Tomorrowland

With the recent rumours that Disney may be announcing the replacement of Tomorrowland Speedway in the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World with the Tron ride that’s taken Shanghai Disneyland by storm, of course the Disney community has been throwing round a whole bunch of opinions – some people are desperate for some newness, others are already mourning the potential loss of a ‘classic’ Tomorrowland ride. On this particular matter, I stand fairly central; I don’t particularly like change, but I did love the Tron ride at Shanghai, and I think it would be a fabulous addition to WDW. One thing I can be certain of, however, is that Tomorrowland needs SOMETHING.

Walt imagined Tomorrowland to be the ultimate step into technology, and at the time, it definitely was. Look at the Carousel of Progress. It absolutely epitomises Walt’s dreams of the future, but the final scene has now hit the 21st century – virtual reality gaming, voice controlled homes – that’s the life we’re all living now. That doesn’t take anything away from my love of the Carousel, but it does indicate that times are changing, and an update is needed.

At no point had I ever believed Tomorrowland to be dated, or at least that was until my trip to Shanghai Disneyland last year, and as soon as I laid eyes on Tomorrowland the first thought that ran through my head was ‘this is how it’s meant to be’. I appreciate that the park is newer, so of course it would have better technology and a cleaner look, but it had what I can only imagine was Walt’s desired feeling: that you had stepped into the future.

Of course, the focal point of Shanghai’s Tomorrowland is the Tron Lightcycle PowerRun ride, but even the classics like Buzz Lightyear featured better tech and just felt so much cooler. The Tron ride itself was in a league of its own; it’s not dissimilar to Test Track in Epcot, but the look and feel just comes across so much sleeker, and it’s one hell of a ride!

Tomorrowland Speedway, on the other hand, does not get me excited. It’s a ride I have quite happily skipped on my last few trips and I wouldn’t shed any tears over the loss. I saw a tweet that summed up exactly how I feel:
I don’t feel like Walt would be proud of Tomorrowland as it is right now. It’s classic, but classic always implies age; being dated. Sure, if they were gonna replace Space Mountain, or the beloved PeopleMover, I think I’d feel differently, but what’s futuristic about a little car that you can drive around a track? Now give me a lightcycle..

To be honest, I think my main concern about the change happening would be the construction affecting the rest of the park, but I don’t think I’d lose any sleep. Tomorrowland is too much like today.

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Tangled Tree Tavern at Shanghai Disneyland

When Shanghai Disneyland was still under construction, a rumour broke that got me pretty excited for the park’s opening. Then in all my excitement for the trip, I promptly forgot all about it.

The rumour was that a Tangled themed restaurant would be featured in the park, and it wasn’t until I arrived in Shanghai Disneyland and saw ‘Tangled Tree Tavern’ on the park map that it dawned on me that finally I could visit The Snuggly Duckling for myself. Of course, I had to Disneybound that day..

Shanghai Disneyland Rapunzel Disneybound

Tangled Tree Tavern, Shanghai Disneyland

Tangled Tree Tavern, Shanghai Disneyland

Tangled Tree Tavern, Shanghai Disneyland

Tangled Tree Tavern, Shanghai Disneyland

Tangled Tree Tavern, Shanghai Disneyland

I didn’t meet any ruffians or thugs, but they clearly weren’t far away as their stuff was all over the place – helmets hanging from the ceiling, tankards left everywhere.. They’re probably out living their dreams, or just getting ready for the parade..

Its a counter service restaurant, and although we didn’t actually eat here, the food looked really good! All the seating is outdoors, but under cover so you can stay shaded from sun!

I love seeing my favourite films represented in the parks!

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Shanghai Disneyland Details

Its been three whole months since I walked the magic of Shanghai Disneyland, and I still haven’t had much of a chance to share my photos with you lot, so I thought I’d do a bit of a gallery post today to share some of the adorable little details that fill the park!

Shanghai Disneyland

Shanghai Disneyland

Shanghai Disneyland

Shanghai Disneyland

Shanghai Disneyland

Shanghai Disneyland

Shanghai Disneyland

Shanghai Disneyland

Shanghai Disneyland

I just love looking out for little hidden gems around the park; there’s so much more than just hidden Mickeys out there! Disney Imagineers are just incredible people.

