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Old 12-05-2009, 01:46 PM   #1
Ms Poppins
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Where it all started......a wee trip down memory lane (Final Update)

As the title says this is a wee trip down memory lane for me.....I've been clearing out the cupboard with all our photos and came across an autograph book, in which I'd written a trip report of our very first visit to Disneyland Paris in 1998.

So, as I am now a self confessed Dis geek, and given that my family no longer speak to me on Disney related matters - I thought I'd bore you lot with some trips from the past. This is really only for my benefit, so if you don't go any further I won't be offended

Also, the photos may be a bit suspect as I've had to photo them from the photo album and put onto laptop - I did not have such devices in them days

Our first trip to the Magic

The Cast:
Me, Julie - 23 - so excited I could hardly breathe
DH, John - 27 - going with it
DS, Mark - 4 - disney maniac
DD, Abbey - nearly 1 - no idea where she was

Monday 4th May 1998

This was Mark's 4th birthday. We woke at 5:30 and phoned my dad to wake him as he was taking us to the airport. Got there in plenty of time, checked in and had some breakfast. The flight took off on time, 08:35 and the kids seemed fine. We had to change aircrafts at East Midlands, so by the time we actually got to CDG it was about 13:00. We followed the signs for the VEA bus, and took the only seats left, right on the back row.

Mark fell off the seat, and a very kind lady in from passed him some biscuits that kept him quiet.

When we got to DLP I remember passing all the other hotels before getting to ours and being so impressed with the NPB from the outside - my jaw just dropped. Then we went on to our chosen hotel, the Cheyenne. We had chosen this as Mark was cowboy daft. We were allocated our room in the Calamity Jane building.

I loved the theming and the park tickets:





It was about 15:30 by this time and I had pre-booked a character tea at Pizza Planet to celebrate Mark's birthday, which started at 16:00. The hotel had no idea what I was talking about when I asked and they directed me to the train station Knowing what we know now, I would never have accepted that, but being a complete newbie, I just took them at their word - Anyway we ran towards the parks, and for some reason walked all the way round Lake Disney past the NPB before realising we could have gone past the HNY....we really were complete idiots.

By the time we had rushed to Pizza Planet the tea was finished. I remember being so upset, as I had wanted everything to be perfect, but we decided to go in anyway as it was almost tea time and had Pizza instead. Mark was thrilled with the surroundings and even more so when he met his heros Buzz and Woody. I seem to remember it being very dark.







We were exhausted after this, and I don't remember going on any rides - we just headed back to the hotel for a rest. Later in the evening we had a knock at the door for a CM who handed in a large plate of chocolate chip cookies wrapped in ribbon, as an apology for us missing the character tea. Someone must have figured out what we had be on about - so that was nice that they tried to make it up

Tuesday 5th May 1998
We all slept well, and headed off to breakfast. Mark enjoyed all the cowboy touches.



We then had an unfortunate episode on a pony ride that Mark insisted on doing. If I'd realised that i'd be responsible for hanging onto the pony, I don't know that I'd have gone along with it. The sand that the pony walks on started getting in my sandals so I asked DH to take over, the pony nipped his hand and DH shouted out - the pony bolted with Mark hanging on for dear life, and he eventually fell off. Thankfully he wasn't injured, and when I think about it now it must have looked like something you'd see on You've been framed!! A purchase in the hotel shop of a cowboy had soon calmed him down.

Then we were off to the park, and after yesterday's hurried adventure, we really took our time taking in all the surroundings:

I was blown away by the Disneyland Hotel - 'one day we'll stay there' I promised to myself:



We took in the surroundings of Main St and explored the castle:



Note the 4 year old stealing a shot of his sister's buggy!



The first go at the sword:



Then off to the first ride - the Carousel. I loved Mary Poppins as a child, and without videos and only 3 or 4 channels on tv, Mary Poppins was the only film that was guaranteed to be on at Christmas - and I just loved it. Mark didn't want to come on the ride, we were a tad paranoid about leaving the buggy, so I ended up going on it myself!



We then did all the rides in Fantasyland and the kids loved them all - with Peter Pan being a stand out favourite. After a few hours we noticed that everyone else's buggys were fine, so we calmed down a bit and enjoyed ourselves.



