The gates are opened after the five years of construction and multiple delays of the most tremendous park called “Shanghai Disney Resort”, the first new Disney theme park in over 10 years.It covers the vast area of 3.9 square kilometres made up of Disneyland, Disney town, Wishing Star Park and two hotels.
According to Disney officials, it’s the brand’s biggest international park and utilises never before seen technology,it is the most jaw dropping experience for the visitors. But we aren’t just going to take their word for it.
To find out what visitors can expect — and how the park stacks up to its global Disney counterparts, we went to Stefan Zwanzger — better known as the “Theme Park Guy”, He has visited 332 parks in 142 countries. o we knew he wasn’t going to miss out on this one.
Zwanzger was lucky enough to get a sneak preview of Shanghai Disneyland during its pre-opening trial period before the official June 16 opening date.
- What’s your overall impression of Shanghai Disneyland?
Zwanzger: I have witnessed the rise of Disneyland in the eastern Shanghai suburbs from day one, and the change that has happened there is staggering. It’s like turning Nepal into Switzerland in a matter of years.
I think it’s the most marvellous and unbelievable Disney park ever built in terms of attractions and thrill. They have many more rides than Hong Kong and Paris Disneyland had when they opened, it really is a big park with a good range of attraction offerings such as their grooving slides and all.
As for charm, I think there’s less magic than at Hong Kong and Paris Disneyland.
You don’t need Main Street and Disneyland Railroad at every park, you can come up with new ideas, but I don’t think Mickey Avenue and the Gardens of Imagination in front of the castle are a great replacement. But nevertheless, it’s a very complete park, attraction-wise. You have almost 10 major attractions to visit and queue for when you enter the park upon opening. That’s very unusual. It’s really huge.
They have replaced it with a much-smaller Mickey Avenue, but it doesn’t provide that special Main Street outlook on the castle. It’s big, but it’s not magic compared to for example Paris Disneyland’s castle.
- Will foreigners experience any cultural or language barriers?
It maybe 85% Disney and 15% “distinctly Chinese,” Any foreigner can come and have a good time and enjoy to the fullest.
- How does Shanghai Disneyland compare to other Disney parks?
I think Hong Kong Disneyland is much more magical and beautiful, but then Shanghai Disney is like every individuals dreams comes true when it comes to the attractions.When Hong Kong Disneyland opened in 2005 there was almost nothing to ride. Shanghai is the opposite, there is plenty to do.
In my opinion the best Disney theme park in the world is still Disney Sea in Tokyo and the most “magic” Magic Kingdom continues to be Disneyland Paris but yeah, I must say that everyone should visit here because the way they built and organise this park is literally feels like heaven.