What you need to know about wonderful leisure park – Disneyland Paris

Disneyland Paris is the biggest and most visited amusement park in whole Europe.  With an area spanning over 4,800 acres of land this mega theme park is visited by millions of tourists each year. It’s the second Disneyland Park to open away from US by Walt Disney Company after Tokyo Disney Resort. Theme park consists of many facilities including Resort Hotels, Shopping Malls, Restaurants, Entertainment complexes and a Golf Course. Resort has its transport systems and a dedicated railway service which includes a railway station inside the complex.  Theme park is easily accessible as visitors can avail many transport options including Paris Disney Shuttle Services, Paris Disney Transfer services, Euro Disney Transfer services as some of those services are offered by the Resort itself in addition to various visitor friendly transport service providers. There are also many Disneyland Tour operators in Paris where tourists can book for their services well in advance. Paris airport to Disneyland Transfer services are also available with many taxi services for those who are not booked their transport in advance.

 

History of Disneyland

History of Disneyland

Disneyland Paris is owned and operated by Euro Disney S.C.A a fully owned by The Walt Disney Company an American media and entertainment conglomerate. Walt Disney Company was founded by Walter Disney 1923 with his brother Roy as a animation production company in Hollywood.  Walter Disney a considered the pioneer of the American animation industry which he entered as an illustrator. After moving to Hollywood and forming Disney Brothers Studio Walter became highly popular with his creation of animation character ‘The Mickey Mouse’ in 1928. With the growing success of his creations and company he produced many world famous animation movies such as Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Fantasia, Pinnocchio, Dumboa and Bambi. His animated and live action creations include Cinderella and Mary Poppins which were became highly successful and made him a entertainment tycoon. Disney introduced new technologies to the industry including Synchronized sound, full color three strip Technicolor, and technical developments in cameras. Walter Disney Holds the record for most number of Academy Awards and Nominations. He has received 22 Oscars.

 

With his fruitful entertainment business Disney got an idea about expanding his business in to the Theme Park business after visiting many theme parks at the time and wanted to create something special. With the funding from his own and banks he started first Disneyland Project in Anaheim, California and opened it in 1955.  Immediately after its inauguration Disneyland became a huge success and receiving 3.6 million guests by the end of first year. Its huge success has required it to undergo many expansions and renovations. After the death of Walt Disney Company expanded its theme parks outside United States in to Tokyo, Paris and Hong Kong. Latest Disneyland was constructed in Shanghai, China.

 

Each of these parks offers uniquely different as well as some core similar experiences. Some similarities include Disneyland Railroad, Live entertainment and City Replicas.

 

Disneyland Paris

 

Originally opened as Euro Disney Resort in 1992 Disneyland Paris covers a total area of 19 kilometers near city of Marne Al Vallee, France. Park considered as the most visited place in Europe with average annual turnover of twelve million visitors. Resort consists of two Theme parks called Disneyland Park and Walt Disney studio part, a golf course called Golf Disneyland, Railway station, Disney village consists with entertainment district including Large shopping mall with large outlet center and Seven Hotels, seven associated hotels with 5,200 rooms in total.

 

Disneyland Paris Activities and Facilities

Disneyland Paris Activities

Many tourist are fascinated by the attractions of the theme parks such as

* It’s a Small World – which takes attendants through a musical tour of world attractions in the Fantasyland.

* Space Mountain: Mission 2 – indoor/outdoor a roller coaster like ride in Discoveryland with retro futuristic and futuristic theme.

* Big Thunder Mountain – is a mine train roller coaster in Frontierland

* Pirates of the Caribbean – water based dark ride in adventureland

* Buzz Lightyear attractions – shooting dark rides based on Toy story 2 movie in Tomorrowland.

 

Disney village comprises with parks shopping , dining and entertainment complexes and is about 18,000 square meters in area. Entertainment area is home to attractions like Buffalo Bills Wild West show with Mickey  and Friends, Gaumont Cinemas & Imax, NEX fun Bowling and Games, PanoraMagique Balloon, Disney Village Marina and Lake Disney Road Train. To treat taste buds of tourists, there are many famous restaurants and bars which include Annette’s Dinner, Ben and Jerry’s Kiosque de Glaces, Billy Bobs Country Western Saloon, Café Mickey, Plannet Hollywood.