We had dinner at Annette's which we all really enjoyed. I loved the the atmosphere and the roller skates:







After dinner we wandered around 'Festival Disney' and then headed back to the hotel for another early night

Last edited by Ms Poppins; 12-09-2009 at 03:04 PM.
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Old 12-05-2009, 02:07 PM   #2
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I love the photo of the castle in its orginal glory, truly beautiful!

Thanks so much for sharing can't wait for more.
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Old 12-05-2009, 02:55 PM   #3
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Wednesday 6th May

Abbey's 1st birthday! We had spotted a nice Mickey and Minnie toy to hang on her buggy - and she seemed to love it:



We started the day with a character breakfast at the LA Bar and Grill, now known as Cafe Mickey.

I booked a cake and mentioned to the CM that it had been Mark's birthday a couple of days earlier. Abbey was a bit freaked out by the characters, and Mark was unsure too - I started to wonder if we should have bothered, but after a while he settled into it and really enjoyed himself with the all the 'guys' as he called them.





When they brought the cake out (or slice of cake) they had two of them, the CM obviously remembering that it was Mark's birthday too. Goofy picked him up and started dancing, and he really loved it. Abbey screamed when any of the characters came near her, so they soon remembered to steer clear!!

After this we headed to the park to watch the morning parade, 11am which was Hercules, the big movie of the moment - and a regular in our house.





Mark stunned us both by asking to go on Big Thunder Mountain, and John and I both took shots of looking after Abbey to ride this. We also visited the Pocohontas village.



John and I took turns on Space Mountain and Mark and John queued for ages to go on Autopia.

We wandered over to Adventureland where Mark got some piratey things. He was really going for the Peter Pan theme, and got a fabulous Peter Pan toy and Tinkerbell (for his wee sister of course) from the large toy shop in Disney Village.





Lunch was at Planet Hollywood - which we were underwealmed with, and dinner was in LA Bar and Grill which did fabulous pizzas.

We really enjoyed the stroll back to the Cheyenne each evening and had fun in the tents:



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Old 12-05-2009, 03:04 PM   #4
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Oh my Captain Hook has improved over the years lol.
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Old 12-05-2009, 03:19 PM   #5
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Thursday 7th May 1998

We made an early start and headed straight for the parks using the bus today.

Enjoyed a quieter morning in fantasyland going on our now well established favourites:





We happened to take a wrong turn coming out the castle and ended up in front of a stage - with a Winnie the Pooh meet and greet!! Another hero of Marks:







Mark was still wearing his birthday badges, one of which was a Pooh one, and he was chuffed to bits when Pooh pointed to it. I though Pooh looked a bit odd - but Mark never seemed to notice, my how he's changed now...

Lunch today was in Discoveryland, Videopolis, and we managed to watch a bit of the Beauty and the Beast show.

We wandered around some more and met some more characters - it was a lovely sunny day:







We then found a spot in Main St for the 3pm parade. I was absolutely stunned by this. I'd never experienced anything like it and could not believe the size of the floats. That song.....'dancing, a catchy rhythmn, singing a happy song-can't remember the rest until it gets to......holidayayayayayayay'

My photos really don't do it justice:







We ate dinner in Annette's again, at Mark's request.

Another fabulous day had by all - last day tomorrow!
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Old 12-05-2009, 03:30 PM   #6
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Friday 8th May 1998

We had a very disturbed night, due to a load of school kids phoning our room at all hours trying to get their friends numbers. They were from the same neck of the woods as us, so some choice words soon got rid of them. However, there was also a load of banging and running in the corridors so we were a tad grumpy that morning.

We finished our packing and made a mad dash back to the park to ride a few of our favourites:









We then had to make a dash back to the Cheyenne and were on the Vea bus by 11:45. Then it was off to the airport and back home.

We all absolutely loved Disneyland Paris and vowed to go back.

