Mount Prometheus at Tokyo DisneySea beckons guests to come explore a sailing ship galleon and the Fortress Explorations within a volcano at Tokyo Disney Resort in Chiba Prefecture, Japan

Hong Kong, Shanghai & Tokyo

  • HONG KONG | Hong Kong Disneyland Park + 3 Hotels
  • CHINA | Shanghai Disneyland Park + 3 Hotels
  • JAPAN | Tokyo Disneyland, Tokyo DisneySea + 5 Hotels 

How many of Disney’s twelve different theme parks have you seen? Die-hard fans know that if you want to visit Disney’s most beautiful and innovative parks, you’ll need a passport! 

Tokyo Disney Resort is home to the 3rd and 4th most visited theme parks in the world. Many Disney experts consider Tokyo DisneySea the greatest Disney park on Earth, and Disney’s newest castle is now charming guests in the adorable Hong Kong Disneyland. With Shanghai Disneyland’s innovative new attractions, all of Disney’s Asian international parks set a high bar for creative enchantment.

But coming out of the pandemic, visiting Japan and China has become extra tricky. When is the best time to go? Can international guests easily access the Disney parks? What kind of reservations are required?

We know Japan & China.

Chris from Wishful Thinking studied abroad in China and has visited Japan many times. He recently visited all four Asian Disney parks in December 2023.

For 2024 and 2025, we’ve got up-to-date information on the international travel & visa requirements to visit Asia. Post-pandemic international travel to Japan and China has more than rebounded — it’s thriving. Now more than ever, it’s wise to start planning as early as possible. 

We’re happy to help. For free.

Thankfully, Wishful Thinking is more than merely an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner. We’re experts about Disney destinations around the world, and we’ve planned detailed trips to Asia for dozens of clients for more than a decade. 

As soon as you’ve got travel dates in mind, it’s smart to start planning. Asia’s Disney destinations sell out months in advance. To learn more, visit our FAQ articles below.

TOKYO DISNEY RESORT

SHANGHAI DISNEYLAND RESORT

HONG KONG DISNEYLAND RESORT

Ariel herself couldn't have had it better down where it's wetter! Coral spires and cascading waterfalls of Mermaid Lagoon at Tokyo Disney Sea in Japan

Tokyo Disney Resort

For over a decade, Chris from Wishful Thinking has made regular visits to Tokyo Disneyland & Tokyo DisneySea; most recently in December of 2023.

Post-pandemic travel to Japan is thriving. 

Wondering which hotel is best? How many days for sightseeing in Tokyo? How to include visits to Kyoto, Osaka, or Universal Studios Japan? Scroll down for some expert advice.

Tokyo Disney Resort’s 40th Anniversary Celebration is underway. Disney’s most exciting, new, state-of-the-art attractions are coming in June, 2024 to Fantasy Springs at Tokyo DisneySea

Now’s the time to plan your visit to the Land of the Rising Sun!

Ariel herself couldn't have had it better down where it's wetter! Coral spires and cascading waterfalls of Mermaid Lagoon at Tokyo Disney Sea in Japan
Tokyo DisneySea's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea attraction invites guests into the depths of Jules Verne's imagination

Tokyo Disney Resort | FAQ

Curious about Tokyo’s two spectacular theme parks, their five Disney-owned resort hotels, and some of the most creative Imagineering on Earth? Tokyo Disney Resort is preparing to launch Disney’s latest innovations to Tokyo DisneySea at the deeply imaginative new Fantasy Springs. Disney fans are thrilled to finally see these sights with their own eyes. 

But when we compare it to Disneyland (in California) and Walt Disney World (in Florida), what’s different about Tokyo Disney Resort? Let’s answer some of the most common questions:

• TIMING | When is the best time to visit Tokyo Disney Resort? How many days do I need? What holidays or days of the week should I avoid? Should I visit Disney before or after some sightseeing in Tokyo? Should I visit before or after the new Fantasy Springs area opens? | Get the answers ▸

• COMING SOON | What do we know so far about the exciting new Fantasy Springs area at TokyoDisneySea? What attractions are on the way? Fantasy Springs opens on June 6, 2024. What can we expect? | Get the answers ▸

• HOTELS | What are the best hotels at Tokyo Disney Resort? The Disneyland Hotel, the Hotel MiraCosta, the Toy Story hotel, the Ambassador hotel, or the Celebration hotel? What about the other hotels along the monorail? When will the new Fantasy Springs Hotel open for bookings? | Get the answers  ▸

• TICKETS | How do I get theme park tickets for Tokyo Disneyland & Tokyo DisneySea?  Can I get single-day tickets without a hotel stay? Will North American credit cards work? | Get the answers ▸

• PACKAGES | Is a Package a good value? What are the minimum / number of nights or guests? What are Attraction Tickets? Why is availability different between hotels & packages? | Get the answers ▸

• TOURISM | What should I see & do in Tokyo? How many days do I need for sightseeing? How should I get around? What’s the most essential etiquette? | Get the answers  ▸

TOKYO + SHANGHAI + HONG KONG | What’s the best way to visit all three Asian Disney destinations? Which should I visit first? How many days do I really need in each location? What’s the best way to schedule this kind of trip? 

These are just the first batch of questions you’re likely to have. Thankfully, we’re experts on travel to Asia, and we’re ready to help you plan every detail of your trip — for free.

WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO VISIT TOKYO DISNEY RESORT?

The weather’s different, the holidays are different, and the local traffic patterns are very different from North American Disney parks. You won’t want to arrive in Japan and question if you’ve timed it right. How many days do you need to see everything? Is it best to wait to visit after Fantasy Springs opens at Tokyo DisneySea?

When you think about planning your visit, keep these guidelines in mind:

You’ll probably want four days to see the parks. | If you’re a major Disney fan — like many Wishful Thinking clients — you’ll probably want at least four days to properly explore Tokyo Disney’s parks.