 

Disneyland has fourteen hotels with 5,200 rooms to provide accommodation to the visitors as the park connot be covered in one day. To experience whole theme park most visitors opting to multi day packages. Out of those Hotels within its premises, seven are operated by the resort management and Disneyland Hotel being the most luxurious of all. Other hotels are named Disney hotel New York, Disney Newport Bay Club, Disney Sequoia Lodge, Disney Hotel Cheyenne, Disney Hotel Santa Fe and Disney Davy Crockett Ranch which is located outside park parameter.

 

 Transport

 Transport

Disneyland is one of the easiest locations in France to get transport facilities from wherever visitors are coming. Situated 32km from Paris, Site is estimated to be located within less than four hour drive for 68 million people and two hour flight for 300 million people of Europe.  Those who visiting the resort can access with Paris Disney Shuttle Services, Paris Disney Transfer services, Euro Disney Transfer services as some of those services are offered by the Resort itself France is also known to visitor friendly transport service providers. There are also many Disneyland Tour operators in Paris where tourists can book for their services early. Paris airport to Disneyland Transfer services are also available with many taxi services available for a reasonable charge.

There is a dedicated railway station name Marne-la-Vallee-Chessy which is located with resort which is directly connected to Europe’s train services. There are shuttle busses provided to all Disney hotels and associated hotels for free of charge from the railway station.

 

Early Reservation of Transport

 Transport

It’s very easy to pre-arrange transport services to the Disneyland regardless of transport method visitors are planning. Whether it’s by Plane, Train, Car, Taxi or by Bus there are many service providers and tour operators which offer excellent services. However it’s best advisable to reserve the transport partner in advance to save valuable money and time and to avoid hassle which sometimes can spoil your pleasure. Also it’s economical to book a transport partner or tour operator in France rather than arranging for same from outside France as most such instances visitors have to bear the intermediary charges. Visitors can also arrange for transport and other packages from Disneyland Paris official web site as well.

French Baroque Architectural Monument – Palace of Versailles

Dubbed as the greatest achievement of French Baroque Architecture, the Palace of Versailles or Château de Versailles is a grand Royal Palace in France. Being one of the most renowned and largest royal palaces in the world, this majestic Chateau is a magnificent French work of art in view of architecture and Gardening. Tourists visiting from all over the world to Paris do not miss this splendid site located at Versailles, a suburb which is about 20 km away from Paris in Lie de France region. Versailles is easily accessible from major locations of Paris via ever convenient Transport Paris methods such as Paris shuttle services and Paris cabs or pre-arranged Paris Tour services.

History

History - Palace of Versailles

 

Versailles was a small village on the road from Dreux to Paris when King Louis XIII ordered to construct a Hunting Lodge in 1624, It was designed by Philibert Le Roy and constructed as a small Chateau from Stone and red Brick. Nearly eight years later some enlargements were made with creations forecourt with a grilled entrance with two round towers , side gardens and water fountains.

It was during the reign of King Louis XIV who had an immense interest in Versailles, largest expansion to the palace took place making it one of the largest and distinguished palaces in the world. With the intention of moving royal court to Versailles King Luis XIV  in 1661 ordered his chief architect Louis Le Vau to start a detailed renovation and expansion project with the help of decorator Charles Lebrun and Landscape Architect Andre Le Notre. The development was carried out in four phases. However during 1662-1663 only minor changes and additions carried out to the buildings and major focus was on gardens.

