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Hitting Shanghai and Hong Kong on one trip in March

Discussion in 'Tokyo, Hong Kong and Shanghai' started by Buried20KLeague, Jan 31, 2017.

  1. Buried20KLeague

    Buried20KLeague Well-Known Member

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    There's not much action in this section of the boards, but I'm excited about my trip, so I'm posting about it anyway.

    @WDW1974 , we've had our difference of opinions about Hong Kong... Hopefully my second trip there will have me come away with a better, more similar opinion to yours. My first trip there was before the expansion. I'm hoping Mystic Manor alone makes it worth the trip.

    And obviously we're greatly looking forward to Shanghai Disney. Looking forward to some new experiences.

    If anyone has any "gems" I should make a priority in either Shanghai Disney or Hong Kong Disney, by all means let me know. We're already planning on the Dim Sum lunch in Hong Kong with all the disney character shaped food, for example.

    Also... We're going in mid-March. Doing my homework, it seems as if Shanghai will be cooler (maybe 50's during the day?) and Hong Kong more like low 70's. Does that seem accurate to anyone familiar with the weather in the region?

    We really wanted to do the trifecta and work a 3rd Tokyo visit into the trip, but we just didn't have the bandwidth with our middle daughter in college. That's a trip for another year, we suppose.
     
  2. GiveMeTheMusic

    GiveMeTheMusic Well-Known Member

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    Obviously Pirates is the big star in Shanghai, Manor in HK. If you do characters at all, the new Iron Man meet-n-greet at HKDL is really slick. If you're more of a Star Wars fan, C3PO and R2D2 have a meet at SDL, something I don't believe any other park offers at present.

    Love the Main Street Corner Cafe at HKDL. They usually have a special afternoon tea set that's beautifully presented for 2 people, around US$40 - and you can get a milkshake instead of tea if you crazy. Make sure to book the Crystal Lotus character dim sum lunch in advance, as it's reservation only.

    Jealous of your trip!
     
  3. Buried20KLeague

    Buried20KLeague Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    Since this thread is deader than William Hung's music career, I'm not gonna bother writing much about my trip.

    Shanghai is a great park, with huge dead zones (for future expansion). Long walks to get everywhere you wanna go.

    Hong Kong is a much more rounded out park than when I was there 10 years ago now with Grizzly Gulch and Mystic Point.

    My family (who had never been to either resort) decided they liked HK more than Shanghai... Which surprised me. I actually was evenly split between the two.

    And surprisingly, HK had much better merchandise. I was disappointed in what Shanghai had to offer. Especially considering it's still the "grand opening" of the park.

    I literally could not find one men's shirt that said Shanghai Disneyland on it anywhere, for example.

    Anyway. There you have it. If anyone actually reads this and has any questions I'd be happy to answer them. Otherwise I'll just leave it at this. :)
     
  4. egg

    egg Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I have a few questions. All pertaining to SDL.

    Was Roaring Rapids in operation? If you did ride, was the crocodile animatronic working?
    On that topic, were any rides closed?
    And did you do the ropes course? If so, what did you think of it?

    Those are my only questions. I haven't visited yet, hoping to go sometime soon. Glad you enjoyed your trip!
     
  5. RandySavage

    RandySavage Well-Known Member

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    It feels like most American trip reports I've read can get sorted as:

    HKDL Likes:
    -Mystic Point/Manor
    -Grizzly Mountain
    -Low Crowds/Small Size mean low wait times and less tired feet.
    -Food quality.

    HKDL Dislikes:
    -Not enough to do/still too small
    -Iron Man only 'pretty good' by Star Tours 2 standards
    -Day One attractions not very appealing
    -Disinterested cast

    SDL Likes:
    -PotC/Treasure Cove
    -Tron
    -Rapids
    -Peter Pan
    -Camp Discovery

    SDL Dislikes:
    -Gardens of Imagination
    -Sprawling size/lack of comforting/quaint scale of DL/MK
    -Missing that Disneyland/MK "feel" attributable partially to above
    -Food prices

    Where do you fall?
     
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  6. Buried20KLeague

    Buried20KLeague Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    Roaring Rapids was closed, which was a huge bummer. I wanted to check out the croc so bad. Funny thing is, that ride has basically the largest amount of merch for it.

    That was the only attraction that was closed.

    We did the ropes course. A couple times. There are three courses... one was closed. We did the other two. They were both fairly similar. They were fun, but not all that challenging really. Each "scene" for lack of a better word had a "hardest" path, an easier path, and basically a bypass path if you didn't want to do that section.

