(This photo is public domain, and can be found here)
Tokyo Disneyland (as well as Disneyland Paris and Hong Kong Disneyland) has a castle, just like its American counterparts, but it is much more difficult to find lots of information out about it. That may be in part to the fact that many more people go to Walt Disney World than other parks, as well as other factors, such as the enthusiasm of the visitors, and the more obvious language barrier (私は日本語が話せません, ありがとう).
The Cinderella Castle at Tokyo Disneyland is said to be 167 feet tall, or 22 feet shorter than the castle at Walt Disney World. There are many people out there who claim this number is incorrect, or that if you look at the two, you can definitely tell that one is shorter than the other. My explanation (agree, or agree to disagree) is that in Florida, the Utilidor system is considered the first floor of the theme park, and when the castle was measured, they had to go from the bottom level to the top. In Paris and Tokyo, they measured from the ground level, giving the 22 foot difference.
(This image is from the Tokyo Disneyland website)
The most noticeable differences between Walt Disney World and Tokyo are inside the castle. While Walt Disney World has Cinderella’s Royal Table, the castle in Tokyo has a walk-through entitled “Cinderella’s Fairy Tale Hall, which has artwork, dioramas and other works which detail Cinderella’s life.
(This picture in the public domain and is available here)
Another difference is the paint job. In 2006, the castle in Japan got a re-haul, with newer paint colors to help it stand apart from its sister castles. The darker gray stones and gold sections.
So why a Cinderella castle, and not a Snow White castle? One theory is that the Japanese people felt a stronger connection to Cinderella’s character traits than Snow White’s. Cinderella has a strong work ethic and a sense of duty.
Although I have been to Japan twice, I’ve never had the opportunity to make it to Tokyo Disneyland. Perhaps after going to Walt Disney World for 365 consecutive days, I’ll take a break from it and head around the world.
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