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Saturday, March 24, 2012
8:28 PM

// TokyoTravel-DayOne // TokyoTravel-DayTwo //


Waking up early can be hard work, especially when I'm used to sleep in. However, it will be such a waste to sleep in at holiday time, so we always made an extra effort to wake up early to prepare to set off. I guess that explains the puffiness in my face, and also my eyes seem to look smaller in pictures, but heck, I couldn't even be bothered to look slim in winter clothes. All the days I was dressed in layers, not wanting to suffer from cold.

I mean, look at them. Sure, it was a sunny winter but it was unbearably cold! People are wearing a mask to block out cold wind so as to prevent dry lips. Some people also wear sunglasses to protect their eyes from wind. Especially if you're wearing contact lenses like myself.

On that morning, we walked across the famous 'X' crossing to the front of Hachikō-guchi (Hachikō Entrance/Exit), a popular meeting spot at Shibuya Station, where a statue of Hachikō was erected.

{A statue of Hachikō, known in Japanese as faithful dog Hachikō}

If you don't already know the story of Hachikō, it's time you got to know it. A dog who waited for his late master at Shibuya Station every day for many years, eventually becoming a national sensation for his loyalty. (Read more on Wiki...)

Before we traveled to Tokyo Disney Resort, we decided to visit Tokyu Foodshow for our midmorning snacks. One of the biggest and most diverse food hall, located in the basement of the Tokyu Department Store next to the east exit of Shibuya Station. Here, they sells meat, fish, groceries and produce and prepared food of all kinds such as tonkatsu, sushi, fried tempura, sesame seed–coated rice balls, deli salads, green tea–flavored soft-serve and several different kinds of bento.

{Different kinds of vegetables & fruits}

{Factory salmon wild salmon - Different species of fish}

{Soke hermitage propitious source - Creative fruit sweets}

{Andersen - Variety of breads}

Shibuya Station ➖➖➖ JR Yamanote Line ➖➖➖ Tōkyō Station

{Yamanote Line - Tokyo's busiest and most important lines}

{Feeling the sun's rays - the warmth in winter}

Tōkyō Station ➖➖➖ Keiyō Line ➖➖➖ Maihama Station

We exited the ticket gate at Maihama Station South Exit and proceeded to the Resort Gateway Station of Disney Resort Line (at the left). To travel on the Disney Resort Line, we purchased the single ticket (¥250 per adult ticket) to ride up to one full loop only.

{Disney Resort Line - Monorail that circles Tokyo Disney Resort}

{View of the Tokyo Disney Hotel from the monorail}

Ever since I know of Disney Resort monorail, I have been looking forward to take a ride on it. You won't believe how happy I was exploring the monorail. It's like a dream come true...

Resort Gateway Station ➖➖➖ Tokyo Disneyland Station ➖➖➖ Bayside Station ➖➖➖ Tokyo DisneySea Station WE ARE HERE!

At Tokyo DisneySea Station, everyone quickly moved to the theme park while we were excitedly taking photos of ourselves in the surroundings...

{View of Tokyo DisneySea from the station}

{Imitating the statue of Donald Duck}

Tokyo DisneySea, here we are!

{Welcome to the truly glamorous Tokyo DisneySea}

During the period we were there, it was Tokyo DisneySea 10th Anniversary "Be Magical!" This explains their amazing decorations... I could feel the magic floating in the 'Disney' air~

{Tokyo DisneySea 10th Anniversary "Be Magical!"}

Strolled down the entranceway to Mediterranean Harbor, we were greeted by the fortress and galleon at Fortress Explorations, where literally Columbus and Magellan found inspiration during the great Age of Exploration. So, if you're interested in exploring the fortress and galleon on your own, you should enter the Fortress Explorations to also view exhibitions on the study of space and the earth's rotation and more...

{Stood before the Fortress Explorations}

We started moving around to explore Mediterranean Harbor; An Italian port city, complete with Venetian gondolas. I was truly amazed by the architecture of every building, where Tokyo DisneySea Hotel MiraCosta is. I really envy the hotel guests who can peek out of their hotel's rooms to enjoy the harborside views and novelty of location.

{Various buildings of Portofino}

{Rowing along the Palazzo canals}

Venetian Gondolas is our first ride in Tokyo DisneySea. As we boarded a gondola for a romantic ride around the Palazzo canals, I was unknowingly humming along to the tune that the gondoliers were singing while they used the long, thin oars to propel the gondola leisurely along the water.

{A Venetian gondola against an Italian port city}

{All aboard the happy gondola}

{The cheery gondolier lifted up the atmosphere}

{Favorite scenery photo x Current cover of my Facebook timeline}

Followed to the left of Mediterranean Harbor, the path leads to American Waterfront; The northeastern seaboard of the United States in the early 20th century, featuring an "Old Cape Cod" section and a "New York Harbor" section.

Many of the park's live entertainment, such as Big Bang Beat which features a jazzy show with dynamic singing and dancing, are situated in American Waterfront. If you're interested in shows and events, keep a lookout when you roam the streets in this area.