Tokyo Disneyland’s shows, restaurants, parades, and shops are completely unique. You’ll want to see them all. Other one-of-a-kind attractions — like their new Beauty & the Beast attraction, Pooh’s Hunny Hunt, Monsters Inc. Ride & Go Seek, and others — are so cool that you’ll want to ride them more than once to notice new details! 

Tokyo DisneySea is Disney’s best theme park. You could easily spend an entire day exploring the astonishing theming without getting on a single ride. Nearly all the attractions at DisneySea are unique to Tokyo; you’ll want more than one ride. Sindbad’s Storybook Voyage, The Journey to the Center of the Earth, and Nemo & Friends SeaRider are all originals. Even the Tower of Terror has an entirely unique story.  

If you only have a day or two, we’ll help you prioritize what to see. If this might be your one and only visit, give yourself sufficient time to explore everything. 

On June 6 2024, Fantasy Springs will open at DisneySea. | This will feature the most state-of-the-art projects that Disney Imagineering is currently working on, with attractions and lands themed to Frozen, Tangled and Peter Pan. After new concept art and the names of each attraction were revealed in August 2023, it’s fair to say that anticipation is absolutely through the roof. If you want to avoid Tokyo’s biggest crowds, show up before this land opens. If you want to see the best that Disney has to offer, wait until after this land opens.

Plan for intense jet lag. | If you’re arriving from North or South America, It isn’t wise to visit Disney immediately upon arrival. Why? Because you’ll be dealing with intense jet lag symptoms. For the first two or three days, you’ll feel like you’re sleepwalking. Your body will be saying, “Cannot do this right now. Must. Lie. Down. Immediately.” You’ll be foggy-brained and exhausted. 

Plan for Tokyo sightseeing first. | At the start of your trip, give yourself a few full days in Tokyo. Fill your itinerary with flexible sightseeing plans. Book a comfy, centrally-located hotel where you can sleep in or take mid-day breaks without fearing that you’re wasting the precious time you’re supposed to be in the parks. Save your Disney days until after your body has had some time to adjust. | See our expert tourism tips ▸

Weekends are extra crowded – normally. | 38 million people live in Tokyo Disney Resort’s backyard. On Saturdays and Sundays — all year long — you’ll see an influx of local families with kids and huge groups of teenagers who crowd the parks. If there’s any way to visit during the week — at least before June — it’s a bit more chill. However, when Fantasy Springs opens, you should expect sold-out peak capacity days every day of the week until the fall. 

Avoid Japan & China’s major holidays. |  The parks’ busiest periods are during Golden Week (late April into early May), Obon (August), and the New Year (Dec 31 through early January). Although China is still adapting its strict travel restrictions, historically Chinese New Year brings many vacationers to Japan, and Chinese tourists love Tokyo Disney Resort. The Western holidays of Christmas, Easter, & Halloween don’t bring major crowds — they do, however, bring delightful decorations to the parks.

Tokyo’s weather is similar to Washington, D.C. | Tokyo has four distinct seasons. Summer is hot and humid, fall is cooler and dry. Winter sees frigid temperatures & occasional frozen rain / snow. Spring tends to arrive a bit early, with warm sunshine and springtime showers. Tokyo’s Disney parks are designed for this weather, with more indoor queues than you’ll find in Florida or California. But even sub-zero temperatures don’t drive away crowds — guests show up in their warm winter coats & fuzzy character hats, and make it a fun day with hot cocoa and warm hugs. Extended rainy days — like during a fall typhoon — do tend to inspire the locals to stay home. 

Tell us about your travel dates & let’s start planning ▸  

White Rabbit toots his trumpet outside the Queen of Hearts Banquet Hall in Fantasyland at Tokyo Disneyland

COMING SOON | WHAT IS FANTASY SPRINGS AT TOKYO DISNEYSEA?

Curious about the enchanting additions coming to Tokyo Disney Resort’s Fantasy Springs, opening on June 6, 2024? If you’ve ever wondered what it’d be like to see Rapunzel’s Lantern Festival or sail up into the sky on pirate ship with Peter Pan, get ready for an adventure like no other. Disney’s just announced all new details for Fantasy Springs, its captivating attractions, dining, and more!

WHAT IS FANTASY SPRINGS?

Get ready for a whole new world of Disney magic with all-new state-of-the-art attractions, restaurants & entertainment inspired by Tangled, Frozen, and Peter Pan. The eighth themed port at Tokyo DisneySea promises a paradise of enchantment, featuring three waterfront areas: Rapunzel’s Forest, Peter Pan’s Never Land, and Frozen Kingdom.

At last — you’ll see the light! Join Rapunzel’s Lantern Festival as you sail away on a romantic boat ride, reliving the heartwarming tale of Rapunzel and Flynn Rider.  Head to The Snuggly Duckling for a delicious meal in a brand new restaurant that’s ready to refresh all your ruffians.

Never-grow-up adventures will unfold in Peter Pan’s Never Land. Explore a swashbuckling pirate ship playground, then chow down at Lookout Cookout, the hideout for the Lost Kids.  Peter Pan will host an all-new one-of-a-kind attraction that soars far beyond Peter Pan’s Flight. Little ones are sure to giggle as they help Tinker Bell deliver packages in Pixie Hollow on the Fairy Tinker Bell’s Busy Buggies.

Frozen Kingdom will beckon you into the unknown on Anna and Elsa’s Frozen Journey. You’ll relive the heartwarming sisters’ story and enjoy captivating views of fjord cliffs at the Royal Banquet of Arendelle restaurant. The park’s newest snacks will tempt your tastebuds at Oaken’s OK Foods.

WHAT WILL I NEED IN ORDER TO VISIT FANTASY SPRINGS?

