Is Disneyland Paris the best in Europe?
Do you think Disneyland Paris deserves the name: Best themepark in Europe? Have you ever been there? What is your experience and opinion about the park. Which other park is better in some categories.
My question to you is. Do you think that Disney Land Paris is the best themepark in Europe? Many people do, but personaly I think there are some parks a lot better in attractions and theming. Which park is better in fairytales Disney or Efteling?
Comments in chronological order. Most recent at the bottom. Scroll down to respond.
Well it is the best Europe Park on this site (in fact, it is one of the better parks period), but I think it is the only American Company park (Disney of course) in Europe. Universal and Disney have also staked claims in Japan!
From Gareth H
Posted March 8, 2006 at 8:51 AM
I didn't rate it too highly. Being British I have reservations about anything decent being placed on French soil. The first thing I noticed is that you can take everything American that Disney stands for, turn it french, and it seems to lose it Disney Magic.
I accept that this is because I am British, speak the English language, and when its all translated and names are changed its just not the same! Thats not to say the French don't enjoy it more than they would WDW because of the very same translation issues!
You'll find the British would rather travel to Florida then Paris for Disney, due to the high costs of vacationing in France. Although a short weekend break to Disney is better suited to Paris because of travel time! (9 hour flight to Florida, 1 hours of travelling to airport, 3 hours of checking in, flight delays, customes & immigration at the other end, transfers to hotel!! VERSUS.... 2 hour train ride from the center of London, direct to Disney Paris and an hour either side for getting to and from the train!)
WDW will always take place over Disney Paris for most Brits, but if time is an issue then Disney Paris is a good short break!!!
Thats a very interesting thought you have there! Its too bad we do not have enough people from overseas on this site!
From Gareth H
Posted March 8, 2006 at 10:15 AM
Yes, there are lots of Americans and lots of Brits in here. Not too many Europeans though!
Any views on the Japanese Disney?
I mean it seems that Disney (besides Lego) has a distict advantage over Europe because there is no Universal, Busch Parks (Seaworld, etc), or Six Flags. Japan is another story however!
From Ben Mills
Posted March 8, 2006 at 12:14 PM
Hi everybody! Hee.
It's a shame certain parties are allowing this pathetic anti-French sentiment to get in the way of serious discussion. We're not all like this, I promise. And given France has produced parks like DLP, Futuroscope, and the many Walibi/Six Flags/Star Parks, I'd say Britons have very little right with the "Ours are better than yours!" argument. But anywho.
For any interested, if you're willing to look into parks that aren't part of some massive conglomerate, try Europa Park and Phantasialand in Germany, parks inspired by the original Disneyland that, ironically, Disneyland Paris clearly wishes it was half as good as.
Not saying we should be ignoring some recent achievements in my beloved Britain, mind. Chessington has somehow managed to turn itself from a poor man's Six Flags into a charming family park that actually satisfies pretty much anyone's park-going needs. And Thorpe Park, hideous though it is, has an admittedly decent selection of flat rides and a couple enjoyable coasters. (Drayton Manor and Alton Towers meanwhile continue to stumble around directionless like a cow in the dark.)
None of these trounce Disneyland Paris in anyone's opinion, mind, but that doesn't mean they don't occasionally make an honourable stab at it.
To compare Efteling to DLP is really quite missing the point of both parks. Sure, they may often inspire each other, but Efteling is attempting to be far less of an immersive experience than DLP. And ultimately, in the words of Phillip Curds, "Efteling fails to deliver what I call a 'big punch' attraction". Despite being one of the prettiest and best parks in Europe, it lacks a ride to top Big Thunder Mountain, Silver Star or Nemesis. Fun it may be, but the best it certainly ain't.
Mind you, I'm no longer sure that DLP is the best in the continent. That's hardly surprising, given that executives have had to focus most all their attention on keeping the ship floating while adding novelties to the Walt Disney Studios.
And let's neither forget that Universal and Six Flags have both owned parks in Europe until recently, and Paramount were only last year removed from management duties with Terra Mitica. Disney have been the only American company to make it stick, and as we've seen, it hasn't exactly been easy for them.