As I was ranting over the fact that I hadn't got on a thrilling ride, Lisa decided to led us to one of the scariest ride. Tower of Terror is the most satisfying ride for a wide range of enthusiasts like myself. As we took the elevator, I could feel my heart beating so hard and fast. I took Dionne's hand and held on tightly to let myself feel at ease. Who would have thought that I will catch a bird's eye view of Tokyo DisneySea at the top floor but even before I could take another glimpse, IT WAS ALL OVER!

{Tower of Terror - A high-speed, free fall-type attraction through pitch darkness}

I couldn't help but to feel a sense of bravery; we felt the fear and did it anyway. I must say the view of Tokyo DisneySea, in addition with the high-speed of Tower of Terror, was breathtaking. I wish I could take the ride again, but the queue was terribly long. Dionne and I queued for approximately 3 hours for this 2 min ride and we felt really guilty for letting the 2 others wait for us in the cold wind.

But can I say, it was a blessing in disguise? Because they had a chance to see Mickey & Minnie, but I missed the chance. I'm not trying to be mean, but if I were them, I would feel really excited. I know they won't blame me for being overzealous as they helped me to take lots of photos of my favorite Disney characters. Luv'em, Lisa and Serena.

{All time favorite Disney Characters - Mickey x Minnie}

After a 3-hour wait, it was approximately 3:15pm (JST), mid-afternoon. We quickly made our way to the next 'port-of-call', Mysterious Island. Along the way, from American Waterfront to Mediterranean Harbor to Mysterious Island, we got to enjoy looking at the amazing buildings...

We also got a close look at the Fortress Explorations that proudly greeted us first as we walked into Mediterranean Harbor...

{View of Tokyo DisneySea Hotel MiraCosta}

{View of American Waterfront}

{Fortress Explorations - Explore the dreams and discoveries from the Age of Exploration}

Followed to the right of Mediterranean Harbor, the path leads to Mysterious Island; The giant volcano that is the theme park's centerpiece and most prominent feature. The architecture in this smallest port is of Victorian style. It holds only two attractions, namely Journey to the Center of the Earth, a thrilling ride, and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, a dark ride.

Due to time constraints, we decided to go for 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea as it is less thrilling than Journey to the Center of the Earth. I was excited to explore the ocean depths on a submarine. It really surprised me as we uncovered it's deep secrets beneath the wave. However, if I had a choice, I would choose Journey to the Center of the Earth over 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Personally, I always enjoy thrill rides even though they scare the hell out of me.

{Journey to the Center of the Earth - Explore the mysterious world deep inside the Earth}

{20,000 Leagues Under the Sea - Explore the ocean depths aboard a research submarine}

{All aboard the research submarine}

Next to Mysterious Island, @ Mermaid Lagoon; A home to the characters of The Little Mermaid. Most rides in Mermaid Lagoon such as Jumpin' Jelly, Blowfish Balloon Race, The Whirlpool are themed children's rides. Hence, we did not spend much time in Mermaid Lagoon.

{View of Arabian Coast from Mermaid Lagoon}

{Facade of the Palace of King Triton x Seashell-inspired architecture}

{Welcomed by King Triton and the dolphins}

We headed indoors for a quick look at the indoor attractions. For that moment, we got to enjoy the feeling of being underwater...

{Mermaid Lagoon x Triton's Kingdom}

{Jumpin' Jelly - Carefree up-and-down ride on seashells}

{Blowfish Balloon Race - Race on seashell gondolas}

{The Whirlpool - Spin round and round in swirling valve cups}

{The Sleepy Whale Shoppe - Shop here for character merchandise and sweets}

Crossed a bridge to Arabian Coast; An exotic Arabian harbor combined with an "enchanted world from 1001 Arabian Nights". This port is themed after the popular Disney animated musical family film, Aladdin. Do you remember Aladdin's three wishes? I certainly don't but I suddenly remember a shared joke that I can't really recall.

{Arabian Coast against the blue sky}

In front of the Arabian Coast, there is a wagon selling curry popcorn out of it's cart. Yes, you didn't read wrong. Curry popcorn!!! In Tokyo Disney, beside the traditional salted or caramel popcorn, they offers chocolate, strawberry, honey and many more flavors. What they said: The curry popcorn was awesome - far tastier than the bland salted popcorn. What I felt: I prefer a mix of sweet and salted popcorn. Meh... why am I smelling curry popcorn! It actually smells good~

{A popcorn wagon truck}

{It is them, feeling excited over the curry popcorn}

At the entrance of Arabian Coast, welcomed by Aladdin.

There are four attractions in Arabian Coast, namely Jasmine's Flying Carpets, Sindbad's Storybook Voyage, The Magic Lamp Theater and Caravan Carousel. To be honest, none of these hooked me in the way I was hoping they would. But I thought it would be fun to go on a carousel ride with my friends, so I rushed to join the queue...

{An elegant two-storied carousel in the Arabian building}

{Caravan Carousel - Journey through the desert by caravan}

{Merry-go-around x Sun's rays that expressed our mood}

It was interesting to watch ourselves hopping onto an amazing and awe-inspiring beast to our liking. Everyone made a different choice. Mine was a simple looking horse...