Tokyo’s just announced that all guests who want to see Fantasy Springs will need a valid park ticket for Tokyo Disney Sea plus at least one of the following:

  • A Standby Pass, which is essentially just like one of Disneyland / WDW’s Virtual Queues — it’s free. You request one in the Tokyo Disney app on the day of your visit.
  • Disney Premier Access — which is just like an Individual Lightning Lane — it’s available for a fee. You will be able to purchase them within the app on the day of your visit — or — receive one as a perk of booking a specific Tokyo Disney Resort Vacation Package.

None of us knows for sure, but it’s reasonable to assume that not everyone who enters Tokyo DisneySea on a given day will gain access to Fantasy Springs. (If everyone did, guests would lack a strong incentive to purchase Disney’s Premier Access for entry.)

WHAT IS THE NEW 1-DAY PASSPORT – FANTASY SPRINGS MAGIC?

It’s a new type of 1-day ticket that bundles together Tokyo DisneySea theme park entry with a Disney Premier Access pass for Fantasy Springs. It guarantees that you’ll gain entry to the land. Currently, they’re only available to those who book new type of Disney Vacation Package — although they may become available to regular ticket buyers. We’re awaiting details.

WHAT IS THE FANTASY SPRINGS HOTEL?

Built right into the perimeter of the park, the elegant new Tokyo DisneySea Fantasy Springs Hotel brings enchanting luxury accommodations and Art Nouveau to Fantasy Springs. With rooms and restaurants that gaze directly into the land, the Fantasy Springs Restaurant will offering buffet-style dining, La Libellule will serve gourmet French cuisine, and Grand Paradis Lounge will offer a relaxing salon with wide open windows and one-of-a-kind views. Read on below for more info about Disney’s resort hotels.

WHAT ELSE IS ON THE WAY TO TOKYO DISNEY RESORT?

A whole newly-themed Space Mountain and surrounding Tomorrowland is set to open in 2027, with ultra-modern styling that’s undeniably leaning into future-fantasy.

Complete this form and we’ll keep you up to date on all the news from Tokyo ▸

WHAT ARE THE BEST HOTELS AT TOKYO DISNEY RESORT?

If this is your only chance to visit, you’ll want to be comfortable. Let’s explore the Disney resort hotels — plus the hotels along the Disney resort monorail line. And, let’s discuss why you shouldn’t stay in central Tokyo for your Disney days.

THE LAY OF THE LAND

Before you think about where to stay, let’s cover some navigational basics:

Tokyo is huge. | You can easily spend two hours traveling from one side of the city to the other. That’s why you’ll want to stay right near Tokyo Disney Resort during your theme park days. Stay in central Tokyo when you’re sightseeing.

Tokyo Disney Resort is located on the distant southeastern waterfront. | It’s about as far from central Tokyo as Disneyland is from central Los Angeles. It’s in the neighborhood of Urayasu, along the shores of Tokyo Bay. Technically, Urayasu is not in Tokyo — it’s in the neighboring Shiba prefecture. The train station nearest to Tokyo Disney Resort is Maihama.

View the location on Google Maps ▸

Traveling to Tokyo Disney Resort can be a hike. | Depending on which train you catch (and the time of day), reaching Urayasu can take 30 minutes from Tokyo Station, 35 minutes from Shinagawa Station, and 45 minutes (to an hour) from Shinjuku Station, Shibuya Station, and Ikebukuro Station. Like any major city, there are rush hour delays. If you’re traveling here directly from either international airport — Narita (NRT) or Haneda (HND) — trains and shared shuttles are your best transfer options. The Friendly Limousine Airport Bus is slowly resuming service after pausing its operations. 

More on traveling from HND  Airport ▸ | More on traveling from NRT Airport ▸

The resort area includes five Disney-owned hotels and six Official Hotels (aka ‘Good Neighbor’ hotels) | All but one of them are accessible along Tokyo Disney Resort’s monorail line. Tokyo Disney Celebration Hotel is a quick shuttle ride away.

View the resort hotel map* ▸   *the new Toy Story Hotel is located between map markers 4 and 5

DISNEY-THEMED HOTELS AT TOKYO DISNEY RESORT

The official owner of Tokyo Disney Resort is the Oriental Land Company (OLC), which owns and manages the following Disney-themed hotels:

Tokyo DisneySea Fantasy Springs Hotel | Opening in June 2024 |  Disney’s newest luxury hotel experience is expected to open on June 6th when the land itself opens, although we don’t have pricing or availability yet. Disney’s announced that its three new restaurants will offer beautiful views of the park, but we don’t have details yet about the room types, bedding types, price points, or when reservations will open. | Get notified when booking begins ▸ 

Tokyo Disneyland Hotel | Luxurious, classical, elegant. Similar Victorian-era design as Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa in Orlando, but nicer (if you can believe it). Located just outside the monorail station entrance to Disneyland park. Some rooms feature views of Cinderella Castle; you may see fireworks in the distance. You’ll find art inspired by Alice in Wonderland, beautifully appointed rooms with subtle theme details, themed suites, and a gorgeous lobby with high-end restaurants and cafes. | Get pricing ▸

Tokyo DisneySea Hotel MiraCosta | Ornate, sumptuous, opulent. The world’s only hotel located inside a Disney theme park. Baroque design invites you to relax within an 18th-century Italian waterfront village, inspired by Portofino and Venice. Its main façade serves as the entry point to Tokyo DisneySea’s Mediterranean Harbor. Many rooms feature water views of the park’s nightly spectacular. Its recently renovated, sophisticated rooms feature rich brocades, tapestries, and wood-carved furnishings. The stunning domed lobby features fresco paintings and entryways to a collection of delicious restaurants. | Get pricing ▸

Toy Story Hotel | Colorful, whimsical, imaginative. Tokyo’s newest Disney-themed resort hotel, located right along the monorail line. Think: Toy Story Land at Walt Disney World / Disneyland Paris — the vibe is identical.  Lots of two-dimensional drawings and oversized toy-sized architecture. Rooms are inviting and full of clever details, like an Etch-A-Sketch TV screen and Andy’s iconic bedroom wallpaper: blue sky & white clouds. The hotel’s extensive original merch, kid-friendly play areas, and casual affordable eateries make this family-friendly hotel ideal for guests of all ages.  | Get pricing ▸

