It’s been just over one week since Soaring: Fantastic Flight took Tokyo DisneySea by storm! We’re starting to settle in to a normal life with Soaring in the park, and the brutal heat wave that came with it. With all these things happening, I figured it was time we checked in on the world’s greatest theme park. So, let’s set a course for Tokyo DisneySea, where adventure and imagination set sail!
Resort Gateway Station & Ikspiari
There’s several options to get to Tokyo DisneySea from JR Maihama Station. You can take the Disney Resort Line, which is our monorail, or you can walk.
One of the downsides of the Disney Resort Line is that they charge fares due to Japanese laws regarding railways. On the bright side, it means that for almost every event or occasion, there is a cute limited design day pass ticket! There’s several to choose from right now, including these Duffy’s Summer Fun and Soaring: Fantastic Flight designs! I wish I could have them all!
I chose to walk through Ikspiari (pronounced like the first half of “experience”) to get to Tokyo DisneySea today. Ikspiari is like our version of Disney Springs or Downtown Disney, but almost completely indoors. It’s kind of like an upscale mall with Disney-quality themeing. During the hot, humid summer afternoons, you can spin a wheel for a chance at water cannons firing tons of water on you!
The Lion King remake may be sweeping the box office in the US (as we reported here), but it doesn’t even get a release in Japan until August 9th. I still haven’t decided if I want to see it, personally.
As we approach Tokyo DisneySea, let’s stop and admire the incredible attraction poster out for Soaring: Fantastic Flight! Tom Corless and I were present for the grand opening last week, and it truly is the most, *ahem*, fantastic version of Soarin’! You can learn more about the experience and our thoughts here.
Ah, it’s a beautiful day to be at the park! And the AquaSphere looks incredibly majestic, as it always does. The music in this area definitely moves you to be ready for a world of wonder and imagination!
It’s “Disney Pirates Summer” at Tokyo DisneySea! This is the third and final year of the event, and I’ll be sad to see it go! This special event not only features hearty grub and swashbuckling merchandise, but also “Pirates Summer Battle: Get Wet!”, a splish-splashy harbor show featuring a dastardly pirate crew, battles on the waters of Mediterranean Harbor, appearances by Captain Jack Sparrow and Captain Barbossa, and an insane amount of water! This show has kept me cool on a hot day more than once, and the energy of the performers is unbelievable!
It’s a little more crowded than a Tuesday here at Tokyo DisneySea. The summer break is starting to begin for students across Japan, and the national holiday Obon, a celebration of ancestors, is in just a couple of weeks. That means crowds will be on their way!
Our beloved Mount Prometheus is still under construction and will be for the foreseeable future. This is (to my knowledge, at least,) the first major renovation and reconstruction project on the mountain in the park’s history. There’s always annual touch-ups, but this project is set to last through October 2020, well past the Olympics. During this time, the steam and fire effects that usually come from Prometheus during the day and for shows are turned off.
For reference, this is what Mount Prometheus usually looks like. I took this back in April, shortly before the renovations began.
At least the Palazzo Canals are still up and running! The gondoliers even serenade Guests in Italian!
Over in American Waterfront, I ran in to some familiar faces! Pluto was trying to take refuge from the wind, and Donald was greeting guests in his 1920s-era American Waterfront outfit! So cute!
These bathrooms between Tower of Terror and Toy Story Mania have been closed for three months now. At least we can still see the absolutely beautiful fountain!
Incredibly enough, the wait for Tower of Terror was only at 35 minutes when I passed. Before Soaring opened, it would’ve normally been double on a day like this.
How about a trip aboard the S.S. Columbia? They say her maiden voyage will be any day now! Well… maybe after the annual repainting of her stacks. As I said last week at Tokyo Disneyland, this is a very busy time as the resort prepares for the Olympics next year.
Fortunately, we’re still welcome to board the S.S. Columbia! The deck is one of the few places in the parks where Guests are openly able to see past the berm. It’s an excellent spot for a view of Tokyo Bay and the city itself.
I was surprised to only see a Cast Member in this area, as it was open to Guests, shaded, and had benches.
Over in the Cape Cod section of American Waterfront, we’re celebrating Duffy’s Sunny Fun! All over Cape Cod, there are adorable photo ops with Duffy and his friends, as well as the cutest beach-themed merchandise for sale! More on that later.
As we reported yesterday, the Cape Cod Cook-Off counter-service restaurant now requires you to purchase a full meal to see “My Friend Duffy’. I’m probably going to be upset about this for a while, but at least the show is still cute!
Over in Port Discovery, Aquatopia has been transformed in to a “get wet” version to keep Guests cool in the Floridian Tokyo summer! I rode this last week with some friends, and I came off looking like I’d gone down Splash Mountain!
Our beloved Sindbad is still down for its annual refurb through August 9th. Until then, we’ll just have to go without one of Disney’s modern classics, I suppose.
Mermaid Lagoon is very popular during this time of year, since almost the entire land is indoors. Guests can be seen sitting and cooling down with some water or ice cream along almost every wall. Fortunately, the king of the seas is very welcoming of Guests!
Back in Mediterranean Harbor, it’s hard to believe Soaring has only been there such a short time! It blends in with the rest of the port spectacularly.
Waits were fairly high today, but less than the four hours we saw on opening day last Tuesday!
Right next to Soaring is the main cast exit for the Pirates Summer Battle: Get Wet! performers. They were very happy to wave (and misbehave) for some pictures and “Yo ho!”s on their way out.
There’s so many little, almost unknown spots at Tokyo DisneySea. The Imagineers that designed this park did such an incredible job, and the Oriental Land Company has been just as amazing at maintaining it.
On our way out, we can see the swashbuckling decor in place around Piazza Topolino, the main area of Mediterranean Harbor. There’s Pirates-themed lamp posts, umbrella covers for seating, even the menu board of Cafe Portofino was changed out to look more nautical!
There’s a lovely set of dishes that recently went on sale at Villa Donaldo Home Shop, themed to traditional Japanese tablewares. The ceramic plate and the sake cup are both priced at ¥2800 ($25.79). Several other items in this line are also on sale, including rice bowls, chopsticks, and saucers.
Back in Cape Cod, you can clearly see who rules these stores! There’s four sizes of every Duffy friend: keychain/stuffed badge, normal size, big (which you see on the shelf), and about half of life-size. The largest ones can cost up to ¥52,000 ($479)! But a typical Duffy or Gelatoni (seen on the lower shelves) is a much more reasonable ¥3800 ($35).
Duffy keychains of all sizes, events, and characters are still out for sale at around ¥1700 ($15.66). In the bottom left corner, generic Duffy, ShellieMay, and StellaLou can be seen. The lower right features Duffy and ShellieMay in their sailor outfits, seen in My Friend Duffy next door. On the upper two rows, Duffy and his friends are dressed in their Duffy’s Summer Fun outfits! I can see why they love these characters so much. They’re pretty darn cute!
That’s all this week from Tokyo DisneySea! If you’re considering or planning a trip to Tokyo Disney Resort, be sure to drop in on TDRPlans for everything you need to know and more! And as always, stay tuned to WDWNT for up-to-date coverage on Tokyo Disney Resort, Walt Disney World, and Disney Parks worldwide!