Better late than never? September 2012 Report -COMPLETE!

Discussion in 'Disneyland Paris Trip Reports Board' started by maryr1oz, Jan 22, 2013.

  1. maryr1oz

    maryr1oz Mouseketeer

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    I want Disney to have posts standing alone, so this will finish up our time in Brussels.

    It was Wednesday morning at this point, and we had until mid afternoon, when our TGV train was departing direct to Disneyland!

    We had to pack up and check out of the hotel, although we kept our bags with the bell desk until after lunch. I finally remembered to take some photos of the front of the hotel, and our view over the courtyard on our small balcony.

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    When we left, we walked down to a local flea market. It was all antiques, and second hand items, and we didn't find anything to buy. It was really fun looking at all the old things there though. I can't believe i didn't take any photos of the actual market!

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    We then decided we had not sampled/purchased nearly enough Belgian chocolates, so on the walk back into the center of town, we stopped and tried many different chocolates.

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    My husband was interested in visiting the Belvue Museum, which was all about Belgian history. It was hard as there was not much information in English, but the objects were quite interesting to look at. We spent a couple of hours here.

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    It was already early afternoon at this stage, so we stopped by, of all things, an Irish pub for some lunch. It was right by our hotel, and since it had started raining it was an easy place to stop. At least we were drinking Belgian beer!

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    We also had a look in a couple of other shops, including Dille and Kamille which was THE cutest homewares/garden shop.

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    We returned to the hotel, collected our bags and got a taxi to Gare du Midi station. The TGV train was quite full, but it left and arrived right on perfect time, and the ride was quite comfortable. I think it only took less than 2 hours.

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  3. maryr1oz

    maryr1oz Mouseketeer

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    Let me start by just saying, our time at DLP, outside of our park time, was sometimes a little tedious. I just felt there was a big lack of organisation and communication throughout the resort, and we seemed to encounter a bit of it.

    We arrived into Marne-la-Vallee station about 5:20pm, i believe Disneyland was open until 8pm that night. We were booked to stay at the Newport Bay Club. I had read about the Disneyland Express luggage service, and called prior to leaving Australia to ask about it. The guy i spoke to that day was really unhelpful, and a little sarcastic, i remember thinking that at the time of the call. He booked us for this service (return, as we were catching the train to CDG on our departure day). I asked him if he needed our train arrival details, he laughed, and said no.

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    Anyway, we arrive, go up to the desks to drop our luggage, eager to go straight to the parks, only to be met with closed doors. Finally someone saw us standing around wondering, and opened up a window for us. He seemed very off put that we were arriving this late in the day, and needed to use this service. It took a bit of shuffling around, but they gave us one-entry tickets and told us everything else could be picked up at Newport Bay later on. Already i felt uneasy, but, onto the Park!

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    I was so delighted we were able to visit during the 20th Anniversary year. I also had to stop and find an ATM to withdraw some much needed spending money!

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    We drank in Main Street, and headed for our favorite ride - Thunder Mountain. I knew about the tunnels, but DH didn't, so it was super fun to see how surprised he was.

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    Onto Pirates of the Caribbean! The line was moving steadily, so we hardly got a chance to stop and enjoy the queue.

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    I was hungry, so as we wound through the park, we ended up at Cafe Hyperion for some dinner. It was still quite busy in there, and just basic burger fare, but it hit the spot nicely.

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    I wanted to make sure we had decent spots to view Dreams from, so i took a seat on the edge of the pavement in the middle of the hub. DH went for a look through the Main Street shops. We did have a good view, but i was so disappointed when several families pushed right in front of us last minute, then hoisted kids onto their shoulders. I know i should have expected such things to happen, but really annoying.

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    Dreams was amazing! Definitely the best night time show we've seen anywhere! We loved it. My little camera can't cope with fireworks pics, so i didn't really get any worth posting.


    With the park now closed, we made our way with the masses towards the exit. We took a slow walk back to the NBC, as this was DH's first time through Downtown Disney. NBC looks amazing at night, and i was so excited on our approach to the hotel.