Disney Ambassador Hotel | Clever, cool, comfortable. Art deco design evokes 1920’s – 1930’s railway sleeper cars and Atlantic steamships. Although the rooms are simply appointed (on par with a Moderate-level hotel at Walt Disney World) the lobby, pools and common areas feel like a Deluxe resort. Around every corner, you’ll find extravagant details and gleaming artwork from the period. The hotel is located near the back of  Disneyland Park, but it’s a bit too far to walk. Entrances to both parks are just a few minutes away via the monorail. Dining includes a gourmet table service restaurant, a casual diner, and some of Tokyo’s only character dining, Chef Mickey’s. | Get pricing ▸

Tokyo Celebration Hotel | Fanciful, cute, casual. The only Disney-themed hotel located beyond the resort, about a 15-minute complimentary shuttle drive away. Formerly the Palm & Fountain Terrace Hotel, Oriental Land Company began to transform these hotels a few years ago by adding all-new Disney designs to its rooms, lobbies and pools.  The comfortable rooms are modestly-appointed. The amusing, brightly-colored murals and various bed configurations, however, are designed to appeal to families with young kids. Affordable nightly rates make this hotel one of the most economical lodging choices for Tokyo Disney Resort. | Get pricing ▸

TOKYO DISNEY RESORT OFFICIAL HOTELS

In addition to the hotels above, Tokyo Disney Resort also features six official hotels which are located along the resort monorail.  These are similar to what you might know in the USA as Good Neighbor Hotels. OLC doesn’t own or manage them, but they meet the resort’s high standards for cleanliness, service, and amenities. Each of them has an on-site official Tokyo Disney Resort ticket & planning desk.

Two of the hotels are owned by American brands, and are exceptionally accommodating for English-speaking travelers: 

Hilton Tokyo Bay | Modern, efficient, familiar. Our top choice for where to stay if you’re not in one of the Disney hotels. This large, recently renovated resort hotel feels like any upscale Hilton you might find back home, with polished marble floors and sleek, modern décor. The Front Desk staff speaks impeccable English. Standard rooms are divided into two design categories — one is more serene and classic, the other more colorful and contemporary — but you can’t go wrong here. The on-site restaurants are big — if a tad bit overpriced — with impressive menus that cater to North American, European, and Asian travelers. Best of all, the hotel’s just a quick monorail ride away from the theme parks. | Get pricing ▸

Sheraton Grande Tokyo Bay | Pleasant, reliable, anodyne. A perfectly nice hotel that guarantees a comfortable stay for international guests. It’s probably due for some refreshed décor and room renovations, but you’re unlikely to remember what the hotel looks like when you’re staying this close to the Disney parks. Like the Hilton, it’s especially accommodating for English-speaking guests. | Get pricing ▸

CHOOSING A HOTEL IN CENTRAL TOKYO

Tokyo’s main sights aren’t near Tokyo Disney Resort. You’ll want a separate hotel in central Tokyo for your sightseeing days. Some guidelines:

Choose a cool neighborhood. | You’ll probably have the easiest time getting around the city if you stay in Shinjuku, Harajuku, Shibuya, Roppongi, or Ginza. These neighborhoods are all full of terrific dining, elaborate shopping, and vibrant street life. If we had to pick just one neighborhood, we’d probably point you toward Shinjuku. But it’s a tough call; they’re all great.

Choose a hotel near a train station. | As we explain below, Tokyo is all about train travel. If possible, select a hotel that’s within a comfortable walking distance of a big train station. 

Compare North American hotel brands vs. Japanese lodging. | If you don’t have a lot of international travel experience, try to minimize your culture shock. A North American hotel chain might be your smartest option. Hilton, Hyatt, Marriott, and IHG all have properties in Tokyo. 

What’s the biggest advantage? Familiarity. Their websites, support staff, and on-site front desk staff will work in fluent English. In the guest rooms, you’ll find familiar bed sizes and amenities. If you need to modify / cancel your booking, you’ll be able to rely on English language phone support. When you’re visiting an unfamiliar country, that can help guarantee more restful nights.

However, if you’re an adventurous, seasoned traveler and you’re drawn to unique experiences, consider staying in a ryokan. These traditional, family-owned lodges are Japan’s most memorable accommodations, particularly in historic locales like Kyoto, Nara, or Osaka. Learn all about ryokan >

We have a terrific shortlist of hotels in central Tokyo. | Get in touch and we’ll identify the best match for your particular travel party and time of year. 

Get pricing & information on Tokyo hotels ▸

WHEN & HOW TO BOOK YOUR HOTELS FOR A TOKYO DISNEY RESORT VACATION

How far in advance should you book? This is the million-dollar question. Tokyo Disney Resort’s hotels still haven’t resumed their standard booking process, and travel packages have just recently returned. Theme park, restaurant, and hotel capacity is very strictly limited. COVID-19 protocols are very different from North America. 

Should you book now, or wait until the Tokyo Disney Resort is back to normal? 

This is where some personalized help from Wishful Thinking really comes in handy. We’ve got up-to-date info about how the booking process is changing at Tokyo Disney Resort, what’s selling out, and when you’ll need to make your decisions. We’ve got a free Info Guide with practical tips for things you can start planning now — even if you don’t plan to visit until 2024. Let’s discuss your travel plans and begin booking what we can, with a watchful eye on Tokyo Disney Resort modifications. As always, our help is free. 

Let’s plan your trip to Japan ▸

 
The awe-inspiring lobby of the Tokyo DisneySea Hotel MiraCosta wows guests with luxury Disney resort hotel comfort

HOW DO I GET THEME PARK TICKETS FOR TOKYO DISNEYLAND & TOKYO DISNEYSEA?