From Gareth H
Posted March 8, 2006 at 12:43 PM
Wasn't anti french thank you.
I feel, and as all our countries are "free Speech", that France was a bad setting for A Disney theme park.
Acceptabley, France has a vast area that could, and was, transformed into a Disney resort. England did not have the land neccesary and it wouldn't have been in the Best interests to build there as it would have hit tourism very badly in Florida. I believe Disney piggy backed off the whole "Paris" theme and that was why it was chosen. Somewhere more central europe could have been a better choice.
I don't have anything against France in general. I love the cheap Cigarettes and Alcohol and the short ferry journey from Dover! I love the history (Except a certain period, obviously). I just think somewhere else would have been better!
From Ben Mills
Posted March 8, 2006 at 2:09 PM
Okay, sorry. I'm still not happy with you using being British as justification for having "reservations about anything decent being placed on French soil." Seems a little unfair on the rest of us who don't have anything against France.
I'm curious to know why you feel "that France was a bad setting for A Disney theme park." Sure, we have the issues of weather, and the cost of food etc compared to other European countries, but given the amazing finance deal offered to Disney by the French government, would you have gone anywhere else if you were in charge?
I'd imagine the French would also take offence to their nation's highlights being reduced to ferry journeys, a selection of history and cheap duty free. But I'm guessing that was said partly tongue in cheek. :)
From Gareth H
Posted March 8, 2006 at 3:57 PM
Tongue in cheek yes!
OK, last I'll post on this subject as its gone slightly off topic!!
As a Brit you should understand that when something goes wrong with a foreign enterprise the French are hesitant to deal with it. Should I mention immigration and the blind eye that is turned at Euro Tunnel ports.
Britain virtually had to pay the french government to stop them neglecting their duties in the European Community!
If something major happened at Euro Disney, a disaster perhaps, especially with the Global terrorism threat, I'm sure the French Governemt would be looking to place the blame on someone other than their French operators. I'm sure the blame would immediately be placed on the Disney Corporation and their lack of security and intelligence..
Disney would be a much bigger target than the other theme parks based in France! (Disney = Global Corporate recognition)
In response you your remark about the "Amazing Finace deal" I'm sure it was the major factor in accepting the offers all around. I'm sure the deal was good for both parties involved, otherwise deals like this would never happen.
I am in no way Anti-French!
I agree Chessington has become a very good park. When I was younger I used to visit chessington once a year with school. back in those days it was too far to go to Alton Towers from the South Coast. Once I got older my brother or I could drive we preferred Alton Towers.
Thorpe Park never held any interest for me. My 2 memories of TP are climbing up stairs to sit in an inflatable boat and go down a ramp then getting up with a wet back side, and some one dropping their personal stereo from the top flights of stairs on same ride....
May have to go back one day!!!
"Yes, there are lots of Americans and lots of Brits in here. Not too many Europeans though!"
I was under the impression England was in Europe.
I went to Disney Land Paris about 5 years ago and I really didnt rate it.
Compared to Florida (I've been there 5 times in last 3 years, to many I know)i just didnt get the same vibe at all.
I think someone said it felt as if the magic was not there and I have to totally agree. Many staff I encountered were rude which didn't help the matter..... I dont think thats the English person in me finding faults in French people either before someones asks.....:)
But if I had the choice and in recent times i have with good deals to travel to Florida I would go there every time instead of Paris. Plus you have the option of every other park in Florida which is a bonus...
Dont get me wrong, I go to France. I was there on holiday a few months ago. I just dont think its quite the same....
OK I am a British person who lives in Orlando. I love Disneyland Paris, however, I have had major problems when going there. Mainly the employees. They tend to be very rude and not as helpful as your would expect Disney employees to be. I speak French so imagine my suprise when the French employees began making fun of english speakers in the middle of the pre-show for Honey I shrunk the Audience!!! I came across situations like that frequently including other times when they clearly didnt want to speak english. They also have a cinema in the Festival DIsney area [like Downtown Disney] but refuse to play films in english or with subtitles!! I have no problem with Disneyland Paris and have been over ten times - lost count now - I especially loved Animagique and Cinemagique in the Studios park!!!
