Today marks two milestones at Disneyland Paris. The resort’s second gate, the Walt Disney Studios Park, turns 14. Secondly today was the last day for flights to Endor on Star Tours at the Disneyland Park. This past fall I had the opportunity to visit both and have full pictures and thoughts in my 2015 Disneyland Paris Trip Report
To mark the occasion I thought I would pull a couple pictures to share plus some thoughts.
Star Tours was an opening day attraction at Disneyland Paris. It is closing for a several month renovation and when it reopens it will join Anaheim, Orlando and Tokyo and feature the new digital 3D Adventure Continues version of the attraction. This is the last park to undergo the upgrade. While I found it fun to visit the original attraction one more time it really did show it’s age compared to the updated versions elsewhere. The high definition of the Adventures Continue version makes a world of difference to your experience compared to the original film quality.
Walt Disney Studios Park
Back in the 90s as part of the Disney Decade the Walt Disney Company wanted to turn their Disneyland Parks in Anaheim, Tokyo and Paris into destinations so the plan was to add a second gate to each to increase the number of days a guest would spend at them. This was based on the success of Walt Disney World which was opening its fourth gate (Animal Kingdom in 1998). Anaheim settled for a lackluster Disney’s California Adventure that opened in Feb. 2001. Tokyo received the incredible Tokyo DisneySea in September 2001 and Paris received the Walt Disney Studios Park in March 2002.
I did not get to visit the original park, but based on my less than stellar impression of the current/expanded version I think it would be fair to categorize it as a disappointment and incomplete park. Since the park opened in 2002 they have added the Toon Studio area in 2007, Tower of Terror & Stitch Live in 2008, Playhouse Disney in 2009, Toy Story Playland in 2010 and Ratatouille in 2014. I was most impressed with the newest addition the Ratatouille attraction & area. This area had detail, a sense of place, a good restaurant and a unique signature attraction all of which add up to a solid experience. This really highlights the shortcomings of the rest of the park in my opinion. Even with these additions I did not spend that much time in the park. I was at Disneyland Paris for ten days.. in the parks for parts of seven days and I spend one morning and two afternoons in the Walt Disney Studios Park only. It will be interesting to see what direction the park takes in the coming years. I think it could use a Disney California Adventure level of over haul and investment.
The original Moteurs…. Action! Stunt Show debuted at the Walt Disney Studios Park.
You can also still ride a studio tram in Paris and visit Catastrophe Canyon.
For more pictures from Disneyland Paris be sure to visit my 2015 Disneyland Paris Trip Report