If you’re heading to Tokyo or Japan, you should plan to make the most of your trip to the Land of the Rising Sun. With all the great restaurants, cafés, shops, and attractions, you’ll quickly find your itinerary is pretty full.
Of all the things you can do, the theme parks are among some of the best in the world. Whether you’re looking for thrill rides or something the whole family can enjoy, Japan is home to many fantastic theme parks.
In this article, Superprof is looking at some of the best theme parks in and around Tokyo. Between roller coasters, big wheels, and other rides, you can have a great time in these theme parks.
Tokyo Dome City
Tokyo Dome City in Bunkyō City is an entertainment complex where you can find Tokyo Dome City Attractions, a Japanese theme park. From 1958 to 2003 the park was known as Kōrakuen before changing its name to become part of the Tokyo Dome City complex.
When visiting the park, entry is free but you’ll either have to pay for a pass or pay to go on each ride. The pass will cost 4,200 yen (£30) for an adult or 3,200 (£22) for a discounted evening pass. The cost of the rides ranges between £3 and £10.
Amongst the rides, you should have a go on:
- The Thunder Dolphin
- The Big O ferris wheel
- The Onryou Zashiki haunted house
- The Wonder Drop log flume
- The Dive shooting game
- The Venus Lagoon merry-go-round on water
- The Water Symphony show
- The Super Viking Sorabune roller coaster
There’s something for all ages and tastes and if you find yourself in Tokyo, you have to give this place a go.
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Joypolis is an amusement park based on Sega’s intellectual properties in Odaiba, Tokyo’s artificial island. It first opened in 1994 and is home to plenty of attractions with many of them utilising virtual reality. Between haunted houses, roller coasters, and attractions with your favourite Sega characters, you won’t be disappointed.
It’ll cost you 800 yen (£5) to get in and for each attraction, you’ll pay an average of £4. Otherwise, you can buy a pass for 4,500 yen (£31) for an adult or a discounted £25 for the evening.
It’s recommended that you take the 4,500 yen pass and spend a few hours going on as many rides as you can.
In Joypolis, you can also sit down and have a coffee while enjoying the view of the bay from the third floor. There’s everything you need to enjoy yourself here.
Hanayashiki Amusement Park in Asakusa
Hanayashiki Amusement Park is Japan’s oldest theme park. Located in Asakusa, it first opened in 1853 as a park before becoming a theme park at the end of the 19th century. Amongst the most popular attractions, there’s the Roller Coaster, Space Shot, Disk “O”, and the Sky Ship!
The prices are quite reasonable and you’ll pay 500 yen (£3.50) to get in and around 100 yen (£0.70) for the rides or you can get the Free Ride Pass for 2,500 (£17) for unlimited rides, not including the entry fee. It all depends on how much time you’re going to spend there.
Tokyo One Piece Tower
If you’re a bit of an otaku and have been following Luffy’s adventures from the beginner, you’ll be interested in this One Piece park. Located in the Tokyo Tower, this place is open from 10:00 to 22:00 and has plenty of games and attractions based on the Eiichiro Oda’s manga characters.
Of all the One Piece attractions, the most popular include:
- The 360 Log Theater
- Luffy’s Endless Adventure
- Zoro’s Soul of Edge
- Nami’s Casino House
- Usopps’s Road to Sogeking
- Chopper’s Thousand Sunny Tours
- Robin’s Finding Ponegliff
- Franky’s Ball Run
- Brook’s Horror House
You can get tickets online for 3,000 yen (£20). They’re a bit more expensive if you buy them there. You can also get photos with characters from the series for 1,500 (£10) and take home souvenirs from the world of pirates.
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Namco Namja Town
Namja Town is a theme park in the Sunshine City shopping centre in Ikebukuro and it’s a little different to the other theme parks here. There are several attractions as well as gyoza tastings and a “dessert alley”.