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The Ultimate Six Park Comparison

I’m not gonna lie, the fact that I visited all six of the world’s Disney parks within a 13 month period is probably one of my greatest life achievements, and I’m fully aware of how lucky I am to be able to have visited them at all! That said, there is a question that comes with this achievement which I hate: ‘what’s your favourite park?’.

I hate picking favourites, end of, but this is one I will never ever be able to answer, because every park is different and there’s no way they can be judged on the same level, so instead I’m gonna break down the park pros and cons, and hopefully give a proper and fair analysis!

Disneyland, California

Disneyland California

  • Number of parks: 2
  • Park yays:
    • Compact area – its only about 100m between the two parks, with Downtown Disney right outside
    • Lots of nearby offsite hotels, and easily accessible on foot
    • Plenty of random character interaction opportunities
    • Large Downtown Disney area including branded stores like Sephora and Lego Store
    • While temperatures can vary, rain is very rare!
    • Current shows and parades include: Mickey and the Magical Map, Frozen the musical and Fantasy Faire, Soundsational Parade
    • Parades and nighttime shows in both parks
  • Park nays:
    • Not many direct transportation options from LAX
    • No dining plan
    • During off-peak times, some performances and parades get cut-back to weekends only
  • Why this park is special to me:
    • Disneyland was the first park I visited as an adult, so with the exception of vague early childhood images, all my first proper Disney memories were made in Disneyland. It also makes me so happy knowing that this was Walt’s park, and this is where he walked and where the whole Disney park legacy began.

Walt Disney World, Florida

Walt Disney World

  • Number of parks: 4 plus 2 water parks
  • Park yays:
    • The most advanced Disney parks, with features like Magic Bands, Fastpass+ and My Disney Experience
    • So many entertainment options – something for everyone!
    • Amazing transportation links, including Magical Express to airport
    • Dining plan is great value for money
    • Current shows and parades include: Festival of the Lion King, Finding Nemo the Musical, Beauty and the Beast, Fantasmic, Festival of Fantasy
    • So many resort options!
  • Park nays:
    • Parks can get really packed during busy periods
    • So many strollers..
  • Why this park is special to me:
    • WDW is the ultimate Disney experience. If you stay onsite, you are completely encased in the magic, and reality and problems disappear!

Tokyo Disneyland, Japan

Tokyo Disneyland

  • Number of parks: 2
  • Park yays:
    • Local guests are so polite and considerate
    • Hardly any strollers or scooters
    • So many unique areas (basically the whole of DisneySea!)
    • Best merchandise of any Disney park!
    • Designated train station for transportation into Tokyo
    • Everything is clean and well kept
    • Current shows and parades include: Happiness is Here, Electrical Parade Dreamlights, Fantasmic
    • No Downtown area, but has Ikspiari, a large shopping centre with restaurants and Disney Store
    • Monorail link between the two parks
    • Lots of rare character meeting opportunities
  • Park nays:
    • Not many cast members speak English, and most shows are done in Japanese
    • Rather than Extra Magic Hours, guests staying in Disney hotels only get to enter the parks 15 minutes before other guests
  • Why this park is special to me:
    • Tokyo was my first Eastern Disney park, and I was just blown away with how much I loved it. DisneySea is just such a unique park, definitely one of  my favourite parks of all time, and I live for the merchandise!

Disneyland Paris, France

Disneyland Paris Spring 2016

  • Number of parks: 2
  • Park yays:
    • Designated train station for links to airport and Eurostar
    • Good range of hotel options, both on and offsite
    • Current shows and parades include: Mickey and the Magician, Frozen Singalong, Disney Magic on Parade
    • Lots of seasonal events eg. Swing into Spring and Halloween
  • Park nays:
    • Guests don’t stick to designated smoking areas
    • Walt Disney Studios park doesn’t have as much going on as Disneyland
  • Why this park is special to me:
    • DLP is my local park, I’m an annual pass holder, and I’ve made so many recent memories here, including my 21st birthday and my first Disney trip without my family back in April. I think the park has come such a long way in recent years and I can’t wait to celebrate the 25th anniversary next year!

