Tokyo is home to not one but TWO Disney parks – Disneyland and Disneysea. Disneysea is often praised for being unique and innovative but can it beat the traditional Disneyland? Today we look at both parks to help you decide which park is for you – Tokyo Disneyland or DisneySea.
Disneyland vs DisneySea – Rides
Both theme parks have something to offer when it comes to rides. Disneyland offers classic rides such as It’s a Small World and Splash Mountain – these are iconic rides and a must, especially if it is your first time visiting a Disney park. Whilst Disneysea has some truly innovative rides that transport you to different worlds as no other Disney ride has before.
Both parks have rides available for thrill-seekers and young children but Disneyland may edge it with a few more child-friendly rides. That being said, DisneySea is home to Toy Story Mania, a carnival-styled game that everyone loves. Many would agree, DisneySea rides edge a little more to the adventurous, invigorating rider whilst Disneyland has more themed, family rides.
Disneyland vs DisneySea – Theming
DisneySea prides itself on offering something different. It is an experience only to be had in Japan and pushes the box on what a theme park should look like. The theming is grand, taking inspiration from the canals of Venices and riverways around the world, which draws you in the excellent worlds of the park.
Disneyland also does a great job with detail – giving you that true Disney vibe you will get walking down the many Main Streets around the world. If you are looking for a classic Disney experience or is it your first time at a Disney park, then Tokyo Disneyland is the park for you.
If you are travelling with young children, you will need to decide which park to visit or which park to spend more time in. Because of the fantasy theming and family-orientated rides in Disneyland, this is probably the better option for those travelling as a family.
DisneySea’s rides are more geared towards teenagers and young adults, so perhaps consider this park if travelling with older children.
Disneyland vs DisneySea – Parades
Hands-down, DisneySea wins this one when it comes to day parades. Disneyland has the traditional Main Street Theme Park parade which is as enchanting as the Disney parks around the world. DisneySea introduces a unique floating parade complete with water being squirted at onlookers.
However, Disneyland’s Electrical Parade Dreamlights show is incredible and is a must! Plus, no trip to Disneyland is complete without watching the incredible fireworks show.
When to visit Disneyland or DisneySea?
If the weather is hot – DisneySea is the best place to go. The warm air in the water-based park is the perfect way to spend a day but can be chilly in the Winter. If you are visiting in Spring, when the cherry blossoms are coming out, make sure you visit Disneyland, it is stunning.
Disneyland vs DisneySea – Characters
There are some unique Disney characters in Tokyo and not all of them can be seen at both parks. Duffy and Gelatoni, for example, can only be found in Tokyo DisneySea. However, those classic Disney characters such as Mickey and Minnie can be found in Tokyo Disneyland.
Ideally, you would spend one day in each park but if you only have one day, we would recommend a park hopping ticket and explore DisneySea and the day parade in the morning then get to Disneyland in the evening, as the younger children begin to go home (so you get a quieter park) and enjoy the fantastic night parade and firework show.
Pros of Tokyo Disneyland:
- Cinderella Castle
- Similar layout to the classic Disney parks
- More child-orientated
- Fun parades with a fantastic night parade
- Amazing firework show
Pros of Tokyo DisneySea
- Exciting thrill rides
- Unique Disney park compared to others in the world
- Adult orientated
- Innovative theming and approach
- Gorgeous photography opportunities
If you only want to visit one park, for us, we would have to recommend DisneySea. The park is different from any other park in the world, it is innovative, exciting and well thought through. Visit outside of the holidays to avoid the crowds and enjoy!