Disneyland Paris Half Marathon Review

The Castle photos from the Disneyland Paris Half Marathon came out perfect!

It is still crazy to think we flew all the way to France to run!  The Disneyland Paris Half Marathon along with the Disneyland Paris 10K made up a fantastic weekend and the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo Challenge.  With a finish line in the park, great characters, and beautiful views – what’s not to love?!

2018 Update: It looks like they will be offering a 31K Challenge and a 36K Challenge to include the 5K!

Course

Main Street USA during the Disneyland Paris Half Marathon

The course could be divided up into three parts: the first 10K in the parks, the next 5K around the nearby town, and the last 5K through the Hotels and Disney Village area.  All leading up to a finish line in Walt Disney Studios!

Having a huge chunk of the race inside the parks in the beginning is a great perk.  Doing a runDisney race is a unique experience because of the park time.  We like that part because of the amazing Cast Member cheer squads by each attraction!

Our least favorite part was the next 5K. Even though the views were spectacular around the lake and through the town, a portion of the race was on a rough dirt path.  It was nice to see residents and locals out cheering for the race!

The course then finished up through the Hotel area and the Disney Village Shopping Area.  It was nice to take a moment to see the other Hotels and pass right next to our room at the Hotel Santa Fe.

Characters and Entertainment

Shenzi, Banzai, and Ed – The Hyenas from The Lion King on the Disneyland Paris Half Marathon Course!

How many times can we say that runDisney France has the best character encounters of any race?!  Even for the Half Marathon we saw rare characters and waited in next to no line to meet Jack Sparrow!  It was incredible to race through the parks and wonder which character awaited us next.

There was also a nice variety of entertainment outside of the parks including break dancers, a band, and even a DJ!  The amount of entertainment, characters, and things to see made the race go by really quickly.  There didn’t seem to be a dull portion to the course at all.

Swag

Captain Jack Sparrow on the Disneyland Paris Half Marathon Course

Let’s talk about the important things… the free things.  Well, are they free if you’re really paying for them?  First and foremost the medals were stunning.  There is something truly breathtaking about receiving a medal that represents running a series in two different countries!  Even the 31K Challenge medal had a spinner and the Half Marathon medal was bejeweled.

Even though we sized up on shirts, Katie still found hers was too tight in comparison to the US shirts (which are small to begin with).  The challenge shirt at least had more spandex and was a slightly better fit.

Overall Review

It was great having a PhotoPass photographer right after the finish line!

When the Disneyland Paris Half Marathon first occurred in 2016, we promised each other we would attempt to run the Inaugural Challenge.  Lucky for us, that happened in 2017 and we found amazing flight deals.  We figured this would be a once in a lifetime race for us.  After an amazing weekend, we really want to go back for 2018 and we think you should too!

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