{It is me, galloping on the exotic beast}

Played around in the bustling corner of Arabian Coast, where the shops are situated. Agrabah Marketplace is a shop selling lots of merchandise themed to Genie and Chandu whereas Abu's Bazaar is a shop with two different games to test your skills.

As we headed towards the Lost River Delta, we spotted Jasmine's Flying Carpets and decided to fly on our own magical carpet...

{Aladdin and Jasmine on the flying carpet}

{Jasmine's Flying Carpets - Fly over Jasmine's garden on a 'flying carpet'}

Before the sky grew darker, we moved to Lost River Delta; A huge, ruined Central American Aztec pyramid. There are two attractions that definitely caught my attention. None other than, Temple of the Crystal Skull, a jungle-ready off-road truck traveling through the temple ruins and Raging Spirits, a high-speed roller coaster racing through the excavated ruins of an ancient stone ceremonial site. I would love to take these rides, but the waiting time was horrible, so I decided to give it a miss.

{View of Arabian Coast from Lost River Delta}

{Raging Spirits - A high-speed 360-degree loop}

{Crossing bridges to the different attractions}

Although we decided to give the rides a miss, we still toured around Lost River Delta, an Amazon-like South American river setting, that is located at the far end of Tokyo DisneySea.

{Temple of the Crystal Skull - Adventure on an off-road truck}

Walking around Lost River Delta, you will see many restaurants and wagons, selling food and drinks. I was attracted to the Expedition Eats, where you can try their famous Yucatan Sausage Roll. That sounds yummy! I guess that explains the never-ending queue.

{Expedition Eats - The best quick bite in the jungle}

Just when I thought I won't have a chance to see Mickey & Minnie, there is the Mickey & Friends' Greeting Trails. Although the waiting time to snap a photo with Minnie was approximately 25 mins, my friends willingly agreed to accompany me to join the queue. They even wanted me to snap a photo with Mickey, my Number 1 favorite, but I wasn't willing to let everyone queue for 45 ~ 50 mins...

{Mickey & Friends' Greeting Trails - Snap a photo with the Disney Characters}

{Exploring the trail before we met Minnie}

With Lots of Love from Minnie,
{One of my favorite group photos - with Minnie Mouse}

We quickly moved to Port Discovery; Home to the fictional 'Center for Weather Control', hailed as "the marina of the future". There are three attractions namely, StormRider, a large-scale simulator ride, Aquatopia, a boat ride that spins through a lagoon amid whirlpools, and DisneySea Electric Railway, an overhead electric red trolley that transports riders.

{Port Discovery - The Marina of the Future}

{Aquatopia - Whirl around on an experimental watercraft}

Don't miss this Aquatopia! Onboard the watercraft, through the experimental pool with whirlpools, spouting water, and rock formations, that is interesting, relaxing and fun. You will definitely be impressed!

{StormRider - Ride into the center of the storm}

We were hoping that we could take the DisneySea Electric Railway that will take us over the horizons of time, from the marina of tomorrow (Port Discovery) to an early 20th century harbor town in America (Port Discovery). However, it could be closed due to the show...


Fantasmic! take place at night on the water of Mediterranean Harbor. It features Mickey Mouse as the Sorcerer's Apprentice who creates a fantastic world of Disney through his powers of imagination. It is certainly an unforgettable fantasy and excitement!

As a Mickey fanatic, I surely didn't want to miss this spectacular entertainment show, filled with special effects. However, it got dark and it got colder. I couldn't withstand the wind and had to forcefully leave the 'WOW' scene!

Still I couldn't help but smile to myself, as we managed to conquer Tokyo DisneySea in 6-hour only, even though we didn't get onto most of the thrilling rides that require a longer waiting time. The next time I am there, I'm definitely going to explore the Fortress Explorations and take the DisneySea Electric Railway, Temple of the Crystal Skull, Raging Spirits, Raging Spirits, Journey to the Center of the Earth and more...

Good-bye Tokyo DisneySea,
I hope to see you again!

Unlike the day before, we took approximately 2 hours to be back at Shibuya. As we had to take the Disney Resort Line from Tokyo DisneySea Station ➖➖➖ Resort Gateway Station to get to Maihama Station.

This time we settled down in a restaurant, Tenya (天丼). Tenya is a fast food franchise specializing in tempura. It has about 100 stores in Tokyo...

{天丼 てんや}

{Menu - Here's the price range}

{海老・いか・ほたて・れんこん・まいたけ・いんげん - ¥650}

As usual, I always finish my food. Especially because Japanese dishes are usually served in smaller portions to discourage overeating. But there's enough to fill my stomach, even though we only had 2 breads in the day. I also had to admit I love to eat tempura Tendon. Too yummy~

End of Day Three. Stay tuned for TokyoTravel-DayFour...

{Some photos credited: Lisa, Serena}


jqMEow |

be happy.
love life.

09 July 1990

Typical ♋ian;
I'm a suffering soul and sometimes lose control of my emotions. I need you to be understanding and not give up on me.

I don't want to own anything until I know I've found the place where me and things belong together.

✉ tan.jiaqi@live.com

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