It’s recommended that you visit Namja Town with the kids because there are plenty of great attractions for them and the food’s great. Tickets cost around £25 for adults and £20 for kids.
If you find yourself by Ikebukuro, you have to visit this park.
Tokyo Disneyland is arguably the theme park with the most recognisable name, especially if you’ve been to any of the other parks. This theme park is great if you grew up watching Disney films.
Of all the attractions in the park, the most popular ones include:
- Pirates of the Caribbean
- Jungle Cruise
- Big Thunder Mountain
- Splash Mountain
- It’s a Small World
- Snow White’s Adventures
- Peter Pan’s Flight
- Haunted Mansion
- Star Tours
- Space Mountain
- Buzz Lightyear’s Astro Blasters
- Monsters, Inc. Ride & Go Seek
Adult tickets cost 7,500 yen (£50), 6,500 yen (£45) for teens, and 4,900 yen (£34) for kids under 11. It can quickly become costly visiting Tokyo Disneyland, especially if you stay for a couple of days to go to Tokyo DisneySea.
However, much like Disneyland Paris and Disney World, you’ll have to wait in queues of at least half an hour for most of the rides.
It’s a good idea to go when the Japanese are at school if you want to avoid the queues.
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You’ll have to head outside of Tokyo to go to Fuji-Q Highland, the theme park by Mount Fuji. At the foot of the famous mountain, this theme park has plenty of attractions in wonderful surroundings. Many of the rides have broken records.
There’s the roller coaster Dododonpa, Endless Mine, and Panic Clock. If you love thrills and spills, this is the park to go to.
Tickets cost 3,900 (£27) for an afternoon and can go up to 6,000 yen (£40) for the full day.
Universal Studios Japan
Universal Studios Japan is located near Osaka and has been open since 2001. The park is full of attractions, shops, and shows themed around Universal Studios’ intellectual properties. Amongst the attractions, you’ll find Jurassic Park, Harry Potter, Hello Kitty, Sesame Street, and Jaws.
A day ticket will cost 7,600 yen (£53) for adults and 5,200 yen (£36) for kids. For this price, you can enjoy all the attractions and eat in Three Broomsticks restaurant or the Minions restaurant.
If you’re travelling to Osaka or nearby, you might want to head to Universal Studios Japan.
Now you know a bit more about Japan and Tokyo’s best theme parks, you can start planning your trip to the Land of the Rising Sun. To learn more about Japan and its main cities, check out our other articles on the subject. You can also get help with your Japanese from one of the many talented tutors on Superprof.
If you'd like to learn Japanese, there are plenty of great books out there and online resources and apps available. However, if you want to learn a language, you need to speak it and you can do that thanks to the many talented Japanese tutors on Superprof.
There are three main types of tutorial available and each comes with advantages and disadvantages in terms of your learning and budget: face-to-face tutorials, online tutorials, and group tutorials.
Face-to-face tutorials are probably what most people think of when they hear "private tutorials". This is a tutorial between a private tutor and a single student. While this is the most effective type of tutorial, it's also the most costly. After all, your tutor spends time outside the tutorials planning and tailoring the course to you.
Online tutorials are similar to face-to-face tutorials but instead of the tutor being in the room with you, they'll teach you via webcam using video conferencing software. While online tutorials have their drawbacks with hands-on subjects, they're great for foreign languages, especially since you can get online tutors from anywhere in the world. Since online tutors don't have to travel to their students and can schedule more tutorials each week, they tend to charge less than face-to-face tutorials.
Finally, there are group tutorials. Unlike the other two types of tutorials, you won't be the only student in the session. As a result, they tend to work out cheaper than the other tutorials since every student in attendance is footing the bill. However, with other students in the class, you won't get as much one-on-one time with your tutor and the sessions won't be tailored to just you. If you and a group of friends are going to Japan, you should consider getting group tutorials before you go.
In the end, the decision is down to you, how you like to learn, and your budget.