Hong Kong Disneyland

Hong Kong Disneyland

  • Number of parks: 1 (for now!)
  • Park yays:
    • Designated train station for easy access from the city
    • While still being fairly close to the city centre, the area feels very secluded
    • Most cast members speak English really well
    • Current shows and parades include: Paint the Night parade, Festival of the Lion King, Mickey and the Wondrous Book, Flights of Fantasy
    • Fun twists on classic rides
    • Depending on the time of year and day of the week, the park can be really empty!
  • Park nays:
    • No offsite hotels nearby
    • Local guests use umbrellas for shade, so it can be hard to watch parades
    • No Downtown Disney area
    • Fastpasses only available for a few rides
    • Merchandise was quite expensive compared to other Asian parks
  • Why this park is special to me:
    • Hong Kong was the last Disney park I visit on my six park adventure, and I fell in love with it. I love how similar the park is to Disneyland California; its so pretty and classic!

Shanghai Disneyland, China

Shanghai Disneyland castle

  • Number of parks: 1
  • Park yays:
    • So many incredible new rides
    • Located really close to Pudong Airport, and also has a designated station on the city’s underground tube system
    • Disneytown is ride next to the park, and you can use the second entrance at the end to re-enter the park by Tomorrowland
    • Current shows and parades include: Tarzan the musical, Mickey’s Storybook Express, Captain Jack Stunt Show Spectacular
    • Just the most beautiful castle!
  • Park nays:
    • Local guests aren’t very into queuing, and lots will push past
    • Quite a bit of rubbish around the parks
    • Queues for Fastpasses can be longer than queues for some rides at times!
    • Currently still very much in a trial stage, with some technical problems still occuring
  • Why this park is special for me:
    • Being able to visit a brand new park within a month of opening was so special for me, and the experience was totally magical.

Wow, I really struggled writing this; I hate finding negatives in things! I’ll probably come back to this a million times and change and add things when they spring to mind!

What do you love about the parks you’ve visited?

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Shanghai Disneyland’s Royal Banquet Hall

You know that big beautiful castle that towers over that Mickey built in Shanghai? Well did you know that it contains a big beautiful restaurant?

Shanghai Disneyland Royal Banquet

Royal Banquet Hall is an absolute must-do for royals and non-royals alike! The entrance is on the ground floor of the castle, but after waiting for your table in the most beautifully decorated reception area, you’re escorted to a side room for a photo with one of the princesses – Aurora was so lovely! – before being lead upstairs to the main restaurant

Shanghai Disneyland Royal Banquet Hall

Shanghai Disneyland Royal Banquet Hall

Shanghai Disneyland Royal Banquet Hall

The restaurant itself is comprised of a few different rooms, each one themed to a different classic princess. We were in the Snow White room, but there was also Mulan, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella and Princess and the Frog, all of which were just totally stunning, but while the princesses played a big part in the design of the restaurant, the characters were a whole other level of royalty!

Shanghai Disneyland Royal Banquet Hall

Shanghai Disneyland Royal Banquet Hall

Shanghai Disneyland Royal Banquet Hall

That’s right, Mickey and the gang were dressed in their fanciest gear to hang out with us while we ate, and eat we did! The food was INCREDIBLE. Its a set menu, with four options for starters and desserts and six main course options, so plenty to choose from! I had the tomato soup, which was delicious, but I didn’t finish it as I knew I’d want to save myself for my main: pumpkin and chicken stew, which was served inside a real mini pumpkin with a pile of Mickey shaped rice! It was such a huge portion but I managed as much as I could, and I’m still thinking about how great it was! Also, I could stuff myself up because the lovely cast member serving us gave us as much time as we needed before bring out our desserts.

Shanghai Disneyland Royal Banquet Hall

Shanghai Disneyland Royal Banquet Hall

But were they desserts or works of art?

Shanghai Disneyland Royal Banquet Hall

Shanghai Disneyland Royal Banquet Hall

Honestly I could not fault a single part of this experience! As well as three courses, drinks were unlimited (although souvenir cups were available for an extra charge) and included tea and coffee, and the bread basket was forever being topped up by helpful and friendly cast members – all of which were so polite and spoke English really well! The price was 368 yuan per adult, plus 15% service charge, which is around £45, or £30 for a child, which was pricey compared to other restaurants in the park, but not unreasonable compared to character meals in the American parks or Disneyland Paris, and I really think it was good value for money considering the quality of food, and the character interactions involved! I also really loved the fact that although there is a princess meet, the main characters are Mickey and friends, making it suitable for all – I know my family aren’t keen on princesses!

What’s your favourite character meal?