Having trouble with North American credit cards? Wondering if you should get your theme park tickets before you arrive in Japan? Are theme park reservations required?

Here’s the main thing you need to know: Tokyo Disney Resort’s operations are not back to normal. 

That’s especially true of their ticket & reservation systems. Much of what we could tell you today could be different tomorrow. 

Here are the most essential updates (updated in November, 2023):

If you’re an overnight guest in one of the Disney resort hotels, you can buy theme park tickets through your hotel. | They’re only valid for the date you select when you buy them; no additional theme park reservations are required. All Disney resort hotel guests are guaranteed to be able to enter the parks even if all the day’s theme park tickets are sold out for non-hotel guests. The Disney resort hotels are:

  • Tokyo Disneyland Hotel
  • Tokyo DisneySea Hotel MiraCosta
  • Disney Ambassador Hotel
  • Tokyo Disney Resort Toy Story Hotel
  • Tokyo Disney Celebration Hotel

If you’re a guest in one of the Tokyo Disney Resort Official Hotels — the ones which are not Disney operated & themed — SOME GUESTS may buy tickets through the hotel. | As of last year, a new policy is in place within the Official Hotels: only a portion of hotel guests are able to purchase tickets with a guaranteed right of theme park entry. At the Hilton Tokyo Bay, for example, rooms are available with the guaranteed park entry benefit, but — this part is important — that perk is only available for a select number of rooms booked within sixty days of arrival. Wishful Thinking can book you in this type of reservation; get in touch to set up your booking

NEW: TICKETS + TRANSFERS FROM TOKYO | As of 2023, third-parties like Expedia’s Viator are now selling single-day tickets along with private car transfers from Tokyo. Other reliable sites like KKDay are selling individual theme park tickets, too. If you are planning just for a simple one-day visit, and you don’t plan to stay at Tokyo Disney Resort hotel,  this is a good way to make sure you’ll get into the parks. 

Buy a one-day ticket to Tokyo Disneyland or Tokyo DisneySea plus a private car transfer ▸

You may buy advance-day tickets online, but you can’t buy tickets more than 60 days in advance. | Currently, online tickets are only valid on the date you select when you purchase them — no additional Theme Park reservations are required. As of now, there are no in-person theme park ticket sales at the parks. You MUST buy your tickets online (or through your Disney resort hotel).

Many USA-based credit cards are declined because the Tokyo Disney Resort website and app rely on advanced credit card security called 3D Secure. | The 3D Secure verification is standard for Japan-based banks, but it’s a protocol that isn’t yet standard within the USA. For this reason, many USA-based credit cards will not work if you try to book a hotel or purchase tickets on the Tokyo Disney Resort site. If your card is not working, you need to get a new card. Why? Because you will need a card with this feature when you actually visit Japan. The paid features in the Tokyo Disney Resort app won’t work without one, and many other vendors in Japan require this type of authentication.

Get a card from Revolut. | We highly recommend the safe, secure, internationally-accepted debit cards & credit cards from Revolut, which specializes in international travel. Their exchange rates are tremendous, there are no international transaction fees, and you can even store online balances in multiple currencies — a great strategy if you’d like to buy JPY in advance when the USD is strong. Best of all, their cards support 3D Secure verification.

Explore debit & credit cards from Revolut ▸

Multi-day tickets are still not available. | The 2-day Passport, 3-Day Magic Passport, 5-Day Magic Passport, Annual Passport, and many other long-standing ticket categories are currently not available, and we don’t know when Tokyo Disney Resort may resume the sales of these ticket types. 

If you speak Japanese, you may prefer to buy tickets at select locations of the Disney Store. |  Previously, you could buy tickets at many Disney stores in Tokyo. As of now, they’re only available at a few stores, mostly in the suburbs, with additional park reservations required via the Japanese-only Disney Store Club smartphone app. If you speak / read Japanese, consider buying at these locations:

Tokyo Disney Store theme park tickets: Learn more (site in Japanese) ▸ 

Wishful Thinking can provide guidance & assistance for Tokyo Disney Resort theme park tickets. 

   
 

SHOULD I BOOK A PACKAGE FOR TOKYO DISNEY RESORT?

Packages at Tokyo Disney Resort are very different from what you’ll find at Disneyland or Walt Disney World. For starters: they’re more expensive than simple hotel bookings + park tickets. You’re paying for unique perks & privileges. So are they worth it? What are the minimum / maximum number of guests and days? Let’s discuss.

Pre-pandemic, there were numerous types of packages that have not yet returned. The primary package that’s available now is called  Attractions and More, which includes:

  • 2 or 3 days of theme park entry (2 days at Tokyo Disney Sea, 1 day at Tokyo Disneyland)
  • 1 or 2 night stay in a Disney resort hotel
  • Attraction tickets (aka, ‘Fast Passes’) for select rides throughout your visit — some of which are timed (and selected when you book), others of which you can redeem at any time throughout your day, Most packages award 3 Attraction Tickets per day. Learn more ▸ 
  • A nifty little souvenir bundle

It’s important to know that packages cost MORE than simply booking a hotel and tickets. In many ways, this is the equivalent of charging for Genie+ / Lightning Lanes — you’re simply paying for the privileges when you book the whole trip, rather than paying for it on the day of your visit. The attractions which are offered in this package are not part of the daily Premier Access line-skipping options.

Currently, packages are available for a minimum of 2 adults. If you’re a single traveler, you’ll need to book your vacation a la carte.

As for  2023 / 2024 arrival dates, packages are ONLY available for a 1 or 2-night stay. If you want a longer hotel stay, you’ll have to book multiple visits / back-to-back visits. Park hopping is still paused at this time.

Note: Tokyo Disney Resort has been allocating a portion of their hotel rooms to make them ONLY available within the Package category. A hotel might show as ‘sold out’ for a normal booking, but still available under the Package category.

