Is everyone excited for the July International Parks Wrap-up?! Clearly, I’m still excited from my recent travels to Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Tokyo Disney Resort! It was a grand adventure that started off with a delayed luggage disaster and ended with a lovely anniversary dinner in Tokyo DisneySea. (FYI, if you’re letting your spouse actually put your packed items into the suitcases, remind them to split everything up between the bags 50/50. Not all of your stuff in one and theirs in another. Because when one bag gets delayed, one of you will be borrowing the other’s underwear. I digress…)
I will preface this report by saying that there isn’t an enormous amount of news. We’re smack in the middle of the summer season, meaning that most of the special offerings kicked into gear last month and we’ve covered them in past reports. For those parks in particular, I’ll throw in a tidbit or two from my own adventures! (Unfortunately I don’t have any photos to share yet – I’m actually uploading them all to my computer right now, and it is taking a serious chunk of time!)
This September Shanghai Disney Resort is holding it’s first-ever Disney Inspiration Run! On September 15 – 16 you’ll find three courses traversing the magical lands of Shanghai Disney and ending alongside Wishing Star Lake. As to be expected with a Disney run, you’ll find characters along the route, along with music and entertainment. Registration is open now through August 10.
Now for my special side note – I reported back in May that Shanghai Disney Resort guests are now able to enter the park early, and through a special entrance in Disneytown. This. Is. Amazing. Seriously, I cannot begin to fathom how much stress and annoyance we avoided by entering the park early through the easy, peasy line in Disneytown. It was downright magical.
Hong Kong Disneyland
Onward and upward to the quaint Hong Kong Disneyland! The biggest news from any international park this month is the introduction of Duffy’s new friend, Cookie! We just missed her debut by a few days, but her prints were all over Main Street, U.S.A. Cookie is a precocious pup who loves to bake, and her friendship with Duffy started over an accidental mixing of her waffles and his cotton candy. She is the first friend of the Duffy pack to debut at Hong Kong Disneyland, and she’s meeting guests in her signature chef’s hat.
Hong Kong Disneyland also features race news this month, with their 10K Weekend returning November 3 – 4. The races are themed to The Incredibles, Monsters University, Toy Story, and Mickey & Friends. Registration for this event is open now through August 28.
In spite of all the construction taking place in Hong Kong Disneyland right now, my husband and I absolutely adored the resort. It was easy to manage, the lines were practically nothing, and the laid-back experience was a welcome relief after Shanghai and the bag debacle. We will most definitely be returning to Hong Kong Disneyland in the future, and I can’t recommend it enough. (And we spent an entire day in the park in tropical storm conditions!)
Tokyo Disney Resort
Just like with Hong Kong Disneyland, our trip to Tokyo just barely missed the premiere of new happenings at Tokyo Disney Resort! After we traveled back to the states, Tokyo Disney released their new nighttime spectacular and two new stage shows.
“Celebrate! Tokyo Disneyland” is a nighttime show featuring fountains, projections, and pyrotechnics. During the daylight hours, you can catch “Let’s Party Gras!” at Theatre Orleans in Tokyo Disneyland. Mickey, Minnie, Daisy, Goofy, Max, Clarice, and the Three Caballeros show off their moves in this Mardi Gras-themed extravaganza. Over at Tokyo DisneySea, Mickey and his friends have encounters with New York City’s street performers and the bright lights of Broadway in “Hello, New York!” Be sure to catch these three new entertainment options on your own travels to Tokyo Disney Resort.
It is harder to narrow it down to just one thing to share about Tokyo Disney. Tokyo feels like home. My husband and I met when we were stationed in Japan together, and being back, experiencing the Japanese culture, was the most spectacular way to spend our 10-year anniversary.
When you’re there, embrace the experience. Our trip was right in the middle of Tanabata days, and when we went to Magellan’s at DisneySea for our anniversary dinner, we both dressed for the occasion. I wore a yukata (summer kimono) and my husband wore a jenbei. There are no words for how wonderful that evening was (even if it took me an hour to get properly dressed!), and I wouldn’t change anything about it. (Just remember, if you choose to participate in a cultural custom such as this, do it respectfully.)
I have only the tiniest tidbit of news out of Disneyland Paris, and that is the release of the medals for the upcoming Disneyland Paris Magic Run Weekend, taking place September 20 – 23. Unfortunately, Paris was not on my itinerary for this trip, so I don’t have any special tips or things of note to share!
Are you planning on visiting any of the international parks? Have you been in the past? Is there anything in particular you want to know about my recent travels? Please comment and share your thoughts and experiences on the Disney Parks throughout the world!