the happiest, most humid, place on earth. seriously...most humid.
Hong Kong Disneyland!
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!
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!
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.
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....
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)
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).
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.
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.
There was a small agenda for our return trip into the park:
1.) hit Mystic Manor again. here are a few more shots:
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.
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!