    The main stand out section was on one of the courses you had to walk around an inner lip of a ledge maybe 8 inches wide while a HUGE waterfall was coming down just a few feet away. That alone was worth it.
     
  7. Buried20KLeague

    Buried20KLeague Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    Agree with the HK likes, except for food quality. In fact, we thought the food was pretty bad. Especially compared to shanghai. The food there was very very good.

    On the dislikes... we thought HK had a good amount to do. We didn't feel like it wasn't worth the price of admission. We actually got annual passes. Ha.

    Iron Man, I thought, was much better than star tours. But that being said, it's still a 20 something year old ride system. Stan Lee makes an appearance too.

    The cast at HK we felt was AWESOME. They didn't seem disinterested at all.

    On SDL... add the food, as I mentioned earlier. A big plus. We also liked the new Buzz.

    The gardens didn't bother me and I'm not sure why they bother anyone. It makes for plenty of room for fireworks viewing.

    The park and resort in general does have a large, industrial feel to it. Large expanses. Lots of brick and concrete. It definitely has a unique feel to it. My family wasn't so crazy about it. I didn't mind it because it still felt like Disney at its core.

    Food prices were fine, in my opinion. The same or a little less than the US parks. I think that complaint comes from locals that aren't used to park pricing. I mean... we grabbed a meal on the run at McDonald's one day and spent about $15 usd on 5 value meals. So when a meal at SDL is $10, they freak out.

    The crowd at HK was worlds better than SDL. We witnessed multiple arguements between cast and guests, between guests themselves, between cast and drivers, etc... the pushing and line cutting you read about happened all the time. everyone at HK was much more civilized and polite... much more well dressed, and just seemed to take care of themselves more. The HK crowd reminded me of the crowds in Tokyo, both in attitude and in dress and fashion.
     
  8. GiveMeTheMusic

    GiveMeTheMusic Well-Known Member

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    I couldn't get over merch prices at SDL. Food prices are also prohibitive to many guests - on a crowded day the utter lack of anyone buying food is not good. Lowering prices to a more reasonable point for the region would result in much higher sales and revenue. Money is being left on the table.

    Merch is also prohibitively priced - observed most guests looking and even trying things on for pictures (like ear hats) but not buying. Why does Disney insist on matching US price points in a country where wages are nowhere near comparable? They could still have healthy profit on lower prices, even if just on volume alone.
     
  9. BrianLo

    BrianLo Well-Known Member

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    Sorry I missed the thread before, glad you had a good time!

    Was Shanghai relatively crowded? I know the crowds were unruly, but was it busy?

    Some of my hatred for the hub had to do with opening day horticulture. I wonder if you thought things were a bit more filled in, or not up to snuff with other parks.


    I'd add I generally dislike the castle at HK to @RandySavage list of things, and feel like the train is the most quintessential castle park attraction that should have been included at SDL. Especially for such a large park that could have benefited from the transit.
     
  10. GiveMeTheMusic

    GiveMeTheMusic Well-Known Member

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    SDL is hurting badly for kinetics and transportation. That was a mistake. And the gardens portion of GOI haven't improved much, but it is winter there right now.
     
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  11. amjt660

    amjt660 Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for writing this report
    I have the opportunity to go to one of these parks in the fall (will be in Japan on business and want to do a weekend trip).

    Do you have any advice?

    What I gather is that HK is smaller, less busy and a little more civilized.
    SDL is larger, newer and some new rides are cutting edge

    Thanks
    Max
     
  12. Buried20KLeague

    Buried20KLeague Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    I definitely saw a lot of people eating their own food at the park.
     
  13. Buried20KLeague

    Buried20KLeague Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    I shall answer your question on crowds with a photo taken around lunch time:

    [​IMG]

    Yes, it rained in the morning, and it was a tad on the chilly side (low 50's), but still. There was literally not another person in sight.

    We spent three days there. The first two were very dead. It was a Sunday and Monday. Tuesday was sunny, and crowds were a LITTLE larger. Still not to the point of even needing fastpasses though.

    I viewed all the plant life as new and not grown in, so it didn't bother me much. I know the park will look fuller and grown in in 10 years than the largely industrial look it has now.

    I couldn't agree more about the lack of a train at SDL. It made NO sense to me. Especially with the size of the park.
     
  14. Buried20KLeague

    Buried20KLeague Well-Known Member Original Poster

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    It really sort of depends on what you want.

    Do you want to see Tron and the new Pirates, in a new, mostly re-imagined park (new buzz, better Peter Pan, etc)?

