5 Lesser Known Amusement and Theme Parks around Tokyo You Must Visit

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5 Lesser Known Amusement and Theme Parks around Tokyo You Must Visit

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When you think of theme parks in Japan, there definitely have to be at least two places that come to mind—Tokyo Disney Resort and Universal Studios Japan. They’re the powerhouses of theme parks and attract millions of visitors every year.

But what if you come to Japan and just don’t feel like squeezing with crowds of people and waiting in line for hours? Fortunately, Disneyland is not your only option. In Tokyo alone there are plenty of amusement and theme parks that are smaller in size but not any less fun.

Fuji-Q Highland

If you enjoy hardcore rollercoasters, a visit to Fuji-Q Highland is in order. With extreme rides, terrifying haunted house attractions and a glorious view of next-door-neighbor Mount Fuji, this amusement park is going to be a test of courage from start to finish. If that’s not exciting enough, this year end they’re going to finish off the year with a bang at the 2017-2018 Fuji-Q Highland Countdown Live. There’s no better way to welcome the new year than with fireworks, celebrities and performances all against the majestic backdrop of Mount Fuji.

Fuji-Q Highland official site:

Asakusa Hanayashiki

Enter a world steeped in tradition when you go to Asakusa Hanayashiki, the oldest amusement park in all of Japan. It opened in 1853 as a flower park, and over 160-odd years has bloomed into a bustling amusement park that remains beloved by young and old patrons. It has all the classic attractions, including roller-coasters, haunted houses and dazzling stage shows. Not only that, but Hanayashiki is also incredibly picturesque. From now till April 1 2018, Asakusa Hanayashiki will be lit up every night with their special “Lumi-yashiki” illuminations to create an even more magical place to escape to.

Asakusa Hanayashiki official site:


Wedged into the northeastern side of Tokyo, Toshimaen is another long-standing amusement park that has been around since the Taisho era in 1926. Last year it crossed it’s 90th anniversary, celebrating a history of family fun and thrills. In addition to the usual rides, Toshimaen shows its unique personality with a dog park, fishing area, interactive pet garden and more. Wouldn’t you love to meet a cute kangaroo right here in Tokyo? With so many different attractions, you can easily spend a full day Toshimaen. They’re revving up for the Christmas season too; start getting into the holiday mood when you drop by for their Winter Fantasia event! Expect a stunning sight with their fully illuminated areas and 3D projection mapping.

Toshimaen official site:


. ー よみうりランド 🎠🎡🎢 #1106 #jewellumination #illumination

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You might want to just spend hours relaxing among beautiful night scenery—this is the perfect place for that. One of the most popular spots for winter illuminations, Yomiuri Land boasts the biggest illumination sites in the region with a total of 5,500,000 LED lights lighting up the park at night. With a variety of different themed areas, visitors can take their time exploring and admiring the beautiful LED displays while taking photos. As Tokyo’s largest amusement park, you can be sure that you’ll have plenty of space without having to fight the crowds.

Yomiuri Land official site:

Sanrio Puroland


Get ready for this unique theme park overflowing with cuteness—all your favorite characters come together to welcome you at Sanrio Puroland and let you bask in the purely adorable atmosphere of everything Sanrio. Even if you’re not a fan, you might just fall in love with all the photogenic spots and lively stage performances. The characters themselves also come out to greet you in person, so that’ll be a meeting to remember during your time in Tokyo. They’re also celebrating the holidays with two special events this year, with “Puro Christmas” from now till December 25, and a New Year event “Tribute to Wonderful!” from December 26 till January 19 where you can catch the characters in kimono!

Sanrio Puroland official site:

There’s no end to the fun you can have around Tokyo—and you can do it comfortably at these cozy parks anytime. With so many options you’ll be spoilt for choice; why not try them all? Especially with the approaching winter, the illuminations will light up your memories and truly make it a season to remember.

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College student in Tokyo and lover of Ghibli and Hello! Project.

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