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If you’re a fan of all things Disney and find yourself in Japan, Tokyo DisneySea is a must-visit! It is a totally unique Disney park and is located just outside Tokyo, right next door to Tokyo Disneyland. It is the perfect mix of Disney magic and Japanese creativity.
Now, if you haven’t ever done a Disneyland Park before, I would highly recommend you visit Disneyland Tokyo first. But if you’ve done a few parks before or have time to do both, I highly recommend it!!
I would certainly put Tokyo DisneySea in my top 3 favourite parks I’ve ever visited – after Disneyland CA and Animal Kingdom. DisneySea is honestly unlike any other park, and a MUST visit if you are heading to Tokyo!!
In this post, I will take you through everything you need to know to make the most out of your visit, including rides and attractions, hotels and resorts, booking options, food and dining, and maximizing your experience with the Tokyo Disney Resort app in 2023!!
The most convenient way to get to Tokyo DisneySea is by train (everything is easier by train in Tokyo). From central Tokyo, take the JR Keiyo Line to Maihama Station. Then it’s only a short walk or monorail ride to the park’s entrance. The monorail is so cute, and all Disney themed, so I recommend you jump on it!!
Buses and taxis are also available options. Buses run between major hotels and the parks and we did this last time as we stayed at the Hilton nearby.
There are also taxis and Uber if you don’t want to wait, but they are expensive!
I would highly recommend booking tickets in advance, especially during peak seasons. Everything in Japan is always booked out I find. And we missed quite a few things we wanted to do, it’s not the best city to be spontaneous.
For this trip, we did manage to get them the day before, which was super lucky, but a lot of the time they can be booked out! Always check a crowd predictor to see what the day is going to be like. We were mid-week and out of their school holidays so we got lucky!
Tickets can be purchased online through the official Tokyo Disney Resort website or authorized travel agencies. We bought ours via Klook, which I find easiest, especially for Aussies – it offers convenient online ticket purchasing, is all in English and sometimes has offers and discounts!!
The tickets were ready in the app and easy to use, literally just scanned and go!
If you want to get the most out of your day/s – you must plan ahead!!! Before you embark on your Disney adventure, be sure to download the official Tokyo Disney Resort app. This app is a helpful tool that enhances every aspect of your park experience and makes everything so much easier!
Available for both iOS and Android devices, the Tokyo Disney Resort app can be downloaded from the respective app stores. Install the app and make sure to have it ready before entering the park.
The Premier Access system (or FastPass/Standby Passes some know it as) is an invaluable feature of the app, especially if you are trying to get it all done in one day. It allows you to reserve access to certain attractions, entertainment, and character meet-and-greets in advance.
This means you can skip the regular lines and enjoy more rides during your visit. Once you’ve entered the park, open the app and select the attractions you’d like to reserve Standby Pass for first. You can only hold a certain number of Standby Passes at a time, so choose wisely.
I check current wait times and how far out the FastPass is for that ride. You can book another once you’ve used the first OR an hour after booking the first. There are 5 rides total with this option – Soarin’, Tower of Terror, Toy Story Mania, Journey to the Centre of the Earth & Indiana Jones.
There are also currently 40th Anniversary passes for other rides, this wasn’t happening when we went but it was not available.
The app provides real-time information about ride wait times, helping you plan your day more efficiently. You can see which attractions have shorter lines and adjust your schedule accordingly. Additionally, you can check the wait times for restaurants, making it easier to decide where and when to enjoy your meals.
I will note, lines for food carts can sometimes be longer than rides! The food is a big draw card at DisneySea!
The Tokyo Disney Resort app offers an interactive map that displays the locations of characters for meet-and-greets and the schedules of various shows and performances. This feature is particularly useful for families and fans eager to meet their favourite Disney characters.
Personally, my kids don’t care and we didn’t do this. If you’re wanting to get these in, I reckon you need more than one day as lines can get long!!
Tokyo DisneySea is divided into several themed lands, each with its own unique atmosphere, attractions, and rides. And this is one of the main parts that make it so fun and unique – as it’s unlike any other land in other parks!
As you enter the park, you’ll find yourself in the stunning Mediterranean Harbor. The architecture here is reminiscent of Italian and Mediterranean coastal towns, with gondolas and beautiful waterfront views. Don’t miss the Venetian Gondolas for a serene boat ride. This is also where a lot of parades happen on the water!
This land is based on the works of Jules Verne and is home to the iconic centrepiece, Mount Prometheus. This houses one of their unique rides, Journey to the Center of the Earth. This is a must-do!
This one is super cute and obviously based on The Little Mermaid. It’s actually pretty much all inside too, so it’s perfect for both hot days and rainy and cold as the weather won’t impact you!
The rides are all quite “kiddy” so a great spot for young families. There is about 5-6 rides inside the cave and a few outside. All is well worth doing!
Again, so cool and based on Aladdin. They have a two-story carousel and Sinbad’s Storybook – I would say this is almost exactly like Small World, and kinda long and boring. But still – you have to do it at least once.
This land offers an Indiana Jones-inspired adventure with attractions like “Indiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Crystal Skull.” One of my favourite rides in all parks!! They also have Raging Spirits which is unique to this park!
Here you’ll find Aquatopia, Nemo and Turtle Talk etc it’s a super cute area and again great for little kids!
Here you’ll find rides like Tower of Terror and Toy Story, I suggest checking the app early in the day and booking Premier Access if lines are long as both of these had the longest lines. These rides are also in other parks so we didn’t do them the day we came as we ran out of time.
Tokyo DisneySea offers several on-site hotels and resorts including Tokyo DisneySea Hotel MiraCosta, Tokyo Disneyland Hotel, and Disney Ambassador Hotel. If you’re after the full Disneyland experience, these would be great and give you park perks. Have never personally stayed myself but I hear great things.
There are also several partner hotels around the park. Last time we stayed at the Hilton on the Bay, which was great. If you’re after a cheaper alternative, these hotels are fine!
Honestly, the food is one of the best things about DisneySea IMO!! The park offers a diverse range of dining options, from quick bites to sit-down meals.
We stopped at a lot of the street-side eats, and these did not disappoint! You can check on the app what is served at each one so you can plan ahead
We also ate at Sebastian’s Calypso Kitchen and there were so many goodies here – my suggestion for lunch!!
But check on the app for all options and current food offerings – it’s really quite detailed. Not to mention there are lots of 40th-anniversary specials!!
Another thing I love about the Tokyo parks is their unique merchandise, a lot you cannot find at any other park! They have so much exclusive merchandise, including character-themed apparel in theme with different lands, collectibles, and unique treasures.
They also have lots of headband options and I found it SO hard to pick just one (so I got 3 LOL). Ted got these cute burger ears – they were my favourite!
To sum it all up, DisneySea is a MUST-DO – and unlike anything I’ve ever experienced at a Disney park.
But to get the most out of the park you need to be prepared, and do as much planning as you can before you head to the park.
If you want to know my top picks for must-do rides, Soarin’ (even though they have this in other parks it’s a different version), Journey, Raging Spring, all of Mermaid Lagoon and Indiana
If you want to skip some, we did not really rate 20,000 Leagues and Sinbad.
But, if you are doing multiple days and parks, you will have a lot more flexibility and time, but certainly, if you want to try to get it done in a day – these tips will help!!
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