We did go back, 3 years later - and yes, I will bore you some more with some details of that trip too - watch this space
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Old 12-05-2009, 04:27 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thelittlemermaid83 View Post
Oh my Captain Hook has improved over the years lol.
I know...Pooh looked very odd too back then. I was a bit surprised when I looked at these today.....
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Old 12-05-2009, 06:25 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thelittlemermaid83 View Post
Oh my Captain Hook has improved over the years lol.
I was just thinking exactly the same

Thanks for sharing. Our first trip would have been in 2000 you're bringing back lots of happy memories
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Old 12-05-2009, 07:03 PM   #9
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That was fun! brought back some memories - perhaps we should all do a report on our very first trip to the magic! I myself cringe when I look at the old photos (mind you mine are about 25 years old in WDW). Thanks for sharing.
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Old 12-06-2009, 05:30 AM   #10
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Our second trip to the Magic

July 2001

The cast:

Me, Julie, 26
DH, John, 30
DS, Mark, 7
DD, Abbey, 4

I don't have detailed days here, so I'll just share some memories and photos if that's ok

We had felt a bit cheated by losing most of our first and last day due to flight times/transfers etc, so decided to book directly with Disney and try Eurostar from Ashford.

We travelled down the day before and found the whole process very easy. We were in the station at DLP by 13:00ish and dropped our bags off at the Disney express desk before heading to the park.

We decided to upgrade to a better hotel this time, as the Cheyenne had only really been picked for the cowboy theme and to keep Mark happy. We did price the NPB, as we had been blown away by the look of it before, but decided on the Hotel New York, as we both loved Friends - I know, we have no rational reasoning behind choosing hotels...

So, the Hotel New York it was - and we loved it:





The weather was beautiful, and the castle looked stunning in the sun:



The obligatory go at the sword:





As we walked through Fantasyland I felt so happy, I felt as if I'd come home...The one thing I love about Disneyland Pairs, over all others, is that it's not too huge. I remembered where most things were, and everything was so familiar - no more head down in a map for every single move.

With Abbey being older, it was really like her first visit and she just loved it all. Mark remembered a few things too, and favourite rides were soon established. Abbey loved Big Thunder Mountain too - so it was really nice to be able to do rides as a whole family.



We really relaxed on this trip, and took our time. We explored Adventureland and came accross the Swiss Family Robinson Tree House, that we had somehow missed last time. It was quite spooky, as the film had been on tv a few weeks before our visit, and both kids had really loved it.





The strolls through the village to the hotel were lovely - I think this was all pre-bag check, and don't remember security to get through the village.

Abbey loved the rock 'n' roll theme in the village, and insisted on her dad picking her up and swinging her around every time we passed:



We enjoyed Annette's again:





We took time to watch a few shows that were going on, that we had appeared to be oblivious to on our first visit:

Tarzan at the Chapparall Theatre - just magic!!



Winnie the Pooh on the castle stage:



And Mulan at the Videopolis - this show was amazing:



We took afternoons out to rest and enjoy the pool at the hotel - with it only being a short walk through the village, it didn't feel like we were missing out.

Abbey was a real princess by now, her room filled with Disney Princess things, but there weren't any princesses about them. She would have absolutely loved Auberge.

As we had enjoyed the character breakfast last time we agreed that it would be an absolute must do this time round too. Luckily one of the places holding the character breakfast was our hotel, New York in the Manhattan. We had a lovely table, and had so much character interaction, it was a real highlight of the holiday:











Abbey just loved the mice from Cinderella and danced with them at one point.

It was Minnie though who stole her heart - Minnie spent ages with her, and I had tears in my eyes at one point:






Last edited by Ms Poppins; 03-13-2012 at 02:32 PM.
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Old 12-06-2009, 05:37 AM   #11
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We'd spend hours going on and off the rides and discovered the delights of the Gibson Girl Ice Cream, Caseys hotdogs and the constant smell of popcorn!!

Pizza Planet was again visited:



By this time Toy Story 2 was out and Abbey loved Jessie. She managed to meet her, and I do have a lovely photo somewhere, but can't lay my hands on it. I think Abbey may still have it in her room - I'll add it later if I find it.

The parade again, at 3pm every day was again, fabulous:









All too soon our holiday was over. We absolutely adored the Hotel New York - loved the meet and greet area, the yellow taxi outside, the pool, the space in the rooms - at that time you could also hear the tv from speakers in the bathroom. We loved the village - Annette's felt like an old friend, and the entire park was just wonderful. I think this was such a special holiday because Mark and Abbey were at just the right age. They were both very familiar with all the classic Disney movies, and recognised everything.

I liked the extra time we got by going Eurostar, and this was to prove the preferred mode of transport for our future trips.

So sorry to leave - but a truly magical trip had by all.