Under the first building campaign from 1664-1668 involved in changes to the Palace and garden to house 600 guests invited for the party to celebrate War of Devolution against Spain. Second phase of the building campaign occurred from 1669-1772 which was given the palace some of the appearance we see today and Le Vaus envelope of old Hunting Lodge. New buildings included separate apartments for King, Queen and other members of the royal family. Third building campaign was started with the end of Dutch War from 1678-1684 under the direction of architect Jules Mansart.  Most of the looks that it has today were given during this period to the palace. New north and south wings were added under the expansion along with re-landscaping palace gardens. In 1682 king Louis XIV officially established his Royal Court at Château de Versailles. Fourth and last building campaign was carried out from 1688-1697 after the defeat of War of the League of Augsburg by king Louis. Expansion was mostly consisted with construction of Royal Chapel and minor renovations were done in royal apartments. Upon completion of chapel in 1710 major developments of the palace was halted.

Upon death of Luis XIV, palace received less significant upgrades and modifications and gardens remained virtually unchanged under the reign of King Luis XV. King eventually decided to move the Royal Court back to Paris along with other government administrative offices. Versailles received a major replanting of gardens during Louis XVI and some structural and interior redesigns.

With the French revolution palace saw many changes. Prior to arrest of Louis XVI royal family moved to Paris. Versailles used as a repository for confiscated art works and later became a national museum; during the revolution and many of its royal furniture were auctioned. During the first empire under Napoleon museum was closed and designated as an imperial château.

Architecture

Architecture - Palace of Versailles

Today Palace encircled by 800 hectares of splendid gardens with vistas , fountains and statues which is a finest example of French skills of Gardening.  Palace consists with many private apartments for royal family and over 700 rooms for royal guests and government and palace staff along with halls that can house the royal court with 3000 residents. Palace also comprises with more than 2,000 windows, 1,250 fireplaces and 67 staircases.

Unique feature to the Palace of Versailles architecture it’s the best example of French Baroque Architecture.   Francois Mansart, Jules Mansart and Louis Le Vau were excellent architects of this art who were in charge during various design and construction phases of the palace. Hence, palace depicts the best characteristics of French Baroque art. In which palace is designed with Massive U shaped building with two long wings ending with Dufour Pavillion and Gabriel Pavillion, less disturbed by all by the undersized low arcades on the main front towards the gardens.

Created by Ange-Jacques Gabriel the Royal Opera of Versailles which has a seating capacity for 1200 guests and a important hall in the palace.

Interior design

 

The king and the queen had new apartments know as château neuf as a new addition as a result of ‘envlopppe’ which former hunting lodge absorbed to the palace by Le Vau. In which king’s apartment was comprised of seven rooms. While queen apartment consisted with facilities for the three queens of France.

One of its main highlights is ‘The Hall of Mirrors’ built during 1678-1690 which is the central gallery with 17 mirror clad arches reflecting its 17 windows. There are 357 mirrors have used along with polychrome marbles, gilt bronzes for its decoration. Know as galerie des glaces this room hosted mmany of the ceremonies of the French Court.

Palace also hosts the Museum of the History of France which founded in 19th century and ascended to the throne in 1830 which housed in entire second floor of south wing. In which a rich collection of paining and sculptures showcases different achievements of French History.

Tourism and Transport

Tourism Palace of Versailles

Being a UNESCO wolrd heritage site and being one of the most beautiful French art achievements of 18th century this amazing Chateau is one of the most attractive tourist destinations of whole Europe. Palace is open for tourists on all days except for Mondays from 9.00 am to 5.30 pm.  Palace of Versailles can be easily accessible via many of the available Transport Paris facilities including Paris Cabs, Paris Shuttle services any many of the Paris Tour operators which include travel packages to major tourist destinations of France. These transport serves in Paris are really affordable and has the highest standards of French hospitality.

The Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris

With over 800 years old, regarded as a masterpiece of  French Gothic Architecture and one of the largest Cathedrals in the world, Notre-Dame de Paris Cathedral or Notre-Dame which means Our lady of Paris, is an iconic and historic monument in the France’s largest city, the Paris. Being one of major tourist attractions in France, and also located on the IIe de la Cite in the fourth arrondissement, Notre-Dome is easily accessible with Paris Cabs services and Paris shuttle services and many Paris Tour packages include this magnificent Church as a must visit. Public Transport Paris is more convenient than many other European cities.