You know, I had a similar problem with rude cast members in the Italy Pavillion at EPCOT. I speak a little Italian and and partly Italian also. Now thats in the US.
I just couldnt believe how rude they were at times.....
For example we stayed in a Disney hotel (the name of which one escapes me right now)
The women at reception had a french symbol and english symbol on her jacket to show she could speak both languages. Italian to I think...
I admit my french is pretty rubbish, I will hold my hands up to that. But she just refused to speak English until after a few minutes of confusion and problems, I kindly asked if she could possibly speak English so we could check in easily.
Now I know we are in France but come on. I wasnt being ignorant, she had the badge/symobol on her uniform showing she could speak English.
She eventually spoke English and French (mixture) to us so we could understand roughly what was going on. But she was snappy and certainly didnt have the "magic" that Disney is all about.
It's not as if I was one of those people that didnt even bother to speak French. I did what I could....
It just got the few days there off to a bad start. Sure alot of people will say its my problem i cant speak French but I am sure Disney would have forseen this problem which is why they have the symbols on their jackets of which language they could speak...Didnt mean she had to be rude.
There were a number of other problems through out the trip but Im not one to complain during the events. Just like to get on with things and enjoy my holiday as best I can!
From elaine mck
Posted November 7, 2006 at 4:05 AM
I also have experienced the complete and utter rudeness of "senior staff" at disneyland resort paris . We had booked tickets to attend the Halloween soiree but unfortunately they never arrived in the post (I was told that they HAD to be posted and that would definitely arrive in time) When the tickets, which I had paid for in full including a charge for postage, didn't arrive before we were leaving for France(last post before halloween) I contacted Disneyland and was advised by a very nice helpful girl that my tickets would be available for collection at the ticket office of walt Disney studios ON halloween. So on Halloween I went as instructed and Queued( for 40 mins) at the ticket office of Disney studios to be told, no it's the "guest relations" desk I needed to go to, so off I went and Queued yet again(30 mins) to be met with a blank expression by the girl at the desk. she attempted to contact the relavent dept and all the while I was told to stand to one side while she waited on a return phonecall and dealt with the people behind me on the Queue. I must stress at this point I was starting to get a bit irritated at the manner in which I was being treated but I did manage to remain calm as I understand that aggression is pointless. I did however contact the Irish dept of Disney's central reservations and got a very helful man who assured me he'd get to the bottom of this fiasco and that he'd call me back as he didn't want me wasting money holding on my mobile. Eventually after 25-30 mins waiting to the side of the guest relations window a senior representative arrived and told us that we'd have to go to "Pluto" window at the other park!!! off I trotted, while my 3 year old and 1 year old amused themselves dancing outside the park, to finally get my tickets. guess what.........no tickets!!! I was told I'd have to go back to walt Disney studios ticket office at 7 pm to collect them (this was 1pm) when I said( calmly) that this was unacceptable that I've been sent here, there and everywhere all morning and that I wanted them to get the tickets now and that I wanted to speak to a supervisor.The supervisor came to the window and told us we "could stand there for the day if we wanted that it wasn't her problem" and if we wanted our tickets we'd have to "queue at 7pm at disney studios" her attitude was OUTRAGEOUS! I have NEVER been spoken to like that or treated with such contempt in my life. I found it completely amazing that this "supervisor" felt the need to talk to me like that considering what I was asking for was completely unreasonable- all I wanted was the tickets I had bought and paid for to be given to me I did NOT want to be sent on yet another wild goose chase!! The helpful man from Central reservations then rang me back to apologise because he couldnt do anything he too thought it was disgraceful the manner in which we were treated and he advised me to send an email of complaint on returning home. when I went at 7pm to Queue, again, for my tickets I discovered that everybody on the Queue had been given the run around all day too. I think it was badly organised and when the mistake was brought to their attention they should have handled it better- after all it wasn't our mistake it was theirs and we are not employees of Disneyland and it was completely outrageous to expect us to run around like couriers all day to get our tickets which SHOULD have reached us by post!
I think that many of the employees of Disneyland Resort Paris need to be properly trained how to deal with the public as a confrontational and abusive attitude when a mistake has been made is unacceptable. All in all the day was ruined as a result of this! so mush for Magic Kingdom more like a nightmare!!
