Hunting down cherry blossoms and stuffing my face with sushi and ramen took a back seat for a day while we headed over to Tokyo DisneySea! Celebrating its 15th birthday this year, Tokyo DisneySea is a relatively new addition to the Disney theme park collection. It has come to be one of my favorite theme parks I’ve visited and I knew no Tokyo trip would be complete without a stop at this magical place!
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
Part 5 – Tokyo Tales Day 2 – Tokyo DisneySea
Part of the Tokyo Disney Resort, DisneySea is to Tokyo Disneyland as Disney California Adventure is to Disneyland. The two parks sit on the same property and can be accessed via walking or the Disney Resort Line monorail. Thomas K. had never been to the either parks, but we decided on Tokyo DisneySea as it had more Tokyo-exclusive rides and attractions.
After arriving at Maihama Station via the JR/Tokyo Metro trains, we transferred over onto the resort’s monorail. The monorail is a complete loop around the resort that connects both parks, the official partner hotels and Ikspiari, a shopping/dining complex. The park can also be accessed with a 15-20 minute walk, but how can you resist such a fun train ride?
We used THIS website to help gauge just how busy the parks would be while we were visiting. It’s an invaluable tool because Tokyo Disney parks are known for being notoriously crowded. The park opened at 8AM that morning and we arrived about an hour before opening time. It was amazing, but no surprising, the amount of people already there well before our arrival.. I mean just take a look..
As opening time loomed closer, groups started standing and making their way towards the gate. As soon as the park gates opened, the dash started. Everyone started on a mad dash into the park as soon as their tickets were scanned. Cast members were around telling people to please walk, but were ignored. The anxiety and mob mentality got the best of us and we started running too! What a way to wake up in the morning!
Let me take a little break here and say that I absolutely love the theming at Tokyo DisneySea. The entire park is made so well and really takes you into their world. As soon as you walk (or run) into the park, you’re greeted by Mediterranean Harbor (pictured above) and thrown in Venice. One of the official Disney hotels, Hotel Miracosta, is actually built into the park and the hotel rooms actually look right into the park/Mediterranean Harbor! Every area of the park has a different feel to it and is themed accordingly.
The main goal of the day was to do everything that is exclusive to this theme park; things you will never be able to see outside of Tokyo. Having been to the park two years ago, me and Ryan H. still had a good idea of where everything was generally and where we should hit. Target #1: Journey to the Center of the Earth. Based on the novel by Jules Verne, the ride takes you underground and into the heart of Mysterious Island. The entire ride, including the queue line, has a steampunk feel to it, even down to the cast member’s uniforms.
This thrilling ride is quite easily one of my favorites at DisneySea! We were able to ride it twice thanks to also getting a FastPass for the later in the day. Other rides that you can only find at DisneySea include Raging Spirits (mini rollercoaster), 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Storm Rider and the Venetian Gondolas! Here’s a few random pics of the rides I took throughout the day:
One of the attractions we used a few times, both for convenience and for a break for our poor poor legs, was the Electric Railway and Transit Steamer. These two rides transport you from one area of the park to another and allow you to take in the park at a leisurely pace.
One end of the electric railway drops you off in the middle of the American Waterfront, which has the Tokyo version of Tower of Terror, Toy Story Mania, and the SS Columbia. Toy Story Mania, the interactive 4D shooter game, is apparently the most popular attraction here at DisneySea. During the morning mad dash, most of the park goers are headed there to claim their spots.
The SS Columbia was an interesting detour as you are able to walk throughout the ship and even onto the decks. There is also the Teddy Roosevelt Lounge on board where you can stop for drinks and food. (These pics were taken 2 years ago during my last visit.)
The rest of the day consisted of walking around the park, waiting in a few lines, walking around the park, snacking culminating in some more walking around the park. Yes, there was a lot of walking around the park. Here’s a few random pictures I snapped throughout the day (click to enlarge). It’s worth mentioning that the shows here at Tokyo DisneySea are amazing! We were able to catch Fantasmic! right after dinner and it’s done on Mediterranean Harbor on boats and floats. You don’t even need to understand Japanese to take in the magic of the show!
As the night winded down, we ended the night with a little shopping excursion for gifts and trinkets to bring back home. After exiting the park, a simple hop back onto the Disney Resort Line brought us to Maihama and back to Ebisu we went. After a long day at the park, falling asleep was no problem whatsoever. We all needed to be well rested for another day of exploring Tokyo. Next up was Tsukiji, Asakusa, and sushi goodness!
BONUS – Tokyo DisneySea Snacks/Food
What’s a trip to any Disney park without a plethora of Disney-themed snacks? Tokyo DisneySea has some amazing snacks that you will find nowhere else! Here’s just a few of the things the park has available:
Toy Story Alien Ice Cream Mochi
Alright so I don’t have a picture of the popcorn. You’re probably thinking how special can popcorn really get? Boy, you have no idea what Japanese Disney magic can do to popcorn. Park goers at the Tokyo Disney Resort are obsessed with the popcorn stands at the park. There were 5+ flavors at the park on the day that we were there – ranging from caramel to black pepper to curry (my personal favorite).
Showing the popcorn obsession even more, the parks release seasonal and limited edition popcorn holders that are sold at each cart. No trip to the park is complete without bringing your own popcorn holder!
This snack is quite possibly my favorite food item to come out of any Disney park around the world. Like the caption says, it’s gyoza stuffing inside a steamed bun, like the one you get at dim sum restaurants. It’s just delicious! We snacked on this for our mid morning break while we people watched from the cafe below Mysterious Island.
If you’re a Disney fanatic like me, I also visited Hong Kong Disneyland last summer. I wrote all about it here!
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