Back from Christmas & New Year - TDR, Kyoto, Himeji, Hiroshima & Snow Monkeys!

Discussion in 'Tokyo Disneyland' started by AndyR, Jan 14, 2019 at 12:06 PM.

  1. AndyR

    AndyR DIS Veteran

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    We're back from our Christmas and New Year trip to Japan. The photos have been downloaded, culled and posted to SmugMug :-)

    We spent one night at the Disney Celebration Discover Hotel, followed by 5 Nights at the Tokyo Disneyland hotel. We then relocated to Kyoto for 4 nights, and finally back to Tokyo for 2 nights before flying back home.

    Itinary Dec 22nd to Jan 4th:

    Day 1: San Jose (CA) to Narita on ANA.
    Day 2: Arrive Narita, take Limo Bus to Celebration Hotel - Grab a Starlight Pass for DisneySEA.
    Day 3 -7: Move to Disneyland Hotel, use Multi-Day Passport Special to hop as needed. Score Big Band Beat Lottery.
    Day 8: Take a cab from TDR to Tokyo Station, catch Shinkansen to Kyoto, visit Tenryu-ji. Check into Four Seasons Kyoto.
    Day 9: Visit numerous Kyoto Temples/Gardens.
    Day 10: New Years Eve - Visit Himeji Castle & Gardens - so many stairs!
    Day 11: New Years Day -Take Shinkansen to Hiroshima - visit Miyajima (Deer Island) & Hiroshima A-Bomb Dome/Park/Museum.
    Day 12: Shinkansen from Kyoto to Tokyo. Check into Four Seasons Marunouchi. Explore Character St. in Tokyo Station.
    Day 13: Shinkansen from Tokyo to Nagano. Visit the Snow Monkeys.
    Day 14: Take the NEX to Narita for flight back to San Jose.

    All the day-by-day pics @ https://andyr.smugmug.com/Disney/Tokyo-Winter-2018

    Andy
     
  2. aleh021

    aleh021 Mouseketeer

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    Wow your photos are beautiful!

    If you don't mind can you give me your thoughts on Celebration Hotel?

    We are actually looking in to doing something similar as you! Starting out at Celebration Hotel & then moving to Tokyo Disneyland Hotel. Was it easy to move to the Tokyo Disneyland Hotel?
     
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  4. AndyR

    AndyR DIS Veteran

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    This was our 4th TDR trip (in 4 years). We'd previously done one stay at the DHL and two at MIracosta.

    We'd originally planned to do TDR at the end of the two weeks (for New Year), but we couldn't get the room we wanted on a weekend, so we swapped around and did the TDR segment first. Again room availability was an issue, but the Celebration had availability for the one night we needed (the day we flew in). We *think* that the lack of rooms on a weekend is due to the packages TDR sells. As they are available to book one month earlier than regular bookings (and they are only for 2 nights), we think they sell all Fri/Sat or Sat/Sun availability before those of us doing longer stays are able to book.

    The Front Desk staff were excellent and we checked in w/o any issue. The hotel is nicely themed, but very sparse. We had a triple and the couch also converted to a bed. There was a small dresser with TV/Safe/kettle, but no wardrobe. The usual separate bath & potty.

    The breakfast was buffet style, adequate if basic. We only did breakfast there the 1st morning (the day we transferred to the Disneyland Hotel).

    We got a Starlight Pass and caught the shuttle to TDS. I think it took 20mins to get to TDS.

    We had do arrange our own transfer. If you're staying in the Miracosta or DLH they they will move your bags for you, but not if you're at the Celebration. We got a cab @ 9am, checked in to the DLH, bought hoppers, received Monorail & Happy 15 passes (had to wait until 4pm for room), but were back in TDS by 10am and headed over to watch Out of Shadowland.

    So overall the Celebration was good for our situation. There were 3 of us, we only unpacked enough to see us through one evening/morning. We'd look into other hotels on the Monorail in preference to coming back to the Celebration for anything longer than a one night stay.
     
  5. aleh021

    aleh021 Mouseketeer

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    We did Mira Costa & DLH last year and loved them both. Did have a little more love for DLH though.

    We plan to do 3 nights at Celebration then 4 nights at DLH.

    We have a late night flight when we arrive and unfortunately bus shuttle to Tokyo Disney Resort ends however the bus still goes to Celebration Hotel which is a plus.

    The ability to make dining reservations in English is a huge pro for me as well.

    I see the hotel doesn't get a lot of love because of the simpleness & distance but that doesn't really bother me especially if it helps out the total cost of the trip.

    Were you able to get a taxi from Celebration to DLH?
     
