Up before the sun, Daniel and I navigated the Paris Metro and RER systems and headed out to Parcs Disneyland. We were there to meet Tom, a member of the DLRP cast who I met two years ago as they were training on Buzz Lightyear. Tom had promised to show me around the parks when I made it to Paris, so after exchanging some emails, the date was set.
We arrived right at 8am despite a delay of 5 minutes at one RER station. The thing that frustrates me about Paris is that when something happens to the transit system and you are a tourist with little or no French knowledge, you are out of the loop and know nothing about what is happening. For being one of the premiere cities of the world, they could do a little to improve their services for tourists. Another big gripe is that every ticket agent knew enough English until I needed help at which they then decided that they didn’t know it. I guess I am partially to blame since this is my sixth trip to France and I still know very little French.
Tom immediately whisked us into the park where we were able to see areas with no people and some with just a handful of people. He took us on a whirlwind tour through Star Tours (for Daniel), Space Mountain, Buzz, Peter Pan, Pirates, Indy, Phantom Manor, and Big Thunder. Those of you familiar with my site know that I have this deep found love for Disneyland Paris and it was great to see it from an insiders point of view. We were privileged to see some backstage areas as well, including some of the cast facilities.
We then moved over to Walt Disney Studios Paris where we were shown the newest land Toon Studios as well as some of the placemaking projects for the park. Along the way, we even spotted Jay Rasulo, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, taking a tour. Tom also showed us around the new Tower of Terror attraction which opens in January, and I think the public will be impressed with all that is going into and around the attraction. Sorry folks, no spoilers here, just a quick rundown of what we did. We wrapped up our day with a ride on the Rock and Rollercoaster, Lights, Moteurs, Action, and finally Cinemagique. That leaves Animagique and the new Cars ride as the only WDSP attraction I have not seen. By the way, the new Crush Coaster is awesome!
To end the night, Tom took us to the Fantasia Bar at the Disneyland Hotel for a drink. I cannot say enough about how amazing the day was and how great it was for Tom to take time out of his busy schedule to take us all around the resort and to share his insights on the Resort. For me, it was an amazing day that I will not soon forget.
Exhausted, Daniel and I looked around the Disney Village and took note of some cool things we might pick up before we go home. It was then time to take the RER back the 17 stops to Paris. We decided to stay on for an extra stop so we could walk the Champs de Elysais to get a quick bite to eat. What better place to get something quick than Quick? After downing our meal and leaving to avoid the scary beggar, we headed back to our hotel to crash.
We need to get some more Chocolate croissants since we enjoyed them at one of the backstage cafes. Before we head out tomorrow, we will need to find a bakery in the Rue Cler that sells them. If all goes according to plan, we are going to sleep in for a bit and then head back to the Resort to enjoy it at a leisurely pace and do some serious souvenir shopping. Friday is shaping up to be the Touristy day in Paris with museums and Eiffel Towers galore.