When we were planning our nearly three-week trip to Japan, we had scheduled one full day in Tokyo Disneyland, and that was it. Towards the end of the trip, after traveling all around Osaka and Tokyo’s major cities I snuck away and decided to visit Tokyo Disney again.
Since we already covered the majority of the park in my last article, this time we’ll go over everything that I missed the first time I went. I have to admit that I was hesitant about visiting the park by myself, I had never gone to any theme park by myself before. I actually found the experience to be relaxing, because I could go at my own pace and re-ride all of my favorites. It also gave me a chance to walk around with my camera and take pictures of the park.
I started my park adventure with rope drop and headed for Adventureland. After a morning ride on Pirates of the Caribbean and Jungle Cruise: Wildlife Expeditions, I hopped onto the Western River Railroad. I love riding the train in Florida, and since I won’t be riding it any time soon (thanks, Tron) this will have to do for a while. Like any train, you get excellent views of the park and it was such a relaxing experience. It really is a must do, in my opinion.
Located next to the Western River Railroad is The Enchanted Tiki Room: Stitch Presents “Aloha E Komo Mai!” I entered the queue area and sat on one of the benches outside of the theatre, and a few minutes later a cast member came over to me with an odd smartphone looking device. She explained to me that the whole show was in Japanese, and this was a translator, so I could read the words on the screen and know what was going on in the show. While this seemed like a great idea, it wasn’t entirely practical. I found myself during the show looking up more to see all of the tiki room birds and Stitch, more than looking down at the device. Neat idea, though. The show itself was cute though, and Stitch actually fit into it nicely.
Next came Critter County, an area we completely skipped the first time. This is where you can find Splash Mountain and the Beaver Brothers Explorer Canoes. The wait for Splash Mountain was a posted seventy minutes and it felt like I waited every single one of those minutes. The ride was similar to Florida’s, though theirs felt nicer- all of the lighting was working, the animatronics looked and worked great and everything felt fresh. Tokyo Disneyland as a whole felt this way- nothing was broken or dirty or looked like it needed a refurbishment. The Oriental Land Company, who actually owns this park, does a great job and I wish Disney would take their attention to upkeep and detail and bring this stateside. (Maybe then we wouldn’t have monorail issues!)
Tomorrowland Terrace Food Review
For lunch I didn’t want to spend a lot of time eating, especially because I was by myself, so I popped into the Tomorrowland Terrace. The menu here isn’t incredibly extensive, so I ended up getting the Cheese & Beef Patty Mickey Bread Sandwich set for 980 yen ($9.00 USD.) A “set” includes French Fries and a small beverage. For comparison, the 1/3 lb Angus Cheeseburger at the Florida Tomorrowland Terrace in the Magic Kingdom is $11.49, and that doesn’t include a drink.
The food wasn’t great. The burger was cold and rather flavorless, and I felt like the fries were extra salty. However, the bun was Mickey shaped and I thought that was cute. Were there better options in the park? Absolutely. But, this was quick, cheap and did the job.
Shortly after lunch the Dreaming Up! parade was starting. Parades at Tokyo Disneyland are a big deal- people will camp out very early for good spots. I happened to be in front of the Crystal Palace when this was starting and managed to get a spot by a flower garden. This turned out to be great because I managed to get parade photos with the castle in them. The show itself is cute, I loved seeing different characters get their own floats and attention- like Winnie the Pooh, Big Hero 6 and Pinnochio. You can check out our video of the debut of the parade back in April of 2018 here.
The Tokyo Disney Monorail
Around 5:00 PM I said goodbye to the castle and Tokyo Disneyland, and hopped onto the Tokyo Disney monorail. These monorails require a ticket you must purchase to ride, or you can use your Suica or Pasmo metro card. The inside of the monorail looks similar to a subway car you would find in Tokyo, but they are super clean and play Disney music, so that’s a plus.
Both Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea offer a type of ticket called the “After 6 Passport.” This ticket allows you to enter the park after 6:00 PM on weekdays, and it sells for 4,200 yen ($38.56 USD.) For comparison, a full day ticket is 7,400 yen ($67.94 USD.) After you purchase the ticket, the cast members organize a separate line outside of bag check, where you wait until it hits 6:00 PM. I recommend getting there early because these lines can get rather long.