Thats really too bad!
But honestly, are there really any parks in Europe that could compete with Disneyland Paris? I mean it seems that the theme park industry in the US is not nessairly the same in Europe. I would guess that Disneyland Paris would be the best just by default is that there is nothing similar to it in Europe. I used to remember that it was a bit of a flop, but I guess its gotten better! I will be going there in the summer so I will see what it has to offer!
I would never go there again to be honest.
It probably has improved but it really did put me off for life when i went before.
Would rather travel the extra thousands of miles to Florida, then I have a choice of other things besides Disney to.
Especially since now I have a little one on the way and when i do take them in a few years I want them to experiance the best of Disney and not what Paris has to offer.
From Ben Mills
Posted November 8, 2006 at 5:27 PM
Ahh, but then Paris has infinitely more cultural elements to experience beyond the gates of theme parks, whereas Orlando, fun as it is, is hardly a high point of culture. Still, this is totally dependent on your reasons for going on holiday, and if the highlights of a city are not in your sights, then Paris as a destination is largely defunct. Yeah!
IN response to Steve Rogers post about the cast members not have the Magic at Disneyland Paris.
It reminds me of New Jersey here in the states. Same stores as everywhere else but the people working in them...Good grief. Everything is an ordeal! Kind of like life in Jersey in general when compared with the rest of the country.
WOW, France and jersey may actually be the same.
I have just returned from Disneyland Paris and read this forum and everything fits into place. It's not an opinion it is a fact, the French are extremely RUDE! Obvioulsy every single person is different so there will be the few exceptions but the MAJORITY are rude! I went to the Disney village nightclub, Hurricanes (well worth it, not) only to get stranded outside until 3am because there was no taxi's and security said they would call one a couple of times but I heard them laughing every time I walked away. We didn't get to bed until 4am so woke up 2pm the next day and lost a day round the parks. Got there at 4pm and was told they shut at 7pm so paid 88 euros for 3 hours! (for 2 people)I complained to the manager at city hall who gave me a form to fill in and kept me waiting 45 mins in a room making me miss the christmas lights switch on at the castle and only to say "sorry" at the end of it all. I said "is that it"? he said "I cannot make up for your lost time" I asked for a few hours the next day before we left in the afternoon for free and he wouldn't oblige. They don't have any morals and Walt Disney would be disgusted if he were alive and aware of this situation. He built a theme park as a place for a family can have a "day out", somewhere to go with good value for money. Now it's just a case of money making share-holders and doesn't uphold the morals it was originally intended for. The Americans are much more civilised. The French should NOT HAVE this theme park; it's dishonourable to America because of French attitude. If they want us to go there and spend our money then why refuse to speak our language and say it's "their country" we should speak their language!? As far as I'm concerned Disneyland Paris, you don't exist! Viva Florida next June with the good American welcome, humour, weather and most important "MAGIC"! The only magical thing about Disneyland Paris is your money which disappears in a vanishing act; leaving nothing in its place! Things like that make you proud to be BRITISH thank god we don't have an attitude like that; it makes you appreciate our customer service standards. I wont be compensated for my problems in Paris but here they probably would've given me a full refund and free day out! Ps. Has anyone else noticed the stench out of Marne la vallee - chessy train station of raw sewerage and the urine smells in the car park behind it?
From Ben Mills
Posted December 19, 2006 at 12:06 PM
Wow. That was... interesting.
It's very odd though. Despite the fact that I've been to France many, many times (and Disneyland Paris nearly as many) I appear to be the only person in the universe without an anti-French attitude. Theme parks, in particular. Compared with the way I have been treated in parks like Thorpe Park and Drayton Manor, I tend to feel like royalty in DLP. But hey, maybe that's just me. Maybe I've even finally developed a pair of rose-tinted glasses...
