Everything You Need To Know About Visiting Tokyo Disney
Prepare for a cute and kitsch fun-time explosion.
If you’re in need of a cute and kitsch fun-time explosion, make your way to the place where dreams really do come true: Tokyo Disney Resort.
Look The Part
Aside from the aforementioned ears, it all depends on what time of the year you’re visiting Tokyo Disneyland. If you’re going during summer or the end of summer, make sure you’re prepared for a hot and sweaty day out. There’s not a huge amount of shade in the park and the humidity can be killer, so pack sunscreen and wear something that breathes.
There are also intermittent patches of rain that aren’t particularly fun, so be prepared.
You’ll notice almost instantly that most Japanese visitors are dressed to the nines as their favourite Disney characters. These costumes are so amazing that, for the most part, you won’t be able to tell whether you’re looking at an enthusiastic visitor or an actual staff member in full character garb.
How the locals pull off the flawless makeup, the heavy long wigs, and the insanely layered princess dresses in the heat is beyond me. But, hey, we all do what we can for the ‘gram, right?
Take A Ride
Generally speaking, you can expect to wait up to 45 minutes per attraction, but there’s so many awesome, insane, and WTF ride moments at every turn that you won’t care about the queue.
For a quick hit of fun, check out Alice’s Tea Party (who doesn’t like the teacup rides), and then head on over to the Star Tours: The Adventures Continue ride for some (literally) gripping 3D action.
If you’re happy to get a bit wet, head on down to Splash Mountain (which is not for the faint of heart) and then take a chill pill at It’s A Small World.
For a good giggle, make your way to the Haunted Mansion, which starts off as a guided tour (in Japanese) before turning into a rollercoaster ride in the dark. The theme for the ride during my visit was based on The Nightmare Before Christmas. Here, while I didn’t understand a word of what was said, I sure did smile a lot.
Keep in mind some of the rides will be themed around the time of year, so you’re bound to have some festive moments if you visit near Easter, Christmas, Thanksgiving, or Halloween.
OK, I would literally go back just for the food. It’s amazing – everything you’d want from amusement park food and then some.
While it can be tempting to go into the food halls and giant restaurants, don’t bother. They’re too busy and the wait times are longer than that of some of the rides. Instead, save room for the best meal of the day – a Mickey Mouse-shaped pizza from Huey, Dewey, and Loui’s Toon Town Eatery.
When you’ve walked off the meal, get ready for more delicious Disney-shaped items, including a Mickey Mouse waffle from the Great American Waffle Company restaurant.
Oh, and the eats are seasonal, too, so prepare to chow down on treats like pumpkin ice cream around Halloween.
Keep In Mind
You’re going to take a million photos, so bring a charger with you if you have one.
While the parades and shows might seem like fun, you’re better off spending your time enjoying the rides. Skip the long queues by hitting the bigger rides during the parade times – half of the park’s visitors will take up real estate around the parade route, so head for your favourite ride while everyone’s distracted.
Yep, the easiest way to get to the Tokyo Disney is by train. Who’d have thunk it?
Unless you have a car and you’re prepared to drive, park, and then drive all the way home once the day is over, the simplest way to venture to Tokyo Disney is by jumping on a train and heading for Tokyo Station.
Once you’re there, switch over to either the JR Keiyo Line or the JR Musashino Line as both will take you to Maihama Station. Depending on where you’re coming from in Tokyo, it’ll take around 45 minutes.
If you’re keen to enjoy a low-key journey before entering full-blown Disney mode, take a book with you or enjoy the scenery – you’ll even get to see water on the trip in.
When you arrive at Maihama station, there’s no missing the path to Tokyo Disney – it’s like a yellow brick road of excitement. It’s a five-minute walk and, best of all, the ticket lines move quickly so there’s no need to pre-book online.
A day-pass for adults will set you back ¥7400 (AU$91), but you’ll need cash for food and drinks, so it’s best to withdraw the money before you arrive.
If you can, avoid visiting on weekends as the crowds are out in full-force. Once you’ve got your ticket, grab a map, and head on in.
(Lead image: Tokyo Disney Resort)