Did you have a happy Christmas time? I hope you all spend some quality time with your loved ones and enjoyed special food treats. I certainly had one of the best Christmas time because I was visiting Tokyo Disney Sea with one of my best friends. We did spend our first Christmas abroad in Disneyland and it was absolutely amazing so we thought why not try to recreate that so we visited Tokyo Disney Sea, which is just next to Tokyo Disneyland (if you ever come to Tokyo and want to visit Disneyland I would highly advise you to go to Disney Sea; it might get more crowded there but the park is bigger/has better attractions/is a lot more new and it is the only Disney Sea in the world – actually a Japanese firm bought the rights to Disney theme parks in Japan, which was a big mistake in my opinion. Disney is HUGE in Japan.
So we booked a day pass for Disney Sea ahead, got up at 5:40AM so that we would arrive around 8AM where the park would open. We were extremely excited so we almost didn’t sleep at all. With sleep deprivation, we were even more pumped and jumped around Disney Sea like small children. It was awesome. Note: As Japan is not a Christian country, Christmas is mainly seen as a day for dates. However, as most people do have to work/go to university like on any other regular day of the week, it is surprisingly not crowded on Christmas Day.
So… Tokyo Disney Sea. Let me tell you: They disney different than other countries in the world. First of all, you have to have a hat when you are/go to either Disneyland or Sea. It’s an unwritten rule and you weren’t really there if you don’t come home with a pretty head that you carried around the park all day. Probably more than 80% of all visitors wear a hat, mostly in partner fashion (Mickey&Minnie, Donald&Daisy etc.) often in the exact same outfit. They make a variety of hats in the Japanese Disney parks, from the original characters to Toy Story, Ariel, Alice in Wonderland and so on. However, all these hats are usually bright and happy. In sparkling pink and fluffy white.
Pachi and I were very delighted when we found out that there actually was a limited villain hat edition! Japanese don’t like the villains. They’re the bad ones after all. Plus, they usually are very dark and not as cute as the main protagonists so they are not very popular in Japan. They had hats of Ursula (Ariel), Maleficent, Cruella De Ville and a shady fox that I didn’t know of. We opted for Urusla (Pachi’s favorite character) and Maleficent as you can see by my horns. We didn’t expect what was coming next.
Pachi and I were the absolute stars of Tokyo Disney Sea that day. We always get stared at by people (tall foreign people with piercings and tattoos!) but with these hats, boy. Everyone was staring at us, screaming „sugoi!!“ („amazing“) because the two foreigners were walking around with big bad villain hats. The Japanese just lost it. So many random people came to us and ask if we would take a picture with them, it was absolutely ridiculous. People would wave at us all the time and tell us how cool we were, we just….. we never expected that. They were just some hats after all! But apparently, we might probably just be the only two individuals who ever bought the villain hats in Japan. Everything that concerned the villains was on sale which came in handy for us of course. We were just really overwhelmed by the reaction of the Japanese because we were the stars of the park, it was so funny and so ridiculous.
Triton’s palace + Ariel’s lagoon. This is the most prettiest thing ever built.
Inside Ariel’s lagoon, I wish one could see how extremely colorful and sparkly the interior is, I love this place!
Special Christmas decorations everywhere. Probably the only place in Japan where it could really feel like Christmas.
The Toy Story part was just newly built and the main attraction was crowded all day. Pachi and I don’t like Toy Story much so we only looked around but passed on the main attraction – a weird thing where you have to shoot virtual figures. Not waiting 150mins for that.
Sunniest Christmas I ever had. 12°C with perfect sunshin all day long. Lucky!
Even the train who runs between the station and the two theme parks was already prepared for Christmas 😀
Triton’s palace and Ariel’s lagoon at night. Even more pretty than before 🙂
Ah, this was a really really nice day. Although Pachi and I were extremely exhausted after being in the park for 12+ hours. It’s worth it though and if we go there, we need to make it count. We did enter every single attraction except for the freefall tower (Pachi is afraid of height) and the Raging Spirit looping one (I hate loopings.). Since we didn’t make it to any attractions at all the last time we visited, this was a really good visit! Also, Tokyo Disney Sea & Land have a lot of really nice merchandise. They have a huge store in both parks close to the entrance of the park and at least one shop in every park area where they sometimes sell stuff particular in response to the theme (in the Ariel the little mermaid area they sold special Ariel plushies and Urusla themed shirts etc.). I just cannot go to Disneyland or Sea without buying anything, it’s impossible! And especially not on Christmas. They did have Christmas Specials but they weren’t that cute this year so I passed. (The most prettiest goods you will get from March – April in Japan because they design special cherry blossom „sakura“ goods, so pretty! – It’s also when the park will be most crowded because of spring vacation :/) This is what I got for myself & as presents for friends:
..I mean, how cool?! The villain themed things were all on sale because literally no one wanted them, same with the hats we bought. So instead of 4800 the handbag was only 3000Yen (~20€ I just looked it up OMG I didn’t know Yen – Euro was at such a good place right now! Sorry Japan.) I couldn’t decide between the handbag and the medium pouch and went three times into the store to think about it. When I finally decided for the handbag my best friend sneakily bought the pouch when I wasn’t looking as a Christmas present for me ;_; We also got partner Maleficent underwear because that’s just how we roll. The maleficent (guess who’s my fav character?!) key strap was much needed as I have not a single chain on my key and both the ear muffs and the pearl minnie strap are gifts for a friend 🙂
We just had so much fun and a great Christmas. If you ever find yourself in the situation of either going to Tokyo Disneyland or Disney Sea, remember these tips:
– Never ever go in Japanese vacation/ off-campus time (end of January – middle of March and end of August – October) The day pass will be cheaper than usual which leads to extremely crowded parks and overall less fun because you have to wait for 3-4 hours to get on one of the main attractions.
– Get a fast-pass. Better, get two or three. After receiving your ticket, you can go to the main attractions and get a fast-pass pro person that allows you to enter attractions with as little as 10-15mins waiting time. Find the fast-pass counters near the attraction, scan your ticket and you will receive a fast-pass for the next time available (usually 2-3 hours ahead). On your ticket is printed when you will be able to get the next fast-pass (usually about 2 hours later than the one you just got). This is extremely convenient and can save you hours of waiting time. Pachi and I didn’t know about this system the first time and spend almost the whole time waiting. This time, we got a fast-pass for the two main attractions which gave us enough time to explore the whole park.
– If you can, sleep nearby the park so you can get enough sleep but still be there when it opens (this correlates to number 2, get a fast-pass. They will be sold out very soon for the most popular attractions, and sometimes all fast-pass‘ would be sold at 11AM when the park is especially crowded.
– Get a Disney hat. Japanese will think of you as weird if you walk around without a single Disney item, it’s just not how they roll. Most carry even their Disney-themed plushies and carry them around the park, it’s def. an experience you aren’t likely to make anywhere else.
Have you ever been to any Disney themed parks? It seriously is the best and Tokyo will always be my favorite 🙂 I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and I dearly wish you all a happy New Year!
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