Some people with certain disabilities might find the rides in Disney somewhat disconcerting or upsetting but there is absolutely tonnes to do around Disneyland Paris suitable for disabled people. There is often no queue for the maze in the Alice in Wonderland section of the park if you fancy a wander around there. The hedge height doesn’t feel claustrophobic even sat at wheelchair height as the hedgerows are wide and you aren’t enclosed. There are plenty of what I would class as shows across the park. In Disney’s Hollywood Studios We went to Mickey the Magician which was a really fabulous show! It encompasses the story of Mickey who becomes a magician’s assistant whilst learning lessons from various Disney spectaculars including songs from the Lion King, Frozen, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and Cinderella. The show is half in English and half in French but is easy to follow. There is loud music, strobe lighting, dry ice and wooden Lion King puppets that enter the audience if you or your travelling companion is affected by these things. You show your disability passport at the entrance to be let into a special pre-show holding area before being let in first. There are plenty of wheelchair spaces but, as with any timed Disney show, I would recommend arriving slightly early.
Also in Disney’s Hollywood studios, another great disabled Disney experience is the Motors Action stunt show. They let disabled cardholders into the metal amphitheatre first and there is a special area marked out for disabled and wheelchair Disney guests. We didn’t watch it but “The Path of the Jedi” show is in a specialised theatre where you can also eat. There are plenty of wheelchair friendly tables if you get there early enough. The “Starlit Princess Waltz” and “Mickey presents: Happy Anniversary Disneyland Paris” both take place 3-5 times a day in front of the Castle depending on the day of the week you are visiting. I must say this is an area that Disney falls down on in terms of access since there is no special disabled area that you can gain access to. If you arrive early enough to these show then you can sit on small benches in a slightly tiered stage area but we found that often the standing crowd in front of the stage blocked my wheelchair height view. It’s definitely worth turning up early and getting the highest area you can get to to try to prevent this.
However, Disney Paris is suitable for disabled people in a lot of other ways. It excels when it comes to the 5.30pm parade “Disney Stars on Parade”. If you head to the same area that you see the shows in (directly in front of the castle on the right-hand side as you walk towards the castle from the entrance) then a Disney staff member will allow you plus however many carer companions your passport allows you into a special area. this worked really well for us as we got there early and parked my wheelchair by the rope with my sister behind me so we both had a brilliant view of the parade. The parade characters seemed to interact really well with the disabled area, especially the children! As with most Disney shows there was loud music, smoke and scary elements such as a large fire-breathing dragon. The firework and lighting display “Disney Illuminations” takes place around the castle at park closing time. During Summer months this is at 11pm which is quite late for many children. The disabled area for this is at the roundabout in front of the castle but do ask any cast member if you struggle to find this. This is one that’s definitely worth getting to an hour in advance as it gets busy really quickly and from wheelchair height it’s hard to see the castle where there are projections if people are stood in front of you. People were generally considerate in the disabled area though and let children and wheelchair users to the front but there aren’t any guarantees that people will be so good for you unfortunately.
Shows will vary according to when you visit and seasonal shows are often introduced around times such as Halloween and Christmas. If you have any questions or want help planning your Disney holiday then email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Feel free to browse my other posts on disabled Disney Paris