When the Christmas season rolls around in Disneyland Paris we all look forward to seeing the Christmas Tree take its iconic place in Town Square. This year however was different, as we knew that a brand new tree was coming our way. At 24 metres high it was to be slightly taller than the previous tree, the same tree that was used in 1992 and every year since. Other than that we knew very little of what the new Christmas tree would offer.
On Friday afternoon, when I first arrived in Disneyland Paris and walked towards Town Square, I saw a Christmas tree that looked really tall, much taller than I was expecting. Even though it physically only edges out the old tree by a small amount, I have a feeling that Disneyland Paris have been up to their forced perspective tricks again, as this new tree looks incredibly tall. It is decorated with a lot more ornaments than the previous tree, so maybe that helps to give the illusion of it being nearer the sky than the old tree. However, those ornaments (1,000 in all) are not cluttered on the branches, and it never feels like there are too many.
Speaking of the ornaments – wow! They look fantastic, and so very stylish. There are stars, baubles, characters, stockings, gingerbread men and so much more. There are of course the globes which light up in different colours, but more on that later in the article. You can actually buy smaller versions of some of the ornaments for your own tree, but I couldn’t find the Mickey/Minnie/Goofy sledge ornament anywhere, and I did look in every shop I could possibly get to. So, if anyone spots it then give me a shout!
At the base of the tree is a pile of presents, and around those is a train. It’s no ordinary train though, as this is the very train that is featured in Disney Dreams! of Christmas. The train doesn’t actually move, maybe that’s a feature for next year.
When daylight fades it’s time for Magical Christmas Wishes, which is the new name for the Tree Lighting Ceremony. This year there is no float and no characters, well, not ones you can see anyway. The event is narrated by Jiminy Cricket and Pinocchio and it really embraces the inner child as excitement builds. The fact that are no characters to see, but lots of amazing light effects on the tree, with the voices it seems even more magical than the previous version.
According to Disneyland Paris on Twitter the tree is equipped with the latest lighting technology including 2,600 LEDs, and you really get those all working in full effect. The lights are dazzling and the aforementioned globes come to life in a variety of colours, which make the tree look even more majestic than ever before. There are waves of sparking colours and the music blends perfectly to leave you glowing as much inside as the tree is outside.
From last year to this year, it really is all positive with the new tree and the new Magical Christmas Wishes. In the few minutes I stood watching and listening, the spirit of Christmas consumed me and happiness surged through every part of my body. Magical Christmas Wishes is enough to turn even the biggest Grinch into a fan of Christmas and my only regret is seeing it just the once. Next time I’ll stay longer and watch it as many times as I can.