My first visit to Tokyo Disney Resort was on a Saturday in the middle of June back in 2010. The crowds were heavy, the humidity was less than ideal, and we didn’t get to ride much. My friends and I still had a memorable time, but if I had known a when to visit Tokyo Disneyland, I would have advocated for that option without question.
Since then, I have visited the parks many times — even wrote a 200-page book to help you plan — and have taken note of the best and worst times to visit Tokyo Disneyland & Tokyo DisneySea. All based on my experiences over the years.
The question “When should I visit Tokyo Disneyland?” is one of our most asked and with good reason. This is the most important part of your trip planning, so you don’t want to make any mistakes. Here you’ll learn how to decide when to visit Tokyo Disneyland and avoid the crowds.
I’m so happy you’re deciding to visit Tokyo Disney Resort, it holds a special place in my heart and I want each Explorer (that’s you!) to have a memorable time. Alright, let’s help you decide when to visit!
Table of Contents
Things to Know
Before we begin, I want to stress that there is no absolute best time to visit Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea. There are times which are better than others of course. I designed this guide to help you make the right decision. Now that’s out-of-the-way, let’s begin.
Major public holidays are usually the busiest time of year, and off-peak or shoulder seasons tend to save your sanity. But because the Japanese calendar of public holidays differs greatly from North America (and even Europe), what might be the low season at other parks could be an extremely busy time at the Tokyo Disney Resort.
- Avoid weekends and national holidays
- Best days to visit are Tuesday through Friday
- Mondays are generally the busier weekday
- Always buy your Park tickets in advance (trust me)
- Always prepare yourself for crowds (you’ll thank me)
- Crowds are always heavier in the morning so it’s best to get there early
The best piece of advice I can give is to always check the crowd calendar. This helps you see if the dates you chose are busy or not. Also, avoid the weekends and holidays if you can. You’ll see lines for everything including quick service restaurants, popcorn, and even the toilet.
Here’s a quick breakdown of the months (details are on the “Best Months to Visit” section)
- Busy Months
- End of December (after the 25th) into the first week of January
- End of April into the first week of May
- Lower Crowds
- After Golden Week in May
- Comfortable Weather
Every month of the year has a seasonal event that brings merchandise, food, entertainment, and decorations. The first days of any seasonal event bring moderate to heavy crowds. Merchandise and food typically come out a week before the start of the event which also increases the crowds a bit.
- New Years
- Anna and Elsa’s Frozen Fantasy (Not coming back for 2020)
- Pixar Playtime
- Duffy’s Heartwarming Days
- Tokyo Disney Resort 35th Anniversary “Happiest Celebration!” Grand Finale
- Tanabata Days
Pro Tip: The day before an event begins the entertainment typically is running with a soft opening. Use this to your advantage. The times aren’t published on the website but are on the wait times board in the Parks.
When to Visit Tokyo Disneyland in 2019
For those visiting in 2019, here are my suggestions for the best times to visit. I’ll update this section as more closures and seasonal event dates are announced. The 2019 Rugby World Cup is on from September 20 to November 2, 2019. This may affect crowd levels during that time (keep an eye on the crowd calendar).
There is a special case where the Emperor of Japan is abdicating on April 30. This could result in Golden Week in April (one of the biggest holidays in Japan) to become a 10-day holiday. This means it could last from April 27 through May 6, 2019.
A few points about visiting in 2019:
- Construction of the new Beauty and the Beast area goes until 2020 (no dates known yet)
- Soarin Fantastic Flight opens July 23, 2019, at Tokyo DisneySea
- Construction work on Mount Prometheus (Tokyo DisneySea) from March 31, 2019, through October 2020
- Construction work on Cinderella Castle (Tokyo Disneyland) from October 1, 2019, through early April 2020
- See the 2019 Tokyo Disney Resort Events Calendar for specific seasonal event dates
The construction work for both Mount Prometheus and Cinderella Castle may have you changing your plans. We don’t know the extent of the work being done, but we’ll keep you updated. My guess is Cinderella Castle is being redone before the opening of the new Beauty and the Beast attraction. With the Olympics coming in 2020, a lot of construction is happening throughout Japan as a whole.
If you’re saving up money and vacation time for a once-in-a-lifetime trip then I’d considering waiting until 2020 or later. It’s also worth noting that Super Mario World at Universal Studios Japan opens in 2020. Even if you decide to visit before then, there’s still tons to experience.