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    We went to check in, and it took a LONG time. They thought they didn't have our package, as it should have been at Disney Express, we explained they told us it had already been sent to the hotel. After much checking and hunting around, our package was found. We also got the breakfast times i had been hoping for. We had booked an Admiral's Floor room, but we really were given a great location. Smack bang above reception with a lake view. I don't want to say i was disappointed with the room, but i wasn't astounded either. It just seemed a bit... shabby. I know these rooms are about to undergo refurb, and i think that's great timing. I know staying on Disney property is expensive, and you pay for location before anything. I guess i just expected more from Disney...

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    The room had an odd smell. My husband was convinced it was the toilet, but i think it just needed a very good scrub, perhaps a carpet clean. Anyway, we paid the 10 Euros for 24 hours internet, and then wrote some emails home, and turned in for the night. I was definitely going to be in the park first thing tomorrow!
     
  4. maryr1oz

    maryr1oz Mouseketeer

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    We woke up early this morning, and headed down for breakfast at the hotel. It was the basic continental fare. We had our backpack all ready, so from the dining room, we headed straight out to walk along the lake towards the parks.

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    We walked through an almost empty Downtown Disney.

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    Security was quick and easy, and we even had to wait at the outer gates for a couple of minutes before they were opened. We took a couple of photos, and then headed for the turnstiles.

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    Inside, we had almost perfect clear shots up Main Street towards the castle.

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    We went straight to Space Mountain, and rode with absolutely no wait. I'm not a big coaster person so i knew i had to do it first thing or it probably wouldn't happen. Then we did the Orbitron.

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    From there, we went around to Fantasyland and rode Small World, the Teacups and then Dumbo.

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  5. maryr1oz

    maryr1oz Mouseketeer

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    DH was desperate to ride Crush's Coaster, so i thought we had better get over to the Studios and into line early. We arrived before park opening, but they had already opened the gates and had people queuing inside Crush. We ended up only waiting about 10 minutes which was great. DH love this ride, me, not so much. I'm glad i did it, but i didn't do it again.

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    We walked over to Toy Story Playland and it was pretty much deserted too. DH rode RC Racer, and was the only person on the ride!

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    We both rode the Parachute Drop.

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    DH wanted to to do Rock'n'Roller Coaster so that's where we headed next - there was hardly a wait, and he loved it. He rode about 3 times in a short amount of time. DH has done Tower of Terror a couple of times at Disneyland in Anaheim, but for some reason he wasn't up for riding here - if he wasn't, i definitely wasn't, so we just walked past.

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    We came back to the front of the park, and got in line for the first showing of Cinemagique. I thought it was cute, but for some reason was expecting something different.

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    At this time, we had to cross back to Disneyland, as we had a lunch reservation at the Blue Lagoon!

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    We were seated straight away, and our server was very attentive. The food was a bit hit and miss... but i loved the atmosphere!

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    Appetizers:

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    Mains:

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    Desserts:

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    I wouldn't go back there. DH's main course fish was really bad, pretty much inedible, and my chicken was pretty dry. The ice cream dessert was good, but the creme brulee had a really strong taste - something with a chemically taste (perhaps whatever they used to burn the top with).
     
  6. maryr1oz

    maryr1oz Mouseketeer

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    We re-emerged into daylight after our fun lunch, and headed for Indiana Jones. This is another one i sat out, but DH really enjoyed.

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    Then it was off to Fantasyland, where we rode the Storybook boats.

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    It was just about parade time, so we got a spot to watch, right in front of the castle.

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    After the parade, we made our way out of the park. We stopped off at World of Disney to pick up some souvenirs.

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    It was about evening at this time, and we decided we'd have an early dinner at Annette's. Good service, and good food.

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    We had intended on going back to the park to watch Dreams again, but once we got back to the room we couldn't get the motivation to go back... :confused3 We did see some of the higher fireworks from the room.

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  7. PrincessInOz

    PrincessInOz Thanks for my avatar, Mary Jo!

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    WOW! Seems like you covered a fair bit at Paris.

    Your room seems rather basic for a DL resort. Hmmm.
     
  8. maryr1oz

    maryr1oz Mouseketeer

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    I thought so, especially when we were paying what you would pay at a deluxe in WDW, or the GCH at Disneyland... :(
     
  9. maryr1oz

    maryr1oz Mouseketeer

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    We had an early breakfast time booked inside the park today - at Plaza Gardens.