OMG, someone that's been to Paris with his eyes shut! Ever heard the expression "I will say zis only once"? from Allo Allo, I think? Did you not see every other car with a dent in the back of it Ben? Do you not hear the horns of every motorist who has to stop at a Junction for more than 10 seconds? The cars that park touching each others bumper in EVERY street! Have you ever been laughed at for being British or someone that CAN speak English refuse to talk to you in that language unless it's absolutely necessary; wont accept any blame. Seen French men masterbate in the toilets downstairs of Burger King at the sink! I think one can have many trips to the same place and be asleep to the underbelly of things; especially when there is a relationship between camera and tourist attraction. I have to say one thing, there were the exceptional "few" french staff at Disneyland Paris who WERE nice but if you paint a black speck on the mona lisa, then the whole painting's ruined.
'Seen French men masterbate in the toilets downstairs of Burger King at the sink!'
Now did you really have to post that? Younger people than yourself read this site so have a little restraint O.K?
Not to mention he spelled it wrong.
Anyway, one of my friends went to Paris after taking 4 years of French in high school and she told me almost everyone she encountered was very kind to her and helped her while she was speaking. I've also heard that the people become much nicer once you're outside Paris.
You are joking!? The younger folk may read what I put about the french man in the toilets but I had to see it when I was 12! Better to read it methinks. Anyway this is a PG, so parental guidance advised, it's harldy pornographic and half the little so and so's know more colourful language then you'll beg to imagine. Sorry for not spelling the word right I'm sure your grammar is 100% perfect 100% of the time. :op
No, I'am not joking.
Take it up with the site editor if you wish, I'am sure he would love to hear that someone has been posting bad language on his discussion boards without censoring it. Most of us on TPI censor language that is deemed obscene. If I use language that is deemed obscene a censor it.
From JasonK K
Posted January 1, 2007 at 12:55 PM
I'm afraid I'd have to agree with most of the comments on this subject. I think they made a mistake putting the park in France. Physically the park is superb but the staff are definitely rude. The weather is often abysmal. It is impossible to get away from cigarette smoke, even in lines for young kids' rides. I was once in the gents toilets using a urinal and a female cleaner suddenly appeared beside me, sweeping the floor, acting like if it was the most normal thing in the world! (It definitely was not for me!)
Where should they have put it then?
From JasonK K
Posted January 2, 2007 at 11:44 AM
I'd have thought somewhere in England would've been a good place as the whole 'America thing' is generally welcome here. However, the weather again would be a bit of a problem as well as the lack of space.
Otherwise Spain could've been a good place, especially for the weather. Universal and Warner Bros have taken this option.
Part of the reason for putting it in France was probably that it is a more centralized location and isn't that great of a distance from most other European countries. Also, I'm sure there was a deal with the French government some way or another. It seems like it would have been a better idea though to put the park in the south of France.
No, Disneyland Paris is not the best in Europe.
Wow, that wasn't too hard!
Well Mark, you are British so obviously you would be more bias towards your country's theme parks and you might actually be one of the few people on this site that can actually compare or contrast European Parks. THere are just too many of us Americans on this site!
The English Parks do look pretty good, but I am just going to guess that Disneyland Paris does so well because of the brand name and that Americans would probably be drawn to it more than other parks.
I don't know, you are probably a better expert on European parks.
Mark, biased? How could anyone draw such a radical conclusion?!
I can't place my views on Disneyland Paris because I've never been there. From what I hear however, one of the most often heard problems seems to be with the attitude of the staff, but that's just what I have heard.
I cant speak for all of Europes parks but Disneyland Paris is far superior to anything we have in the UK.
Most of our Parks are a joke that can be done in half a day.
Alton Towers is vastly overated compared to the large US parks ive been too and although it's the largest UK park it's a dirty place and still only just a single day park.
Thorpe Park and Chessington are our next 2 "big hitters" 10 miles apart but combined would only just make a full day out.
Possibly Port Aventura in Spain comes close to Disney but personaly I dont think so.
in response we visit Disneyland Paris often from here in the UK and we have never had a problem with the staff, yeah they arent American in their behaviours - THATS because theyre not American - i would find it insulting if they were to adhere to scripts and wish us all a nice day as thats not in their culture.