    Or do you want to see a Disneyland style park with some familiar faces (Space Mountain, Buzz) and a couple killer new additions (Mystic Manor and Big Grizzly Mountain)?

    The answer isn't that obvious. As I mentioned, we did both resorts on one trip, and I thought for sure my family would hands down love Shanghai more... But they all liked Hong Kong more.

    You can't go wrong either way... That much is certain. They're both near their respective airports. Hong Kong is MUCH more lush and green and grown... SDL is concrete and industrial. HK has the Paint the Night parade. SDL doesn't have a night parade. HK has a FANTASTIC show called "Mickey and the Wonderous Book" that we saw a few times over the three days we were there (it was that good). SDL has the ropes course. It's got the new Soarin'. It's got the better projection/fireworks show (though not by much, IMO).

    In my own head I keep going back and forth.

    Hong Kong wouldn't require a visa to visit... SDL would... In fact... If you had the time, it would likely be cheaper to use the Transit Without Visa rule and go to BOTH resorts (like we did) than to buy a visa for Shanghai.

    Lots of factors to consider.
     
  15. mandstaft

    mandstaft Well-Known Member

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    Glad for your trip! As far as your description of SHDL as "industrial", I think you it the nail on the head. I haven't been there, but from all the pics and videos, the place seems to lack warmth. Especially for a Magic Kingdom. HKDL seems to have much warmth and charm but just not enough to do.
     
  16. WDW1974

    WDW1974 Well-Known Member

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    Sorry, I am only noticing this almost two months later. But am not on the site as much as I once was. And I tend to stick on News and Rumors. In other words, if you want to make sure you get my attention, send me an email or a PM!

    On a personal level, I was thinking about you recently and wondering how things were going ...

    I still haven't ridden MM yet -- and likely won't in 2017 (headed to every Disney resort in the world this year, except my little MK on Lantau!)
     
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  17. WDW1974

    WDW1974 Well-Known Member

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    Are you REALLY jealous? If I didn't know any better, I might think you JUST helped Tony Stark save Hong Kong. But it isn't like the Spirit knows all!:D;):cool:
     
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  18. WDW1974

    WDW1974 Well-Known Member

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    Not to make this about my ample ego, but your thoughts would be welcomed in my Spirited Valentine thread. You would get eyes and people would talk. Nothing short of Disney announcing a new Asian park is going to breathe life into this board. And if that happened, people would be talking about in News and Rumors anyway!

    Did the walking take away from the experience? How would you compare it to other Disney parks (since you've done them all)? Too much walking? What about the views out of the park?

    Oh, and where did you stay and how many days did you do the park? Thoughts on DisneyTown?

    Hey, you didn't mention Toy Story Land ... or Iron Man. The park has added what ... four E-Tickets since you were there last? (Big Grizzly Runaway Mine Cars, MM, Iron Man, Small World) And swapped out stage shows too. And added a night parade ...I can see why people might like it better without even going to SDL yet (very, very soon! :) ) It is smaller and more intimate. It has a DL vibe of less is more. It is in a beautiful lush locale. Except for certain periods, it doesn't tend to be crazy busy. ... FP is basically non-existent (is it still just Pooh and Space Mountain or did they put it on Iron Man?)

    Not surprised at all. HKDL had much better merchandise than TDR in my experiences. I've seen lots of SDL stuff online and it doesn't overly appeal to me. ... Oh, more questions ... where did you stay for HKDL? How many days did you visit? Where did you dine? Did you visit Ocean Park as well?
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2017
  19. WDW1974

    WDW1974 Well-Known Member

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    Interesting. In my multiple visits to HKDL, I really liked the food quality across the board. I still say Crystal Lotus at HKDL Hotel is the best value of any top tier eatery around the world. It was almost cheap the two times I dined there (also got 20% off AP discount).

    I have heard food is good at SDL (with mediocre reviews of castle full-serve where I don't plan on dining).

    What places would you recommend dining at SDL and why?

    Yes, that is the problem. SDL isn't being built for the tiny amount of rich Americans, superfans, bloggers/Lifestylers/eBay resellers who are going to travel. It is being built for the huge catchment zone within 300 or so miles. To them, those prices are insanely high even if you have a $10 meal there and think "Gee, this would be $16-18 at WDW and not as good!"

    Well, HK still has the vestiges of British rule. And Shanghai is attracting some people who have no idea how to behave in a park. It doesn't make them bad or less than, just ignorant because well they are less worldly. You know, like people in the flyover states who never go anywhere!
     
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  20. WDW1974

    WDW1974 Well-Known Member

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    I see that at DL and WDW too!
     
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