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View Full Version : Mixed feelings about Tokyo Disneyland.


mousefan2322
01-08-2011, 09:38 PM
After waiting forever to be able to take a trip to Japan I finally had the chance to visit TDR. On the first day we visited Tokyo Disney Sea and it was amazing, that park is superb in many areas to other theme parks in the world. Everything is done very nicely and attention to detail is superb here! The only problem we encountered there is that major attractions (ToT, JTCE) they stop letting people in sometimes even and hour and a half before park closing (not nice at all!!!)

The next day we visited TD, my first impression was that World bazar (which is the main street of TD) looses all of its charm due to the fact that is completly covered, it also has several streets as opposed to just one main road. After that we visited several other lands and al of them are very well kept, you wont find anything that is in need of mantainance, all the painting looks fresh, the park is really clean and cast members are outstanding they also tend to participate more in the ride story as opposed to WDW, I assume because japanese are very committed to their work. Also, the probably have the best parades in the world, and Poohs hunny hunt and Monsters Inc are just amazing!!!

But somehow, I didnt feel I was in a Disney Park, for me disney parks are known for inmersed theming and in TD transitions between lands are done in a very strange way. For example, Golden horseshoe is right next to the castle, so if you look to your left you can see all of westernland and to your right you can see the castle and fantasyland, all in the same corner. The same happens for tomorrowland and world bazar and everything is so close together you never get the ilussion you are inmersed in a totally different land. I found that quite amusing, because Disneyland is also a small park, but they dont have this problem. I have been to all the MK in the world and found TD to be the least favorite because of this. Did anyone else has this feeling? any comments?

jsilvers
01-09-2011, 07:07 AM
But somehow, I didnt feel I was in a Disney Park, for me disney parks are known for inmersed theming and in TD transitions between lands are done in a very strange way. Golden horseshoe is right next to the castle, so if you look to your left you can see all of westernland and to your right you can see the castle and fantasyland, all in the same corner. The same happens for tomorrowland and world bazar and everything is so close together you never get the ilussion you are inmersed in a totally different land.

I think this is, at least in part, due to practical concerns having trumped theming when the park was designed. The side streets from World Bazaar make getting around the park much easier (and the roof is much appreciated in the event of cold rain or snow - not a typical problem in CA or FL).

But there are certainly points in the U.S. parks where you can see large stretches of more than one land, and there are certainly points in TD where you're fully immersed.

ChrisFL
01-11-2011, 01:07 PM
I do understand where you're coming from.

One obvious example is seeing the Haunted Mansion directly beside the Dumbo ride, it's startling to see.

I wish there was some kind of publication about the design of Tokyo Disneyland beyond the basic World Bazaar stuff

mousefan2322
01-11-2011, 02:14 PM
I wish there was too!!!

I totally get that they they didnt have the space Florida has, but on the other hand Disneyland seems smaller to me than Tokyo Disney (correct me if I am wrong!)

And having built WDW MK befores Tokyo´s they could have donde the layout of the park a little better. Another thing that I really missed and I think it is a big park of any MK is the railroad around the park.

I have been fortunate enough to go to all the Magic kingdoms in the world and Tokyo Disney was the only one i had this feeling.

Hong Kong for example is really small, but it still has a lot of charm to it. It has the best adventureland ever and everything was done nicely!

ChrisFL
01-11-2011, 04:13 PM
I wish there was too!!!

I totally get that they they didnt have the space Florida has, but on the other hand Disneyland seems smaller to me than Tokyo Disney (correct me if I am wrong!)

And having built WDW MK befores Tokyo´s they could have donde the layout of the park a little better. Another thing that I really missed and I think it is a big park of any MK is the railroad around the park.

I have been fortunate enough to go to all the Magic kingdoms in the world and Tokyo Disney was the only one i had this feeling.

Hong Kong for example is really small, but it still has a lot of charm to it. It has the best adventureland ever and everything was done nicely!

The railroad is actually an issue with the local government. Any type of public transportation that has more than one stop must charge a fee (and taxes to the government). That's why the monorail isn't free of charge like at WDW and that's why there isn't a train that makes 2-3 stops at TDL.

jsilvers
01-11-2011, 07:05 PM
I wish there was some kind of publication about the design of Tokyo Disneyland beyond the basic World Bazaar stuff

Although it's a bit more of a book about the sociology of Tokyo Disneyland than its design, one item off of my bookshelf that I can recommend is Riding the Black Ship: Japan and Tokyo Disneyland (http://www.amazon.com/Riding-Black-Ship-Disneyland-Monographs/dp/0674768930). In order to discuss the implications of the park, it includes a fair amount about its design, interviews with cast members, etc.

jsilvers
01-11-2011, 07:13 PM
The railroad is actually an issue with the local government. Any type of public transportation that has more than one stop must charge a fee (and taxes to the government). That's why the monorail isn't free of charge like at WDW and that's why there isn't a train that makes 2-3 stops at TDL.

I'm not sure the fee/tax explanation is quite right, since the DisneySea Electric Railway makes 2 stops and doesn't charge a fee (other than the overall park admission price).

In Riding the Black Ship: Japan and Tokyo Disneyland (http://www.amazon.com/Riding-Black-Ship-Disneyland-Monographs/dp/0674768930), the author quotes an imagineer as having explained to him:

We don't have the monorail because of Japanese bureaucracy. In Japan, if you have a train that's going only to one station, it's not considered a train. That's what we have. A train that goes to only one station. That's Western River Railroad in Adventureland. It's a ride, not a train. Otherwise, we would have to deal with the Transportation Department, apply for various licenses, and be subject to various requirements and supervision. This was something that we didn't like to deal with.

(Obviously, this conversation pre-dated the construction of the TDR monorail, which opened in 2001.)

ChrisFL
01-11-2011, 09:16 PM
Although it's a bit more of a book about the sociology of Tokyo Disneyland than its design, one item off of my bookshelf that I can recommend is Riding the Black Ship: Japan and Tokyo Disneyland (http://www.amazon.com/Riding-Black-Ship-Disneyland-Monographs/dp/0674768930). In order to discuss the implications of the park, it includes a fair amount about its design, interviews with cast members, etc.

Oh nice, and thanks for the info about the train issue...I kept hearing there was fees/taxes involved.

escape
01-12-2011, 06:29 PM
Interesting. We were at TDL for just one day a couple of weeks ago. I guess I really didn't notice or pay much attention to it...I was just excited to be there. :teeth:

Well, now that I think about it, the layout did seem more "open" but it didn't bother me for some reason. I guess I was just really impressed with the Japanese cast members, the attention to detail in the parks, and how they incorporated Christmas into some of the rides that I managed to overlook the design. For example, It's a Small World. The dolls sang festive Christmas carols in addition to the familiar IASW song. The Christmas decorations inside the ride were a nice touch. Haunted Mansion - the nightmare before Christmas theme. Maybe for the HM, that's a standard display, I don't know but I liked how the rides were different enough that it almost made me feel like a newby to the Disney parks all over again.

I have not been to the Hong Kong park but I have been to the other three. A friend that was with me had been to all and she liked TDL the best - outside of WDW (MK) & DL. If I get the opportunity to go again, I'll have to pay more attention. ;)

Also, interesting about the monorail. I did wonder if there was a government connection since we were charged a fee to ride it.

nytimez
01-25-2011, 09:27 PM
While I do notice these things in Tokyo, none of them bother me.

In addition, the covering over World Bazaar is in line with many of the downtown shopping districts ("shopping arcades") across Japan, no doubt because of the country's lengthy rainy season.

In a sense, Main Street, Japan wouldn't be complete without a roof.