    DH hadn't slept very well, an opted for a sleep in and to miss breakfast. He didn't need to tell me twice, i was excited to spend a couple of hours by myself in the park.

    As i entered the turnstiles, i noticed that overnight the Halloweek decorations had begun to appear...

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    A the end of Main Street, i took a right and made my way to the Plaza Gardens. I was seated straight away, and i was only 1 of about 4 groups inside at this stage.

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    After breakfast i decided it would be a good opportunity to take some photos, and ride some rides that DH would put up a fight to.

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    I rode Buzz, Small World and the Carousel. I then took some time to pick up some more souvenirs on Main Street. I was meeting DH over at the Studios so he could ride Crush again at park opening.

    I headed in that direction, taking lot's of time for photos.

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    I met up with DH right on time and he disappeared into the Crush line. I waited outside, and for the longest time empty cars kept passing by. Eventually riders appeared, and DH followed shortly. He must have been quite close to the front of the line.

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    Before we left the Studios we trekked back to Rock'n'Roller coaster for DH to have a couple more spins. We had a noon booking to take the Disneyland Park tour, so it was back in that direction for us.
     
  10. PrincessInOz

    PrincessInOz Thanks for my avatar, Mary Jo!

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    Fantastic! I love having a couple of hours to myself in the parks too. looks like you used the time well.
     
  11. maryr1oz

    maryr1oz Mouseketeer

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    Back down Main Street, this time with DH, and another chance to get some nice photos.

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    I noticed more Halloween decorations by the castle.

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    We went underneath the Adventureland gates, and went to get fast passes for Big Thunder Mountain.

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    We wanted to get some lunch before we met for the park tour, so we ducked into Hakuna Matata restaurant for some food. It was empty, and we got served very quickly.

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    In the short time between going into the restaurant, and coming back out the skies had opened up! This would be the only afternoon of the whole trip where the rain came, and didn't stop :( We weren't prepared so after a short discussion, we gave up on the tour, and instead made a run for it to the Frontierland Station to ride the train.

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    Full loop complete, we returned into Frontierland, and used our Big Thunder fast passes. BTM in the rain was different... :rolleyes1

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    At this time we were quite damp, and i finally agreed with DH to abandon the park, and head back to the hotel, for at least a change of clothes and to grab the ponchos.

    We got as far as Rainforest Cafe, where i won the battle to go in and have a cocktail and some ice cream - yum! Although, having not been to one of these cafes in years, i was a little surprised at how poorly presented it is. That, and the service was pretty bad.

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    We went back outside, and the rain had slowed to drizzle. I again talked DH into walking the long way back to the hotel, via Cheyenne, Santa Fe and the Sequoia Lodge. I had stayed at Santa Fe years ago, and i wanted to see it again. It was a nice little walk back there along the creek.

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    When we walked through Sequoia Lodge we got a little bit depressed. This resort felt so much nicer, and more 'Disney' than ours. We really wished we had of stayed here instead... :worried:

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    We finally did return to the NBC hotel, and it was nice to have a hot shower and change into dry clothes.
     
  12. maryr1oz

    maryr1oz Mouseketeer

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    We spent an hour or two in the hotel room, the next morning we were checking out and beginning the big journey back to Australia, so we had some packing and organising to do.

    The rain still hadn't let up, but none of the dining options at the hotel interested me, so we donned the ponchos and went back to Downtown Disney for dinner. It was packed, and there seemed to be queues for all the sit down restaurants.

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    We chose Earl of Sandwich as a quick and casual last meal.

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    I wasn't ready to call it a night though, so on return to the NPB we went to the lounge and had another cocktail. It was a nice end to the day, as well as the last night of our whirlwind trip!

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  13. maryr1oz

    maryr1oz Mouseketeer

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    The last morning of our trip was definitely not my favourite, unfortunately. :(

    We awoke early and dragged all our bags down to reception, our intentions to leave them with Disney Express to be taken to the station, have a final breakfast at the hotel, then spend a couple of hours in the parks before we had to leave.

