Tokyo Disneyland | Yokohama Cosmoworld | Photos | Videos
September 23, 2017
Tokyo & Yokohama Japan
The next morning we got up early and made our way to Disneyland. It was our last day in Japan and I knew it was likely to be busy at Tokyo Disneyland, but we pressed on. The morning was overcast. We ate breakfast outside of the park at the train station before heading over to Ikspiari and then the front gate. When you enter there’s no familiar hill with a train station for you to pass under, but immediately you are standing on a covered version of Main Street U.S.A. called World Bazaar (Still not sure why the covered main streets are all the rage in Japan, but it does cover you from the rain). The castle in the distance, however, is all too familiar.
The park was already quite busy and it was just opening. We made our way to the right first to their version of Tomorrowland (or, more aptly titled, we-need-to-upgrade-it-all land). Tokyo’s Tomorrowland has the familiar Space Mountain building as its centerpiece, and we were able to snag a fast pass for Space Mountain for later. But it also has a version of Star Tours that never seemed busy (I’m not a fan of those types of motion rides so we never bothered), Stitch Encounter (Stitch is pretty big in Japan, but again, I’m not going to wait for 2 hours for a ride I’m not crazy about and have ridden in the states), Buzz Lightyear’s Astroblasters (which is fun, but had a long wait and no Fast Passes), and a version of the twirling rockets, though they’re being removed soon for their version of New Fantasy Land. This part of the park is in desperate need of a make over. It was very dated and it needs at least one new E-Ticket level attraction.
One ride that I’ve heard is nothing short of amazing though, and had yet to reach a 90 minute wait time, was Pooh’s Honey Hunt So we got in line with 82 minutes to wait. The queue is very well done, mostly outdoors. They should incorporate the queue entertainment from the ride at Magic Kingdom. Having said that…
Pooh’s Hunny Hunt–This was everything I’d heard of and more. Another ride that uses embedded RFID pucks to move around in trackless cars. You are grouped as 3 honey pots at a time, all three going through seemingly random (though not really) jaunts thru each room. The ride is capable of spinning, stopping, swerving, and everything else Aquatopia was (without the water). You start with a large book with (English) words and a motion picture projection of Pooh and Christopher Robin before heading in to 100 Acre Woods. You end up in the bouncing room with projections of Tigger bouncing around as well as the set. Then Pooh disappears into a star field where one large room sees several different groups of threes as the cars spin and dance around, adding a custom character vehicle into the mix that stays in that room. The whole ride was great. All of the characters are there. I like Pooh, and this was the best use of the IP I’ve seen to date.
We walked around the park some, checking out the lines and lay of the land. Splash Mountain (which supposedly has a single rider line) was already up to 3 hours. No thanks. I knew going in that it’s a small world, Big Thunder Mountain, and Jungle Cruise were all down, which really hurt capacity.
Since Splash Mountain was likely a bust, we headed back over towards Fantasyland, and found a Haunted Mansion with a 50 minute wait (that ended up being less than 20 minutes). The ride was set up for Haunted Mansion Holiday, which was my second year in a row seeing that in another park all together. This one is slightly different than the California version of the ride, from what I remembered. The ride is basically the same as the Magic Kingdom version (without the 2007 refurb), but some of the Nightmare theming wasn’t the same as Disneyland’s. After Haunted Mansion Holiday, it was time to head to Space Mountain for our Fast Pass.
Space Mountain–The queue needs a good overhaul (much like all of Tomorrowland). The station is fairly identical to the California version, but the ship hanging in the ‘bay’ is much different. As for the ride its self, it was a lot of fun. This is the side by side train like California. There are quite a few drops, turns, and some decent laterals. Layout is the same as the original at Disneyland. Not much in the way of theming outside of music and a projected star field in the interior of the dome, but the ride was fun. It could use the California upgrades, though. And to think, it was updated 10 years ago. But both Magic Kingdom & SoCal’s versions are much better.
We went back over to Splash Mountain in a second attempt to find the single rider line, to no avail. We rode the sternwheeler first, then went over to Tom Sawyer’s Island for a bit instead. I’m not sure if this one is different, but seemed much larger than what I’d seen before at the U.S. parks (and that’s before Disneyland California’s was shortened). We explored the geyser, the caves, and the fort. Walked across the barrel bridge, and sat and rested in the fort. After hanging out over there and having an iced coffee we headed back to shore. A parade had just started so we took this opportunity to head to Adventureland, grab a bite to eat, then hit up some attractions. After our sandwich and bubble tea we did something I’d never done in any Disney park before, the Enchanted Tiki Room (Featuring Stitch, because he’s huge in Japan). We had little translators that gave us subtitles, and it was cute. Also, it was a nice chance to sit down.