(only two more trips to go, to bring you up do date)

Now for some fun....

Here is a picture of John and Mark on Big Thunder Mountain in 1998:



Look at the guy in front of him.

Now here is a picture of John, Mark and Abbey on BTM in 2001:



Is it just me, or is the guy behind the same guy??
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Old 12-06-2009, 10:13 AM   #12
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LOL he looks to be the same guy or at least related!!
great to see older TRs and see how much has changed
great thread
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Old 12-06-2009, 11:00 AM   #13
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Fabulous - brill to see your kids at their different stages on both trips, loving the theming around Winnie the Pooh's meet and greet - and doesn't the Village look different!!
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Old 12-06-2009, 11:58 AM   #14
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Ha Ha looks like a complete white knuckle ride for that poor guy! Another great trip again thanks for sharing.
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Old 12-06-2009, 02:59 PM   #15
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Thanks for the replies - I really didn't expect anyone to be too interested!

So..

Our third trip to the Magic

April 2004

Me, Julie, 29
DH, John, 33
DS, Mark, 9
DD, Abbey, 6

I was six months pregnant and we wanted to go on a final holiday with just the 4 of us. We both really wanted to try out the NPB, as that memory of first ever seeing it just wouldn't go away. With work commitments, school holidays etc we could only manage a short trip for 2 nights, so we booked the NPB and were so excited.

A couple of weeks before going, I was checking out reviews on various sites, and to be honest they weren't too great for NPB - walking distance within the hotel was mentioned at lot, and with me not being as mobile as usual, I convinced John that we should think about upgrading. As we had already paid in full for NPB, and booked through Disney, it didn't cost us that much to upgrade - to the Disneyland Hotel!! We were all so excited

We set off same as last time by using Eurostar. This time we didn't bother with Disney Express, we were desperate to get to the hotel. Our room was ready when we got there which we were delighted with.

The rooms are just so beautiful, just how a pink palace should look. I told Abbey that this was Mickey and Minnies house, and we might see them there

We were on the ground floor, near the swimming pool area, with a small patio outside:





We were given a fastpass each, per day which proved very useful.

The best bit about the location, was that we used an entrance that is right outside the exit gates from the park.

At the end of our last visit we had noticed some Mickey ears high in the sky between the park and the village, and this time round it was open - The Studios!!



We headed there first, and from the moment we got there we saw tons of characters:







Now for the picture that I now need to look twice at:



And no, the statue hasn't been moved.......How bare was it back then?

We took everything in and enjoyed the flying carpets:



The Art of Animation was a big hit with the kids, and we enjoyed drawing Mickey and Minnie:



Dinner was in Annettes......again.....





On that first night we booked the evening coach tour to Paris. The city looked stunning - unfortunately none of the pictures I took worked - but we had a fantastic evening.

It was a late night, especially for Abbey and we didn't get back to the hotel until about 11pm. It was a lovely clear night, and as we approached the hotel door, a really bright star lit up above the Disneyland Hotel - Abbey just stopped dead and looked straight at me - she said 'Mum, that's Tinkerbell, isn't it?' 'Yes it is', I replied. She looked for it for the rest of the trip, and was thrilled to bits that she'd seen Tink!

The breakfast was excellent with the added bonus of meeting all the 'guys' in the lobby:







Seeing the park again was lovely. The kids remembered their way about really well, and Pirates became a real favourite. It was one of the few that I could do.

I love this picture, as Abbey and Mark used to suss out where the pictures would be taken on the rides and pose. For anyone who's been recently you'll know that the camera takes your pic on pirates just after a drop. Well, back then it didn't. It just snapped you as the boat ambled along - you can see from the faces of the other passengers that nothing remotely interesting is going on, but Mark has to pose and Abbey looks like she's on BTM!



I really missed BTM on this trip, but the others had an absolute ball.

I managed Orbitron with Abbey:



And Pizza Planet was visited again:



Abbey became a real autograph hunter, and had to kiss this guy before he'd oblige:



She was really into all the princesses, but again, there were none to be had a DLP back then. The only characters were in suits, there were no 'real' people. She'd have absolutely loved it. How I miss her dressing up in 20 different costumes an hour.....



Make the most of it, those who have princesses

She was (and still is) a wee daredevil though - check this out in the Village:

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