I’m actually a pretty big Disneyland fan. A little funky right? Why spend a hundred bucks to go line up, eat subpar food in the chaotic land of loud kids and bitter parents? Well, if I were to do that once a month (as some of you do), you’re right, that sounds crazy. But once a year, I like to just punish myself by going to a theme
- This is the only DisneySea in the world
- Opened on Sept 4, 2001, making it almost 20 years old
- 5th most visited theme park in the world, which in translation means really freaking busy
I went with a pair of Australian love birds from my sharehouse, Saori and Ruben. We went on February 15th, which I thought at the time was “low season“. It was also scheduled to snow that day, which was perfect for a Canadian. However, this meant absolutely jack shit since when we got there at 9 am, it was already packed.
Once we got there, I noticed a few things.
- The tram between Disney parks (as shown above) takes the metro card, which is very convenient.
- There were a lot of
highschoolstudents present that day, in their school uniform. Apparently, this is tradition and for the females that meant wearing their kilts. They must have been freezing cold because god knows I was (and I’m from Canada)
the staffmembers smile and wave. I’ve been to other Disney parks (California, Florida, Paris) and I noticed all the staff was happy, but the waving here was on another level. Even the cleaning lady waved at me.
As a side note, the weather can be a real problem for DisneySea. If it’s too windy (or even snowing), some attractions will not open. They post it on the board before you get your ticket. For us, the Indiana Jones attraction was closed, so that was unfortunate.
We went straight for the Tower of Terror, and the line up was already at the
What is a Fast Pass?
- If you go to Universal Studios, you can purchase either a normal
pass,or a fast pass. The fast pass is more expensive (50% more), but gives you access to the priority queue for most of the rides (usually everyone except for the latest hottest ride). To my experience, this is worth it, because time is money.
- At Disney Resorts, a fast pass is a completely different entity. (I think at DisneyWorld, it all happens on your phone, but at
DisneySeait’s not) It is free but you have to get one for each ride that it’s made available for, and you have to wait a certain amount of time before you’re allowed to get another one.
- For each big ride / notable attraction, there is a completely separate physical section within the ride to get a fast pass.
- It’s a machine. You scan your ticket (so don’t lose it or you’re screwed), and you are given a fast pass ticket, for the attraction you are lining up for.
- The fast pass you receive has a
1 hourtime range on it. E.g: 3:00pm – 4:00pm. You can return to the attraction during this window and then join the “fast pass lane”. Typically if the normal queue has a 2 hour wait time, the fast pass lane will have a 15 – 30 min wait time
- The time window given is usually a few hours into the future. For example, we got the fast pass at
9am, we were given a window of 2:00pm– 3:00pm.The time is not posted on a board anywhere, and you won’tknow what it is until you get the pass.
- The fast pass you receive also tells you the next time you are eligible to receive another fast pass. This is usually 1-2 hours later and exists so you can’t go around town collecting fast passes for everything.
- The spirit of this system is to get a fast pass for one ride of interest, and then you go physically line up at the normal queue for another ride.
I’m always hungry. But in this case,my Australian friend, wanted to eat first. The food at this theme park was perhaps the most surprising part. As much as I enjoyed Disney World in Orlando, the food was crappy and expensive (with the exception of Epcot). But DisneySea wasn’t bad at all! We stopped by a few food places, and they were all delicious. Most important thing of all, and it didn’t cost an arm and a leg.
As you walk by the park, there are these cool little Mickey Statues too.
How Are The Attractions?
- Aquatopia – We only really did this ride because there was no
line up. You just spin aimlessly on this tube ride above water. You don’t get wet and it’s kind of pointless, good for kids.
- Ariel’s Playground – Think of this as the play area at
McDonalds, except 500 times cooler. Great production value, I enjoyed it. Kids run around here, so be careful.
- The Magic Lamp Theatre – It’s a live “magic” show, where the magician accidentally rubs the lamp and the genie comes out. The second half of this is a 4D
show / sing a longto “Friend like me“. The entire show is in Japanese, but I don’t think it really matters.
- Caravan Carousel – It’s a merry-go-round with your favorite Aladin characters. Ruben complained his butt was getting cold.
- Tower of Terror – This was awesome! The ride itself is identical to the other Disney park ones, but the back story is different. It was all in Japanese so I couldn’t understand. But I’m told, a rich guy buys a weird statue and then it haunts the hotel.
- Sinbad’s Storybook Voyage – You board a boat and then go through a musical journey of Sinbad. Same idea as “It’s a small world“.
- Journey to the Center of the Earth – This is probably the best ride in the entire park. It’s the giant volcano in the middle of the park. It’s a good roller coaster, 9/10!
- Nemo & Friends SeaRider – Your standard 4D ride. You board this “ship” and then it is reduced to the same size as
nemoand friends. You explore the sea and have water lightly splashed in your face. (Very lightly, as in you just have to clean your glasses).
It then got really cold, so we decided to go home 🙁 So should you go to DisneySea? I think so! If you hate queues, then just prepare for a crappy day, but hopefully your kids or significant other will get some joy out of it.
Summary + Tips
- Tickets aren’t cheap, at 7400 Yen ($88.17 CAD) per person, get there early. Also, remember some rides are weather dependent. Refunds aren’t given if the weather gets bad.
- When it comes to discipline and manners, Japan is #1. People line up quietly, and (unlike the metro) there is no shoving, yelling and chaotic child behavior. Don’t be that foreigner that introduces chaos 🙂
- All of the staff speak enough English to complete their task (ordering food, checking inventory for items). So don’t worry if you don’t speak Japanese. God knows I don’t.
- Fact of life, you will spend all day lining up. Do not expect otherwise.
- The food was very impressive. All the meals and snacks I had was better than any other theme park food I had. It was expensive, but not outrageous. (Comparison: 15.00 USD at Disney World for cheese pizza is 100% garbage)
- Take your hat off for the rides (Yes Ruben, I am laughing at you)
- Don’t bring a boyfriend that is allergic to fun and hates queues (Yes Saori, I am laughing at you)
- If you’re only there for 1 ride, pick the Journey of the Center of the Earth.
- The souvenir shop is divided up into two sections near the front of the park. The first is just the toys and everything else you can find in the rest of the park. The second is a bunch of cute little treats you can take back home. They’re typically chocolates and cookie with a very fancy box.
- There are mini-parades and show that run through the front area of the park, so be prepared to have staff guide you to a waiting area.
That’s it, I had a great time and I highly recommend it to anyone who likes Disney. My only small regret was I didn’t get to stay for the ending show, but that’s okay because I am likely to return. Thanks Saori and Ruben for letting me be the third wheel.