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11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

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  • 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

    Kevin visits the Tokyo Disney Resort, Part One: Tokyo Disneyland - Discuss it here!
    "Politics is the profession whereby the inevitable is made to seem a great human achievement" - Quentin Crisp

  • #2
    Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

    Kevin what a nice suprise it was for me to read today's article. Like you I to have just come back from a trip to the Tokyo Disney Resort and shared a lot of the same views as you did, through it was my second trip here. You were right on the money when it came to your views on World Bazaar and I look foward to hearing more about your trip on Thursday
    Follow me on Twitter http://www.twitter.com/malin1804

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    • #3
      Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

      Yay! It's so great to see coverage of Tokyo Disney. So far, your view of the place pretty much matches mine. I would like to mention, though, that the covered World Bazaar area is very reminiscent of a Japanese shopping arcade--a covered street open to pedestrians only. After I encountered a couple of these, I realized that the covered shopping arcade is a very typically Japanese format and in fact seems to evoke a very nostalgic feeling in many Japanese.

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      • #4
        Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

        I visited the Tokyo resort in 2002 and totally agree with Kevin's assessment. TDL is magnificently executed, but lacks the intimate charm of other Disney parks. It's probably the fault of the wide walkways that I didn't feel immersed in each land, with the exception of Adventureland. In Anaheim, I generally feel immersed.

        The crowds did detract from the magic a little. I went in late October, and the place was packed on the Monday, with crowds easing off by Wednesday, which felt a lot better. Yes, Disney parks get crowded, but even at their busiest I've never found the North American parks to feel so packed. The day started with a 30+ minute wait just to get a fastpass for Pooh. I generally had to line up for fastpasses during the day. It was all very manageable, but not as relaxing a visit as I would have liked.
        My Micechat cruise trip report, Part 1:http://micechat.com/14795-disney-wonder/

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        • #5
          Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

          Thanks for the great article Kevin. Can you also tell us about your adventures in Tokyo itself. I'd love to read your take about transportation and hotels in Tokyo.

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          • #6
            Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

            Part II will mention the misadventures of the hotels and transportation... let me punt until after that comes out

            Now, if you want to talk Kyoto and Hiroshima, that won't be in the report, so we'd have to do it here.
            Kevin Yee
            MiceAge Columnist

            I am the author of several Disney books:
            Jason's Disneyland Almanac - a daily history of Disneyland
            Walt Disney World Hidden History - tributes, homages, and ride remnants at WDW
            Your Day at the Magic Kingdom
            Mouse Trap
            Tokyo Disney Made Easy
            101 Things You Never Knew About Disneyland
            Magic Quizdom (The Disneyland Trivia Book)

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

              And here I thought we'd actually get a trip report without the word 'outdated' in it-MiceChat's favorite word in the dictionary.

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              • #8
                Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

                Originally posted by KevinYee View Post
                Part II will mention the misadventures of the hotels and transportation... let me punt until after that comes out

                Now, if you want to talk Kyoto and Hiroshima, that won't be in the report, so we'd have to do it here.
                Did you get a chance to go to Miyajima while you were in Hiroshima?

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                • #9
                  Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

                  Miyajima was the original goal (I wanted to see the torii!) but on the trains, we realized we didn't budget the right amount of time. We preferred to get back to Tokyo at a human hour, and we were traveling back that same day. So a slight mixup there. I hear it's gorgeous.
                  Kevin Yee
                  MiceAge Columnist

                  I am the author of several Disney books:
                  Jason's Disneyland Almanac - a daily history of Disneyland
                  Walt Disney World Hidden History - tributes, homages, and ride remnants at WDW
                  Your Day at the Magic Kingdom
                  Mouse Trap
                  Tokyo Disney Made Easy
                  101 Things You Never Knew About Disneyland
                  Magic Quizdom (The Disneyland Trivia Book)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

                    Can't wait for the next part and your thoughts of Tokyo DisneySea! I agree that World Bazaar is not very attractive compared to the Main Streets, but I thought it was rather elegant. It's not supposed to be a real town, but simply a Victorian era shopping center. Hence why the roof and walls never bothered me. But that entrance area is just too industrial and I too miss the train station.
                    Arabian Coast at nighttime ~

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                    • #11
                      Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

                      Originally posted by KevinYee View Post
                      Part II will mention the misadventures of the hotels and transportation... let me punt until after that comes out

                      Now, if you want to talk Kyoto and Hiroshima, that won't be in the report, so we'd have to do it here.

                      Misadventures in transport? No such thing in Tokyo. You just need to realize that the trains are run by three different companies so unlike most cities line transfers may require a special ticket. http://www.jorudan.co.jp/english/norikae/ is a wonderful resource which helped me a great deal. Tokyo is a fascinating place (think Manhattan on steroids). Despite all the tech they are really sweet people.

                      I'll let Kevin tell you all about DisneySea but here's a tease Best ride at DisneySea .... NOT Journey to the Center of the Earth. Its actually Stormrider. I'll let Kevin tell you why

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

                        Originally posted by obelix View Post
                        Misadventures in transport? No such thing in Tokyo. You just need to realize that the trains are run by three different companies so unlike most cities line transfers may require a special ticket. http://www.jorudan.co.jp/english/norikae/ is a wonderful resource which helped me a great deal. Tokyo is a fascinating place (think Manhattan on steroids). Despite all the tech they are really sweet people.