- Right after the New Year’s event, the crowds are at its lowest
- You’ll see the start of the winter events at the Parks
- Before April 27 (Golden Week starts right after)
- Mild weather and chance to see Cherry Blossoms at Tokyo Disney Resort and around Tokyo
- Be mindful of the closure of Pooh’s Hunny Hunt (see section below)
- After May 6 (Once Golden Week is over)
- A chance to enjoy the Easter Events
October / November
- A chance to experience both Halloween and Christmas with a split visit
- Note: October has become quite busy the past few years, even on weekdays due to the popularity of the Halloween event
Ride Closures in 2019
Attraction, show closures, and refurbishment schedule are important to take into account to help you to decide when to visit Tokyo Disneyland. Here are a few of the major closures (so far) for 2019:
- Haunted Mansion: January 4 – 14, 2019
- Splash Mountain: February 4 – March 5, 2019
- Pooh’s Hunny Hunt: April 3 – May 2, 2019
The resort follows this schedule closely, which means don’t expect attractions to re-open ahead of schedule. For more information see our ride closure schedule.
When to Visit Tokyo Disneyland in 2020
In 2020 we’ll see the summer Olympics in Tokyo in August, which makes it difficult to decide when to visit Tokyo Disneyland. While it’s hard to predict right crowds right now, expect them to start before and after the Olympics. Since about 2013, tourism has increased substantially to Japan. With the summer Olympics, expect the number to continue increasing.
I don’t recommend visiting during the summertime when the Olympics are happening. Not only is the heat intense, but it’ll be busy throughout the entire country and expect prices for hotels to rise. This also applies to Tokyo Disney Resort.
Stick with the months listed in the sections above as a good general rule of thumb for when to visit. Expect high crowds during the opening of Beauty and the Beast attraction in 2020. The opening of this new attraction isn’t known yet, but a prediction (take this with a grain of salt) is around April or May 2020. We’ll also see the opening of Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Japan the same year.
Lastly, read our “Should I Visit Tokyo in 2020” article for more insight on visiting in 2020.
Best Months to Visit
Here’s a summary of every month of the year to help you decide when to visit Tokyo Disneyland. Each month is given one of three labels to help you see what to expect that month. Remember to always check the crowd calendar for your specific dates. This is a general guide and you can apply it to any year you’re visiting.
- ✅ Best: ideal for lower crowds, nice weather, and events
- ❌ Avoid: not ideal due to larger crowds and hot or cold weather
- ⚠ Hit or Miss: Depends mostly on the weather
- Average temperature: 5°C (41°F)
- Crowds are high until January 5 (afterward is the start of the low season)
- Average temperature: 6°C (43°F)
- The cold temperatures and unpredictable crowds due to student discounts
- Average temperature: 9°C (48°F)
- Spring break for students and the added student discounts make for large crowds
- Average temperature: 14°C (57°F)
- Warmer weather and chances to see Cherry Blossoms (Sakura)
- Visit before April 29 to avoid the start of Golden Week
- Average temperature: 18°C (64°F)
- The best month for lower crowds and comfortable weather
- Visit after May 5 (Golden Week)
- Average temperature: 21°C (70°F)
- Rainy Season
- Hit or miss because some years it doesn’t rain much while others it’s non-stop for weeks
- Average temperature: 25°C (77°F)
- Heat and humidity may bother some
- Crowds are lower at the beginning of the month and pick up at the end due to summer vacation
- Average temperature: 26°C (79°F)
- Hot and humid
- Summer holidays and Obon Week bring park capacity crowds
- Average temperature: 23°C (73°F)
- Summer vacation is over and the crowds are lower
- Average temperature: 18°C (64°F)
- Typhoon Season
- Typhoons bring high winds and tons of rain which lowers the crowds
- Parks are still open during most Typhoons (indoor attractions still run)
- Average temperature: 12°C (54°F)
- Cooler weather
- Average temperature: 8°C (46°F)
- Cold weather
- Avoid after December 25 due to New Years Holidays
My Favourite Times to Visit Tokyo Disneyland
Everyone has a personal preference when to visit Tokyo Disneyland. Here’s a list of when I absolutely love visiting the Parks.
After the New Years crowds are gone is one of my favourite times to visit. The weather is cold, but being Canadian, I love it. Everything feels fresh and is one of the few times in the year to experience the Parks with no events (until the winter ones begin later in the month).
Sitting outside on the S.S. Columbia with a hot wine watching the sunset is one of the most relaxing things you can do.
I absolutely love the summer events (even though it’s hot) and Tanabata Days (pictured above). It’s some of the most energetic times of the year with all the shows with spraying water. I’d rather be outside and have water dumped on me than sitting at home in an air-conditioned building. That sound odd, but I adore it.
The summer heat subsides and Halloween begins! The crowds are also a bit lower since everyone is back in school in September.
I believe that Tokyo Disney Resort does a phenomenal job at celebrating Christmas, even though it’s not a religious holiday in Japan at all. Similar to January, I love sitting outside at night with a cup of hot wine and watching the Christmas lights twinkle in the winter sky.
In conclusion, when you decide to visit, remember to have a wonderful time and be in the moment! I absolutely love Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea and is an experience I think every Explorer should have. Now that you have the knowledge to plan when to visit Tokyo Disneyland, it’s time to continue you’re planning.
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