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  1. #1

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    Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2012

    Yes, pinch me. Remind me again that it is actually true.

    I cannot believe that we are only a few days away from my first trip to Japan and visiting the Tokyo Disney Resort. My partner George and I have been talking about this trip for what seems like forever and now it is just around the corner. My excitement has gotten to the point that I didn't even want to wait to start a trip report so here I go. Plus I figure it will help if I can make any comments while we are traveling having the thread already going.

    First off I must thank everyone on this board who has answered questions and helped with my research and planning. Like many others, the thought of planning a trip to Japan can be initially overwhelming but with everyone's help and awesome trip reports (Thank you Joe!) it has made it fun and easier. Working in the travel industry I have some insight and background to traveling internationally but I have never traveled to Asia before. Being able to read the reports and gain input from everyone has been super valuable.

    Plans became finalized last September when I bought tickets to Tokyo on Singapore Air. That really set the ball rolling. I wanted to experience an Asian carrier to fly to Japan and I found a great deal on the non-stop from LAX. Since we live in Tampa, FL I worked on getting flights to the west coast to start the trip. George had not flown internationally since he was in Japan in the service a good 30+ years ago. He was a little concerned about a "real long" flight so we thought breaking up the trip in LA for a night would help. With that said here is the basic plan for the trip.

    May 6 - Tampa to LA
    May 7 - LA to Tokyo via Singapore Air
    May 8 - arrive Tokyo
    May 9 - Tokyo sightseeing with guide from Tokyo Free Guide (Asakusa, Imperial Palace, Sumida River cruise)
    May 10 - Hakone National Park circuit via Hakone Free Pass
    May 11 - Tokyo sightseeing
    May 12 - Kamakura sightseeing with guide from Tokyo Free Guide
    May 13 - My birthday! More Tokyo (National Museum, Harajuku and more!)
    May 14 - 17 - Tokyo Disney Resort (TDL, TDS, hop, hop)
    May 18 - last minute Tokyo sightseeing before evening flight back to US

    Basically we are spending most of our time in Tokyo. I really enjoy getting to know a city when I travel and I like leaving time to explore (and CD shop), find unexpected sights (take lots of photos) etc. Plus I am excited to be in Japan for my birthday and will actually (kinda sort of) be at TDR for my birthday. Since Tokyo will be 13 hours ahead when we are at the resort it will still be my birthday back in Tampa so I can technically say I was there on my birthday. I was going to plan on being there on the actual day itself but I thought we should avoid the weekend and I wanted to make sure we were at TDL at specific times since some attractions go into rehab on May 15. Speaking of ride rehabs, I did find out after the trip was set that Journey to the Center of the Earth was going to be in rehab while we were going to be at TDS. It really bummed me out for a few days especially since I did plan the trip around the posting of JTTCOTE's February 2012 rehab not thinking it would have a second one so soon. Bit once I got over it I realized I am still going to Japan and TDR. Did I say pinch me?

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  2. #2

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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    I'd wish you a great trip... but I think that's a given.

    Warning: TDR is addictive. A couple weeks ago, I visited TDR for my 4th time and I'm already trying to plot a way to get back sooner rather than later.

    Make sure not to miss Mythica and Fantasmic at TDS. I'd recommend trying to do them (and any other outdoor shows you really want to see) on the first day possible because I've experienced some weather related cancellations on past trips... and it would suck to leave something to your last day and then not be able to see it at all.

  3. #3

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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    Hakone and Kamakura are excellent trips: you will see enough shrines and national treasures aplenty.

    Some notes: Asakusa can be half a day easily if you spend time in the shopping arcades and explore the whole area.

    In Kamakura, make sure to go to the Bamboo Temple (Hokokuji Temple):
    Hokokuji Temple (Takedera Temple) - Kamakura - Reviews of Hokokuji Temple (Takedera Temple) - TripAdvisor
    It is an absolute must. One of the most peaceful places on earth, and make sure to have the traditional "whisked" tea in the little teahouse. They close at 4 pm on some days, so go there early and soak it in.
    Born in a shoebox and making the most of it.

  4. #4

    • Tokyo Disney Sea Cast
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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    I wish I can see you in the parks!
    Tokyo Disneyland Crew!

    Currently working at:: Journey to the Center of the Earth!



  5. #5

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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    Prometheus. Will you be working at the parks when we are there?

  6. #6

    • Tokyo Disney Sea Cast
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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    Looks like I will be at the parks in May, but since I am moving to Toy Story Mania asap it opens, maybe I wont be in JTTCOTE but in TSMM. I'm the cast assisting guests inside the vehicles, checking their safety bars etc...
    Tokyo Disneyland Crew!

    Currently working at:: Journey to the Center of the Earth!



  7. #7

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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    Where will you be during the ride rehab May 7 - 25? That is when we will be there (May 15 -17). Hopefully we can get a Lava Sanctum tour.

  8. #8

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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    1% Possible im in Jttcote....but Toy Story Mania is about to open so I am currently practicing how to guide, so Im not sure if I will be there..
    Tokyo Disneyland Crew!

    Currently working at:: Journey to the Center of the Earth!



  9. #9

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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    I cannot wait to see your pictures and hear about your experiences. I'm very interested in your experience with Tokyo Free Guide.
    ~Tamika

  10. #10

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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    It's been a great week so far. I will post a complete report when I am back home but I did want to mention that the Tokyo Free Guide service was excellent. It was a great way to have locals show you around. And today I got into the Tokyo Tower for free since it was my birthday. Hard to believe tomorrow we are off to TDR.

  11. #11

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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    Happy birthday! So thrilled to hear that it's been great so far- not that I expected any less. Looking forward to the report- Have fun at TDR!

  12. #12

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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    Happy Birthday!

    Can't wait to hear about everything! We're heading to Japan in July, very exciting!

  13. #13

    • Joe Flowers
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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    Your trip is finally here! Awesome!
    I'm looking forward to hearing about all your fun experiences and seeing your photos.

  14. #14

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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    Have Fun!!
    Tokyo Disneyland Crew!

    Currently working at:: Journey to the Center of the Earth!



  15. #15

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    Re: Pinch me! I actually tgoing to Japan & Tokyo Disney. Carmen's Trip Report - May 2

    Prometheus .... Do you think the Magnum Sanctum Tour will be available while JTTCOTE is in rehab? I saw the sign for it yesterday but there were no CM around.

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