Tokyo Disneyland officially turns 30

AFP-JIJI

Thousands of fans packed Tokyo Disneyland on Monday to celebrate its 30 years in business.

Mickey Mouse, Winnie the Pooh and dozens of other familiar faces from the annals of Disney history paraded through the 51-hectare park, cheered on by 15,000 people who had turned out to see them.

The resort comprises the Disneyland and DisneySea theme parks as well as three hotels, shopping malls and a monorail line that connects the facilities.

In contrast to the Disneylands in Hong Kong and France, which have sometimes struggled to attract customers, Tokyo Disney Resort is one of Japan’s most popular tourist destinations, with more than 25 million visitors a year.

A total 570 million people have visited since the park opened — approximately four times Japan’s population, with tourists coming from all over Asia to see Mickey and friends.

“Since its opening day in 1983, Tokyo Disney Resort has inspired the imagination of hundreds of millions of guests, becoming the most followed resort destination in Japan,” said Thomas Staggs, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, at a ceremony.