Those who know me know how much I love Disney. No, it is not just for children how very dare you. When I would mention to people that I am going to the Disney parks whilst travelling they would laugh and act as though I am ONLY going to these countries to go to the Disney parks. Like dude, obviously I am doing other stuff as well – in fact, my time spent in Disney is literally only 3 of the days out of 730+ days of travel; let’s get some perspective people! But seriously, if I am travelling half way across the world to visit a country, possibly for the only time in my life, of course I am going to go to the happiest place on Earth whilst there.
So on the morning of Wednesday 18th of April 2018, I woke up bright and early (less of the bright as I had hardly any sleep thanks to time differences damn it) and made my way on the MTR to Sunny Bay – the gateway station for the Hong Kong Disney resort!
The Disney trains in both Hong Kong and Tokyo are insanely cute. They have Mickey shaped windows, Mickey shaped hand straps and cute Disney décor inside.
I had purchased my ticket in advance on the best app ever – Klook. They have discounted tickets for essentially all attractions in most of Asia and a few other countries. And you get the voucher straight to your phone and email, so you can print it off or just show the voucher on your phone. So I was ready to go and headed straight to the barrier where the attendant swapped my printed voucher for an actual ticket and I was off!
I soon came to realise as I ventured away from Main Street, that it was luckily not very busy. I knew it was during term time as I had checked before hand, and it was mid-week so I was hoping it would be quiet. I headed towards Fantasyland, but passed Tomorrowland on the way and saw that the line for Hyperspace Mountain was empty, so I essentially walked straight onto that ride first. I had not been on Space Mountain in Paris since they had done the Star Wars makeover on it, so this was going to be exciting. It was very cool, as you begin the ride it plays the Star Wars theme tune which always gets me hyper (geek). They play a lot of blaster sound effects and Star Wars music and video as you go around the ride. It is a lot more like the Walt Disney World Space Mountain in the sense that it does not go upside down like the Disneyland Paris one does, but it was still crazy fast and very fun. I went on this ride twice during the day seeing as it was so quiet, which was very nice thanks very much.
After this I kind of wandered around haphazardly just going wherever I fancied. I was very excited about the The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh ride as I adore Winnie the Pooh. The queue itself was adorable, it had giant book pages from all of the Winnie the Pooh story books by A. A. Milne. The ride itself was really cute inside and the detail is, as it always is with Disney, impeccable.
One of the rides which is totally unique to Hong Kong is Mystic Manor. It is similar to the beloved Haunted Mansion ride in the sense it’s a mansion/manor type ride. But that is where similarities end. This was a trackless ride, similar to Ratatouille in Paris. The story is about an eccentric guy called Lord Henry Mystic who acquired an enchanted music box with the special power to bring inanimate objects to life, and his cheeky little monkey companion Albert who secretly opens the box. It was a really cool ride, it basically follows Albert through the manor as he faces all of the enchanted artifacts! I went on this ride twice as well, and each time you go on it you see different angles as it is trackless ride so you can see different things each time which is cool! Disney music legend Danny Elfman also composed the music for the ride, which is pretty freaking amazing.
The Big Grizzly Mountain Runaway Mine Cars ride was my personal favourite though I have to say. The bears they use for the story during the ride are so funny and it is just so much fun with a lot of unexpected twists and turns. It is quite a long ride as well, unlike a lot of the others that are over within 30 seconds. The runaway train ride is almost always my favourite ride in every Disney park! This was another ride I managed to go twice too, the first time I literally walked straight to the front of the queue and the second time I had to queue for about 15 minutes, so not bad at all!
A couple of other rides that I went on were the Jungle Cruise, It’s a Small World – which has a new layover where they have placed all the famous Disney characters in their appropriate countries which was actually pretty cute. For example they had Lilo and Stitch in “The Islands” section, Jasmine and Aladdin on their carpet in the Middle East and Jessie and Woody in the North America desert section. I also went on The Iron Man Experience – which is pretty much the same as Star Tours but with an Iron Man theme, and through the Fairytale Forest which depicts little mini versions of famous scenes from some Disney classics like Cinderella, Tangled, Beauty and the Beast etc.
The Toy Story land in Hong Kong is essentially identical to the Paris one, so I didn’t really go on any of the rides there. I did wander around though and noticed that there were a couple of different details here and there which was nice. I also had to get a churro sundae from the food cart there, which is basically an ice cream sundae with two little churros in, heaven!
A lot of the counter service restaurants and food stalls throughout the park were closed when I was there due to it being quiet I guess, so I ate in the Banquet Hall thing in Fantasyland for lunch. I just had a simple burger and chips, can’t go wrong! I also bought a Duffy bun from one of the little cafes. It is very similar to an iced bun at home, but just in the shape of a bear with Duffy themed icing on. Duffy – if you don’t know – is a Disney bear character who is extremely popular in the Asian Disney world. He has his own little furry posse made up of himself, ShellieMay another bear, StellaLou a bunny and Gelatoni a cat. They are all pretty cute and the people here go crazy for them, they have merchandise for each of them and you will literally see people walking around kitted out in giant Duffy bags, ears, coin purses, popcorn buckets. A lot of them actually carry around Duffy teddies with them to use in photos etc. He is a phenomenon!
I met a few of the Disney characters for photos whilst wandering around. Eeyore was first, lovely, depressed Eeyore! He is always a favourite. Then wonderful Pooh Bear, Russell and Mr Fredrickson from Up and lastly Chewbacca. I felt like a bit of a Sally saddo going to meet them by myself ha, but everyone in Disney is overly friendly always so it wasn’t too embarrassing!
One of my must-see things at this Disney park was two of the shows that they have there. “Festival of the Lion King” and “Mickey and the Wondrous Book”. I was especially excited for the Lion King show, as I could not miss the chance of seeing one of my favourite Disney films and also theatre shows in a little mini show. It was a round stage in the middle of the room with seats around the outside. It follows the standard Lion King story with the most popular songs performed and it was so good! The floats, props and costumes were amazing and it was a great little show. The Mickey one was also really good. The talking parts with Mickey and Goofy were all in Chinese but they had English subtitles and the songs were in English! It followed Mickey and Goofy as they open up a magical book and Olaf falls out. Mickey then tries to get Olaf back to the correct “Frozen” page in the book, passing by other popular Disney stories on the way like Jungle Book, Rapunzel, Little Mermaid, Aladdin etc. It was really enjoyable!
I finished off my Disney day by watching the visually stunning Electrical Parade. Obviously it is dark at this time, and all of the parade floats are made up of thousands of dazzling lights, screens and glowing effects. It was magical, and the elaborate detail was again incredible!
I was very lucky it was so quiet at the park this day, I didn’t need to use a fast pass for anything, walked onto most rides and went on some things twice! I would highly recommend Hong Kong Disneyland if you are in the area, there are some things that are unique to it that you don’t see in the Western parks, and come on let’s face it, you can’t beat a day at Disney!