Tokyo DisneySea, like everyone says, is beautiful. It’s unique, it’s so pretty, and there’s water everywhere! It was also really refreshing to actually need a park map. While I picked one up at Tokyo Disneyland, if you’re familiar with a castle park, you can get around Tokyo Disneyland just fine. However, I was lost once inside DisneySea.
Knowing that it was later in the evening, I knew I wasn’t going to be able to ride much. If you plan to ride all of the rides and see everything, you’ll need a full day or two at this park. I was content to just walk around the park, ride what I can and take lots of pictures.
My first stop was Port Discovery, which holds the Aquatopia attraction, the DisneySea Electric Railway, and the Nemo & Friends SeaRider. I didn’t know what to expect with any of these rides as I purposefully didn’t do any research, I just wanted to be surprised. So, I saw the Marine Life Institue from Finding Dory and I was curious. This ride is like Star Tours, instead with a Finding Nemo theme. You ride in the EAC with Crush and Squirt, join in on the Stingray migration from Finding Dory, and see all of your favorite undersea friends. It was fun, but not worth the forty-minute wait.
Next was the Lost River Delta. This is where you’ll find Indiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Crystal Skull, DisneySea Transit Streamer Line and Raging Spirits. This area might be my favorite of the whole park. The adventure/temple theme was everywhere you looked, and well done. With Dinosaur being one of my favorite rides ever, I knew that I had to ride Indiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Crystal Skull. I joined the standby line, but just a few feet inside the entrance is a sign with a gate leading to the FastPass line. This gate is meant for single riders. Instead of giving a cast member your FastPass ticket at the end of the line, they’ll guide you to a different stairwell to wait in until you’re needed to fill in a ride vehicle. This cut my wait from ninety minutes down to fifteen and I highly recommend it. Especially because you’re probably going to want to ride this ride over and over again. It’s honestly one of my favorite rides I’ve been on in my entire life. While Dinosaur is amazing, this takes the movements from Dinosaur and dials it up to eleven. This ride will whip you back and forth, multiple times I felt like I was going to fly out (in a good way) and it even went backward!
Have you ever wanted to visit Agrabah? Once leaving the Lost River Delta area, that’s exactly where you’ll end up. With the name technically being the Arabian Coast, everything is Aladdin themed. Here you can ride the Caravan Carousel, Jasmine’s Flying Carpets, Sinbad’s Storybook Voyage and visit The Magic Lamp Theatre. While I didn’t ride anything in this area, I loved walking around.
Keeping with the princess theme, the next section of the park is the other area tied for my favorite: Mermaid Lagoon. While this is technically an area for children, I loved every second of it. The Little Mermaid was one of my favorite movies growing up, and it felt like a dream come true to actually walk inside the castle. You truly feel like you’re a part of the environment from the movie, and I found myself wandering around, looking at all of the details. There are also rides here, like Jumpin’ Jellyfish, Scuttle’s Scooters, Flounder’s Flying Fish Coaster, the Blowfish Balloon Race, and The Whirlpool. There is also Ariel’s Playground, caverns to play in filled with Ariel’s treasures and the Mermaid Lagoon Theatre. While I love the Under The Sea – Journey of the Little Mermaid in the Magic Kingdom in Florida, I really wish they could re-theme that area to look like this and then stick the ride inside.
Mysterious Island is the last part of Tokyo DisneySea that I visited, and this is probably the most popular due to rides in this area being 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and Journey to the Center of the Earth. I really, really wanted to ride Journey to the Center of the Earth, but the wait time was 110 minutes and since the park was closing soon, I decided to skip out. Instead, I rode 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, which was a walk on. This ride is unique, the vehicle hangs from the ceiling like Peter Pan but the portholes use technology to make it look like you’re underwater. We actually have a POV ride video up on our YouTube channel that I highly recommend checking out.
I wish that I had more time to check out all of the unique rides that DisneySea offers, and this park really deserves a full day or two to fully enjoy. But, if you don’t have the time for that, the After 6 Passport is a great option.
I’ll be writing a full recap in my next (and final) segment in this series, so, for now, I’ll leave us with a ‘see ya real soon!