This was my third visit to Disneyland Paris since Toy Story Playland opened, but the first time I’ve actually been on any of the rides. In 2010 we never got past the Cars Rally ride as that was my son’s absolute favourite and at just 2 he was a bit young for anything in Toy Story Playland anyway. In November last year, a friend and had our whirlwind visit and we only got to Toy Story Playland on day 2 of 2 and it was really busy with long queues for everything. We did have a walk around back then and I sais that Slinky Dog Zigzag Spin looked tame enough for me, being the thrill avoider that I am. I was definite that I’d never go on RC Racer, and being afraid of heights, I was pretty sure Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop was off the menu too.
Fast forward to our recent trip last month and I have experienced two thirds of Toy Story Playland – go me! So not only is it an area that I appreciate the theming of, but now I also have ridden, and enjoyed some of the rides.
Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop
My wife, having been on Tower of Terror in America, had no problems with the idea of riding Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop, and my son had no fear what so ever. I on the other hand was a bit apprehensive, to say the least. It didn’t help that the queue seemed to move at a snail’s pace and the queuing area, aside from a few odds and ends from the Toy Story films, is very dull. There is a little 8-bit video, but after 50 minutes of watching it on loop it grates on you somewhat. I think Disneyland Paris do need to do something to make the queuing areas more bearable – maybe they can show film footage or construction footage – just something to keep people in high spirits while they are waiting.
By the time it was our turn I’ll fully admit to being quite nervous, but I battled that fear and sat next to my family. As our parachute went up, and up, the sheer height of this ride became apparent and was in excess of what I’d even been dreading! The first plunge down was quite a shock, though not actually as bad as I had maybe been expecting. The ascent was definitely worse than the descent. However, after that first rise and fall something quite strange happened, as I started to enjoy the ride.
Having battled my vertigo demons, I looked forward to the next climb up, and even allowed myself to look around and marvel at the construction of Ratatouille, albeit it only being in basic construction site form. It actually got to the point after the third rise and fall that I felt disappointment, thinking that was it. I was then treated to a 4th rush of a adrenaline as it became evident I’d counted incorrectly. It should be noted, that at this point I was the one enjoying the ride the most. My wife was looking a little green around the gills and the boy was holding on for dear life. I even made the overly confident statement that maybe I was ready for Tower of Terror now!
So, Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop turned from being a ride I didn’t think I’d ever go on to one that I’d class now as one of my favourites. They just need to make the queuing area more interesting, or decrease loading times.
Slinky Dog Zigzag Spin
Thankfully this queue went pretty quickly, presumably not attracting the same volume of riders as Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop. That and the ride is quicker, takes more passengers and loads relatively fast. We were on in just a few minutes, and while the ride is over very quickly, we all enjoyed it and my son especially enjoyed being pushed to the outside of our carriage and squashing me against the side!
It was a fun ride, but over too quickly and could maybe benefit from doing more than just going around in a circle – maybe extend it to figure of eight at the very least.
Two more rides got ticked off my ‘to do’ list on this trip, and both we experienced again later in the holiday. In fact, Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop was my number one repeat ride request, with Pirates of the Caribbean being taken for granted as something we’d go on as much as possible anyway. Not only does Toy Story Playland look good, but the rides are good too, but then you probably already knew that!