map showing Tower of Terror and Crush's Coaster.

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Back of the park program.

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Heading up to the entrance.

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Heading through the admission gates.

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Walking into the soundstage entrance... did I miss the reason they're still heavily advertising CARS?

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Inside the soundstage entrance.

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The view as you walk out of the soundstage entrance.

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Into Rock-N-Roller Coaster.... we had no audio at all in the main show room. It was incredibly quiet during our ride.

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The ride operator is very visible in the load area of this version.

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Beginning of the launch.

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Shot #2 of the launch.

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I can't help but love the beginning of this ride.

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Time to check out the backlot Tram Tour.

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From the tram we see a nice side view of Tower of Terror.

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The tour featured a duplicate of the Catastrophe Canyon sequence.

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One difference was this static set from Dinotopia.

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The other difference was the Reign of Fire set on which a fireball shoots from the sewer . That's about all that happens on this set.

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The strangest souvenir we saw was a Jobox full of American license plates. If I had known, I would have brought some in my luggage to sell.

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They had rodent-friendly souvenirs. We have 3 pet rats, so Rebekah was a big fan of this hat.

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Animagique made for a nice sitting break for 30 minutes. It's okay, but if time is tight, it's missable.

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Time to head over to the very newly opened Tower of Terror.

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Yes, that's a bunch of kids crawling around in the fountain and poking at the fiber optic signage.

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The main entrance was very small and kind of 'missable' if you were walking by when the walkway is crowded.

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The outdoor section of queue was REALLY boring. I missed the overgrown gardens, fountains and such.

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Unused section of queue. We never saw it used all 3 days, even when the wait got to 60 minutes.

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Heading inside from the outdoor queue.

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Main lobby atrium area.

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Waiting for the library.

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The library is pretty much the same. Just dubbed in French.

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Yes, I'm afraid it's the dreaded hallway. The ride was pretty much a duplicate of the one at California Adventure.

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Exiting through the giftshop.

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The exit from the giftshop.

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After leaving Tower of Terror, we grabbed a snack at the courtyard nearby and watched the group next to us and their very interesting snack selections.

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She ate an entire cucumber while we sat there.

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Over to the original Moteurs Action! stunt show.

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The grandstand for this one is quite a bit smaller than the one in Orlando.

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The Tower of Terror looms over the Moteurs Action set.

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The bacon cheeseburgers at Disney Paris use giant discs of bacon. A little bacon in every bite.... mmmmmm.

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Yet another thunderstorm passing through.

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This kid seems to have had just about enough for the day.

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Now over to the Crush Coaster....

You get to watch cars coming by outside the building.

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This happens just after you leave the load platform inside.

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Closeup to show car carriage and grab handles.

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A view of the show building from the beginning of the queue.

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The ride really was a lot of fun. The first minute is spent "dark ride" style going through scenes from the movie. The second minute is the coaster, which was extremely smooth and quite fun overall. Imagine Space Mountain in free rotating cars.

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At an early point in the queue, they hold you back for 5 minutes at a time. But that didn't stop this kid from just crawling in through the landscaping and bypassing about 30 minutes of waiting. Line jumping was a common practice for the locals... both child and adult.

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The first part of the queue takes you towards the show building and the blessed overhang that covers the second part.

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Once on the side of the show building, you navigate another 30 minutes of turnarounds before heading inside.

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First view of the inside queue after walking inside.

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Up the staircase that goes across the load platform. The car in this picture is coming back in to unload.

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Ride operator sits behind the window under the Angel's Cove sign.

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Closeup of seats. These were, IMO, the most comfortable coaster seats I've ever been in. The center grab handle was really nice.

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The cars constantly move through the load platform.

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The seagulls constantly move and occasionally make "mine" noises together.

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Our favorite sign in the queue.

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By the time we came back out, the line was back up to 120 minutes....

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During one of the sunny breaks in the day, people just started camping out on grassy sections of the park. It was like being back on a college campus.

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The queue for Stitch LIVE was always long and, as it's not really our cup of tea, we never made it inside.

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Is it just me... or is this the most out of place attraction at the Studios park???

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Over to Cinemagique to end the day. I recommend not missing this show.... it really is fun to watch. This was actually our 2nd visit to see it.

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This show was one of our favorite exclusive attractions in both parks. They combine footage from classic movies, live action, and special effects on a large format screen.

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This guy figures very prominently into the show. If you go twice, it's fun to watch him during the preshow.