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A Look Around Shanghai’s Disney Store

The Disney Store in Shanghai’s city centre is the largest in the world, did you know that? I certainly didn’t until we arrived in Shanghai, and at that point I knew I had to visit!

Shanghai Disney Store

Shanghai Disney Store clock tower

While the exterior of the building is fairly understated, this incredible clock tower is the centrepiece of a large forecourt full of hidden Mickeys and Disney magic, and as for the interior..

Shanghai Disney Store castle

Shanghai Disney Store

Shanghai Disney Store

A castle. A real little castle in the middle of the store. I squealed. The whole inside of the store was full of magical details, from chandeliers and trees to hot air balloons and pixie dust, and I could have spent all day wandering around that shop!

Sure, some of the merchandise was no different to what you can find in a UK or US Disney Store, but there were also some adorable exclusive and unique products to marvel over:

Shanghai Disney Store

Shanghai Disney Store

Shanghai Disney Store

Shanghai Disney Store tsum tsums

The store was actually celebrating its 1st anniversary with these beautiful limited edition tsum tsums – you may have seen in my Shanghai Disney haul that I got the set of mini Minnie and Daisy, but I’m too scared to take them out of the box, ha! They had a huge area of soft toys and tsum tsums, as well as the standard Star Wars and Marvel merchandise, and a whole wall of Disney princess dresses and toys.

Shanghai Disney Store

Shanghai Disney Store
And at night, it gets even prettier! The store is located right in the city’s centre, next to a big shopping centre – if you wanted to make a day of it!

Isn’t this just the prettiest Disney Store?

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Shanghai Disneyland Hotel

Being a shiny new park with shiny new everything surrounding it, when making our Shanghai Disneyland plans, there was only one correct answer to where we had to stay, and that was the big’un: Shanghai Disneyland Hotel.

There are two Disney hotels on site, the smaller (and cheaper) of which being the Toy Story Hotel, but I’ll save that one for a future adventure, ha! I wanted to see the main event.

Shanghai Disneyland Hotel

Shanghai Disneyland Hotel

Shanghai Disneyland Hotel

So classic, so beautiful. The reception has a real distinct smell to it (weird, I know!), like walking into Abercrombie and Fitch, but when you’re coming in from the heat outside, its a welcome rush of scent and air-con. The lobby is breathtaking, with artwork on every wall and cast members looking dapper behind every desk. Although you feel like you’re coming in on the ground level, its actually the third floor, with steps leading down into the gardens overlooking the park in the distance – yes, you can see the castle from the hotel!#

Shanghai Disneyland Hotel

Shanghai Disneyland Hotel

Shanghai Disneyland Hotel

Shanghai Disneyland Hotel

The whole hotel has a bit of a Fantasia/Philharmagic theme, from the statue in the lobby to the room decoration. Oh, and you see those gorgeous wooden headboards? Find the Tinkerbell button by the nightstand and they light up with pixie dust and fireworks – AMAZING!

Although I never like making too much use of a tv in a hotel room, these were by far the best at any Disney resort, with on demand movies, kids bedtime stories and streaming of the nighttime spectacular!

Shanghai Disneyland Hotel

From the hotel, you’ve got three options to get to the parks: you can get a shuttle bus, a ferry across the lake, or you can walk it. The buses are possibly a tad quicker than the ferry – mainly due to trainee ferry drivers! – but they both drop you about the same distance from the park entrance.

There are also a few dining options within the hotel, including character dining at Lumiere’s Kitchen, and if you’re staying club level, you have access to a breakfast buffet, afternoon tea and cocktail hour on the 7th floor, where you can also watch the nighttime show from!

Shanghai Disneyland Hotel

It was just such a magical place to stay!

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Things You HAVE to do at Shanghai Disneyland

I feel like I start a lot of posts by complaining about how quickly time goes (regular readers, I do this all the time, right?), but it has been almost 4 weeks since I was at Shanghai Disneyland and I’m not ok with that.

Being that it (for now!) only has the one park, you could probably manage to do everything in 2 days, depending on how busy it is, but if you were pushed for time, there are definitely a few attractions and experiences that are like no other!

