Disney Trip Report with Toddler and Baby!

by - 14:37:00

So it's been around 6 months since we visited the mouse, yet watching our YouTube video (which can be found here) me and Kairi are still saying 'wow' and I'm welling up with happy tears!

I thought I'd write about our experience to help parents who are considering taking little ones to Disney... My verdict DO IT!
Many people told me they were too young and wouldn't remember, but for me it wasn't about their memories, yes it's fantastic that Kairi remembers and talks about it, but I wanted the memories, I wanted to remember her toddling down Main Street, meeting her hero and get amazing pictures like this:
Date, People and Accommodation
Sunday 8th March to Friday 13th March.
Me, Ryan (husband) and our 2 girls Kairi and Naminé (23 months and 7 weeks).
My mum, my sister and my niece (2 years + 2 months) also came.
We stayed at the Santa Fe for 4 Nights. (Monday-Friday) with an overnight stay at the Travelodge in London on the Sunday before.

Itinerary and Report
Sunday - we left at around midday (after what seamed like years of waiting!) and got on the train from Great Yarmouth to London. The journey was pretty smooth, it was a pain having to change at Norwich and Cambridge, but it wasn't too bad. We arrived in London and checked into the Travelodge, the power went out in 1 of our rooms, so half our party was moved and we got free breakfast! We ordered pizza for dinner which was a nice treat to end a long day.

Monday - we got up early and had breakfast, walked down to the Eurostar and checked in. It was so easy. We boarded the Eurostar (we were premier class as it was the same price!) and had a nice 'breakfast' (however it was nearly lunch by the time it came!) We had croissants, jam, butter, frusli with yogurt and a roll. Drinks were Orange juice, tea and coffee.
We arrive at Disney Land Paris just after lunch and used Disney's magical express (Which is a service that takes your bags to the hotel for you letting you get straight into the park!) We went straight to Magic Kingdom guest relations to sort out our disability passes (1 green and 1 orange, for temporary and permanent disabilities) we also asked about the haircuts at Dapper Dans but were very disappointed when we were told that they were only for Boys! (Catch up with the times Disney!) While everyone grabbed the famous 'picture in front of the castle', I popped into the shop to purchase our photo pass, which is very worth the money.
We managed to get quite a few rides in and at 6pm we sat down for our first meal which was at Blue Lagoon. It was the first time we had eaten there and it was amazing, the food was perfect and the atmosphere was great, we all enjoyed watching the boats pass by whole we tucked in to a wonderful meal. We finished our meal by boarding Pirate of the Caribbean (we walked straight on!) When we got out it seamed dead, we checked the time just and just as we did, the fireworks went off, we couldn't believe it was that late already!
We were tired from our long day and couldn't really get a good view of the fireworks from where we were so we decided to try and beat the crowds out (but failed!). On our way to the bus, knowing it would be packed already, we went into the world of Disney Store where we brought our daughters' first gifts. (The plan was to leave her a surprise every night from 'Minnie' to wake up to!)

As soon as we got back, we went to check into our hotel, the Santa Fe and with our luggage already there, it made a very easy check in! Entering our rooms we found gifts! (3 Mickey teddy's on the beds, a box with tea, coffee, biscuits etc and some chocolate coins.)

Once the girls were asleep, I unpacked and Ryan chilled out watching Disney channel (we are really missing watching Hannah Montana now!). Just before bed we set up Kairi's present from Minnie Mouse for her to find in the morning. (It was a Minnie Mouse buggy and a baby Minnie which we had brought at world of Disney). Unfortunately with the excitement and magic of Disney, she awoke and found it at 3:30am and started playing with it! But we didn't mind we were on holiday and it was fab to see her so happy.

Tuesday - My Alarm went off at 5:30 so we got up and got the girls ready (I was determined to make Extra Magic Hours) however everyone else was running late! So after our nice breakfast we didn't make it into the park until 8 anyway! (TIP: Breakfast gets really busy! So get there early or wait until later! You could be queuing for a VERY long time!)

As soon as we were in the park, we got lots of rides done and went to meet the Princesses, we got to met Merida which was fab. She held baby Naminé for me and we the photo pass photographers got some amazing pictures.
As soon as Hollywood Studios had opened, we hopped on over and to our surprise (especially for Kairi!), we managed to meet Minnie Mouse! Meeting Minnie has to be my absolute favorite memory of the holiday. Unfortunately, people had been pushing in, but we waited patiently, Minnie was greeting the person before us and the music which tells her she has to leave started to played. We begged Minnie to just see our 2 girls and she did! I will never forget my daughters face the day she met her hero, it brought tears to my eyes (even writing this does!) luckily I managed to get some on video (so I can cry when ever I like!!) You can check it out here
Dinner tonight was at the Silver Spir Steakhouse (which was Ryan's favorite). The restaurant was wonderful and had a romantic type setting which was really nice for us.
After we met up with Mum, Vicki and Lilli where we finally managed to catch dreams. It was Ryan and the girl's first time seeing it and there reactions were priceless! I think it really changed Ryan's opinion on Disney, he was blown away! TIP: Rain wear from your buggy is great to sit on when the floor is wet while your waiting for Dreams to begin!
As we were still feeling good, we decided to take a walk back. We visited a few shops and then My mum watched the girls while myself and Ryan had a drink In the Santa Fe bar (we had a glowtini and a mocktail which were very tasty!). We also managed to meet a friend called Ash (from The Disney Village Facebook group) and got our 'Official Resident' badges, we had a long chat and Ryan finally admitted to enjoying Disney! (He had been a lot of times before and never enjoyed it!)

