Holidays

Disneyland Paris In A Wheelchair (part two) – I’m Here

So I’ve arrived in Disneyland Paris!

Read the story so far and find out how I got here…

Due to using Disney Express we didn’t need to offload at the hotel, so straight to Disneyland Park we headed!

Heading under the Disney Hotel to enter Disneyland

Our first stop was City Hall. If you have a disability you can get something called a Green Card from here. You need some form of disability proof, I showed my Blue Badge, which sufficed.

A Green Card entitles the bearer and their family/friends priority access onto rides and attractions. Queue jumping as it were. You can only use this pass if you are going on the ride yourself. Family and friends cannot use the Green Card if the person with the disability isn’t taking part in the attraction. This can mean a fair bit of waiting around on my part if the ride is inaccessible to me, as queues can be upto an hour long. I don’t mind this, as we do things I can access in between. Plus it was nice just chilling in the sun with a slushy sometimes!

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The first afternoon and evening was spent mostly wandering. There is so much to explore! We did bump into Genie from Aladdin on our strolls through Adventureland. I wonder if he will grant any of my wishes?!

Adventureland in Disneyland

In Adventureland you feel like a pirate!
Sleeping Beauty Castle in the distance. Like a fairytale

Waiting in line for Genie we spot a little al fresco cafe behind the gates
Meeting Genie. What would you wish for?

After getting a decent spot for the early evening parade the heavens opened. It rained. And rained. The parade was cancelled, we can’t have Micky Mouse getting wet now can we. No worries though, this was day 1 of 5 and the parade would be on everyday. Also there would be no more rain. Fact. I would get sunburn the rest of the days. Happy fact.

The walk to the hotel doesn’t take long at all. I rather like it. You pass through the Disney Village (full of shops, restaurants, bars and a cinema) and then walk/wheel around the lake.

We stayed in Sequoia Lodge and have done previously. It’s in the perfect location. I love how far away it feels from Disneyland even though it is only a 10-15 minute walk/wheel.

In the middle of a forest, it feels like a different world to the crazy, exciting and shiny world of Disney. Spacious, peaceful and green.

Sequoia Lodge

At check in we discovered we wouldn’t be in the main hotel, we were in a little lodge round the corner. At first, wandering there with our cases we thought it was quite a trek, especially for an accessible room where it’s likely the occupant would have mobility issues. The next day though we realised there was a little short cut that quickly got us to Disney Village.

To the pool and mini lodges

On route from our lodge

Easy access smooth pathways through the forestry

The lake before Disney Village. You can go up in that balloon!

It was also rather nice being a bit separate. There were a few rooms and guests in our lodge but it was much quieter than the busyness of a large hotel.

Booking an accessible room meant that we got an adjoining room too. Mum and I in one room, sister and kids in the other. Lockable door in between!

I was relieved and rather proud to find a hoist in my room, ready to use. The plan had come together.

If you’ve read ‘Disneyland Paris In A Wheelchair (part one) – The Take Off’ you’ll know I have difficulty sleeping on a regular mattress so packed an inflatable camping one with me… well it inflated perfectly fine at home in a trail run. That pump did not want to pump in Paris!

After a lot of huffing and puffing (not from my pathetic lungs) the mattress was up and placed on top of my single bed. Like The Princess and the Pea! (Don’t think that’s a Disney yet?!).

A little terrified to move, as whenever I did it felt like I was on a bouncy castle, one part of me went down and the other flew in the air! I actually slept quite well. For me anyway. It’s a good job I can’t move in my sleep!

Snippets of the Bambi wallpaper border in our room

On the morning of day 2 we decided to make a bit of a plan. The weather forecast was warm and sunny well into the evening and we wanted to make the most of this.

On the walk through Disney Village we booked a table at The Rainforest Cafe for later that evening. This is one of my favourite places to eat, it’s not a Disney thing, these are located all over the world, London to Dubai.

The food is tasty but nothing too fancy, the wheelchair access is good, spacious with easy to drive under tables. I think it’s somewhere everyone should give a go, especially if you have kids (although I probably loved it more than them!).

You enter through a giant fish tank archway and find yourself in the midst of a rainforest. There are monkeys and elephants, colourful birds hidden in trees. Every twenty minutes or so the place goes darker and a storm hits, there are crackles and an elephant roaring in the distance, do elephants roar? At first the kids are startled but then the excitement grows, their imagination comes to play. I just want to state here that, bar the fish the animals are not real, it’s not a safari. Although they are pretty realistic!