Tron Lightcycle Power Run

Shanghai Disneyland Tron ride

Oh. My. Gosh. This ride is insane! If you haven’t seen photos or videos of it already, go YouTube it now. There is a height limit of 122cm, so its not for the little ones, but while its definitely a fast and exciting rollercoaster, its incredible smooth; even my incredibly motion-sickness prone mum had a blast! If I could liken it to anything already existing in other Disney parks, its kinda like a motorcycle equivalent of Test Track in Epcot, but so unique and crazy and amazing!

If you can, get a Fastpass for this because queues can be insane! If Fastpasses run out, wait until during/after the nighttime show and run over there.

Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for Sunken Treasure

Shanghai Disneyland Pirates of the Caribbean

I know you can ride Pirates in pretty much every other Disney park, but not like this I promise you! Disney Imagineers went to town on this, the advancement in technology was just phenomenal; I think my jaw was on the floor the whole time. Without spoiling it, this is way more than just a boat ride!

Dine inside the Enchanted Storybook Castle

Shanghai Disneyland Royal Banquet Hall

The Royal Banquet Hall is an AMAZING dining experience. I’ll be reviewing it fully in the next few weeks, but being my first time dining inside a castle ever, I was blown away. The food was beyond incredible, and the characters and cast members were the sweetest and did I mention its INSIDE THE CASTLE?

Meet the boss

Can you go to a park without meeting Mickey? He looks really smart in his Shanghai blue suit!

Tarzan

Shanghai Disneyland Tarzan

Looking for somewhere to escape the heat of the day? This is the perfect excuse! The show is full of monkey fun and amazing acrobatics; its a real crowd pleaser!

Climb a mountain

Shanghai Disneyland Adventure Isle

I’m a bit gutted we didn’t get to do this on our trip – we only discovered it on the last day of our visit! – but there’s actually a high-ropes style course through the mountain in Adventure Isle, how crazy is that?

Explore the castle

Enchanted Storybook Castle

There’s actually an attraction inside the Enchanted Storybook Castle! It’s an interactive walking tour up the beautiful spiral staircase in the centre of the castle, telling the story of Disney’s first princess, Snow White.

Ok, so I could probably sit here and list off everything in the park so I’ll stop now, but I think if you’re in a rush, these are the things you’ve 100% gotta hit.

Is Shanghai Disneyland a place you’d like to visit?

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Favourite Photos from.. Mickey’s Storybook Express!

For this month’s Favourite Photos from.. it only seemed right to share Disney’s newest parade, from its newest park, so here’s Mickey’s Storybook Express from Shanghai Disneyland!

Shanghai Disneyland Mickey's Storybook Express

Shanghai Disneyland Mickey's Storybook Express

Shanghai Disneyland Mickey's Storybook Express

Shanghai Disneyland Mickey's Storybook Express

Shanghai Disneyland Mickey's Storybook Express

Can you imagine being Slinky Dog’s bum?!

Shanghai Disneyland Mickey's Storybook Express

Shanghai Disneyland Mickey's Storybook Express

Shanghai Disneyland Mickey's Storybook Express

Mine! Mine! Mine!

Shanghai Disneyland Mickey's Storybook Express

Shanghai Disneyland Mickey's Storybook Express

Shanghai Disneyland Mickey's Storybook Express

Shanghai Disneyland Mickey's Storybook Express

Unfortunately during our visit, the spectacular Mulan float I was so looking forward to seeing was out of action so didn’t feature in the parade, but I absolutely loved the Finding Nemo float – especially the seagulls! It was also obviously great to see my favourite royal couple, Flynn and Punzie.

I was amazed at how uninterested a lot of the guests in Shanghai were with the parade; I’m so used to people sitting and waiting for 20+ minutes before parades, but that really didn’t seem to be the case, with a lot of people rocking up just as the music started.

Take me back?

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Shanghai Disneyland Haul!

The only good thing about coming home from a Disney trip is unpacking all the goodies I picked up from the parks, and having visited two Disney parks, it meant double the fun!

Shanghai Disneyland merchandise

As well as going to Disneyland itself, we also visited the Disney Store in Shanghai city centre, so I picked up a few bits from there before I even stepped foot into the park. They had three for two on tsum tsums, so I picked up Destiny and Donald, as well as an Iron Man for the boyfriend, but I also couldn’t resist this limited edition set – to commemorate the first anniversary of the store!

Shanghai Disney Store limited edition tsum tsums

I also picked up a Donald Duck scrunchie from the Disney Store sale, which opened the floodgates to buying more cute hair accessories from the park, and of course I had to get a set of Grand Opening ears!