    This didn’t go to plan... :confused3

    We went down to a busy lobby, and joined the queue for concierge, as weren’t sure where we had to leave our bags. Stood there for 15 minutes, not moving. Another employee approached us and asked us what we were needing, we said to leave our bags. He said, no problem, just head out the front doors and the luggage window would be there.

    Get outside, window not due to open for another 10 mins. Ok. We wait. When window opens, we get told we need to have tags on the bags, these we would need to get from concierge. Back inside we go... FINALLY get tags. Back outside, get asked which train we’re taking. I say the 1pm TGV to CDG. Man laughs – says well then, we can’t use this service as they wouldn’t arrive at the station till after 2pm. I was so annoyed. We’d wasted 45 minutes in lines now, we’d paid 50 Pounds for this return service, neither of which had actually worked for us! :worried:

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    We had had it with NPB now, and didn’t even want to stay for free breakfast, so we dragged our luggage onto a bus and caught it to the station. We then had to pay for a locker to fit all our things. It was fine, at least it was an option. By the time we exited the station, and headed towards the gates it was quite a bit busier than the other mornings we had been there.

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    Our first stop was the bakery on Main Street for some breakfast. I needed to chill out, and not be mad on not only our last Disney morning, but our last morning of our whole trip.

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    DH rode Space Mountain again, while i sat out. We then had our last ride on Small World.

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    It was getting close to the Studios opening time, and since DH wanted to ride Crush again, we made our way there. We got to the line, and it already said 75 minutes. I was shocked. They had opened even earlier than we were used to, and the line indeed was that long already. I found DH in line and told him... he left. I felt bad because i knew he really wanted to ride, and i would have waited, but he insisted it wasn’t worth that long a wait.

    The Studios Backlot tour had been closed the whole time we were here, but was reopening today. We joined the already growing line. DH was not amused, he thought this ride would be lame (i should have listened). This was the only time i really got annoyed with people cutting in the line. Specifically a couple of large families with young kids. It was quite disappointing to miss out on making it onto the first trams when these people who blatantly cut in did. Therefore, another 20 minutes wasted in line. Sigh. :confused3

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    After our backlot tour, we said forever goodbye to the Studios, and went back to say goodbye to Disneyland. I couldn't believe the queues we struck to re-enter.

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    I was desperate for another ride on Pirates, but DH wanted to sit it out and just people watch instead. For starters, the queue was very long – right outside underneath the ride banner. I thought it would move quickly, and it did, until i was just about in the next boat to load and the ride went down. We waited about 15 minutes, and then i was finally able to board. From leaving DH to getting back to him, i was gone close to an hour...

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    We didn’t have alot of time left now, so we made our way back to the station. Bags collected, tickets validated and we had a little bit of time before descending to our platform. The TGV took 10 minutes to get to CDG, and it was so easy. When we arrived at CDG we did have to transfer terminals, and with their little internal train it was super easy. :thumbsup2

    The check in line was chaotic. We stood in it for about 1.5 hours, so by the time that was finally done, we didn’t have much time to look around.

    The flight ended up being delayed by about an hour, but not too bad. There were no upgrades this time, we had to settle for good old economy – but it was fine, they were very good. The flight home via Doha was about a 20 hour trip all up, and we arrive back in Melbourne about 10:30pm on Sunday night. After customs, and the drive home, we didn’t get into our beds until about 1:30am. Poor old DH had to get up and go to work the next morning!

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    We had a really fantastic trip, and i feel like we definitely made the most of our short time. We’re hoping to be able to get back over there next year and see some more!

    Thanks everyone for reading :wizard:
     
  14. zanzibar138

    zanzibar138 DIS Veteran

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    Thanks for sharing :goodvibes

    Sorry your last morning didn't work out that well, but it seems like you had a great time overall!
     
  15. markpsych

    markpsych DIS Veteran

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    Thanks for sharing :goodvibes

    Some great photos and you certainly made the most of your trip!
     
  16. maryr1oz

    maryr1oz Mouseketeer

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    Thanks guys!! :goodvibes
     
  17. PrincessInOz

    PrincessInOz Thanks for my avatar, Mary Jo!

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    catching up. Sorry about the last morning and it seems like you spent a lot of time in queues, which is not the best way to remember that last day.


    Thanks for sharing. I really enjoyed your trip report.
     

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