Want to experience the magic of Christmas with lights and Disney characters? Whatever your view on Disney, the Tokyo Disney Resort is an illuminating experience at Christmastime, so read this article to find out more and get insider tips!
Christmas at Tokyo Disney
Throughout the Park
During the Christmas season, Tokyo Disney Resort is still the happiest place on earth (and some would argue, most beautiful season to visit Disney!). Both Disneyland and Disney Sea are filled with Christmas decorations. From the moment you step into the park, enjoy tinsel, wreaths, ornaments, bells and Christmas lights galore. Enjoy the Christmas-themed windows outside the merchandise shops. Walk around Cinderella’s castle to see even more Christmas cheer and décor. And finally, be filled with the joy of Christmas as you hear Christmas carols being played throughout the park. Try singing along to some of the most well-known Christmas classics.
The 15-meter high Christmas Tree made its return to Disneyland this year (2022) after a 3-year hiatus due to Covid restrictions. Located in the World Bazaar as you enter the park, this is a definite photo opportunity. As crowds gather around the tree, take advantage of the extra time and admire the beautiful colors and intricate decorations. In Japan, it is said that the best food and activities are where people congregate and stand in lines. So be patient, and enjoy the beauty of the tree that brings the crowds.
- Insider Tip: A little-known gem of Disney is searching for hidden Mickeys. If you look closely at the Christmas decorations throughout the park, look for hidden Mickeys among the beautiful reds and greens.
Events and Rides
Check out the special Christmas parade “Disney Christmas Stories”. This is a special 35-minute parade through the park at Disneyland. Disney Sea has its own Special Christmas Greeting with Santa in Mediterranean Harbor twice a day. There’s even a special Mickey Mouse show called “Christmas Time with You” that you will need to get an Entry Request for.
One of Tokyo Disneyland’s popular rides, Haunted Mansion, has a special Holiday version “Holiday Nightmare” during the Christmas season. Based on the film “The Nightmare Before Christmas”, decorations change from Halloween to Christmas as the mansion is taken over by holiday chaos.
Make your way to Toontown to see special Christmas decorations, too! Enjoy exploring this special area of Disneyland and see the park transform into a Christmas wonderland.
Although not exclusive to the Christmas season, you won’t want to miss the special nightly Electrical Parade: Dream Lights at Disneyland. The beautifully lit floats make their way through the park, and you can wave at your favorite characters as they pass by.
- Insider tip: If you want to view the electrical parade while sitting down, grab a meal at the Tomorrowland Terrace. Make sure to get your seat on the terrace early to enjoy a peaceful viewing of the parade without having to save a spot along the route in the cold and to avoid fighting crowds.
Both Disney Sea and Disneyland have nightly fireworks shows timed to Christmas music. If you happen to be in the park on a clear night, enjoy the spectacular show!
- Insider Tip: If you’re at Disneyland, I recommend trying to get the timing right so you can ride Big Thunder Mountain as the fireworks light up the night sky as you cruise through the mountain.
Purchase some Christmas-themed merchandise for yourself or your friends. What’s on your wish list this Christmas? Disneyland has you covered with Christmas postcards, clear file folders, balloons, stationery, chocolates, and cookies. Christmas is a time to give and receive love through special gifts.
For those who want to enjoy the full Disney experience with Disney headbands and headwear, the fluffy headbands and hats will complete your outfit and keep you warm in the chilly winter months. If you’re lucky, maybe you’ll even find a special Christmas-themed headband or clothing item.
- Insider Tip: Search for the items you want to buy on the Disney website or app before you arrive at the park. Then find the store location so that you can go directly there to purchase your gifts and souvenirs.
The Christmas season calls for special food! Whether it’s the delicious chocolate churros or the red and green sandwiches from the Sweetheart Café, there’s a little bit of Christmas cheer to please your palate and your stomach.
Or what about some special bourbon hot cocoa or maple-flavored apple cider? Celebrate Christmas at Tokyo Disney with hearty food and warm drinks.
- Insider Tip: Enjoy your food while watching a parade or fireworks! Enjoy a curry meal at Hungry Bear Restaurant or find a spot along the parade route while snacking on a churro or sipping a hot cup of tea or coffee. At Disney, time is of the essence so you can make it to all your desired rides and shows.
Disney is always a magical dreamland filled with colorful lights at night, but the Christmas season adds an extra dose of magic.
To complete your Christmas at Tokyo Disney experience, why not make time for the shopping mall Ikspiari located next to Tokyo Disneyland, right outside Maihama station? Not only can you browse for Christmas gifts for family and friends, but you can soak in more Christmas cheer with the Christmas décor and treats.
For general Tokyo Disney Resort tips, you can check out this article to make the most of your day at Tokyo Disney.