Have you ever thought about visiting Disneyland Paris in winter? The weather can be cold, but the park is still magical! These top 5 tips for visiting Disneyland in winter will help you plan ahead and fully enjoy your holiday.
Our first visit to Disneyland Paris was in February, during the cold winter season. We had to wrap up in winter coats, hats, gloves and scarfs. But despite the cold winter weather, we had a fantastic time.
Does Disneyland Paris Close in Winter?
No. Disneyland Paris is open all year round. However, opening hours do vary from season to season and some of the shops, rides and attractions can close during very cold weather.
Winter may not be considered the best time to visit Disneyland Paris, but it can still be wonderful. One benefit of visiting Disneyland in winter is that it gets dark early. This gives younger children who may not be able to stay up late the chance to see the park all lit up with fabulous lights and the magical atmosphere.
Here are my top tips for planning a trip to Disneyland Paris in winter.
1. Dress Warm
If you’re wondering what to wear to Disneyland Paris in winter, it’s simple: Dress warm and wear layers.
You’ll be spending hours outdoors at a time, so be sure to wrap up warm. Prepare for cold weather but take a backpack in case the weather warms up. That way you can take a layer off and keep it in your backpack.
I wore warm trousers, a jumper and a coat. My daughter wanted to wear her Disney dresses, so she wore warm clothing such as a jumper and leggings underneath her Disney outfits. She also had her coat on top when needed.
Top Tip: If you’re planning to take your child in winter, get Disney costumes that are larger than your child so they can fit over the warm clothing without being too tight.
2. Find a Hotel Close to the Park
I recommend staying as close to Disneyland as possible. Sylvia and I stayed in the warm and cosy Santa Fe Hotel, which was a 5 minute shuttle journey to and from the park.
Winter in Disneyland Paris can be very cold and you may want to return to your room for a small break during the day or return in the evening to have a warm, hearty meal before heading outdoors for the laser show.
The Santa Fe Hotel is warm and toasty and we made great use of the warm bath and shower facilities at the end of each day.
3. Book Family Meals in Advance
Whether you have a dining plan or not, book family meals in advance.
In the winter, you need to book at least a day or two before your meals if you plan to eat in the parks. The weather will be cold and people will be taking their time in the restaurants for warm, filling meals. Booking in advance is essential.
Food and drinks can be very expensive at Disneyland. You can either go half board, full board or choose to eat meals whilst in the Disney Park. Prepaying for food can really help on the budget.
Make sure you plan and book your evening meals early each day when visiting the Disneyland parks. If you’re full board, then that’s sorted for you, however if you’re going to choose from a selection of restaurants, book early.
People want a break from the cold air and often spend a good amount of time in the warm, toasty restaurants.
If you leave it too late (as I did on our first day) you may find yourself struggling to find somewhere warm to eat.
Going half board meant we had breakfast vouchers which entitled me and my daughter to a hot or cold drink within the park in the morning. We took advantage of this and it really helped in the cold weather.
On one occasion we chose to dine at the hotel Santa Fe. We ate warm croissants, porridge, cheese and hot chocolate before heading out to the Parks.
We also really enjoyed eating in La Cantina in the Santa Fe Hotel and visiting the Davy Crockett Ranch.
4. Check Disneyland Paris Opening Times And Get An Early Start
It gets dark early in the winter, and darker means colder. Getting an early start means more time in the daylight and (hopefully) the sun.
During the winter, Disneyland Paris is typically open from 10am until 10pm. You can visit either the Disneyland Park or the Walt Disney Studios Park during these times.
However, if you’re staying in a Disneyland hotel, you can visit the parks two hours earlier than others. This is a fantastic opportunity in winter as this can reduce the time standing outside in the cold waiting to go on rides.
Later on in the day, take advantage of the Fast Pass rides, where you can get a ticket in advance and return at a certain time.
5. Schedule Indoor Attractions and Take Indoor Breaks
Take advantage of some indoor shows and attractions throughout the day to warm up. There are plenty in both Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios.
There are two indoor arcades on Main Street, plus shops and restaurants where you can sit and warm up with a hot drink. There are also several indoor rides and character meet and greets.
We loved the Animagique show and also enjoyed visiting several other indoor options such as Buzz Lightyear’s Laser Quest.
Visiting the Disney Princesses can take time but is a great way to keep warm during the day when you need a break from the winter weather.
I would plan indoor activities part way through the day to break up the time you are indoors and outdoors.
Disneyland is simply an amazing adventure one that can be enjoyed in all seasons. It’s such a magical place during the winter season and I’d love to return again during the colder winter months.
More Disney tips you may find useful:
- Meeting Moana At Disneyland Paris
- DIY Mickey Ears The Kids Will Love
- Hot Air Balloon Ride At Disneyland Paris
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