Wednesday - I got up at 6 and after 3 days, I finally made the Extra Magic Hours! It was just Myself, Ryan and the girls and we managed to meet Minnie and mickey, took some amazing photos on main street and did the tram ride to the castle. At 10am we hopped over to Studios to meet mum, Vicki and Lilli. Ryan was really tired and we were worried about him having a seizure so he went back to the room for a rest/sleep (better to miss a few hours than be out for the rest of the holiday!) We got quite a few more rides done, especially in Toy Story Land. Ryan met back up with us for dinner at 4pm at Walts. We bumped Into Ash again, who was also eating there, had a quick chat and then went up. Walts is one of my absolute favorites (Now pared with Blu Lagoon) the food and service are both fantastic and being above main street you get a wonderful view (which if you're in there at the right time means you can see the parade!). Once out, we caught the parade and enjoyed the rest of our day in Magic Kingdom before taking a stroll back to the room, rather than the bus.

Thursday - Again I got up early! and quietly got myself and Kairi ready, Ryan stayed in the room with Naminé, I had my phone if he needed me and Santa Fe isn't far away from the park. Myself, Kairi, Mum, Vic and Lilli had a quick breakfast (quiet with no queues) and went straight to the Magic Kingdom. We made the Extra Magic Hours again and really used the time to get loads of rides done (we also bumped into chip and dale/tic and tac who had no queue!). At 10:30 we went to 'meet Mickey' as we hadn't managed to see him yet, the queue was very long but the meeting was really nice and although the room had a lot of people in it, you still had that 1-to-1 feeling. Ryan met us shortly after and we quickly went into the baby care center to feed Naminé. (It was far to cold outside and we knew she would be wanting a long feed!) We then all met up and tried to finish off all the rides and shows that we hadn't done yet. We grabbed lunch at Caseys (On the corner of main street which does very tasty hot dogs!), I don't usually enjoy hot dogs, but loved this one.

Our last dinner was at Cafè Mickey's, (we saved the best til last!) we managed to fill our autograph book (all bar one page) and got loads of pictures. The 1-to-1 time was lovely and the girls really enjoyed it.
FOOD PLAN TIP: If you don't have a food plan for an under 3 save to buy them a kids meal or side! We found we couldn't share and all have a good portion at the non-buffet restaurants and the only other food they offer under 3's is puree (try offering a 2 year old puree who has never tasted it in her life!)
I took Naminé to change her and when I came back everyone was staring (my family was laughing and explained when I left the brought our cake out and sang and clapped!) I'm glad I missed it as if not I would have been breastfeeding and had everyone staring my way! They were more than happy to do it again which meant we got a fab video. We left and had a big shop, spent loads of money and then took a nice walk back to the room with and Earl Of Sandwich! (By this point I was probably on my 10th brownie!!)

Friday - It was our last day, so again we got up early again to make the most of it, which was a good job as the check out baggage queue was huge! We checked in our bags (unfortunately they wouldn't take our balloons or buggys!) got straight to the park. Monday (On check in day) we had asked about the special overflow breakfast in the park and were given tickets to eat in plaza gardens. The food is basically the same as the hotel breakfast, but it was really nice to enjoy the view and relax. We finished our trip by watching cinemagic and riding tower of terror (it was Friday 13th!). We waved the parks goodbye, shed a few tears as we left our home and checked into the Eurostar for our long journey back. We made it home at midnight, surrounded in Minnie and Mickey teddies!

Other Tips:

PAUSE GORMET VOUCHERS -  We hardly used our pause gormet, its valid at what seam like the wrong time (it's always too close to dinner) so like many others we saw at Eurostar, on the last day we used them all at 3pm just before we left the parks to get bottles of water and donuts for the journey home. (The other half of our party stocked up on earl of sandwich!)
RIDES FOR UNDER 1's AND TODDLERS - I would defiantly recommend taking any child over 1 there was so much they could do and they loved every moment. However under 1 was another thing, there were of course some rides she was not allowed on and others that they would tell us the risks and let us decide (I thought this was fantastic practice). If you do take an under 1, beware that at times, you will need a baby carrier to ride (luckily we don't use a buggy, only a carrier, but it's good to know.)
PHOTOPASS+ - I absolutely love this! We got nearly 100 pictures and they were amazing! I would recommend it to anyone.

You can check out our whole trip video here and I hope you to have an amazing time.
Happy planning!

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