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Rebekah is very excited by the HUGE Indiana Jones promo at the Disney Village cineplex. Only a couple more weeks.....

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On to Planet Hollywood for some dinner.

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Bekah got her fave.... Cap'n Crunch chicken tenders.

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I got the Tostadas. I had been aching for some American style 'texmex' for two weeks.

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The Disney Village is their blend of the Marketplace, Downtown Disney, and Pleasure Island. The cheesy Eiffel tower vendors run rampant here and really make the entrance look trashy.

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We checked out the only nightclub on resort property. The first time we went, we were the only ones in the building other than staff. The next time we decided to turn around and leave when we were told that we would have to check every camera, bag, coat, sweater, etc at 2 Euro each. No thank you.....

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What is that in the distance.....

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This balloon would take people up to viewing height to overlook the property.

 

Note: Pictures and descriptions are reversed, so start at the bottom and work up.

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Great Report!

 

Does Crush have Fastpass?! There is no way I'll be able to wait 2 hours for that ride!!! I'm also really glad they put the seagulls in it!

 

Glad to have some more rodent people on the board!

 

As for the report being backwards...just edit your first post and tell people to start at the bottom. There's not an easy way to flip them all around. For your next batch just do it in order, when you preview it will show up wrong, but when you post it will be just fine!

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Crush did NOT have a fastpass... which was pretty dumb, considering the magic carpet ride next door did.

 

Over the 3 days we were there, the shortest wait time we saw was 50 minutes. My advice is sucking it up and getting in line anytime it shows between 50-60, as it would jump up to 120 a lot.

 

Other interesting thing was that Crush has been there the better part of a year with no fastpass and 2 hr. waits, while Tower of Terror just opened, with average 45 minute waits and has fastpass.

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I stupidly realized I left a few photos out of this part of the report.... so here they are.

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Finally, a nice sunset shot of the water tower.

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The information board for the Studios park. The boxes next to the show times are little video monitors that show clips of the respective shows.

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They're running 2 separate High School Musical shows multiple times a day in the Studios park. It was hard to get a steady shot, as I was attempting to hold the vomit reflex in check.

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I love the way you can see the TOT from all angles.

 

It really does act as a visual centerpiece for the park, which is strange since it is such a newly added attraction and the big visual centerpiece attractions are normally there from the time of opening.

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Nice report and some very lovely pictures. Thanks for sharing!

 

Now that I've seen your beautiful pics, I hope I can visit the Studios real soon! I've been to DLP when I was 12 and the Studios weren't even built back then...

 

(Btw: totally off topic but does anyone knows when is the best time to visit DLP? Is it always this busy?)

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Great report so far. I'm looking forward to part 2.

 

My next visit since 2 years is scheduled for August this year. I'm really looking forward to it.

I guess best way to ride Crush is to head to it at opening time.

 

 

^

After X-mas holidays till end March, on weekdays and not in 'our' or neighbouring countries' February holidays, you should be fine.

Of course it can be unpleasantly cold in those months.

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Does Crush have Fastpass?! There is no way I'll be able to wait 2 hours for that ride!!! I'm also really glad they put the seagulls in it!

 

It's looking like a sprint to Crush on Friday morning as soon as they open. Unfortunately, this would take away some Extra Magic Hours time in Disneyland Park.

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Crush Coaster is always a 90-120 minutes wait! What the park figured out to make the stampeding at opening easier... If the park opens at 10am, they'll actually open the gates 20-30 minutes earlier and allow people to line up in front of the entrances. We showed up early enough that we were the 3rd group in line, the ride opened and by 10:05am, we were on the ride!

 

There has been talks ever since the ride opened of adding a single riders line. They tested it at Indiana Jones and the Temple of Peril, it worked good there, so we can only hope Crush Coaster is the next one to receive it...

 

They tested fast pass on the ride shortly after opening and it was a nightmare! The stand-by line barely moved and it had turned into a fast pass only ride when you start counting in the ride's shutdowns.

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Crush Coaster is always a 90-120 minutes wait! What the park figured out to make the stampeding at opening easier... If the park opens at 10am, they'll actually open the gates 20-30 minutes earlier and allow people to line up in front of the entrances. We showed up early enough that we were the 3rd group in line, the ride opened and by 10:05am, we were on the ride!

 

Thanks for the tips. Geez. Guess I might have to show up at like 9:30 AM and waste 30 minutes of Extra Magic Hours.