                        I'll let Kevin tell you all about DisneySea but here's a tease Best ride at DisneySea .... NOT Journey to the Center of the Earth. Its actually Stormrider. I'll let Kevin tell you why
                        StormRider? Now I think the attraction is the best of the simulator attractions (certainly better than Star Tours and I prefer it over Soarin'), but I would never place it above Journey to the Center of the Earth or any of the other lavishly themed E-ticket attractions. Don't get me wrong. I think StormRider is a nice E-ticket attraction, but it's not the best in the park for me. But now I'm really interested in what he has to say!

                        And to expand on my previous post, I think the two parks provide a very nice contrast. Tokyo Disneyland provides a magical and whimsical atmosphere, while Tokyo DisneySea provides an extravagant and romantic atmosphere. Two very different experiences, though I prefer Tokyo DisneySea's breathtaking theming and attention to detail. I'm thankful that the architectural and design flaws of Tokyo Disneyland were corrected for Tokyo DisneySea. The stunningly beautiful MiraCosta framing Mediterranean Harbor as the main entrance far, far makes up for World Bazaar (which is not all that bad in the first place in my opinion).
                        Arabian Coast at nighttime ~

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

                          Hey Kevin

                          Glad to read your trip report. Who went with you, what did you think of the food in the parks, and how did you get by with English?

                          Surprised you featured no pics of the castle or from Critter Country and Toon Town.

                          Looking forward to your DisneySea report.

                          Cal

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                          • #14
                            Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

                            Originally posted by CaliforniaAdventurer View Post
                            Hey Kevin

                            Glad to read your trip report. Who went with you, what did you think of the food in the parks, and how did you get by with English?

                            Surprised you featured no pics of the castle or from Critter Country and Toon Town.

                            Looking forward to your DisneySea report.

                            Cal
                            I agree. I would have enjoyed a description of Critter Country and Splash Mountain, which is much better than Disneyland's and the Magic Kingdom's in my opinion.
                            Arabian Coast at nighttime ~

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

                              Splash was on rehab, alas. I certainly visited ToonTown, but it was pretty similar to CA's version (though painted for once).

                              I had to choose which pics to include, and the choices were difficult. I had taken over 6,000 photos on the trip, and after a while, I started to forget what I'd selected for miceage already and what not.

                              Oh, the castle: it was half under a (themed, colored) tarp so those wouldn't have been pretty pics.
                              Kevin Yee
                              MiceAge Columnist

                              I am the author of several Disney books:
                              Jason's Disneyland Almanac - a daily history of Disneyland
                              Walt Disney World Hidden History - tributes, homages, and ride remnants at WDW
                              Your Day at the Magic Kingdom
                              Mouse Trap
                              Tokyo Disney Made Easy
                              101 Things You Never Knew About Disneyland
                              Magic Quizdom (The Disneyland Trivia Book)

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

                                Oh yes, I forgot that Splash Mountain was down for a lengthy refurb. And the castle was under the tarps for the annual Christmas makeover, I believe.
                                Arabian Coast at nighttime ~

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

                                  Did you notice how clean Space Mountain was, compared to the often caked in dirt Anaheim version?

                                  Also, even when crowds are light during the weekday they still do every single show! They don't punish tourists at Tokyo Disney!

                                  I myself was disapointed that the park's were only open until 10pm on the weekends, but the parks being open until 10pm on the weekdays more than made up for it.

                                  DCA closes at 6pm on a weekday, TDS at 10pm. That says a lot!

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

                                    It is a shame that you did not get to see the Mickey Mouse Revue. When we went in 2005 (I was invited to speak in Tokyo, so I brought my family along), that was one of the attractions that I wanted to be sure to visit. You can tell that the attraction was dated by what I felt was the poor quality of the audio-animatronics and the pre-show film. We were thought the Japanese translations of the songs were funny (but not in an insulting way to the Japanese culture).

                                    Kevin - did you have a chance to sample the food there? My daughters were 5 and 2 at the time and they were very picky eaters... very picky. I remember getting the Japanese version of a hot dog on a stick and it was a rather large beef sausage impaled by a rib bone. Did you bring home any of the food "schwag" that you got when ordering certain meals? The Tokyo Disney resorts really do a fantastic job on them. We have a number of them from our last trip that we use. My youngest daughter loves her clear Donald mug that we got for ordering ice cream.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

                                      Kevin as I've read your articles for a number of years I notice a lot of them were devoted to visiting WDW while with the family. Will you be offering any such comparrisons from your Tokyo Disney Resort trip.
                                      Follow me on Twitter http://www.twitter.com/malin1804

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Re: 11/6: Where Dreams Are True, Pt. I

                                        Originally posted by TDR_Fan View Post
                                        I agree. I would have enjoyed a description of Critter Country and Splash Mountain, which is much better than Disneyland's and the Magic Kingdom's in my opinion.
                                        The Castle is just like WDWs except there was a villains attraction (now closed) inside. Toontown was like DL just reversed.

                                        Critter Country was a thing of beauty. I was expecting Splash to be a WDW clone. How wrong I was! Crittter couintry is divided into two levels. Take the path on your right to go up into the Splash queue. Take the path on the left to the lower level and the rest of Critter Country.

                                        The Splash queue is all inside and HUGE! A Big relief in rainy weather. Boarding is quicker with separate load and unload stations. The attraction is called Splash Mountain but Spritz Mountain would be more accurate. Imagineering developed "splashless" logs for the Japanese. There is a small air/water gun at the bottom of the final hill which gives you a light dusting of moisture but certainly no splash.

                                        I was totally blown away by it.

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