Exploring the International Disney Parks

Disney World and Disneyland aren’t exactly the same, so why should the other Disney parks abroad be similar?  If you ever get the chance to travel to an international Disney park, perhaps to Tokyo Disneyland for the new D23 convention this fall, you might notice a few differences from the domestic ones.  BBC Travel did a report on some of the unique things that set the international parks apart. One of the most obvious differences is the food.  While you can get some international food at Disney Parks, especially at Epcot at Disney World, it’s still not standard.  Obviously, that’s … Continue reading

A Year in Disney Fandom: D23 Events for 2013

Any D23 members wondering what will be on the official Disney Fan Club’s schedule for 2013 don’t need to wait any longer.  The official D23 website and the official Disney Parks blog have both posted announcements of the fan club’s 2013 events. The most exciting news to come out of D23 for 2013 is the announcement of a second year of Fanniversary.  The event, which is open to the public (but D23 members get first registration), is a must-attend celebration for any Disney fans.  It’s hours spent reveling in the best of Disney movies, history, park attractions, and more.  Special … Continue reading

Escape into Nature at “Villages Natures”

We’ve been looking so much at the new construction at the domestic Disney parks, why don’t we take a look at an exciting new project at one of the international parks? Disneyland Paris announces plans to begin work on Villages Natures, an eco-tourism site built just under four miles outside of Disneyland Paris. Villages Natures is a lot more than a giant park along the lines of Disney World’s Wilderness Preserve. Eco-tourism means destinations designed to let guests commune with nature, where the focus of the vacation is being in and learning more about the natural world. The crowning center … Continue reading

Indulge Your Messy Side with Goofy’s Paint ‘n’ Play

Although I desperately want to visit a Disney park, I’m really only interested in attending the domestic ones. I know I’d have a great time at Hong Kong Disneyland, Disneyland Paris, or Tokyo Disneyland, but if I manage to travel in either China, France, or Japan, I’m not going to spend my time at an amusement park. There are far too many other more unique places to visit in each of those countries. Sometimes a story comes along, however, that makes me wish for a second that I could visit an international Disney park. Today I encountered one of those … Continue reading

Tokyo DisneySea

DisneySea’s Tower of Terror I’ve always wanted to write a feature about Tokyo Disneyland. It seems like the most mysterious of the Disney Parks because it’s always the one I hear about the least. Its website isn’t as well translated as that for Disneyland Paris or Hong Kong Disneyland, so I can never find its special offers page or really much else substantial about which to write. Tokyo DisneySea has always intrigued me the most. For all that I say I don’t see a lot written about Tokyo Disneyland, I see the name DisneySea pop up a lot, more than … Continue reading

Fun for Grown-Ups at Disney: The Spas

When I last talked about fun things for adults to do alone at Disney, I highlighted a fast-paced thrill ride. Today I’m going to talk about a service Disney features that is perfect for winding down after racing around the tracks at the Richard Petty Experience: spas. Several of the hotels at Disney Parks have spas, but Disney World in particular boasts a few larger ones worthy of note: the Grand Floridian, Saratoga Springs, and Mandara. These three offer an extra level of pampering ideal for a vacation all about taking time to relax. The Balinese-themed Mandara spa can actually … Continue reading

Villagers Ejected From Future Site of the Most Magical Place on Earth

At the beginning of the month Disney made an announcement I initially decided not to cover on my blog: plans to build a new theme park in the Pudong district of Shanghai, China. The announcement basically consisted of just that, with little additional information, and I wasn’t sure how many of our readers would ever have the chance to visit the park. Now I’ve learned something about the Shanghai Theme Park Project that makes me want to bring it to the attention of our readers. The future site of Disney Shanghai is currently occupied by the villages and fields of … Continue reading

Dog Breeds: Shiba Inu

I once saw a Shiba Inu puppy at a pet store and totally fell in love with the breed. Shibas are the smallest of the native dog breeds that come from Japan. It is one of the breeds declared national monuments by Japan — that list also includes akitas and the Japanese chin. The breed nearly went extinct during World War II — I’m very glad it didn’t! The Shiba Inu was developed to be a hunting dog — both a scent hound and a sight hound. The breed is built for hunting in the dense undergrowth found in Japan’s … Continue reading

Disney’s “Third Shift”

Many visitors refer to Disneyland as the “Happiest Place on Earth” and if you’ve ever been to the theme park you know it is certainly one of the cleanest public places on the planet. But, have you ever wondered how it maintains its tidy reputation? The answer: the “Third Shift.” Not long after the last guest exits the park’s gates “cast members” (yes, even the maintenance crews were deemed such by Walt Disney) arrive to restore order to the Magic Kingdom. According to Disney execs, some 1,000 workers known as “custodians” clock in after midnight to inspect rides and scrub … Continue reading

Disney’s The Magic Gourd Designed to Enchant China

China is one tough nut for Disney to crack, but to give the Walt Disney Company credit they have been bound and determined for over a decade now. Yesterday, Disney announced that they would be launching a new strategy in the Asian country designed to entertain and entice the Chinese public. Part of their new strategy includes the upcoming release of the Chinese-language film in cooperation with the China Film Group called The Magic Gourd. The Magic Gourd This film, a first of it’s kind as the Disney Company works in conjunction with the state-run film group is a mix … Continue reading