It’s also important to note that the availability differs between the Japanese-language portal of the site and the English-language portal. If you aren’t Japanese, don’t waste time shopping in the Japan portal. (Just as Disneyland has special offers for California residents and Walt Disney World has special offers for Florida residents, TDR has special offers for Japan residents. But if you cannot enter your name, permanent address, and credit card information using Japanese characters… it’s not gonna work.)

   
 

WHAT SHOULD I SEE & DO IN TOKYO?

The world’s biggest metropolis: 20 million people live here. Thankfully, it’s also one of the most hospitable destinations for international travelers. But what are the real must-sees? And how should you get around the city?

Have you ever walked into an incredible party in full-swing and thought, “gosh, if I’d known it was going to be this cool, I would have shown up earlier!” 

That’s what it’s like to visit Japan for the first time. It’s even cooler than you imagine it’s going to be. Most North Americans have only a surface-level knowledge of Japanese cuisine, history, & culture. Research can only get you so far. You simply have to go.

Here are a few of the key things you’ll need to know as you plan your visit to Tokyo:

It’s all about the trains | Getting in a car means you’ll be sitting in traffic, not moving. Taxis & rideshares are very expensive — we’re talking $250+ USD just to get to the airport. Not worth it. Getting around Tokyo — and journeying to cities beyond — is all about train travel. There are 3 major train systems in Tokyo:

  • The Japan Rail (JR) |  A nationwide rail network, kinda like Amtrak in the USA (but far, far better)
  • Tokyo Metro | 9 train lines serving 179 stations
  • Toei Subway | 4 train lines serving 106 stations

Taken together, they form an interconnected web of train lines that service the whole city. Thankfully, an IC (integrated circuit) payment card (like Suica) works for all three systems, so it doesn’t really matter which train you use. There are many major train station hubs where you can easily transfer from one train to another: Shinjuku, Shibuya, Ikebukuro, Kita-senju and Tokyo Station are the busiest.

Check out this excellent guide to Tokyo’s train systems ▸ 

Bullet trains to other cities | The JR lines also include Japan’s famous bullet trains, known by the Japanese word shinkansen. These high-speed trains are excellent and affordable and provide easy access to cities like Kyoto, Nara, Osaka, and Hiroshima. Many theme park fans who visit Tokyo Disney Resort are also interested in Universal Studios Japan in the city of Osaka, which is 3+ hours away by train. 

View shinkansen routes, schedules & tickets ▸

Japan’s trains can be intimidating at first. Soon, you’ll learn that the station signs, onboard announcements, and train schedules are available in English — once you know where to look. Within a few days, you’ll wish that travel in North America was this quick, efficient, and easy to navigate!

Sightseeing: a contrast of ancient & modern | The sights of Tokyo inspire you to appreciate one of the world’s most incredible ancient cultures with a non-stop eye on the future. From Buddhist temples to high-tech shopping, you should give yourself at least three full days for sightseeing. Remember, you’ll be very jet-lagged, so don’t plan on overdoing it. Here are the most popular tourist sights for international visitors:

  • Tokyo National Museum | An eye-popping, incredibly curated museum that traces Japan’s history from the shogun to the modern era. More ▸
  • Sensō-ji Temple / Kaminari-mon Gate | Tokyo’s oldest and most spectacular temple, dating back to the year 645. More ▸
  • Meiji-jingū Shrine | A beautiful, picturesque Shinto shrine within a peaceful evergreen park — one of Tokyo’s most-photographed locations. More ▸
  • Ghibli Museum | A family-friendly, incredible museum devoted to the films of the legendary Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki (My Neighbor Totoro, Spirited Away, Princess Mononoke & many more). A must-see, especially for Disney fans. More ▸
  • Shibuya Crossing & Hachikō statue |  The zig-zag pedestrian traffic crossing that you’ll recognize from countless video composites of Tokyo. You might not be familiar with the touching story of the adorable Akita who waited for his dearly-departed master here every day for ten years. More ▸
  • Takeshita-dori street in Harajuku | An alley-style shopping bazaar catering to the latest youth trends. You’ll find cutting-edge fashion and the newest must-have snacks. More ▸
  • Ginza | A tawny neighborhood with impressive department stores offering high-end accessories, housewares, and designer clothing. More ▸
  • Kamakura | The former capital of Japan and an ideal day trip from the city. Visitors flock here to explore its beautiful ancient temples and pose in front of one of Asia’s largest Buddha statues. More ▸

Learn Japanese manners and courteous phrases. | Japan is a very, very polite society. To avoid unpleasantness, it’s best to learn the most common Japanese phrases, along with the most essential etiquette:

  • Payment is given & received with two hands. | When greeting a cashier, always present your cash or credit card with two hands, and do the same when receiving it back.  More ▸ 
  • Don’t walk & eat / drink at the same time. | Food and drink are meant to be consumed while seated indoors. Even if you place an order ‘to go,’ never eat or drink while walking. You’ll notice that there are virtually no trash cans on public street corners — and this is why. The one spot in Japan where you can probably get away with this? Inside Tokyo Disneyland / Tokyo DisneySea. 
  • Remove your shoes in establishments, if requested. | Many traditional tea shops, restaurants, and ryokan hotels will provide slippers or sandals for you to wear upon entry. Place your shoes in the provided cubby holes and change into the footwear they provide.  More ▸
  • To visit gyms, pools or onsen spas, be cautious about tattoos. | Tattoos are considered disrespectful by traditional Japanese society. If you’ve got large, elaborate tattoos, it’s possible that you may be denied entry to certain gyms, pools, or onsen spa baths. You may want to seek out a tattoo-friendly gym or onsen that has a stated tattoo-friendly policy. Learn more  ▸
  • Learn important, courteous Japanese phrases. | It’s absolutely crucial to learn the Japanese words for please, thank you, hello, goodbye, etc. Here’s a great guide  ▸

This is just the beginning. We’ve got far, far more tips to share.

