Tokyo Dome City + Shibuya

Alexander: Tokyo Dome City is nothing short of an enthusiast’s gateway drug into the world of Japanese theme parks. A great flume? A unique Intamin hyper? Essentially Japanese glitz? Pokemon? Oh yes.

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The first thing we did after we checked into our hotel was come  here.

ACE had this park as part of the 1st day of the tour, but how could we resist not coming early for some insurance rides?

Behold! The fashion, entertainment, and cuisine capital of Tokyo Dome City: LaQua!

In this unassuming, clean-subway-station-but-still-a-subway-station-looking plaza is the entrance to Thunder Dolphin, a mild hyper with exceptional views!

80’s era Six Flags fans rejoice! A Tokyo Dome City icon for over 30 years is Sky Flower, an Intamin Parachute Tower.

Do you know how lucky we are? We were assigned the front seat on this, the most militant assigned-seating-only coaster ever. And it was Sean’s 400th coaster!

Earthquakes be damned – Thunder Dolphin’s suspension bridge-inspired approach to superstructure outsmarts even the wildest of shakers!


Care to take a closer look?

Thunder Dolphin may not deliver too strongly in the thrill department, but it’s a great ride overall that still satisfies better than Millennium Force.

And the flume here is great too! Pocari Sweat: THE RIDE!

There’s a lot of Pokemon: GO stuff here.

Like, there’s a whole set-up here and everything. You can even have your picture taken inside a giant Poke Ball!

We had dinner across the street, in a cheesy American-Italian thing that’s a handy cross between Denny’s and Pizza Hut. Not a bad view from the entrance!

French onion soup and fast food spaghetti with squid. Be still, my heart!

La Qua is pure aesthetic. When you think of Japan, think of this. It’s too good.

What more could you even ask for??

The parachutes aren’t very high, but I’m sure when they were built they felt much mightier.

Anyway, here’s how it looks when 150 ACErs descend upon a coaster with 5min dispatches. 

By day, the bright chutes are easier to appreciate.

This time we ate at an “actual” Italian restaurant. We got some amazing pie!

Japanese folks are definitely on board with the entire spectrum of Italian food (everything from Italian food to “Italian” food to “Italian” “food”)

Daylight rides on Thunder Dolphin have their own unique charms.

It’s easier to admire the ride’s crazy support system this time of day.

Better call Jo-Ann Fabrics because THE THREADING OVER HERE IS OUT. OF. CONTROL.

There’s a yellow train and an orange train, but at any given moment I couldn’t exactly tell you which is which. For a while I thought they were the same color.


The Ferris Wheel isn’t the only thing getting threaded over here.

My favorite thing in the world is takoyaki. Being able to eat it for every meal of every day is one of may favorite parts of being in Japan.

Yes, the parachutes still have their stand-up cages! It’s such a rush!

That evening we popped over a few stops to Shibuya, home of the world’s busiest intersection.

So basically, it’s Tokyo’s Times Square. Except it’s better, because it’s in Tokyo.

This is what a lot of people think of when they think of Tokyo. They’re not wrong for that. 

There’s no better metro than Tokyo. All that’s missing is the sweet vomit smell of Manhattan.

At one point a lost Sean inside a 6 story electronic store. I found him in the toy department, fulfilling his dream of being a Japanese pop star.

Dreams really do come true! And we’re not even at Tokyo Disney yet!

Four of our five biggest focus parks are all that’s left of our Japan coverage! We saved (some) of the best for last!

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