Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Tokyo Disney Sea

Tokyo Disney Sea along with the neighbouring Tokyo Disneyland, is a part of the Tokyo Disney Resort. The resort is one of the most visited theme parks in Japan. Tokyo Disney sea holds the record of being the fastest themepark in the world to have reached the milestone of 10 million guests, having achieved it in 307 days since it’s opening on 4th September 2001. In 2010, Tokyo Disney sea attracted 12.6 million visitors making it the fifth most visited theme park in the world.
Tokyo Disney Sea is also the most expensive theme park ever built. It is estimated to have cost over USD 4 billion to build this 176 hectare park. Originally designed to cater to a grownup audience, the theme park ultimately evolved to suit audiences of all age groups. However most rides and shows are designed to appeal to the grown up audiences. The number of rides and attractions are lesser than the neighbouring Tokyo Disneyland. This is compensated by more number of shows and performances, restaurants and shopping areas and offcourse the availability of alcoholic beverages (One thing which appeals to most Japanese visitors).

The entire theme park is inspired by the myths and legends of the sea. The Tokyo Disney Sea is made up of seven themed port of calls : Mediterranean Harbor, Mystery Island, Mermaid Lagoon, Arabian Coast, Lost River Delta, Port Discovery and American Waterfront.

The Disney Sea Aquasphere at the entrance to the park is a water fountain with a large revolving model of earth. 
Mediterranean Harbor at the entrance to the park is inspired by an Italian port town, complete with Venetian style canals and gondolas. 

The Italians style buildings actually comprise Tokyo Disney Sea Hotel Miracosta. The Mediterranean Harbour is also the venue for the “Fantasmic” Show in the evening at 8:00 pm. 




The show features , Mickey Mouse  as the sorceror’s assistant and many of the popular Disney characters feature in the show. 
This spectacular show which makes use of water, pyroeffects, fireworks and laser is a must see.
At the centre of the park is the volcano, Mount Prometheus. 
What Cinderella’s castle is to Tokyo Disneyland, Mount Prometheus is to Tokyo Disney Sea. Located within Mount Prometheus is Fortress Exploration, a walk through fortress which gives visitors the feel of walking through an European castle.  





Mysterious Island is also located within the volcano and the place looks straight out of Jules Verne’s works.

Two popular rides, Journey to the Centre of the Earth and 20,000 Leagues under the Sea are located in Mysterious Island.

Mermaid Lagoon is designed to cater to the younger audience. 


Scuttle’s scooters and Flounder’s Flying Fish Coaster are outdoor rides which attract kids and adults alike.
Triton’s Kingdom is home to the indoor rides like Jumping Jellyfish, Blowfish Balloon race and Whirlpool which are pretty small and short but which have some of the longest queues. 




Mermaid Lagoon gives kids an opportunity to enter the colourful undersea world of Ariel and her fishy friends. Visitors can also meet Ariel and get photographed with her at Ariel’s greeting grotto. The Mermaid Theatre also has live performances of the show “Under the Sea” featuring songs and scenes from the Little Mermaid, throughout the day.
Arabian Coast is a recreation of the 1001 Arabian Nights and the world of Aladdin and Sindbad. 
The entire area is modelled to look like an Arabian city. 











Sindbad’s Story book Voyage is a ride on the lines of Disney’s popular ride “It’s a Small World” but features scenes from Sindbad’s voyage. 




Jasmine’s Flying carpets and Caravan Carousel are other popular rides in Arabian Coast.


The Magic Lamp Theatre houses a 3D movie hosted by the Genie which uses a combination of magic and live action. It was closed for repairs during our visit. We watched a show featuring the Genie and other Disney characters around lunchtime.


Port Discovery is a marina of the future. 
Visitors can enjoy Storm Rider, a virtual rollercoaster,a ride that attracts long queues. 

Another popular attraction is Aquatopia, a selfguided watercraft which steers safely through whirpools, waterfalls and fountains.



Lost River Delta is inspired by the ancient temple Pyramid in the jungles of Central America. 
The Indiana Jones Adventure :  Temple of the Crystal Skull is an adventure ride through the temple’s ruins.


The Raging Spirits roller coaster is also a popular attraction.

American Waterfront is an area overlooking the Pacific Ocean and is designed to resemble 20th century harbourfronts in New York, New England and Cape Cod.  



The S.S. Columbia Steam Liner houses a restaurant and lounge. Regular shows are held outside it.


The Tower of terror is an adventure ride through the Haunted Hotel.

The Disney Transit Steamer Line is a convenient way to move between various areas in the park. 

However there is a long wait during most of the day, thereby leaving visitors the only option of walking between the various areas. 

The elevated Disney Transit Electric Railway connects the American Waterfront and Port of Discovery.

Our visit in early June coincided with the Spring Carnival event at Tokyo Disney Sea. The entire park was decorated in the spring theme. The shows were themed around Spring too.

We visited the park on our daughter’s birthday. At the entrance she was given a “ Happy Birthday” sticker which she was asked to stick on her shirt. All the crew members at the rides and shows greeted her with birthday wishes, making her feel on top of the world. The icing on the cake was a special birthday hug and kiss from Ariel at Ariel’s greeting grotto in Mermaid Lagoon early in the morning followed by a big birthday hug from Donald Duck. No wonder they are her current favourite Disney characters ! ( Not putting those pictures on the blog as I don't put personal pics on the blog).
Even on a weekday, we had to wait from 40-90 minutes for our turn on popular rides. Fastpasses get filled up quick and even Fastpass doesn’t guarantee an easy entry. Rides are easier to board after 8:00 pm. An hour before closing time, waiting time reduces drastically and we got to do most rides during this time slot.

Address: Tokyo Disney Resort, Maihama, Urayasu city, Chiba Prefecture, Japan

Access: For visitors arriving by Train: Maihama station is the closest. Urayasu IC is the nearest for visitors driving to Disneyland .

Opening Hours: 9:00-22:00 hrs  daily. ( Opens early on weekends)

Closing days: None; open all 365 days

Admission: Adult Yen 6200 ; Juniors( age 12-17) Yen 5300 and Children (under 12) Yen 4100. 
                (Different types of tickets are available, please check the website for the ticket prices)