I love Tokyo Disneyland. That much is probably a given considering how much I gush over Tokyo Disney Resort. However, having visited Walt Disney World all of my life, there are some times when I almost stop in my tracks and do a double-take as I walk around Tokyo Disneyland, since parts of it feel like a “Bizarro Magic Kingdom,” borrowing from common elements of Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom, and to a lesser extent, Disneyland. Certain parts of the park mirror present day Magic Kingdom, other parts (like Tomorrowland) look like the Magic Kingdom of years past, other areas feel like out of place versions of the Magic Kingdom, and other parts still incorporate a dash of Disneyland.
Then, of course, there are the entirely original areas of Tokyo Disneyland, which tend to be the most interesting of all. These original areas are pretty much everything of consequence that has been added to Tokyo Disneyland since the mid-1980s, and what really make Tokyo Disneyland a world-class theme park and not just “the Magic Kingdom, but in Japan.” This post focuses primarily on the similarities that make some areas of Tokyo Disneyland feel eerily familiar, so don’t underestimate Tokyo Disneyland based on the cloned or near-cloned parts of the park covered here. You don’t get to be the best Disney castle park, as Tokyo Disneyland is in my opinion, by being nothing but clones!
If all of this doesn’t make sense via text, don’t worry. The photos tell the story a lot better. I thought for today’s post on the 31st Anniversary of Tokyo Disneyland, it would be fun to take a look at the areas of the park that look like they’re Twilight Zone versions of the Magic Kingdom and Disneyland! (more…)