After some shopping and a couple of pit stops, we saw that Pirates didn’t have much of a line so we did Pirates of the Caribbean next. This was much like the version with Cap’n Jack and an updated soundtrack of characters from the movies. Tokyo Disneyland also has a Blue Bayou restaurant like Disneyland, but the wait was 2 hours without a reservation, and I’d forgotten to make a reservation before heading to the park when planning our trip.
We walked back to the very large and well done Toontown to see about Car-toon-spin, but the line was a couple hours for a fun ride that I can hit up in SoCal next time I’m there. We walked around the park afterwards for a few more photos, and once we were back at the front of the castle Isaac made the suggestion that we get a cheaper dinner outside the park, and actually make our way to Yokohama Cosmo World since the lines were way long at Disneyland. This would get us to one of the last places on the list that we really wanted to visit, and we’d be closer to our hotel at the end of the night so that we could pack up and get some sleep. We actually had dinner where we ate breakfast (it was good) and after I picked up a few gifts for back home in Ikspiari, we headed to the station and caught our trains to Yokohama, which wasn’t far from our hotel.
By this point in the trip my legs hurt even with 1000mg of Ibuprofen, and as much as I enjoyed being in Japan I was pretty ready to come home, sleep in my bed, and get some rest. But I’m glad we made the trip out to Cosmo World. As we got closer to the park, which is in a beautiful part of Yokohama right on the river and across from an outcropping of Tokyo Bay, you could see the gigantic Ferris Wheel, the Cosmo Clock 21. It had great lighting and a nice atmosphere. You can tell that people come to hang out on a Saturday night to have some drinks, ride some rides, and have a good time. My next time back to Japan I’d like to spend an evening here.
The skyline is dominated by a few buildings like Yokohama Tower, as well as the Cosmo Clock 21, formerly the world’s tallest Ferris wheel (in a country filled to the brim with them). This would be our largest of the trip, as well as our last. The light package on it was spectacular! Video and photos do not do it justice. We headed into the park and once we found a ticket office, we got tickets for the main coaster and the Ferris wheel, as the other coasters were closed and we didn’t really have time for any flats, though I would have liked to ride the log flume (complete with light package but, then again, every ride and building here had a light package).
The wait for Diving Coaster was around 20 minutes and we had to blow in to a breathalyzer to ride (I’m guessing there is a lot of drinking that goes on in the area as we smelled quite a few drunks in line for the Ferris wheel). Upon getting in and pulling down my shoulder harness… the seat belt from the harness to the seat wasn’t long enough. I just knew I wasn’t going to fit. Then, right about the time I looked up to say to Isaac I wouldn’t be riding, the op came over with the extension. The OTSRs were really padded, and most Japanese people aren’t my height. Score one for the team on the ride looking out for me though!
Once we dispatched, we swing around to the lift hill, and about 1/3 the way up, the coaster stopped. They made an announcement, and I looked back, and the guy that had given me the extension belt was shaking his head (trying to tell Isaac and it it wasn’t us and everything would be fine). Of course we didn’t understand much of the announcement. What I hadn’t noticed was the ride op that had walked up the staircase beside me to the front row, where the 2 passengers there were filming on their phone, which is prohibited.
Diving Coaster Vanish– At the top of the lift you turn, then drop. The first drop was fun, then you swoop towards the Ferris Wheel and then around and under the Ferris Wheel before diving down into the tunnel under the water, which was filled with LEDs. You come up into another hill and then pop up into a helix at the far end of the park before you pop up into the brakes. It was a really fun ride and in such a great setting.
We hurried over the 40 or so minute wait for the Ferris Wheel which gave a decent 15 minute ride which included amazing views of Yokohama, with Tokyo in the distance. There was a tablet in the car with you that gave you information about certain sights in the distance. There were SO many blinking red lights from the tops of buildings in Tokyo.
Once the Ferris Wheel ride was over we headed across the street to the station and took our last train back to Tsurumi Station, just down from our hotel. We got there, packed up for in the morning, and went to sleep.