Shanghai Disney hair accessories

Shanghai Disneyland Grand Opening ears

Shanghai Disneyland Alex and Ani bracelet

My sister bought me the Alex and Ani bracelet as an early birthday present; I looked at the special grand opening design, but up close it actually looked a little tacky, so I decided to get the classic castle design.

Shanghai Disneyland merchandise

Shanghai Disneyland t-shirt

Shanghai Disneyland Vinylmation

If you didn’t already know, I have a slight weakness for Vinylmations.. The grand opening Vinylmation all came with Mickey, and then the unknown design inside, so I was chuffed to get Minnie because they make a perfect pairing. I also got the Gardens of Imagination Year of the Dog one – its Pluto! As well as these bits, I got the t-shirt, an adorable mug and shopping bag, yay!

I can’t wait to start posting more about Shanghai!

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Shanghai Disneyland – Day 3!

Today was our last day in Shanghai, and after a lie in I was in a bit of a rush to get into the parks, worrying that we’d lost an hour by sleeping. What I’d forgotten was that being a Monday, the park didn’t open til 9..

Shanghai Disneyland Pirates of the Caribbean

Mum and Hannah had decided not to come into the park today, so once Dad and I caught the shuttle bus over, and after bag and ticket check, still made it in just before 9am. We took a bit of a slow wander through the parks on our way to Pirates of the Caribbean, after which we headed back to Mickey Avenue to grab some breakfast at Remy’s Patisserie. There was a band playing in front of the Walt and Mickey statue, which we could watch from where we sat to eat.

Shanghai Disneyland Remy's Patisserie

Next on the agenda was the Dumbo ride, but with an hour wait, we didn’t really fancy that, instead heading back for a final ride on Pirates. If you’ve read the last two days as well, you’ll notice we’ve done this a lot, but it’s so good!

Shanghai Disneyland food

Only having an hour left before needing to meet Mum and Hannah in Disneytown, we wandered back to Tomorrowland, and finished our half-day with a final intergalactic mission with Buzz.

After leaving the park, we grabbed lunch in The Cheesecake Factory in Disneytown, before heading back to pick up our bags and getting a taxi to the airport for the next leg of our trip: Chengdu!

I’ll be of the radar for a few more days now, then once in Hong Kong I’ll be back with access to social media and will bombard you with updates from there, as well as blogging our time in Hong Kong Disneyland! See ya real soon Shanghai!

Shanghai Disneyland – Day 2!

Shanghai Disneyland castle

After sleeping in the comfiest beds, we were up bright and early for breakfast at 7, before catching the shuttle bus from outside the hotel to the park. With a game plan in mind, and having done Tron last night, we headed straight for the next big queue ride as soon as the park opened: Soaring Over the Horizon. Despite a supposed 60 minute wait, as well as having to deal with the queue jumpers, we were in and out within the hour!

Shanghai Disneyland

From there, we went on to Pirates of the Caribbean, which was only a 5 minute wait and still just as awesome a ride as it was yesterday – totally mind blowing! We wandered on through to behind the castle after that, and did the Voyage of the Crystal Grotto; a boat ride featuring scenes from classic princess stories, before going underneath the castle into the crystal grotto. It was a little bit Jungle Cruise-esque, minus the commentary.

Shanghai Disneyland Tangled boat

Next on the agenda was seeing the Baymax Super Exercise Expo, where Hiro and Baymax lead the audience of Tomorrowland through a Big Hero 6 inspired dance. Baymax was a real party animal! It was then time for Golden Fairytale Fanfare, the castle show, so we went to hang out in front of the castle for a bit before that begun; partly to sit down for a bit, and partly to make sure I got a good spot! The show was totally beautiful; the costumes were all amazing and the singing was a good balance of Chinese and English.

Shanghai Disneyland Golden Fairytale Fanfare

Now lunch time, we headed back to Fantasyland, stopping by the Tangled Tree Tavern – a nod to the Snuggly Duckling – so I could take a million photos, before deciding to eat at Pinocchio’s. I had Peking duck pizza, which was not only incredible, but also Mickey shaped! In the Mickey mood, it was time to go and meet the boss himself. He was suited and booted in his best Shanghai suit and we had a big hug!
That exited right by the Marvel Universe area, so we stuck our heads in – mainly so my sister could see what Captain America looked like – and ended up in a Spiderman drawing class, which actually turned out to be a Groot drawing class.. Long story short, I’m not very good at drawing Groot.

