You see it on all the adverts: Disneyland Paris is the dream family holiday, where mums and dads can bask in the glow of their precious offspring while little kiddies and older siblings are enjoying themselves in perfect harmony.
Sounds great, but it doesn’t always work out like that!
While teething babies and toddler tantrums are just an accepted part of parenting life, it can be trickier to know what to do when it comes to the terrible teens. They’re not quite old enough to be left at home yet, so you drag them along on the family hols to Disneyland Paris and think, surely, you can’t go wrong. It’s the happiest place on earth, right?!
Many teenagers and adults love Disneyland Paris, but there are many elements that are, obviously, aimed at little’uns. Your teenager is probably more interested in their phone screen than anything else and would rather be watching YouTube than posing with Mickey Mouse and sailing through It’s A Small World.
But there are plenty of ways to keep teenagers entertained at Disneyland Paris without making them suffer through things that they’re simply “too old for” these days. Check out some of my top tips!
1. Bigger rides = bigger thrills
So, they might dig their heels in and refuse to be seen on the Mad Hatter’s Teacups, but I’m pretty sure most teenagers can be tempted into cracking a smile on some of the bigger attractions in the park.
Let them prove just how big and brave they are by daring them to ride The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, Big Thunder Mountain, RC Racer and Star Wars Hyperspace Mountain while the “wimps” wait on the sidelines.
2. It’s a family show
The shows put on by Disneyland Paris are, of course, suitable for children. However, just because younger audiences can enjoy them doesn’t mean they isolate the older generations.
We’ve seen some incredible shows at Disneyland Paris that, while family-friendly, aren’t at all childish. The Lion King: Rhythms of the Pride Lands during the Lion King & Jungle Festival earlier this year was simply spectacular and performed in very cool, sophisticated way that wasn’t cheesy or hammed up for the kids. The Jungle Book Jive was a highlight of this season, too. We’ve also seen seriously awesome Star Wars projections during Season of the Force, jaw-dropping stunt shows like Moteurs… Action! and, of course, the nighttime fireworks.
3. In a galaxy far, far away…
Alright, so we’re still waiting on Galaxy’s Edge here at Disneyland Paris (and probably will be for quite some time…) but there are some decent themes in the park that will appeal to teenagers, probably even more than they would other generations.
We’ve had Season of the Force (Star Wars, obviously) and Marvel Season of Super Heroes, which I would’ve loved as a teenager. These seasons celebrate characters and films that small children might not have even seen before, so it’s definitely something aimed at older audiences. You’ve also got rides like Star Wars Hyperspace Mountain and Star Tours The Adventures Continue, plus a whole new Marvel land with superhero attractions coming soon, to go along with these more adolescent themes.
4. Shop ’til you drop
There are loads, and loads, and loads, and LOADS of shops at Disneyland Paris – and they aren’t just full of stuffed Goofy toys and Elsa and Anna dressing up costumes!
You can find plenty of grown-up clothing that looks really cool, and some gorgeous women’s clothes too that would suit teenagers down to the ground. Not only clothes, but you can also pick up some great fun snacks, accessories like bags, wallets and jewellery and homeware like mugs and bedroom decorations – definitely not for kids!
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