  6. AndyR

    AndyR DIS Veteran

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    Taxi to DLH - yes. The CMs called one for us.We managed to fit 3ppl, 4 cases and 3 backpacks in one cab, but it was a bit cramped lol.
    For dining reservations, the only site I've seen is in Japanese. Our daughter has 4yrs of Japanese, but it's still a stretch for us to do the online system.
     
  7. Haley R

    Haley R With all the strength of a raging fire

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    Your pictures are awesome! Did you fly business class with ANA? That's what we have booked for our May/June trip this year.

    The monkeys are so cute!
     
  8. AndyR

    AndyR DIS Veteran

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    Yep, Biz class. I bought the tix 10mths in advance. I work close to SJC and could see the ANA flight either land or depart most week days - it was a good reminder of our trip to come.
     
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  9. Haley R

    Haley R With all the strength of a raging fire

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    We booked ours about 11-12 months in advance by using credit card points. I’m so excited! Dh and I have never flown overseas together and Dh has never flown overseas at all. The biz class seats looks amazing
     
  10. esc38372

    esc38372 Mouseketeer

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    Thanks for sharing your pictures -- sounds like a fabulous trip! Could you share more about your experiences at the MiraCosta and Disneyland Hotel? Were the beds hard? Do you like one more than the other? We are going to TDR this summer, and I'm debating whether to stay at DLH all five nights or a split stay with two nights at the MiraCosta and three at DLH.
     
  11. AndyR

    AndyR DIS Veteran

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    The beds were very much like the new ones in the Grand Californian/Boardwalk or any of the US Disney properties that have been refurb'd recently. Firm but not hard - we really like them.

    Our first trip (four years ago) was in March of 2013, we spent 3 nights (4 days) at TDR and stayed in a Concierge Cinderella Room. It was really spacious with a separate master bedroom. The bathroom/toilet area was the same as any other room and seemingly identical to the Miracosta. We liked it as it had a separate writing table in addition to the computer 'nook' that all the rooms have. The Concierge Lounge and staff (Marceline Salon) really made our 1st visit easy and memorable. Pics here: https://andyr.smugmug.com/Disney/Tokyo-Disney-Resort-Tokyo-City

    This got us hooked on TDR and decided that we needed to come back and try the Miracosta. So in the summer of 2015, we headed back and spent 5 nights in a Venice side room at the Miracosta. The Miracosta feels smaller, but is amazingly themed. The room was smaller than the Cinderella room (no surprise), but the view of DisneySEA was amazing. The pools & onsen are fantastic. Breakfast in the Bella Vista Lounge can't be beat for either the food or the view of the harbor. We did a double and our daughter had a rollaway (twin). Pics: https://andyr.smugmug.com/Disney/Tokyo-Summer-2015

    Our 3rd visit was over Thanksgiving of 2017 - 4nts @ TDR. We stayed in a triple on the Venice side of the Miracosta. This seemed to be the same size as the double, but lacked the writing table (which my wife loves). Pics: https://andyr.smugmug.com/Disney/Tokyo-November-2017

    Then this past Xmas we were back at the Disneyland Hotel in a double, the couch converted to a bed for our now 17yrd old daughter - who said it was very comfy.

    Given a choice, we'd probably stay at the Miracosta when we go again. Its location inside DisneySEA can't be beat and its theming is off the scale. The rooms are slightly smaller, but the bathrooms seemed the same size.

    The Disneyland Hotel is closer to the Monorail station (in terms of walking) and makes Happy 15 really easy. The Miracosta involves a little longer walk for both the Monorail and Happy 15, but maybe only a couple of minutes extra.
     
  12. indoshakespeare

    indoshakespeare Reach out and find your Happily Ever After

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    You have officially become a Japanophile!
     
  13. AndyR

    AndyR DIS Veteran

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    Yeah. Especially with kiddo learning Japanese.
     
  14. esc38372

    esc38372 Mouseketeer

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    Thank you so much, @AndyR! I have a MiraCosta Harbor view room booked right now - I could switch to a Venice side patio room for less yen. Did you miss not being able to see the harbor?
     
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  15. AndyR

    AndyR DIS Veteran

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    Not really. We were $$ limited and my wife really wanted the Venice side.
     
  16. MomoMama

    MomoMama DIS Veteran

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    Love your snow monkey photos!:lovestruc They are beautiful!!
     
  17. aleh021

    aleh021 Mouseketeer

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  18. esc38372

    esc38372 Mouseketeer

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    Those patio rooms do look beautiful! But I think I would enjoy looking at the hustle bustle of the harbor more... Even better would be a balcony overlooking the harbor...but that's not happening! :rotfl2:
     

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