day 32

the happiest, most humid, place on earth.  seriously...most humid.

Hong Kong Disneyland!  

never thought I'd end up here....

never thought I'd end up here....

It was just about everything you'd expect in a Disney park....there were even churros.

First, let me start by saying that this was the cheapest Disney ticket of all time.  It costs approx $58us for a one day pass.  There's obviously no need to park hop, as there's just the one park.

Once you're through the gate, it's as if you are transported to Anaheim....sure the train station looks a little different, but Main St. sure did look similar.  The weirdest part is the mountain range  in the background behind the castle!

Train Station

Train Station

Main Street.

Main Street.

We got into the park around 11am...and found the park wasn't that crowded.  First up was the Jungle Cruise.  There are 3 separate lines....one for Mandarin speakers, one for Cantonese speakers and one for English speakers.  ...though I'm not sure how much english was actually spoken by anyone.  You should judge for yourself (video below):

I started this video a little late...wish you could really appreciate all of the people bobbing about in the boat trying to get every photo of every concrete crocodile....and that tour guide....still trying to figure out exactly what it was that he was saying!  Also...please notice the kid with the "selfie stick" in front of me....it was the CRAZIEST most surreal Jungle Cruise ever!

Tarzan's Tree House (you had to take a boat over there), that's the Jungle Cruise loading in the background.

Tarzan's Tree House (you had to take a boat over there), that's the Jungle Cruise loading in the background.

Next over to Grizzly Gulch...and a spin on the Big Grizzly Mountain Runaway Mine Cars.  A great ride with a few surprises.  Think of it as a combo between Big Thunder Mountain and Expedition Everest.

...a shot from Grizzly Gulch

...a shot from Grizzly Gulch

Next up was my favorite ride in the park.  Mystic Manor.  First, the cars are not on any sort of track.  The floor was completely smooth...I think that they run the cars via some sort of magnetic track below the floor.  It was super smooth...and had us crossing paths with other cars throughout the ride.  Really impressive.  The ride is not meant to be their version of the Haunted Mansion....nothing like it at all.  While there are a couple of small items that hardcore disney-philes would recognize from the Haunted Mansion it's really about showing off some incredible disney technology.  Lots of video mapping, lots of fiber optics, lots great tricks and surprises.  Ok, enough gushing....

Mystic Manor.   I was waiting for Mr. Rourke to walk out and say..."Welcome to Fantasy Island"

Mystic Manor.  

I was waiting for Mr. Rourke to walk out and say..."Welcome to Fantasy Island"

apologies for the bad iPhone photos....left the good camera back in Beijing.  :(

apologies for the bad iPhone photos....left the good camera back in Beijing.  :(

We walked through Toon Town...which looked like it might be more fun at night when the lights are on (and there are less hysterical children)

toon town.

toon town.

brilliantly creepy.

brilliantly creepy.

Grabbed some lunch at the Banquet Hall....cheesburger and fries (der, why do you think we came here).  If you're curious, yes...they do serve versions of chinese food here.  Lot's of it.  They even had sushi (which, of course, was of no interest to me).

the atrium in the banquet hall.

the atrium in the banquet hall.

look closely at the dish with the yellow squares on it...those are the cheeseburgers.

look closely at the dish with the yellow squares on it...those are the cheeseburgers.

Next up...It's A Small World.  Pretty much everything you'd expect...but 10 times brighter than what I remember from Anaheim.  It looked as though it was a brand new ride.

loved these girls!

loved these girls!

...there's our girl, Pocahontas! God Bless America!  Have you ever heard the wolf cry to the blue corn moon?  Or asked the grinning bobcat why he grins? You can sing with all the voices of the mountain, you can paint with all the colors of the wind. (lyrics from a song in Pocahontas)

...there's our girl, Pocahontas! God Bless America!

 Have you ever heard the wolf cry to the blue corn moon?  Or asked the grinning bobcat why he grins? You can sing with all the voices of the mountain, you can paint with all the colors of the wind. (lyrics from a song in Pocahontas)

Last ride before our afternoon break was Space Mountain.  Waited about 35 minutes...not too bad.  It was here that I suddenly became aware of the cultural differences of "personal space".  Managed to get through it as I didn't want to appear to be rude...and the humidity didn't help...but all I could think was..."please stop touching me".

It got super hot and, if I haven't mentioned it already, and was rather humid...so we headed back to the hotel for a few hours.  We stayed at the Hollywood Hotel....yes, seriously.  All of the references to Burbank, the Pan Pacific pavilion and the Hollywood Bowl were quite comforting.

cheesy hotel room photo

cheesy hotel room photo

behind our hotel...yes, that's the ocean in the background

behind our hotel...yes, that's the ocean in the background

iphone photo

iphone photo

There was a small agenda for our return trip into the park:

1.) hit Mystic Manor again.  here are a few more shots:

no lines!  best way to experience any Disney park!

no lines!  best way to experience any Disney park!

bringing the FEZ back into fashion...

bringing the FEZ back into fashion...

love this wallpaper

love this wallpaper

...and I was worried that I wouldn't have a halloween costume in china.  ha!

...and I was worried that I wouldn't have a halloween costume in china.  ha!

boo!

boo!

2.) catch the new LED based parade called "Paint The Night".  It was certainly a technological marvel...TV friends, it looked as though they pulled every toy from the VER showroom!  Some of these clips are a little long, but...

3.) see the fireworks (sorry, no photos here)

Just a few other items...

Yes, there are turkey legs here, just like in Anaheim.  While I did not try it, I was told that it was just like he remembered.  The only difference here is that they give you a plastic glove so that you don't get your hands dirty.  Fancy.

well, this is all plastic....maybe that's why it doesn't look very appetizing?

well, this is all plastic....maybe that's why it doesn't look very appetizing?

all gloved up and ready to go.

all gloved up and ready to go.

a disneyland margarita

a disneyland margarita

The day ended at the hotel bar....a lovely way to wrap up a fun weekend.  Sadly, heading back to Beijing tomorrow...though will be fun to see/meet the new faces that are joining the team next week!

thanks for watching!

thanks for watching!