From Jonny Read
Posted September 3, 2007 at 2:32 AM
Disneyland Paris, having been there about 3 weeks ago, is far better than many of our UK parks. Apart from Isla Magica, near Seville, it's the only European park i've been to so cant really comment on them. Alton Towers, Pleasure Beach, Drayton Manor, Thorpe Park and Chessington all have their own quality's but somehow Disney seems to have 'magic' and can, as Disney always do, actually call itself a 'theme' park.
From Erik Yates
Posted September 3, 2007 at 6:00 AM
I've gotta say Bon-bon land. THE BEST THEMED COASTERS EVER!
I had very mixed feelings about DLP. The rides are great, but the Cast Members were terrible. And, saying nothing about other people's culture, but a majority of the guests that we ran into were SO much more ruder than the worst in FL. The English people seemed the most polite, but people would cut and knock you over and not care!
So I am not sure anymore if its the best, but I will guess it might because it seems to be the only Theme Park in Europe that has money being poured into it to make it better.
But its the worst Disney resort overall in the world I can gather!
From Ben James
Posted September 3, 2007 at 9:56 AM
I don't think that others are actually all that rude. i think it is more of us as Americans viewing other more's (moor-ays) of cultures. Remeber, it may seem rude because of the culture class, but in their country it may be accepted. On a side note. DLP has been the resort struggling the most. Remember Euro-Disney?
BTW, Alton Towers should be rated the best European Theme Park.
I think they are rude because they just assume that you don't speak whatever they speak and they can take advantage of that!
Note: This is nothing against other people's cultures or anything. I just feel that people should be respected with kindness which I did not get at DLP
And I think it might be one of the better parks because ride by ride, its the strongest of any Disney Park I have been too. The Guest Relations is what is killing it!
My memory isnt perfect, kind of long ago that i visited some of the bigger European parks , but still its save to say even from distant memory that Disneylandparis is the best, its a simple matter of seize.
Some other parks come closer then they should be able to, considering how much more Disneland Paris costed to construct. Others are just tiny and boring. Legoland and Gardaland fall in the second Category.
Europapark, Phantasialand and Futuruscope in the first.
or the americans that have already seen us magic kingdoms theres obivously not much value added at Paris. However this 3 non Disney Parks mentioned above got a notable size, and add some things you wont see at Orlando, or do them better then there. Maybe some people from Orlando should take a look there before they copy each other with almost identical stuff ( that almost identical Andimal Show at Universal Animal kingdom and Seaworld....)
Europaprk consists of country theme lands just like the world showcase at epcot, however theres a huge upside - Europapark got real buildings not plastic crap. Also they didnt overdo it with the dreamland compared to reality like epcot. The real castle there within a park is also a nice adition.
Futuruscope has all this different imax techniques you wont find anywhere else - that one where you see a film below you, the 180degree one, the 180 degree 3d with that special glasses...
Its also much more fun to see people working that are not trained to be some kind of "actor" ( translate: artificial smile, where you just see they dont feel like ).
The British math putting Orlando in the same price category as Orlando is simply wrong, even with the curent exchange rate. The ticket price is still slighly lower in Paris, traveling is obviously much cheaper. The cheapest flights to Orlando should be around 300 € return from Europe, European flights in contrast arent hard to get for 10 € thes days Also the French park got an own train station, so its much more convinient to stay outside disneys dream ( translate extreme high price ) world. Aditionally, in Paris you get the most beautiful city i ever visited that can be easily explored without a car thanks to a good public transportation network. In Orlando you get the ugliest city i ever visited, aditionally one that is built so decentraliced that public transportation would even be painful if they would put any effort in it. Still enjoyed my recent stay in Orlando because well.. the Theme Parks. Yes, admitly Paris is no match with 3 Parks and only one in the Orlando seize.
A note to the does Paris "deserve" Disneyland ?
If you dont like French, you should say yes since Disneyland Paris makes a lot of money for Disney but a huge loss for the French staate, the European Banks financeing it and the public shareholders. They even managed to do the same again in Hong kong.
I cant say anything to Point aventure Lisgard Alton Towers, or Eftlingen never been there, maybe they are as crappy as Gardaland/legoland ( to be correct Legoland isnt crappy just small and still relativly expensive, if you are already in the area and small children visit one ) maybe theres another Europapark category Park uunder them - visitors numbers alone dont tell the full story.
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