Shanghai Disneyland Marvel

With the temperature getting higher, we ducked out of the park for a little while via the little entrance to Disneytown near Tomorrowland. After a bit of air conditioning and window shopping, it was almost time for our Tron Fastpass timeslot, so back to Tomorrowland we went, only to find it was closed.. Basically, when the queue reaches its total capacity, they have to temporarily ‘close’ the ride, which means they stop anyone even entering the line, to let it work its way down a little.

Shanghai Disneyland Mickey's Storybook Express

So instead we did a quick Buzz and went to watch the parade – Mickey’s Storybook Express – which was fab but seemed to be running shorter than usual; I’ve seen photos of a few floats that we didn’t see today! By the time the parade was over, Tron had reopened, so we finally got to make use of our Fastpasses, although it was still about 40 minutes wait!

I was thoroughly sunburnt by this point, so we headed back into Disneytown so I could by all the things on the list I’d made earlier, then headed back to the hotel to aftersun up – I’m basically lobster coloured..

Today has had me a little tuckered out; it’s been a really hot day and I’ve not nearly had enough to drink so I’m not feeling 100%, so I’m signing out early tonight. We’re going to watch the nighttime show from the viewing platform at the hotel and get a proper night’s sleep so we’re raring to go for our last day tomorrow!

Goodnight!

Shanghai Disneyland – Day 1!

What a magical day!

So this morning we were up at 6.30am to get from our hotel in central Shanghai to the Disney resort area – although there was a bus that ran from nearby, we decided to get a taxi to save a bit of time, which was about £20 to the Shanghai Disneyland Hotel.

From the hotel reception area we could see out across the lake, and there was the castle..

Shanghai Disneyland castle

I cried, obviously.

We caught the ferry across the lake, and spent quite a while in bag checks and ticket check queues, and then we were in! While the park doesn’t have a classic Main Street USA, it has Mickey Avenue which is full of charm and the most amazing little details. The castle show was just finishing, so we headed off to start exploring!

Shanghai Disneyland station

Unlike the classic US park set up, here Adventureland is on the right hand side of the castle, and Tomorrowland on the left, so we started an anti-clockwise loop, with the first ride being Pirates of the Caribbean – a bit of a family tradition. It was a Pirates like no other; completely raising the bar for all the other PotC rides around the world! I won’t spoil it too much, but it was way more than just a boat ride.

Shanghai Disneyland Royal Banquet Hall

From there, we headed into Fantasyland land, did the Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh ride, and Pooh was actually hanging out outside the exit when we left so we got in a quick cuddle and photo! We then went on to do Peter Pan’s Flight, then went to explore the beautiful Enchanted Storybook Castle, where we were stopped and asked if we were interesting in lunch at the Royal Banquet Hall – the character restaurant inside the castle – how can you say no to that?! It was just the most magical meal; the food was incredible and the characters were in the cutest outfits!

Enchanted Storybook Castle

After feeling thoroughly stuffed, we queued up for the Once Upon a Time Adventure, an interactive walk up and through the castle, with the story of Snow White being told along the way. While I didn’t mind the fact that it was in Chinese – I mean, I know the story! – what really peeved me was the Chinese families pushing in line and children forcing their way to the front..

Star Wars Launch Bay Shanghai

Onwards to Tomorrowland, we queued up for Buzz Lightyear Planet Rescue, which sadly meant missing the parade, but the newer technology in the ride made it pretty awesome, and because my mum’s blaster didn’t work on the first go, they let us ride it again! We then headed to Star Wars Launch Bay, which is tucked right out of the way of Tomorrowland, which meant it was really quiet; hello 30 second wait to meet Kylo Ren and R2D2!

With the Tron ride queue over 2 hours, we headed back towards the gardens in front of the castle, with the intention of visiting some of the shops in Mickey Avenue, but instead detoured back into Adventureland to watch the Tarzan show, which was pretty incredible! After doing a few of the shops, we headed back to the hotel to sort out checking into our room!

