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Visiting Hong Kong Disneyland can be a delightfully disturbing experience for the classic Disneyland fan

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Visiting Hong Kong Disneyland can be a delightfully disturbing experience for the classic Disneyland fan

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Veteran Disneyland visitors always have the same sort of reaction when they finally get the chance to visit Hong Kong Disneyland. As in: This theme park is exactly the same ... only different.


Photo by Florence Doyle

By that I mean: This theme park's entrance plaza -- with its Mickey-surfing-atop-a-whale's-spout fountain -- is, of course, all-new.


Photo by Florence Doyle

But then you walk up to the actual entrance of Hong Kong Disneyland. And there is an exact duplicate of the train station & that Mickey Mouse floral which has been greeting Disneyland Guests for over a half a century now.


Photo by Florence Doyle

This feeling of Disney disconnection only increases as you go deeper & deeper in Hong Kong Disneyland. Instead of the Santa Ana Mountains being off in the distance (way off to the east behind Tomorrowland), this version of Disneyland has its own set of hills looming up right behind Fantasyland.


Photo by Florence Doyle

It's also kind of jarring to find attractions that you've always loved at Disneyland in slightly different places in Hong Kong Disneyland (EX: "it's a small world") ...


Photo by Florence Doyle

... or redesigned and now operating under a new name (EX: Disneyland's Astro Orbitor versus Hong Kong Disneyland's Orbitron).


Photo by Florence Doyle

Perhaps the biggest "I-think-we're-not-in-Kansas-anymore" moment comes when you enter Adventureland ...


Photo by Florence Doyle

... and then have to decide -- before you get on board the Jungle River Cruise -- whether you'd like to hear this ride's narration in English, Cantonese or Mandarin.


Photo by Florence Doyle

But if you're a Disney theme park fan, you have to ride Hong Kong Disneyland's Jungle River Cruise. If only because it gives a chance to eyeball some of the construction that's now being done on this theme park's three new "lands" : Mystic Point, Grizzly Gulch and Toy Story Land.


Photo by Florence Doyle

But then again, when you get right down to it, no matter if you're standing in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle in Anaheim or the one that opened in Hong Kong Disneyland back in 2005 ...


Photo by Florence Doyle

As the sun starts to go down ...


Photo by Florence Doyle

... and those colored lights begin in come up all over the castle ...


Photo by Florence Doyle

The end result -- whether you're in Hong Kong or Anaheim -- is ... Well, magical.

Special thanks to Florence Doyle. Who took time out from her business trip to Hong Kong so that she could then
spend Father's Day prowling around Hong kong Disneyland getting these shots of that theme park for JHM.

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  • I have over 100 photos & some commentary on HKDL on my blog from my January 2011 visit if any of your readers want to see more.

  • @ Jen- Awesome photos! I checked them out at your blog and I am so jealous! Someday I'd love to visit all the other Disney parks...I've only ever been to WDW. My top 2 are Disneyland and Disneyland Paris. :)

  • It looks like the castle is being strangled by a lasso. Tacky.

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