 

History of the Cathedral

History of the Cathedral

Construction of this 800 year old glorious architectural masterpiece was started in 1163 During the reign of King Louis VII and under the purview of Bishop of Paris Maurice de Sully. Bishop Maurice had a vision to build a special cathedral in Paris as the previous cathedral in the city ‘Saint-Étienne’ was not as big and also its structure was failing as per the historical accounts. Hence the bishop upon appointment demolished the old cathedral and convinced the King Louis VII to start construction of the new cathedral and he dedicated his effort and wealth for the cathedral construction. Construction took over 200 years and many obstacles during that time. By observing the building one can understand that many architects had participated during its construction as different styles at different stages is much evident.

It took from 1163 to 1177 to construct the Choir and High Altar consecrated during 1182. With the death of the Bishop Maurice in 1196 completion of the Transepts was observed by his successor Eudes de Sully. In 1240 Transepts were remodeled by Jean de Chelles with new Rayonnant style. During its 200 year construction many of the original design characteristics were altered by different architects who oversaw the Project.

During its history it saw many glorious events as royals coronations like crowning of Kind Henry VI and Napoleon himself and may dark times where it came close to total disrepair. The cathedral was brought to its formal glory during the late 19th century and early 20th century as its glory was lost during the French revolution in 18th century. During the French revolution may of its treasures were destroyed and plundered. But more damage came from second World War. With many restorations after the war and a major maintenance program in 1991 cathedral has received its status today.

 

Architectural Notre-Dame De Paris

Architectural Importance

Notre-Dame de paris is a fine example of French Gothic Architecture. And one of the very first buildings in the whole world to designed and constructed with use of Flying Buttress.  Although it was not designed with flying buttresses around its Choir and Nave but later added during its construction. Its now understood these additions were made by its architects and builders who oversaw construction in response as its original constructions had few flows notably the thin and walls were not able to withstand its weight and started to fracture leading to a catastrophic structural failure. To prevent this architects built supports around walls. To complement its structure statues were placed as column supports and water spouts. Cathedral consists with a narrow staircase with 387 steps and going through the climb can witness famous Gargoyles and Bell in close proximity along with a splendid view of the City of Paris once reached the top. The naturalism of its sculptures and stained glass are in par with Romanesque architecture characteristics.

 

windows Notre-Dame De Paris

Other Facts about the Cathedral

Notre-Dame contains the Cathedra of the Arachbishop of Paris. Cathedral contains vast displays of artwork, furniture and many valuable items that mirror the Nio-Gothic design. Tourists as well as Christian and catholic devotees are welcomed into the cathedral to view and enjoy these displays. They can also attend the Mass, which is being held three times a day and a popular attraction for Christian visitors.

There are three west portals of the cathedral which showcases early Gothic art. These are namely Last Judgment Portal which is the center portal as per the theme portal is sculpted emphasizing Christ as More a suffering savior of humanity than judge ,secondly Portal of St. Anne which is the Right portal and tympanum installed in 1200 shows the virgin and child on a throne along with angels , bishop , an assistant and king. Third portal , the Portal of the Virgin which is the left portal dedicated to the patroness of the Notre-Dame is usually the departure  door to the visitors.

South transept portal is dedicated to the St. Stephen and North Transept portal consists of statue of Virgin Mary,scenes relating to the birth of Christ and miracles of St Theophilus.

13th Century stained Glass Windows are remarkable collection of Gothic art, and highlight being most valuable set of three beautiful rose windows which are being surviving original glass from the inception of the cathedral.

 

Tourists and Transport

Tourists and Transport

Cathedral is opened every day from 8.00 AM to 6.75 PM and visitors can arrive at the venue very easily with available transports methods in the Paris as many of the Paris Tour operators include Notre-Dame as a must visit. There are Paris Shuttle services available from main locations of Paris to the vicinity of cathedral and You can avail the services of the Paris Cabs services which is the easiest way. Public Transport Paris is also available which visitors can enjoy the city at a nominal fee. Come enjoy the Romantic city of Paris and visit its rich historic Places such as Notre-Dame de Paris Cathedral.