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Note: pictures are reversed... so it's best to start at the bottom and work up.

 

We really need to make a sticky on this. If you preview your pictures before submitting the thread, they appear backwards. They won't be once you post, they go up in the order you uploaded them.

 

It's a quirk in the system, and happens all the time.

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So with the recent additions of the Toon courtyard with Crush and the Cars ride, and the addition of Hollywood BLV and TOT, would you still consider this part a Half Day park?

 

I would definitely plan for a whole day at the Studios park. We were on property for 3 days and still didn't get everything in. The addition of wait times for Crush and TOT really eat up a considerable amount of time.

 

Another sidenote on schedule for this park... contrary to the other live shows, they don't run as many performances per day of Moteurs Action!.... sometimes only once daily. Plus, the seating capacity is smaller than the one in Orlando. So if you want to see it, check the times and schedule around it.

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Wow. These are some great pictures! I would really hope to make it to DLP someday soon. The Aladdin carpets do look out of place. With the Crush's Coaster and the Cars' Ride it does look a little displaced. I can see it going in Adventureland, They should re-theme it to Wall-E if the show does well in the box office. Overall, nice Tr. It's sad that they decided to "remake" DCA's TOT. The WDW or TDL one would look much better there.

>> jake

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Other interesting thing was that Crush has been there the better part of a year with no fastpass and 2 hr. waits, while Tower of Terror just opened, with average 45 minute waits and has fastpass.

 

The hourly capacity on Crush is probably not over 1000, while ToT is most likely over 2000.

 

This info is not 100% accurate.

 

--Jay

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Crush tops at 930pph. And this is theoretical capacity. If you count the three-rider cars, some VIP passes here and there, baby switches, some typically French line jumping and random downtime due to the DR part having a higher capacity than the coaster part and causing stalling in the DR, the effective capacity is way lower.

 

Now imagine you put away 50% of normal line practical capacity to get fast passes in... I'm sure even a 2-seater Sling Shot line would move faster!

 

Adding a single Rider line will only help the ride to tend to its theoretical capacity which is still extremely poor for such a popular disney coaster and won't help the normal line moving faster except if it helps reducing downtime by evening the cars weight! This coaster is doomed to have horrendously long lines until the park as grown enough to have people interested in other rides. I've queued for it once, I won't ever be queueing for it for more than 20 minutes!

 

Tower Of Terror has a capacity of around 2000pph (I personally think it's a tad less), so cutting the capacity by two to add in fast passes is doable (one library, and thus one loading platform for normal line, the other one for fast passes). Still it's not perfect since some operators tend to do their show over and over once you're in the cabin and ready to dispatch. This is great for the riders, but not for the guests in line who have to wait more.

 

Fast Passes for Flying Carpets are useless since no one ever goes on this ride anyway (with rising attendance due to ToT, this may change though).

 

The best times to get there (for attendance) are as Groteslurf said in end january and february (avoid european 'snow' holidays though). September is also a great time to go, between the end of summer holidays and the beginning of the Halloween Season, the park is usually quite empty. And it's not quite as cold as in February!

 

Anyway enough with Off Topic, this is a very nice TR, I'm really thrilled to get back there in July!

 

I've never ridden the balloon, is it worth it?

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Unfortunately, we never had the chance to ride in the observation balloon. The stormy weather was so unpredictable throughout our 3 day visit, that it was constantly 'downed' due to wind/rain. It also never flew at night, to our knowledge. This may change once the busier summer season starts. We could see the balloon when it was at viewing height from many sections of both parks, so I'd bet that it has a pretty good view.

 

Regarding Knottslover77's response as to the accuracy of the times and facts I listed.... I simply relayed the differences between average wait times and availability of fastpasses for these two rides as we observed them on our 3 day visit. I'm not sure how this information can be incorrect. Anywho.... as Olimonn says... enough with off topic.

 

I should be able to get part 2 of the report up by this afternoon, other work permitting .

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As promised.... part 2 of 3 of my Disneyland Paris Resort trip report. (This time in correct order ) This section features our visits to the Disneyland park over 3 days time, Tower of Terror advertising, and other miscellaneous 'stuff'. If you missed part 1, go check it out as it features the Studios park and other miscellaneous.

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I like the outdoor load platform... it really cuts down on light spill inside the main show building.

