Disneyland Paris: Magical 30th Anniversary

My first trip back to the magic since travel restrictions were lifted! I’m so excited to share what we got up to in April 2022 at Disneyland Paris. It’s the park’s 30th anniversary and there’s so much going on.

The Eurostar is my favourite way to travel to Paris from London; it’s so easy and comfortable. I would recommend getting there an hour and 15-30 mins before your train as the queues and security checks have been much longer post-Brexit.

We stayed in Disney’s Hotel Cheyenne, which was perfect for our three-night stay. The standard rooms include a double bed and a sofa bed. The amenities are fairly standard, but the design of the room and the hotel overall is really fun, giving you the experience of staying in the Wild West with Toy Story touches. A shot of the room is below (I didn’t get too many photos as we dropped our suitcases off and ran to the parks!). It’s only a 15 minute walk to the parks directly from the hotel.

It was amazing to be back and wandering down Main Street. That first glimpse of the castle – nothing beats it! The springtime flowers and 30th decorations were out in full force, adding even more charm to the sunny afternoon.

Special mention has to go to the incredible 30th shows, especially the new ‘Dream…and Shine Brighter!’ show which takes place in front of the castle four times a day. It’s so fun with a catchy song that will get stuck in your head! Mickey and the gang, as well as plenty of other characters and dancers, celebrate the anniversary in their special costumes. I’d recommend getting a good spot around the stages as the character interactions are so joyful. The Disney Stars on Parade and Illuminations fireworks show are also back!

Fantasyland will forever be my favourite area of the park, as it’s just so photogenic. Most importantly, it also has some great spots for snacks. The Old Mill offers the mini poffertjes (pancakes) with Nutella (photo below) and, of course, the Mickey ice cream. You can also get the pancakes plain, which still makes a great afternoon snack. A solid lunch option is the Pizzeria Bella Notte, home to the famous Mickey-shaped pizza. The macaron in my photo below is from the confectionary store in Main Street – they had so many cute designs and flavours. I made a TikTok of more of my favourite food at Disneyland Paris here.

We went just as they reintroduced character meets with no social distancing – I took great advantage of Pooh bear hugs!

Another first for me at Disneyland Paris: seeing a show! The Lion King: Rhythms of the Pride Lands show also takes place four times a day, and I won’t give too much away but it is a must-see. I’ll be rushing back to see the amazing talent, especially Nala and Scar.

And one final recommendation from me: Bistrot Chez Remy in Walt Disney Studios. We had a lovely meal here and the service was fantastic. You can see a video with more info here, as I didn’t get many photos.

Disneyland Paris are gifting us with so many amazing new shows this year. The Disney D-Light show, a special for the 30th anniversary, is a short drone show just before Illuminations, the evening fireworks. It’s so spectacular and something really unique to Disneyland Paris – don’t miss it!

Disneyland Paris haven’t confirmed when the celebrations for the 30th anniversary are ending, but fingers crossed they add an extra six months like Walt Disney World did for the 50th. Any questions or recommendations for DLP, please comment and thank you for reading!

New Year’s Eve Magic at Disneyland Paris

Spending New Year’s Eve at Disneyland Paris was pretty special, as you can imagine. It was such a different experience for the occasion, with so many memorable things to do. I was ecstatic before I even walked into the park (photo evidence below)!

In this post I’ll share some of my top tips for making the most out of the evening. I’m sure there are many more guides out there, but this is just some of my advice from my trip in 2019. Undoubtedly there will be changes for the next few years but hopefully this helps you plan a little better! You can visit my previous blog post here for more on a trip to Disneyland Paris in December.

Getting in
The New Year’s Eve tickets don’t let you in officially until 5pm. We had a big lunch at a restaurant in nearby Montévrain so we didn’t have to worry about finding dinner later. You can book a special New Year’s Eve dinner at one of the restaurants in Disneyland Paris, but they are pretty expensive. The Christmas market in Disney Village is also worth a wander if you have some spare time!

Whilst the tickets said 5pm, we got in around 4.30pm and the queue was quite big in front of us, so you could potentially get in a while ahead of the stated time.

Quick plan stop
As you arrive, cast members give out guides to the evening with all of the timings. Check what time the smaller shows and activities are on, and plan around the two parades and midnight fireworks. Grab any fast passes you want for the big rides, and make sure they fit your schedule so you don’t miss anything! We swapped some of our fast pass tickets with another group once we realised they clashed with one of the parades. Disneyland Park was open until 2am, excluding Fantasyland, which shut earlier prepare for the fireworks.

When we went, the parades were around 8.30pm and 10.30pm. Unfortunately we didn’t have a great view of one of the parades as people start getting their spots from very early, but it was so fun all the same.

Some of the aforementioned activities you could check out include free face painting, smaller shows like The Royal Sparkling Winter Waltz with the Disney princesses, and a festive sing-along with Mickey, Minnie and Goofy. There are also many character meets with lesser-spotted Disney characters, but these queues can become huge so make sure you factor that in when deciding what to do.

Getting around
Around 5-6pm, the cast members start setting up barriers around the lands to stop non-NYE ticket holders from sticking around. They draw everyone towards Main Street U.S.A. to watch the Illuminations fireworks. It wasn’t very clear at first to us NYE first-timers, but if you showed your wrist band to the cast members monitoring these barriers, you were allowed through to continue going on the rides.

They put the wait times of the rides up to 100 minutes to dissuade non-NYE guests on queueing, but once again if you show your wristband they’ll let you know the real time, which was usually 5 minutes or less! We went on Big Thunder Mountain as Illuminations was going on, and the view was spectacular!

Have you been to Disneyland Paris at New Year’s Eve? Let me know if you have any tips or questions in the comments!