Halloween is now up and running at Disneyland Paris in a season called Mickey’s Halloween Festival! It is a short season, with almost a full five weeks of fun (in contrast, Walt Disney World began Halloween celebrations almost six weeks ago!). Hopefully Disneyland Paris starts in mid-September in the future, but a short Halloween season doesn’t mean that activities are lacking – far from it. Disneyland Park hosts a fantastic Halloween, with everything included with day entrance for all guests except for the Halloween Soirée on Halloween night – and the season runs through November 4th, 2018.
This article was updated on October 15th, 2018.
The Ghosts of Main Street at Disneyland Paris
This is our third Halloween visit (2014, 2016, 2018) and this year may be the best ever – certainly at least comparable, and Mickey’s Halloween Celebration cavalcade 2018 is the best version I’ve seen. The new Mickey’s Illusion Manor float is incredible! This year is also the chilliest Halloween we’ve experienced, with lows in the 30s-50s so far. There will be a warmup this week, but definitely check the weather before arrival.
Mickey’s Halloween Festival sign
Here are some tips if you plan to visit this season.
1 – Plan a minimum of 2-3 days in the parks. Some friends just left after one Halloween day (they were here for the Disney Loves Jazz night as well) and didn’t feel they saw nearly everything in the one day. So if you love Disney and Halloween, it’s good to give yourself extra time. If you’ve never visited Disneyland Paris, you may want more time than that. If you need a break, the city of Paris is an RER ride away!
2 – Stay onsite or buy an Infinity Pass or Magic Plus Pass for Extra Magic Hours – Having that extra time to arrive early will make the day so much better! The most expensive pass, the Infinity Pass, is currently 399 Euros and gives tons of benefits including early entry.
New this year – beautiful garland over Main Street! It also lights up.
3 – Arrive early – If you qualify with tip #2, then arrive early – 8am – to enjoy the decorations on Main Street with almost nobody around! The garland was still lit up when we arrived the first day, and the ghosts of Main Street are really fun to see. Meet and greets and attractions start opening at 8:30am, including a special meet and greet with Donald dressed as a devil (he also has been meeting in Frontierland after that). Not all attractions are open and most meet and greets start later, but it is nice to get a start on the day. And to add to this, visit during the week to avoid the larger weekend (especially Saturday) crowds.
4 – Watch the Mickey’s Celebration Cavalcade twice (or more) from different areas – The parade/cavalcade presents twice per day. I wish it was more, but it isn’t – and the two run pretty close together, so you can see both in fairly quick succession. Generally at Disneyland Paris, most guests aren’t camping out for long to watch the Halloween cavalcade. Much of Main Street was open at 10 minutes until the parade start yesterday, when an announcement was made and then it filled in quickly. The parade itself is fantastic, and has a similar feel to the Pirates and Princess Party where there is performing during a show stop in Central Plaza with four stages to watch. However, the parade moves on pretty quickly after that, if you are in Central Plaza then you won’t see the parade as you would on Main Street. That is where seeing it multiple times matters, because it really is a different show from different angles. We ended up behind the Mickey’s Illusion Manor float yesterday and Huey, Dewey and Louie were dancing up a storm as well during the show stop.
5 – See both “It’s Good to be Bad with the Disney Villains” shows – It isn’t apparent on the program, but there are two different shows on the castle stage with the same name. Most of the villains are the same, but Maleficent Donald is in one and not the other. And one is mostly English both in words and music, and the show with Maleficent Donald is mostly French but Donald speaks English (the music is in English). My favorite of the two is the Donald show, but both are fun. Get there a little early for a front row spot. The shows also end like Villains Mix & Mingle used to, where many of the characters meet. Maleficent Donald is so popular, he really could use more of a meet and greet besides the two short times after shows. If you’ve been to Walt Disney World for Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, you will recognize some of the music!
6 – Meet characters around the park. Disneyland Paris always has a lot of great characters for meeting, including for Halloween. The Cheshire Cat, Maleficent, Panchito and Jose, mariachi Mickey and Minnie, Jack Skellington – there are so many opportunities. Goofy and Stitch are on Main Street in special meet and greets, as is Pluto where Marie used to meet for Halloween.
The Cheshire Cat only meets for 2 hours per day, so make him a priority! Most other characters meet much longer. This is our video.
7 – Celebrate Día de Muertos in Frontierland – Frontierland is decorated for Halloween as much as Main Street is, with a large section of it for Día de Muertos (Day of the Dead) – there are mariachis and a Miguel puppet with puppeteer – plus so much more going on! The area looks beautiful at night.
Frontierland Dia de Muertos, including Coco decorations.
8 – Try special snacks – There is a small variety of different snack items as well as menus at restaurants and bars around property (including at The Lucky Nugget and Silver Spur Steakhouse). Some of the snacks – particularly the Mickey shortbread – have been selling out early each day, so keep that in mind. The volume and creativity of snacks is not on the level of Walt Disney World and Disneyland, but head to Disney Village also for a couple of nice items at Starbucks (the pumpkin and maple cake is delicious!). You can also find Pumpkin Spice Latte at the Starbucks, pumpkin spice is a flavor that really isn’t found much in Europe – I don’t think pumpkin itself either.
We picked up a donut and a special blood-orange Fanta in limited release bottle.
9 – View pumpkin carvings – Cyril creates the most amazing pumpkin carvings (and he does watermelon at other times of year). He isn’t always out, but you can find him when he is outside the Cowboy Cookout restaurant.
10 – Purchase Halloween merchandise – There is more merchandise this year than I’ve ever seen dedicated to Halloween. Some of it is what you’ll find in the United States and some unique to Disneyland Paris. Just as in previous years, Christmas tends to take center stage for merchandise at this time of year so you can get two seasons of shopping done at once! Christmas is big at Disneyland Paris too.
Donald on a Halloween shirt.
11 – Don’t miss Guest Star Day on Tuesdays! – I had originally heard this wouldn’t be still playing for Halloween, but it is. I enjoy Guest Star Day, where unnanounced Disney characters are the “stars” like on the original Mickey Mouse Club. The first weekend was Governor Ratcliffe and John Smith.
And don’t miss McDonald’s at Disney Village! The decorations inside the restaurant were a big surprise, a little spooky but really well done throughout both levels. I wish hey’d have themed some desserts to Halloween also, but I can’t fault them considering how much they decorated. And Disney Village has some decorations too, though not quite on the level of McDonald’s. 🙂