Update: Tokyo Disney Resort has cancelled all its seasonal events for fiscal 2020.
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 the best time to visit Tokyo Disney Resort, I’d have made a better decision.
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 and Tokyo DisneySea. All based on my experiences over the years.
The question “What is the best time to visit Tokyo Disney Resort?” 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 Tokyo DisneySea to 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
- Golden Rules
- Best Time to Visit Tokyo Disney Resort in 2020
- When is Tokyo Disneyland busy?
- When is Tokyo Disneyland least crowded?
- Are my dates a good time to visit?
- What months are the best time to visit Tokyo Disney Resort?
- My Favourite Times to Visit
Golden Rules for the Best Time to Visit Tokyo Disney Resort!
To make things easier, and not stress you out too much, I’ve come up with a set of “Golden Rules” for deciding when to visit Tokyo Disney Resort. Whenever you find yourself questioning your decision, come back to these rules.
I want to stress that there is no absolute best time to visit Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea. You’ll have to decide if you want perfect weather or low crowds (you won’t always get both).
The best advice is to choose what works with your budget, time, and travel style.
Here are the Golden Rules
- Avoid weekends and national holidays
- Best days to visit are usually Tuesday through Friday (lower crowds)
- Mondays are generally the busier weekday
- Crowds are always heavier in the morning so it’s best to get there early
- Check attraction closures
Major public holidays are usually the busiest times of the 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.
Buy your Park tickets for Tokyo Disneyland in-advance to avoid your dates potentially selling out.
Now that you know the “Golden Rules,” let’s talk about when to visit in 2020.
Best Time to Visit Tokyo Disney Resort in 2020
In 2020 we’ll see the summer Olympics in Tokyo during July & August. I predict before, during, and shortly after the Olympics, the entire country will see a huge spike in visitors. Since 2013, tourism has increased substantially to Japan. The biggest draw in 2020 is the grand opening of the Fantasyland Expansion at Tokyo Disneyland with the new Beauty and the Beast attraction.
Before I tell you when to visit in 2020 here are a few more key events to know:
- Beauty and the Beast and Fantasyland Expansion opens April 15, 2020
- Construction work on Mount Prometheus (Tokyo DisneySea) through October 2020
- Construction work on Cinderella Castle (Tokyo Disneyland) through early April 2020
- Tokyo Disneyland & DisneySea ride closures
When should you visit Tokyo Disneyland in 2020? Here are what are the best times to come.
- Early April for the cherry blossoms (see the Easter event too)
- After May 6 (Golden Week) for lower crowds
- October and November to see both the Halloween and Christmas events
Don’t forget that Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Japan also opens summer 2020!
Seasonal Events in 2020
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 Year’s Program||Both Parks||January 1 - 5, 2020|
|Very Very Minnie!||Tokyo Disneyland||January 10 - March 19, 2020|
|Pixar Playtime||Tokyo DisneySea||January 10 - March 19, 2020|
|Duffy's Heartwarming Days||Tokyo DisneySea||January 10 - March 19, 2020|
|Disney Easter||Tokyo DisneySea||March 22 - June 12, 2020|
|Happy Fair with Baymax||Tokyo Disneyland||June 4 - November 1, 2020|
|Duffy and Friends’ Sunny Fun||Tokyo DisneySea||June 4 - August 26, 2020|
|Disney Pirate Summer||Tokyo DisneySea||July 1 - September 2, 2020|
|Disney Halloween||Both Parks||September 11 - November 1, 2020|
|Disney Christmas||Both Parks||November 10 - December 25, 2020|
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 is Tokyo Disneyland Busy?
The biggest and most asked question is “when is it busy?” Both Tokyo Disneyland & Tokyo DisneySea are in the top 5 most visited theme parks in the world. The crowds at Tokyo Disneyland & DisneySea work differently compared to other Disney Parks. That leads to frustration and confusion for many Explorers.
On busy days you’ll see lines for everything from restaurants, popcorn stands, and even toilets.
Here’s when Tokyo Disney Resort is typically busy:
- New Year’s sees huge crowds right after December 25 (when the Christmas event ends) through the first week of January.
- Spring Break is typically from the end of February and the month of March (differs depending on the schools in Japan)
- Golden Week is the busiest time at the Parks, which is a string of holidays from the end of April through the first week of May
- Summer Holidays sees huge crowds through July and August (it’s also immensely hot & humid)
Other times Tokyo Disneyland can be busy
- Most weekends and public holidays are busy no matter the time of year.
- Mondays are sometimes as busy as a weekend due to school children have the day off due to Sports Days.
- The first and lasts days of seasonal events are typically busier
When is Tokyo Disneyland Least Crowded?
There are times when both Parks at Tokyo Disney Resort are not as crowded. Over the years these days are becoming less and less. With that said, here are times when the Parks aren’t that crowded.
Like most things in life, these times aren’t always quiet. So, before you type that angry comment “Chris, you said it wasn’t supposed to be BUSY but it was BUSY. YOU LIED.” know that I do my best to provide the best advice possible.
- January is least crowded right after the New Years’ break
- After the Golden Week holiday with ideal weather **
- Typhoon days (July through October) and rainy days (June is the rainy season) make the parks empty
** This has changed over the past 5 years since many Explorers have found out this not-so-secret. It’s now become a popular time for non-locals to visit.
Are my dates a good time to visit?
An easy way to double-check your planned dates is cross-referencing with a Tokyo Disneyland crowd prediction calendar. It’ll tell you if the days you chose are supposed to be busy and how big the crowds are.
One thing about the crowd calendars, because I’ve seen this so many times with the numerous emails over the years.
Use the crowd calendar data as a guideline, otherwise, you’ll drive yourself crazy. That means, as an example, if you see a random Friday with a crowd prediction of 39 and a Saturday with 37, and stressing out if you should visit on Saturday instead of Friday because 37 is less than 39.
If you find yourself stressing, go with what works best with your itinerary, budget, and time. I know that’s not an ideal answer, but it’s true. OK, now that’s out of the way, allow me to break down each month at Tokyo Disney Resort.
What months are the best time to visit Tokyo Disney Resort?
Here’s a summary of every month of the year to help you decide when to visit Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea. 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 bothersome
- 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 sounds 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 for the best time to visit Tokyo Disney Resort, it’s time to continue your planning.
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