Tokyo DisneySea

My husband and I decided to take our dream vacation to Japan as a 2 year anniversary trip. I had not planned to go to Disney itself. Silly, naïve me though that the Disney Store in Harajuku, Tokyo, Japan was going to be satisfy my needs for TsumTsums. Oh how wrong I was. It’s was a totally fun and unique experience, don’t get me wrong! But as we were leaving and entering the street again all I could think about was Disney in Japan. It was in Toyko after all. We didn’t have a really strict itinerary for this trip… just general plans for each day. I had mapped out train schedules ahead of time though and I didn’t really want think we could fit in a day at Disney. My husband, being a wise Knight of the Old Republic, knew exactly what I was wanting.

“How far is Disney?” he asked as we were discussing the next day or two of our itinerary. I proceeded to blurt out exactly how to get there and which train stations we needed and that there were two different parks and Disneyland was very similar to what we had back home but oh, boy there was DisneySea and that was really different but it isn’t really reasonable to go to Disney after all we came here for Japanese culture and food and stuff.

“If we can do it we should!” he said smiling at me. Now, let’s all remember that I am nine weeks pregnant at this point. Hormones are high and I had somehow escaped the dangers of morning sickness and food aversions most of the trip thus far. I basically wanted to fling myself on top of him and smother him with love and happiness. 

After a little more cursory research I also delight that one day tickets for DisneySea were significantly cheaper than those for Disneyland or DisneyWorld. Currently, a one day ticket to either Toyko park is ¥7,400 or about $70 for one adult. Not only is a last minute trip 100% reasonable it was affordable. Especially since we only spent a half day in the park after the morning spent booking it up a mountain top temple and back to get to our train on time. (Remember this for later.)
The Maihama train station specifically serves the park making it extremely easy to get to from anywhere in Toyko. Of course everyone in Japan was very friendly and when it came to Cast Members at Toyko Disney it was the same – any questions or confusion related to the train system and the special resort like that went around the parks which required a separate ticket was cleared up.    
The resort line train was adorably decorated with Finding Nemo characters. The view from the resort line as we rounded the bend only added to my excitement as you could see the Castle at Disneyland Tokyo. Why DisneySea you may be asking? Considering the Tokyo Disneyland is very similar to the original Disneyland at Magic Kingdom I thought we should take advantage of this totally unique park. Also, being pregnant I knew I wasn’t going to be able to enjoy the more thrilling rides so the more new and different things I could experience the better! 

We were immediately met by Minnie Mouse upon entering the park at Mediterranean Harbor. If I’d had an autograph book I would have had her sign it. I also wasn’t sure of the customs in Toyko regarding character meet and greets so I took pictures from afar. Etiquette for walk around characters is to be patient and polite and the character will make their way to you if greeting the crowd. Another surprise as we entered the American Waterfront was that it was decorated for Christmas! It had not even occurred to me there might be a holiday overlay until we saw strings of lights and garland across the 20th century streets. There was plenty to see and do without a height restriction (safest rides while pregnant) with the website currently listing 22 of the 29 attractions as no height limit. Each area of the park had great attractions to offer and we prioritized rides without long waits to maximize time (sorry Midway Mania).

Thematically, each land was incredibly immersive. The atmosphere was infectious. American Waterfront had a Tower of Terror which blended seamlessly into the red brick façades. Mystery Island felt like being in a SteamPunk novelization for 20,000 Leagues under the Sea – in fact you could actually ride on it! Similar to Finding Nemo’s Submarine Voyage at Disneyland, guests enter a submarine and are piloted through murky waters. As you exit the ride you catch a glimpse of the Vulcania Restaurant which doubles as the geothermal power station powered by Mount Prometheus, providing energy for Captain Nemo's scientific research on the Nautilus. Nearby, Mermaid Lagoon was an indoor area with rides for young children themed as the underwater city of Atlantica – complete with holiday festooned Triton. The sparking towers of Atlantica rose high above the park and made for a completely unique castle centerpiece. 

We stopped for food at the Cape Cod Cook Off and go some great Chicken Catsu Sandwiches at prices that were much more reasonable than expected. If we hadn’t been keeping to a tight budget for the trip I would have tried a lot more snacks. As it is the only souvenir I was set on was an amazing sushi platter keychain with Mickey and Minnie rolls!

Of all the rides we were able to experience, my husband I enjoyed Sinbad’s Storybook Adventure the most at the Arabian Coast. A relaxing ride ala “it’s a small world” through the epic of Sinbad was a feast for the eyes and nose – at one point the smell of bananas was piped into the ride. The song was much better as well! On the way back to the train station I thought my legs were going to fall off and I was certainly going to die – remember how we trekked up a mountain to get to a shrine earlier in the day? Add a half Disney day of walking to that and my legs were ready to formally separate from the rest of my body. Be prepared (#LionKingKaraoke). 

If you ever have a chance to visit Toyko consider spending even a half day at one of the Disney Parks there. It is a totally unique food experience and a magical experience overall. If I could get someone to teleport me the 15.5 hours of travel from Denver to Tokyo I would totally go again right now to experience the whole park! Since coming home I have learned some great Disney History facts which make our DisneySea experience even more magical. Look for a Disney History Lesson coming soon!

What international Disney Park would you love to visit? Comment below!


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