If you are living in Hong Kong or simply travelling there with your family, you must visit Hong Kong Disneyland at least once. Often voted one of the best theme parks in the world, if not the best in Asia, here is our definitive guide of what to do, how to beat the lines and how to ensure your visit is the best yet.
How much time to spend here
A full day may be enough, as Hong Kong Disneyland is the smallest of all the Disney theme parks. However, you may want to spread your time over a few days, to really make the most of all that there is on offer. Some choose to spend a half-day, staying in only one or two zones, and the tickets are of course cheaper. Try to take the weather into account. The heat and humidity in summer can be unbearable, not to mention the flash storms that can happen. If you are visiting in summer, try a half-day early in the morning, go home until dinner time and then return in the evening.
The Seven Lands
Much like Main Street’s all over Disneyland, this is no different. Just like walking through an American town from a movie, this is where all the best souvenir shops are located. The Emporium, as well as food outlets like Tsum Tsums and Gelatoni. There are several animation attractions here, as well as the Hong Kong Disneyland Railroad. The character greetings take place here, in the grassy roundabout in the central street, but the lines are usually long. You can find character greetings at other places in the park, that are less busy. The Bibbidi Bobbidi boutique is also located here, where kids can dress up as their favorite Disney princess or prince. Make sure to reserve in advance as it can get extremely busy. Try eating at Corner Cafe or Market House Bakery. There is also a snack cart, with turkey legs, waffles and egg tarts.
After walking through Main Street, you can find Fantasy Land, tailor made for young children. At the moment, the castle is closed for renovation and will be until 2019, when it will be reopened as a homage to all Disney princesses. The fireworks display is also on hold. However, little kids will love Cinderella’s Carousel, Dumbo The Flying Elephant, It’s A Small World, Mad Hatter Tea Cups, The Many Adventures of Winnie The Pooh, Mickey’s PhilHarMagic, Sword In The Stone (a character greeting spot). There are plenty of pagodas here to sit on and more importantly, plenty of shade. Here you can have photos taken with characters by a photographer, available for purchase. Royal Banquet Hall is a great place to eat, with several stations, including sushi, BBQ, Chinese and international cuisine. Clopin’s Festival of Food has Chinese cuisine, complete with plastic replicas in the shop window.
Toy Story Land
Dedicated to the Toy Story movies, this has plenty of attractions such as Barrel of Fun, RC Racer, Slinky Dog Spin, and Toy Soldier Parachute Drop. Lines here move slowly, so be patient. You will also be asked to put your things in a locker before boarding but the view is great. Jessie’s Snack Cart has drinks and snacks, including ice cream with churros.
This is a brand-new land and is exclusive to Hong Kong Disneyland. The only ride here is Mystic Manor, and is similar to the famous Haunted House, but with a different story and better special effects. Based on the mystical land of Papua New Guinea and set in a rainforest, as well as the home of the Mystic explorer, the ride is great fun for all. There is also a Garden of Wonders and Mystic Point Freight Depot. The real draw here though is the Explorer’s Club Restaurant which has different stations based on Indonesian, Japanese, Korean and Southeast Asian food. The dining halls are also themed according to different areas of the world.
This is the Hong Kong equivalent of Frontierland and is just like a turn of the century, Gold Rush America. It is quite small and the only rides are Big Grizzly Mountain Runaway Mine Cars. This is a great mini roller coaster for younger kids and is just like Thunder Mountain at the larger Disneyland parks. There is also a snack outlet and a popcorn stall here.
This is the largest of all the zones and here you can enjoy a leisurely Jungle River Cruise (you can queue depending on what language you speak), Karibuni Marketplace (there are often characters here), Liki Tikis, Tarzan’s Treehouse and the rafts that take you there. Try the chocolate banana dippers at the food cart here. They also sell fresh fruit too.
Stay tuned for the second part of our definitive guide to Hong Kong Disneyland!