I am Vicky Wang from Taiwan, I’ve been in mainland China for study & work for more than 10 years, and I’m an amusement park enthusiast. When I was little, I was fascinated by every Disney fairy tales like Lion King, Cinderella etc. Just like other kids, I spent a lot of time watching them and they were part and parcel of my childhood. So once I knew that Shanghai was going to build a Disneyland, I was like “Yeah!!!!!!!!” I can’t wait to go and see that fantastic castle and meet all the prince and princess. Actually, I’ve been to the Disneyland in Japan, both the sea theme and the land park. But I still can’t wait to visit Shanghai Disneyland to see the differences. So in this post, I’m going to show you the complete guide to Shanghai Disneyland attractions!
It was in September, the weather was not too hot, perfect for a Shanghai Disneyland tour.
Shanghai Disneyland Ticket Price
The ticket usually costs around $55 USD (370 RMB) but will go up to $60 USD (499 RMB) on national holidays. You can order the ticket from agency or book directly from their official website. I highly recommend you to book before hand, so that you won’t waste time queuing just to get the tickets. Trust me, the queue is really long!
By the way, you are bound to see a lot of crowd in the park. If queuing kills you or you only have limited time, go for the VIP ticket which costs $300 USD (2000 RMB). This VIP ticket entitles you to fast pass for every ride, which means you can skip all the queue and go straight to the attractions! Of course the ticket is much more expensive than the normal tickets, so only choose this option if you don’t mind spending more.
Suggested Entering Time
The park is supposed to be opened from 9:00 AM to 10:00 PM, but in fact, it opens at 8:00 AM. If you want to go for more attractions, I suggest you to arrive there at about 8:00-8:30 AM.
Preparations for the Shanghai Disneyland Tour
Download Shanghai Disneyland Resort APP
The APP is the ultimate guide to the Shanghai Disneyland! It’s very important to download this APP before you enter the park. It will tell you the approximate queue time for each attraction, so you can plan your tour route accordingly. The APP also shows which attractions are under maintenance or temporarily closed. In a way, it saves you a lot of time and effort running around the park. What’s more, you can select your language; it’s really easy to use.
Get Your Free Fast Pass With Fast Pass Machine
Shanghai Disneyland is divided into 5 sections; they are Tomorrowland, Fantasyland, Gardens of Imagination, Adventure Isle and Treasure Cove. In every section, there’s an awesome machine which allows you to get a Fast Pass for FREE! The location of the machine is indicated in the APP mentioned earlier. Once you put your entrance ticket into the machine, you can choose your favorite attraction and the machine automatically gives you a fast pass. This will help you save a lot of time queuing, especially if the attraction is super popular!
The fast pass ticket will indicate the timing of your ride and when you can get your next free fast pass. Usually every 2 hours will entitle you another free fast pass. However do note that not all attractions have the fast pass card option. And some popular attractions have limited fast pass cards to give out, so be there early and get yourself to the nearest machine asap!
Must Do Shanghai Disneyland Attractions
Since the park is big, you can hardly go for all the rides and shows in one day. So you should be very careful choosing what you want to do, to make sure you won’t miss out the best. Below are the MUST-DO attractions you shouldn’t miss.
Scare Level：Not at all!
This is the attraction that I recommend the most. Trust me, this should be the ride that you should go for as soon as you enter the park! It offers 4D experience without wearing special glasses. How amazing! You can literally travel the world by only sitting on the rides. What’s more, it’s not scary, so it’s suitable for both children and adults. All in all, it’s a super interesting ride offering brand new experience with the latest technology. Highly recommend!
One of the most exciting and scariest attractions in Shanghai Disneyland. It’s like riding a flying motorbike at a speed of 80km/h. This cool roller-coaster will make you swirl and turn in the cyber-fi world of TRON! If you want to have a cool photo with the motorbike, you can bring in your phone and let someone take a quick shot for you. Otherwise, you’ll have to lock your bags in a locker outside.
This ride will get you wet! However the excitement level also depends on your luck and how the boat land on the water. Still, it’s a fun ride to go for. If you don’t want to get wet, you’d better buy a rain coat which costs about $3 USD (20 RMB) per piece.
Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
Don’t be deceived by its harmless look. This little roller-coaster is actually quite fast in certain portion. A little boy behind me actually started crying because of that, poor him… However, the ride will take you through a cute mini tunnel, a very enjoyable experience indeed!
Tada, Pirates of the Caribbean! As you settle yourself in the “boat” and start sailing, the visual becomes really real. At the same time, you can take a good rest on the “cruise” as the seat is really comfortable. If you monitor the APP closely, this attraction sometimes has a surprising short queue of only 15 mins. The usual queue for each ride is around 1.5 hours, so take the advantage of the APP!
This is the attraction I recommend you to do it at night. You can control how high you want to fly, and go all the way up to enjoy the great view of the whole theme park during nightfall.
Peter Pan’s Flight
Scare Level: Not at all!
This section is highly suitable if you have kids around. This little flying boat offers a relaxing ride, and of course, a good rest after a long day of queuing.
Voyage to the Crystal Gritti
Scare Level: Not at all!
Another relaxing ride for you to take a rest. This 20-30 mins ride will take you cruise around the lake and discover many lovely Disney Characters, reminding you childhood time. It’s recommended to take this ride at night when the beautiful lights lit up the lake.
Wow Shanghai Disneyland actually has a club! How cool. You can dance all you want with the awesome DJ music at the back. If you enjoy clubbing and dancing, this is the right place for you!
Ignite the Dream – A Nighttime Spectacular of Magic and Light
PC: China Daily
There’s no reason to miss this fantastic firework! Every day at around 830pm, the beautiful firework will lit up the sky. Lasting for about 20-30 mins, it marks the perfect ending of the day. If you want to get the best out of it, reach the castle at least 30 mins earlier to get the best spot. This is the highlight of my trip, so I strongly recommend you to go for it! Do note that during Winter, the firework will start earlier like 730pm.
Picture Taking with the Castle
What to eat in Shanghai Disneyland?
When it comes to food, there are a lot of restaurants to choose from. Personally, I tried roasted chicken and seafood spaghetti, and they were both delicious! We had lunch at Barbossa’s Bounty in the Treasure Cove. The restaurant offers indoor seating featuring views of Pirates of the Caribbean Battle for the Sunken Treasure. Apart from BBQ and seafood, they also have vegetarian meals.
For dinner we went to Stargazer Grill in Tomorrowland. The restaurant is at this open-air terrace and behold a few of the grandest views in Shanghai Disneyland—all while indulging in a variety of burgers, chicken fingers, French fries, Caesar salads and more.
If you don’t want to spend too much money on proper meals, go for Disneyland snacks.
This huge roasted chicken drumstick is very popular. Yummy and filling!
Mickey Mouse Ice-cream actually tastes so so. But well, it’s perfect for photos!
Mickey Mouse Meat Bun is super huge and yummy, value for money!
Souvenir from Shanghai Disneyland
If you want to bring something back as a souvenir, but have trouble finding something you really like, check out the coin-making machine at the corner. With the machine, you can choose your favorite pattern. I made mine at the shop outside of “TRON”. The coin has features unique to the Shanghai Disneyland, making it a perfect souvenir!
How I feel about Shanghai Disneyland
All in all, I really enjoyed the Shanghai Disneyland. The park is like a combination of Disneyland and Disneysea in Japan, offering attractions that are both exciting and romantic. Some of the rides’ technologies are so cutting-edge that you can barely find in other theme parks. And the park is really huge, you can spend all day here! It’s really worth your time and money. Of course there’s room for improvement too. If the staff can be more friendly and passionate, the overall experience will be even better!
I hope you find this guide useful. Enjoy living up your Disney dream and Happy New Year!
Final thoughts from Chloe
Disneyland has the power the light up everybody’s dream, reminding us our beautiful childhood and giving us a reminiscence of the past. Hope you find Vicky’s guide as useful as I do. Next time when you visit Shanghai, release the child in you and have a blast in Shanghai Disneyland! If you want to find out more about Vicky, check out her biography here. 🙂
Have an awesome year ahead!