A few Mickey shaped desserts in our tummies, and we headed back into the park for the nighttime show. We stood in the centre of Mickey Avenue to watch it, with a great view of the castle, but as soon as it began, the crowd just turned into a sea of phones in the air, which was a little saddening as no one was watching it, and none of the rest of us could see it properly, so I moved to the side of the street in the end. The show itself was a classic projection show, like Disney Dreams or Celebrate the Magic, with a few new clips from Star Wars and Mulan.
With most of the crowds heading out of the park, but with an hour of opening left, we pegged it back to Tomorrowland with the hopes of getting into the elusive Tron rollercoaster, and despite advertising a 70 min wait time, we were on and off within 40 minutes and WOW IS THAT RIDE WORTH THE HYPE!! Absolutely unbelievable, such a unique and incredible ride.

Shanghai Disneyland Tron ride

With 5 minutes til park close, we managed to sneak in two goes on Buzz (again) before taking a slow walk out of the park, and popping into World of Disney in Disneytown – the Downtown Disney equivalent area – before catching the ferry back to the hotel!

Shanghai Disneyland castle

I’m exhausted but it’s been such a wonderful day! Tomorrow we’ll be up nice and early to get into the park for opening, and another Disney day!

What I’m Wearing – Belle Disneybound

The start of weekly Disney outfit posts can only mean one thing.. I’m counting down to a Disney trip! YAAYYYY!

Yes, that’s right, I’m now properly in the run up to my Shanghai/Hong Kong trip, and with 5 total park days during my 2 week trip, I’ve got five outfits to share!

Belle Disneybound

Belle Disneybound

Belle Disneybound

Belle Disneybound

(sorry for out of focus shots, I work with a self timer..)

Its no secret how much I love outfit planning, but I really struggled with ideas for Shanghai, so I took inspiration from the part of the park I’m most excited about: the castle. You see, the newly built castle consists of elements of all of the Disney castles combined, so it only seemed right that I represented a few of my favourite princesses, starting today with Belle!

I had my eye on a pretty yellow dress on Asos, but its forever out of stock in my size, so when I stumbled across this gorgeous playsuit on Romwe, I decided to take a chance on the ‘one size fits all’! I really love it; its super comfy and represents Belle’s ballgown so well! The Belle inspired bow is from Mickey Waffle Bows on Etsy.

Adventure in the great wide somewhere, anyone?

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Disney-bound again!

Its been a while since I’ve done a chatty post, and all of a sudden I realised that I haven’t really told you lovely lot about the fact that this summer..

WE’RE GOING TO SHANGHAI AND HONG KONG DISNEYLAND!!

Little Green Men Mochi from Tokyo DisneySea

Little Green Men Mochi from Tokyo DisneySea

Those of you who follow my Disney antics a lot will know that this means I will have completed one of my life goals of visiting every Disney park, and I’ll actually have done all of them within the space of 13 months which is pretty incredible!

So we’ll be out there for two weeks, spending 2-3 days in Shanghai Disneyland (hopefully onsite!), as well as visiting some of the amazing sites of China, then finishing up with 2-3 days in Hong Kong Disneyland before flying home. My sister is currently travelling out in Asia (and taking after her little sister by blogging it), and our trip is coinciding with the end of her adventure, so she’ll meet us out there and fly home with us.

Shanghai will have been open for about a month when we get there, so hopefully they’ll have sorted any issues that they might find by then, although it’ll still obviously be PACKED with people, which is why we’ll be spending a few days there even though its only one park. I am SO excited to see that beautiful castle!

It’s going to be incredible and I can’t wait to share it with you all!

On another exciting note, at the end of April I’m going on a semi-spontaneous trip to Disneyland Paris!

SONY DSC

I’ve been wanting to visit DLP for Spring for a while now as everyone always talks about how much fun and how pretty it all is, and I definitely didn’t want to miss out on Forest of Enchantment, so when I realised how many of my lovely Disney friends are all going to be out there in the same week, I suddenly found myself booking the Eurostar..

I’m going out on the evening of the 27th, and staying at Santa Fe with a few of my Disney girls who arrive the day before me. Originally we were going to stay offsite at the Kyriad, but with Ellie’s AP discount, it wasn’t much difference to stay at Santa Fe so we thought why not! As well as Swing into Spring, I’m also really excited to buy an annual pass as Ellie is going to sponsor me, and I can’t wait to see so many of the lovely people who are going to be out there with me!

Have you got any Disney trips coming up? °o°

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