Wondering where to find the biggest selection of kawaii collectibles, manga, and anime merch? Wondering where to pipe up for some karaoke with the locals?  Want to try fluffy Japanese cloud pancakes, giant multi-colored cones of cotton candy, or the city’s best sushi, omakase, gyoza, ramen & more?

We’ve been to Japan many times, and we’d love to tell you.

If you plan your trip with Wishful Thinking, we can provide a shortlist of our favorite restaurants, the coolest shops, most unique bars, and the best locations to find the hot new food trends. We’ve also got lots of practical tips on how to overcome jet lag, how to set up your WiFi and phone service, how to pay for things, tipping & gratuities, and more. It’s never too early to start planning!

Let’s plan your Japan adventure ▸

Shibuya's crowded and exciting streets glow with buzzy excitement in Tokyo, Japan
The Enchanted Storybook Castle at Shanghai Disneyland glows with late sunset pink hues in Shanghai, People's Republic of China

Shanghai Disneyland Resort | FAQ

Do I need a visa to enter China if I want to visit Shanghai Disneyland Resort? How many days should I spend in the park? What are the best Shanghai Disneyland resort hotels? What’s the best way to include a visit to the Great Wall of China? We’ve got answers to the most common questions below.

WHERE IS SHANGHAI DISNEY RESORT LOCATED?

Shanghai Disneyland is around 11 miles from Shanghai Pudong International Airport. It’s in the Pudong District of Shanghai, just 12 miles from the city center. Most guests take the train.

WHAT’S THE WEATHER LIKE IN SHANGHAI?

Shanghai’s weather offers four distinct seasons. Summers are sizzling, and winters can be rather chilly. The sweet spot for visiting? Spring and autumn. Here are the historical average temps.

HOW MANY DAYS SHOULD I PLAN FOR SHANGHAI DISNEY RESORT?

If you’re a major Disney fan, we recommend at least two full days in the park, plus at least two additional days for sightseeing. If this will be your first destination after flying from North America, schedule your sightseeing days first. Jet lag is going to be absolutely brutal.

WHEN & WHERE SHOULD I GET TICKETS?

It’s best if we set up your theme park tickets with your Disney resort hotel stay. See below.

WHERE SHOULD I STAY AT SHANGHAI DISNEY RESORT?

There are two Disney-owned hotels. The Shanghai Disneyland Hotel is an upscale resort with blissfully charming Art Nouveau décor. It overlooks the beautiful Wishing Star Lake. For a more budget-friendly option, the Toy Story Hotel makes Andy’s room larger-than-life. They’ve each got their own pros & cons, which we’d love to share with you:

Get pricing and expert insights for the Shanghai Disney Resort hotels ▸ 

WHAT DINING OPTIONS ARE AVAILABLE IN THE PARK?

Just like any other Disney park, dining is a combination of table service, quick service & kiosks. Traditional Chinese cuisine is served in the beautiful Wandering Moon Restaurant, while the Royal Banquet Hall is a must-see fine dining restaurant inside the castle. The Tangled Tree Tavern is a charming quick service spot serving international fare. Sweet treats are available at the Duffy & Friends-inspired Cookie Ann Bakery Café on Mickey Avenue.

After you book your trip, we’ll happily steer you toward the best dining options.

WHAT ARE THE PARK’S HIGHLIGHTS?

Shanghai Disneyland boasts seven unique themed lands:

Mickey Avenue | Here’s the welcome mat of Shanghai Disneyland. Imagine a Disney character-infused hometown, rather than your typical Main Street, U.S.A. vibe. Pick up your “why yes, I’ve been there” apparel in Avenue M Arcade — their equivalent of the Emporium — where you’ll find a huge selection of unique Disney merchandise. 

Gardens of Imagination | A touch of calm with a dash of imagination, Gardens of Imagination is where you’ll come across the Chinese Zodiac-themed garden, a Disney twist that’s genuinely delightful. Key spots? The Storyteller Statue and the Fantasia Carousel. And, of course, there’s the Enchanted Storybook Castle — it’s the largest one that Disney’s ever built.

Fantasyland | Step into a realm brimming with classic Disney stories. The enchanting Voyage to the Crystal Grotto is a must-do. Kids (and kids at heart) adore Peter Pan’s Flight and the Hunny Pot Spin.

Adventure Isle | Time for some adrenaline rush. Prehistoric fun meets high-stakes adventure in attractions like the Roaring Rapids and Soaring Over the Horizon. And don’t miss out on the Camp Discovery challenge trails — they’re like full on hiking adventures.

Treasure Cove | All aboard mateys for the one and only fully pirate-themed land across all Disney parks. A must-see? Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for the Sunken Treasure. Widely considered the world’s best Pirates. Discover legends and lore on a real pirate ship: Siren’s Revenge. And don’t miss Eye of the Storm: Captain Jack’s Stunt Spectacular.

Tomorrowland | Shanghai’s Tomorrowland aims to be actually futuristic. The TRON Lightcycle Power Run is a definite bucket-list item, while the Buzz Lightyear Planet Rescue provides an entertaining (if familiar) alternative.

Toy Story Land | It’s time to play along with Woody, Buzz, and friends in this fun-filled setting. Ride high on Slinky Dog Spin, test your courage on Rex’s Racer, or join Woody’s Roundup. Remember to pop by Al’s Toy Barn and grab a bite at the Lotso Lunch Box.

WHAT IS THERE TO DO BEYOND THE PARK?

Although Shanghai Disneyland Resort doesn’t offer the vast outdoor recreation activities of Walt Disney World, Shanghai Disneyland’s footprint is unique — it’s the one Disney ‘castle park’ where the main thoroughfare — Mickey Avenue is located before the theme park’s turnstiles. In Celebration Square, the Market District and more, you’ll find ample Disney shopping, dining, and entertainment. For a quieter moment, take a stroll around Wishing Star Park to enjoy nature, views, and tranquility.

WHAT ELSE SHOULD I SEE WHILE VISITING CHINA?