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Now for Space Mountain. Rebekah makes the grimace face, as the last time she rode this was extremely rough and gave her a major headache

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Just a friendly piece of advice... two grown adults do not fit into the Orbitron rockets without leaving traumatic and scarring memories. That didn't keep us from trying though.

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The Nautilus walk through is a nice break if you want to get away from the weather for a few minutes.

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Now, over to Discoveryland. As you can see, the fog hasn't burned off completely.

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They laid out a nice selection of cereal, fruit, meat, cheese, pastries, coffee, juice, and milk. The atmosphere was nice and the space wasn't crowded at all.

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Time for breakfast. Our hotel stay came with a breakfast each morning. You choose between eating at the hotel food court or one of the park locations. I highly recommend any of the park locations, as the one at the hotel was a nightmare of chaotic proportions.

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Some of the miniature sets are worth seeing... if the wait isn't too long.

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The Casey Jr. Circus Train

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This just makes me sad that it's only a restaurant and not the ride.

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Obligatory self photo on the Teacups. I think we take this every time we ride this at any of the parks.

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It was strange to see the teapot not as the turntable centerpiece.

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The Snow White queue features pro-rodent architecture.

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Behold the unbelievable...

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I feel unfairly represented in this scene... we're not all farmers in the Midwest....

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While we were waiting for our breakfast reservation time, we checked out some of Fantasyland during Extra Magic Hours.

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The top of the castle got lost in the fog.

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The next morning, we woke up early to very foggy surroundings.

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Current Disneyland park map.

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When it's wet, the floor under the train station was like an ice skating rink. We watched several people get 'owned' by the floor.

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The rains start up again as we leave for the night.

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The views on this ride at night are even better! I highly recommend going after dark.

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As I said before... IMO, this version of Big Thunder Mountain beats out all others!

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There must have been some major issues with fastpass distribution for this ride, as the fastpass wait time was about 45 minutes. Here we see a 5th train being added into rotation.

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The storms quickly passed and we headed on to Big Thunder Mountain for a night ride.

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We took this little-known back hallway behind Main Street back to Frontierland to see if we can use our fastpass before leaving. There is one of these hallways that runs the entire length of Main Street on each side. They are usually less crowded during times of heavy traffic.

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Rebekah watches the sky as the crowds scatter to get out of the rain.

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Just after the parade, another storm stirs up.

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This lady was working entirely too hard to get a souvenir streamer for her kid.

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Though I'm not entirely convinced that Aerial's tummy overflow was because of an insulated suit.....

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The characters were all wearing insulated suits under their costumes, so they looked like they'd been eating too many pastries.

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Jessie had some trouble on the float. She got completely caught up in her leash. By the time she was freed by her wrangler it was time for the other characters to come back to the float.

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Is it just me or does the Army man face look like Harrison Ford?

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Time for the parade...

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This wasn't at Disney.... but rather at a bird market in Paris. It was the overall trip winner for worst toupee, of which we also saw many. Rebekah had to get closer to get a better look.

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Speaking of strange hairstyles... this was our winner for best mullet we saw at Disney. We saw many, but this one was fantastic!

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We saw several cast members with haircuts that would never be approved by parks in the states.

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This was really strange. They pull kitchen staff from the restaurants to do parade walk duty.

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Waiting for the parade, people just go wherever they want. They hop railings to stand in the grass, they stand on fences, and there are no cast members to pay any attention to this.

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I now present a rarity... a hand written fastpass.

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We enjoyed this version so much, we decided to go and get a fastpass. The cast member said they were out, but he was still hand-writing some for people who asked.

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The views from this version of Big Thunder Mountain are awesome! Being out on its own island really makes this ride a standout. There are some exciting surprises for those who have never been on this version.

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From the exit of Phantom Manor, we can see our next ride... Big Thunder Mountain!

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The view of the house after you exit. I know I bring up a lot of the problems this ride had, but don't get me wrong... I love Haunted Mansion in all it's incarnations... that's why I hate to see a version of it not maintained making for an incomplete guest experience.

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The singing busts are only a quartet here. Unfortunately, there was no audio at all in the Phantom Canyon scene.

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The doomed bride was a storyline that wasn't completely clear, as we had no doombuggy audio 2 of the 3 times, and the 3rd time was all French. I got the basics of the story... but it would have been nice to hear some of the details.

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The load area of this version is quite different. Unfortunately, the lighting change effect wasn't working.

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The less than patient French crowd that shared the elevator with us was finally let off and we enjoyed an uncramped minute in the gallery queue. You can see a portrait of the bride at the end of the hallway.