Monkey hanging from the trees
Spacious seating area

Anyways, back to the planning. So we decided to make the most of the weather and do some character stalking and show watching. You can pick up a weekly schedule from City Hall and other places dotted around the park entrances. We focused on Disneyland park today, thinking tomorrow we shall explore Disney Studios.

There were two shows we aimed to see, and one parade. These were all outdoor attractions.

Every show and parade has specific spaces reserved for people with disabilities (Green Card holders) and 2 members of their group. So unfortunately being a group of 6 we couldn’t always sit together. If you are unsure where any of the access seating is there are always plenty of Disney crew to point you in the right direction.

For the shows everybody sits on the floor so there is no problem seeing if you are unable to stand. However the parade is a different matter! To start with everybody is sitting on the ground, as there is a little time to wait (these things get busy so find your position a good half hour before showtime!), then as soon as the music starts it’s a free for all! Yes you are still in a reserved area but these people stand (those that can) and push in. So if you don’t have a good spot near the front it can be frustrating.

Micky Presents: Happy Anniversary Disneyland Paris

Disney Princess Dance

Disney Stars on Parade, 25th Anniversary

I even got snowed on by Elsa

Another perk of the Green Card is bookable character meets. There are characters dotted around both parks all day everyday. As you can imagine the queues for a photo and autograph get crazily long! After all, who doesn’t want to meet legends like these…

With the Green Card instead of queuing you are given the option of booking a time slot and returning later. But be early (you can book from 11am each day for the characters of that day) for this! We did manage to book a couple in advance but also ended up queuing for a few. There are understandably limited time slots, otherwise the regular queuing people would never get a look in! To be honest though I don’t mind the odd queue. I am British!

In between the shows and character meeting we explored some more of the lands and went on some rides. Quite a few of these are actually accessible, and I’ll discuss more later. I’ll leave you today with one of my favourites in Frontierland, one that I could access with my wheels! It’s a great attraction if you fancy a bit of quiet and to take in some of the stunning sights which don’t involve glitter and shine. Disney isn’t all about the sparkle.

Thunder Mesa Riverboat Landing…

Easy access to the boat via a portable ramp
Me on a boat
Sights from our sail

To be continued…

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27 thoughts on “Disneyland Paris In A Wheelchair (part two) – I’m Here”

  1. I have never been to Disneyland but have always wanted to go. Reading this is so fabulous as it’s great to hear from a different point of view! So typical about the matress, always the way that works when you practice and soon as you get there it’s a mess! Glad you got it sorted with out too much agg haha! Can’t wait to read the next installement xx

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I get to go to Disney in Florida in September. I go once every few years. I know people who are fanatics that go every three months or so, even if it’s only for a weekend. I guess that’s much easier if you live near Disney but we live 1200 miles away, so it’s a trek for them.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve never been to Florida and not sure I’ll ever get that far! Paris is a great alternative though and is getting bigger each time I go. I’ve been about 5 times. Once every few years is enough for me too though. It’s more special then 😊. I hope you have a brilliant time in September!

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  3. This all looks amazing Gemma… And I’m officially jealous … I’m like one of them biggest Disney fans but I’ve never had a chance to go to any of the Disney Land, Disney World, Disney anything’s, however I have a great collection of the video tapes which I can no longer play as I don’t have a video recorder anymore. I’m living my dream of seeing Disney through your posts, so thank you 😍

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I had loads of Disney videos too, I’ve no idea where they’ve gone…
      It’s such a great place to visit, especially if you’re a mega fan. And so easy to get to on the train. You must do it sometime Ritu!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. One day Gemma…It just feels like life is slipping me by, with so much going on in work, and with the kids… but we WILL do it!
        My videos are packed carefully, and stored in the attic!!!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Made me chuckle about the mattress! I do hope the Genie will grant whatever wishes you made. Good to hear that on the whole a lot of the accessible and disability-friendly elements worked well. You have some incredible photos and memories, especially the character meets (how amazing!) Looking forward to the next instalment – feels like I’m there & living it with you! 🙂
    Caz x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That mattress… It was like a comedy sketch! But at least it helped me to get some sleep. When I wasn’t feeling sea sick 😂
      It really is quite good disability wise. There are a few rides that I managed to get on with my wheels. You’ll hear more in the next part 😉

      Liked by 1 person

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