How much time have you got? Many North Americans only know of a handful of sights — the Great Wall of China, maybe the Forbidden City, or the Xi’an Terracotta War Soldiers. China is a gigantic country with 1/5th of the world’s population. Planning a trip here can be incredibly complicated, even for seasoned travelers. None of these must-see sights are within easy reach from Shanghai.

That’s why we highly recommend the Adventures by Disney trip through China, which includes an unforgettable visit to both Hong Kong Disneyland and Shanghai Disneyland.

ADVENTURES BY DISNEY: CHINA | 12 DAYS, 11 NIGHTS | HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Explore Hong Kong
    Discover the vibrant harbor city with an iconic skyline, world-class shops and exciting street scene.

  • Hong Kong Disneyland & Shanghai Disneyland
    Check 2 more Disney theme parks off your bucket list as you immerse yourself in Disney magic at China’s Disney theme parks.

  • Great Wall of China Cable Car Ride
    Reach new heights as you ride to Mutianyu for an amazing walk atop this iconic structure.

  • Victoria Peak
    Be awed by panoramic views of Hong Kong’s stunning skyline and harbor from the top of the mountain.

  • Beijing’s Ancient & Modern History Tour
    Walk through centuries of history as you tour this modern city with a rich past.

  • Beijing’s Temple of Heaven
    Tour this massive temple built for emperors to worship the god of heaven.

  • Panda Visit
    Get a rare peek at China’s cutest residents on a tour of Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding.

  • Sichuan Opera
    Enjoy music, acrobatics and the classic face changing act that has delighted audiences for centuries.

  • Shanghai Acrobat Show
    Experience the excitement of this acrobatic performance and live rock show.

  • Lijiang River Guilin Boat Tour
    Cruise the Li River and take in the scenic landscapes, including the “gumdrop mountains.”

  • Terracotta Warriors & Horses in Xi’an
    Marvel at this sculpted army created to protect China’s first emperor in the afterlife.

  • Explore Shanghai
    Discover the sprawling skyline, classic architecture and waterfront district of this truly international city.

  • Tiananmen Square Walking Tour
    Learn the rich history of this focal point of celebration and protest with a local guide.

  • Yu Garden Tour in Old Shanghai
    Find peace and inspiration in this 300-year-old garden sanctuary in the heart of Shanghai.

Get 2023 / 2024 dates and pricing for an Adventures by Disney trip to China ▸ 

DO I NEED A VISA FOR PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF CHINA?

Travelers from 50+ countries — including USA, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom — can enjoy a visa-free visit to China for up to 144 hours if they’re transiting to another country. That’s 6 days. Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months beyond the date you enter the country. There are specific restrictions on where you can travel in China and which ports of entry / airports you may use, so it’s very important to study the regulations. Fact check everything.

Learn more about China’s 144-hour visa-free travel policy and review the countries which qualify ▸ 

If you plan to do any sightseeing beyond Shanghai — or intend to include Hong Kong in your travel plans, which has its own unique rules — we strongly recommend that you obtain a visa. Better to be safe than sorry; apply for your visa 2 to 3 months before your trip.

CHINA CONSULAR SERVICES:  For citizens of the USA ▸  |  For citizens of Canada ▸  

List of China consular service websites for other countries ▸ 

LET’S START PLANNING YOUR ASIA DISNEY TRIP

The sooner we start, the better prepared you’ll be for the adventure of a lifetime.

Start planning your trip here ▸ 

Tomorrowland in Shanghai Disneyland illuminates and glows at night, inviting guests to ride the Grid on board TRON PowerRun
See the spectacular Hong Kong Disneyland Castle of Magical Dreams with Wishful Thinking an authorized Disney vacation planning agency

Hong Kong Disneyland Resort | FAQ

Please check back soon — we’re updating this section as we speak! Chris from Wishful Thinking was just able to visit Hong Kong Disneyland and experience the new Arendelle – The World of Frozen. This absolute gem of a Disney park has so many delights that aren’t well known in the USA, and we can’t wait to tell you all about it!

The tasty raspberry-flavored pawpsicle at Zootpia inside Shanghai Disneyland

BRILLIANT GUIDES FOR WALT DISNEY WORLD

Walt Disney World in 2024 & 2025

When is the best time to visit? How busy will it be in the theme parks?

Why should I book a hotel on-property vs. off-property?

What’s located at each theme park? What’s a must at Disney Springs?

What rides, dining, & experiences are most popular & need reservations?

How can I combine park tickets, dining, and hotel stays to save money?

What are realistic tips for transportation and getting places on time?

How much do park tickets cost? Which ticket options save money?

When & where do I use the smartphone app, Genie+ and MagicBand?

Join our community!

Ask questions. Share your favorite travel stories. Get expert-level free help for any Disney travel destination around the world. You’re invited to join our Facebook group! As Yzma would say, it’s brilliant, brilliant, brilliant!

Flying boy who doesn't want to grow up
Flying boy who doesn't want to grow up

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Our trip planning is free. When you book a Disney vacation through us, you’ll pay the same price as if you booked it on your own, yet enjoy the bliss of a talented Wishful Thinking travel planner.

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It’s never too early to start planning!

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Disney pays us to help plan your trip, from your first wish list until your departure. We’ll even assist you during your vacation until you’re happily back home.

Our trip planning is free. When you book a Disney vacation through us, you’ll pay the same price as if you booked it on your own, yet enjoy the bliss of a talented Wishful Thinking travel planner.

A Wishful Thinking travel planner is:

  • Bright. We’re nerd-level experts on Disney’s past, present and future.
  • Talented. We’ve been designing travel itineraries around the globe for 15 years.
  • Realistic. We help you prepare for everything and set honest expectations.
  • Whimsical. Spontaneous fun often produces our most treasured memories.
  • Inspiring. We’re still kids at heart who believe in the power of dreams.

It’s never too early to start planning!

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