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Like Pirates, Phantom Manor was plagued by numerous mechanical and audio problems. On this visit, the elevator refused to move once the doors were closed and there was no audio track. Thus, we stood in the elevator for about 2 minutes with nothing to listen to and no lighting/blackout at the end. The hanging figure is so hard to see in this version, that it didn't really matter anyway.

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Waiting for the next group to load. This version enters through the front doors, like in Anaheim.

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Closeup of Phantom Manor signage.

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Phantom Manor was also a walk on. Good thing we're heading inside, since yet another storm is passing through.

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Heading over to Phantom Manor, we see a closer view of the Molly Brown.

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Big Thunder Mountain sits out on its own island in this park, which the Molly Brown circles on its cruise.

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From here we can see our next two ride destinations.

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Now over to Frontierland...

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The Indiana Jones and the Temple of Peril coaster features quite a bit of a perilous temple... not so much (if any) of Indiana Jones. I was hoping they would be playing him up more since the movie's coming out so soon.

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Apparently this is where everyone is... we decided to fastpass it.

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From the treehouse we see our next destination...

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The views from the treehouse were pretty good.

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There are several walkways and caves to roam around in this section.

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Over the Adventure Isle bridge...

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It was pretty much a walk on... but that didn't keep this family from cutting under ropes and walking right past Rebekah. Inside we got shoved out of the way at least 3 times for people to walk past us.

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The ride has many parts exclusive to this version. Many audio cues were not playing throughout the ride and other mechanical effects such as cannon shots and splashes weren't working.

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More outside the Pirates entrance...

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Theming outside the entrance...

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Heading over to Pirates...

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You can really see here how empty the walkways were this day.

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Our first stop is Adventureland.

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The first of many storms is on it's way in. The clouds were moving really fast all day.

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Sleeping Beauty castle...

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Stage for 'Candlebration' in front of the castle.

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These banners line both sides of Main street. The 15 and the stars are internally lit and look really nice at night.

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The information board shows the really low wait times. Only 25 minutes for Peter Pan.... the park must be empty. This wouldn't last though... Days 2 and 3 filled up fast.

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This kid was cracking me up... he stood alone in the Emporium entrance with his finger up his nose sadly watching people walk by as his parents shopped.

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For early afternoon on Main Street, it was pretty deserted.

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They were having numerous problems at the turnstiles. This guy had to wait about 5 minutes while they figured out what was wrong with his pass. And as we found, the French are not a patient people.

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Heading under the hotel to the admission gates.

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The entrance plaza to the Disneyland park/hotel.

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..... or right to the Disneyland park.

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Once through security, you have the choice to go left to the Studios park....

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Closeup I took later in the day.

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Once through the bag check, we turn around and see the observation balloon.

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Walking towards the bag check, they had several mounted security personnel roaming around.

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More promotion heading toward the entrance to the parks.

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As soon as you get off the bus, you see promotion for Tower of Terror.

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Let's head out to the park!

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I can't imagine why.... wouldn't you feel safe at night knowing this was going on in a room next to yours.

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Rebekah is a little worried about a hidden door next to our room with a warning plaque on it.

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If you like sleepless nights on a bed that pokes giant springs into your body, then this place is for you. If not, then stay away! Oh, and the food court is pretty much a train wreck in the mornings.

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Arriving at our hotel.... the Hotel Santa Fe. I'm convinced that many of the French think all Americans are cowboys.

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Arriving at the Disneyland Paris Resort train station.

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We loved the Orangina machines that were on the RER and Metro platforms. This was definitely our favorite!

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Taking the RER out to Marne La Vallee Chessy takes about 45 minutes from the middle of downtown Paris.

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These buses were all over Paris. On some of them, the graphic wrapped all the way around the bus.

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These billboards were in almost every Metro subway station platform in all of Paris. There were also many television commercials that played several times a day on Paris stations.

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These exit doors were in several of the Metro subway stations in Paris.

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This billboard in London featured elevator doors at the bottom that closed and opened to reveal new faces each time that were sent via cell phone.

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We started seeing ads for Tower of Terror as far away as London.

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Hey, you stayed in the same hotel I stayed in. Cool.

Plus, I agree with you on Thunder Mountain and it being the best one. At night, the ending drop diving under the water is amazing. It seems to go on and on forever.

 

Awesome pictures. Thanks for posting them.

 

--James

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