Our trip continued with our first day at Tokyo Disneyland! This was an entirely new experience for both of us as I had only visited Tokyo DisneySea during my trip eleven years earlier and this was my wife's first trip to Asia. Tokyo Disneyland is unique in that it presents a "best of" approach, borrowing elements from Disneyland Park and Magic Kingdom in Florida, while also having a lot of elements exclusive to this park. This was such an incredible experience for me in that it presented a true opportunity for me to fall in love with Tokyo Disneyland.
We rope dropped the park for our first day to make sure we could get our first rides in on Monsters Inc. and Pooh's Hunny Hunt. The super polite cast holding up "For safety please walk" signs really made me smile.
First stop, Monsters Inc. Ride and Go Seek!
This is the key to your experience!
You point your flashlight at the many Monsters Inc symbols found throughout the ride, mostly atop these impressive animatronics.
Such a well themed ride! There aren't any points earned for shining light on the targets--just the fun of triggering interactions through the ride!
Honestly not much else to compare this one to, but a really fun experience! We went back for several more rides throughout our visit!
We'll be coming back for this in a little bit thanks to some Fastpasses!
With some time to kill on this corner of the park we figured we'd knock out Star Tours.
While the ride itself is the same as the stateside (and now Parisian) counterparts, the show building is expansive and has some very unique elements...
Like a full-size Starspeeder 1000 parked inside of the entrance of the queue!
And this gorgeous video monitor in the extended queue area.
From here it becomes more familiar...
But there are unique touches like these Hitchhiking Droids.
The loading terminal is simply gorgeous!
Monsters Inc's ride building was built from the ground up with none of the former Meet the World structure retained.
We went back several more times thanks to the old-style Fastpass system still being in use at the resort!
There are some clever gags in the exit of Monsters Inc. that are worth a look.
The Tokyo Disneyland Band was one of many spontaneous performances we witnessed during our day in the park!
Pirates of the Caribbean is located in the park's New Orleans Square.
Similar to Disneyland's version complete with the Blue Bayou Restaurant, but interestingly enough, riders exit before the lift hill return back to the entry station.
Something's crashed in Adventureland and I couldn't be more excited!
Honestly, this version of the Tiki Room was one of my most anticipated experiences in Tokyo Disneyland.
The queue is like a cross between Disneyland's and Magic Kingdom's with the Tiki Garden from California...
But the water features from Florida. This was likely used in the previous versions of the shows' pre-shows, but it is not in use for this version.
I loved every minute of the show! I know purists will take great issue to this approach but the audience loved the show and it just felt so energetic and modern compared to the classic version of the show.
Jungle Cruise Wildlife Expeditions is a recently-updated take on the classic Jungle Cruise.
It is the first version of the ride to have a custom-designed audio track along with a new narrative featuring the spirits seen in these hanging totems. We couldn't understand any of the spieling but the ride was fun all the same.
The ride's audio actually triggers the opening of "The Circle of Life" here which oddly works perfectly. Again purists may take issue but it garnered a ton of laughs in our boat!
And the classic scenes remain intact.
Wouldn't want to be the low man on that totem pole.
Photos don't do it justice (so I won't try) but the inside of the temple has been updated with a neat projection mapping effect that I can only hope will make its way to Florida at some point.
Good old Trader Sam!
The Leaky Tikis don't leak here.
Look at this beauty!
I love the alternate brickwork that was applied to the lower portion of the castle... It just makes the whole thing feel that much more *real*.
I was bummed I couldn't see the old Cinderella Castle Mystery Tour but Fairytale Hall was a cute replacement.
Look at this detail!
A pretty interior scene!
And a neat little element that happens every few minutes or so.
I always make it a point to look up in Disney attractions for design elements like these.
It made me smile to see this beautiful tile mural originally designed for Florida's Magic Kingdom also present in Tokyo!
And credit was even given to the original artist, Dorothea Redmond, a name many Disney fans know well.
Time for another of my most hotly anticipated rides of the trip... Pooh's Hunny Hunt!
Several other trackless rides have debuted around the world since this first opened but I don't think any hold a candle to this.
Just so incredible!
And the Heffalumps & Woozles scene is arguably one of my favorite moments in any Disney ride.
Does it have to be?
We rode Pooh's Hunny Hunt a total of seven times this trip, second only to the 8 times we rode Sinbad's Storybook Voyage!
I got back from Tokyo a few days ago... wow. These photos remind me of how amazing it was.
DisneySea takes themeparks to a whole new level i'd never imagined. Insanely awesome. And the main Magic Kingdom park in Tokyo is different but in a good way, it has the magic feel to it and I loved it so much.
Why oh why does crappy Disneyland Paris have to be the closest park to me.
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