Driving to Disneyland Paris - a complete guide

Driving to Disneyland Paris - a complete guide
Want to experience the magic of Disney and travel there in the comfort of your own car?

Disneyland Paris is closer than you think, so you and the family could be meeting Mickey and the gang before you know it.

To help you plan your unforgettable getaway, here’s our guide to everything you need to know about driving to Disneyland Paris.

Guide contents:

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How long does it take to get to Disneyland Paris?

If you’re driving to Disneyland Paris you’ll be pleased to know the resort is just 311km (193 miles) from Calais, so once you’ve crossed the Channel you’re just a few hours from Mickey, Minnie and friends.

Should I take the ferry or Eurotunnel to Disneyland Paris?

That depends on you. Some people prefer to take the ferry. It’s usually cheaper than the Eurotunnel and although it takes around 90 minutes, there are more daily crossings, so as long as you don’t suffer from seasickness this could be the best option.

The ride across the Channel itself can be exciting for children, particularly in calm weather, while the shops and restaurants on-board can refresh the entire family before the onward drive to Disneyland.

For others, Eurotunnel is the better choice. It’s quicker than the ferry — crossings take around 35 minutes— and you don’t even have to get out of your car, if you don’t want to.

If you’ve got young kids you’ll have to keep them occupied during the journey because there’s not much to see down there, but once you’re in France it’s easy to simply drive off the train and continue your journey onto Disneyland Paris.

Driving in France Kit from £24.99

Did you know you could be fined up to €530 for not carrying the right kit with you in France?

Driving in France Kit from £24.99
Driving in France Kit from £24.99

How do you drive to Disneyland Paris?

Once you’ve crossed the Channel, head south on the A26 towards Lens, a former industrial town that could prove a welcome break for the kids, or even a chance to take in the impressive Louvre-Lens art gallery.

From there, head south on the A1 towards Paris. Disneyland Paris is located around 30km east of the centre of Paris, so you won’t have to drive through the French capital to get to the action.

After Paris Charles De Gaulle airport, take the A104 east until you hit the A4, then head east again. From here, follow signs into the Disneyland Resort, following signs to the right car park for your needs.

Remember to take along some change for the toll roads. In total, a return trip to the park could set you back around €50 in tolls, so don’t get caught short.

The drive to Disneyland can take a while, so if you’re travelling with kids make sure you prepare for the journey and invest in some in-car entertainment — there are plenty of travel games and in-car apps out there to choose from.

driving to disneyland

Take along food and drink so you don’t have to worry about stopping to fill up on snacks, although there are motorway service stations on the way in case you do.

Before leaving home, carry out some simple car checks, too. Make sure your fluid levels are topped up and your tyres are properly inflated, and if anything looks suspect, take your vehicle to the local garage.

Is it cheaper to drive to Disneyland?

It might be. If you factor in plane or train tickets and the costs of baggage allowances and airport transfers, the price of getting to Disneyland can soon add up.

Driving to the resort will cost some money, though, so you should consider fuel costs, any additional insurance or breakdown cover you’ll need, road tolls and the price of your Channel crossing.

In addition to saving money, driving to Disneyland Paris is also better for the environment than flying — especially in a low-emission vehicle — so could be a deciding factor if you’re worried about your carbon footprint.

What are the main attractions at Disneyland Paris

rac disney circus

Disneyland Paris is one of Europe’s top tourist attractions, with some of the continent’s best rides and shows as well as all the Disney magic you’d expect.

To get you in the mood, here is what you expect to see when you visit Disneyland Paris:

Disneyland Park

Set over five different lands, Disneyland Paris’ main park is home to some of the resort’s best-known attractions, including the Pirates of the Caribbean boat ride, Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast and the famous Star Wars Hyperspace Mountain rollercoaster.

Walt Disney Studios Park

Celebrating the history of Disney Studios, Disneyland’s second park also has the best rides. The Tower of Terror and The Rock and Rollercoaster aren’t to be missed, while Ratatouille: The Adventure celebrates one of Disney’s most famous Parisian characters, Remy the Rat.

Disney Village

The entertainment hub of the resort is Disney Village, where holidaymakers can enjoy American-style food, the latest Hollywood movies and some great live shows. It’s also a good spot to pick up those all-important Disney souvenirs before you head back to the UK.

Sea-Life Aquarium

Explore the ocean depths with a visit to the Sea-Life Aquarium, located in the resort’s expansive Val d’Europe shopping centre. The aquarium is packed with all sorts of fascinating sea creatures, meaning your little ones should have little problem Finding Nemo themselves.

Davy Crockett’s Adventure

Channel your inner Mowgli with a visit to Davy Crockett’s Adventure, a tree-top escapade that puts your nerves to the test. There are courses for everyone from beginners to experts, so the whole family will be able to write their own chapter of the Jungle Book.

Where do I park at Disneyland Paris?

There are plenty of places to park in the Disneyland Paris resort. If you’re staying at one of the Disney hotels you can park for free at the hotel car park. If you’re a day guest, there are several car parks to choose from across the resort.

Is parking at Disneyland Paris free?

If you’re staying at one of the Disneyland hotels as a Disney Hotel Guest then you will be supplied with an Easy Pass by the hotel to use at the car parks, which will entitle you to leave your car for free.

However, if you are a day guest or not staying as a Disney Hotel Guest then car parking prices start at €30 for the parks and Disney Village — car parks open at 07:30 and close 30 minutes after Disneyland Park closes.

What do I need to drive in France?

Driving on the other side of the Channel is different from driving in the UK, so before grabbing your Mickey Mouse ears, prepare yourself and your car for France’s driving laws and requirements.

These requirements range from carrying warning triangles and hi-vis vests to Crit’Air clean air stickers, while motorists should also remember that the French drive on the right and have different speed and drink-drive limits to the UK.

The RAC Driving in France kit will help you meet some of these laws, but you should always research the specific requirements for you and your car if driving in another country.

For more information on what you’ll need to drive to Disneyland Paris safely and legally, check out our top 10 tips for driving in France and make sure you don’t get caught out.

Do I need European breakdown cover?

If you’re ever planning to drive outside the UK, the first thing you need to make sure is that you have breakdown insurance that covers the entirety of your trip.

The RAC has some great value European breakdown cover options that offer comprehensive cover if you break down on your way to Disneyland Paris, offering roadside assistance and a 24/7 English-speaking helpline. This will cover you if you're going on a short trip or throughout the whole year, depending on your circumstances.

What happens if I break down in France?

Depending on the level of your European breakdown cover, the RAC will pay towards any garage labour costs, onward travel expenses and accommodation fees — something to consider if you’re travelling with the family and have booked Disney tickets in advance. We also have a specific page on our breakdown cover service in France.

To find out everything you need to know about breaking down on the continent, and to get the right quote that meets your needs, check out our complete guide to RAC European breakdown cover.

Want more European driving advice? Check out our other guides


Image source: Disney

*Based on 1 day cover in Zone 1, max 9 people in a vehicle up to 1 year old.