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5 unique things about Japan’s Ghibli Park to know before visiting

Ghibli Park is set to open on 1 November, but before you book a flight to Nagoya, we’d like to point out that it’s unlike any other theme park you’ve ever seen.

Ever since its announcement in 2017, fans have been eagerly waiting for Ghibli Park to officially open. The chance to see Hayao Miyzaki’s world come to life is something fans have yearned for, and fortunately, they don’t have to wait any longer. They will, however, find a few key differences in this theme park. Read on for the details.

5 unique things about Ghibli Park

There are no rides

ghibli park
Image credit: AFP/©︎STUDIO GHIBLI

Mention theme parks, and heart-dropping rides for thrill-seekers come to mind. However, Ghibli Park has none of those. The attractions found in the park consist of exhibits and immersive locations from Ghibli films that fans will recognise immediately. For example, visitors can visit the World Emporium from Whispers of the Heart and even find themselves inside some of the films’ classic scenes, like the iconic one in the train carriage with No-Face in Spirited Away. Instead of getting your adrenaline pumping, the park seeks to transport you into the world of the Ghibli films by immersing you completely.

It was built with sustainability in mind

ghibli park
Image credit: Ghibli Park

Ghibli Park is located in the Aichi Prefecture in the same place where the 2005 World Expo was held. In an effort to not harm the environment, the park makes use of the same structures that were already built, refurbishing them so that they will fit the park’s theme.

Ghibli’s Grand Warehouse – the indoor area of the park that will house shops, restaurants, and other attractions – was originally an indoor swimming pool. Hayao Miyazaki, Studio Ghibli’s founder, also insisted that no trees be cut down during the park’s construction and that builders utilise the existing clearings to construct attractions. 

There are easter eggs hidden everywhere

ghibli park
Image credit: AFP/©︎STUDIO GHIBLI

The park is littered with references and hidden gems from the films. Some are easier to find, such as the “forgotten items” on a number of benches around the park, and Shun Kazuma’s satchel and cap from From Up on Poppy Hill. Others are a little more difficult to spot like the fuzzy soot sprites from My Neighbor Totoro and Spirited Away. Fans will surely have a blast exploring and discovering all of the park’s hidden details.

There’s an exhibit that revolves around the food of Ghibli films

ghibli park
Image credit: Ghibli Park

No rollercoasters? No problem. This exhibit more than makes up for it. Anyone who’s ever watched a Ghibli film knows just how delectable the food looks. If you’ve ever wondered how they illustrate these dishes, then the exhibit titled “Delicious! Animating Memorable Meals”, will unveil the secrets behind drawing mouth-watering meals. It’s probably best to grab a bite to eat before this because you will definitely leave hungry. 

Tickets are sold by lottery

Image credit: Ghibli Park

If you were hoping to simply buy your tickets online, you’re going to be disappointed. Right now, tickets are not just limited to those residing in Japan but are also won through a lottery. On top of that, tickets are required for each area. Three areas will be ready for visitors on opening day but all five areas are slated to open soon. Ghibli Park’s website does say that a release date for international tickets will be announced on the website, so stay tuned.

Visit their website for more info.

5 unique things about Japan’s Ghibli Park to know before visiting

Eric E. Surbano

Eric can be found lost in his own world jamming with headphones on while writing when he's not prepping for a DnD session or researching 'Star Wars' galactic history on Wookiepedia. A proud Ravenclaw, he loves playing (and writing about) video games, humming the 'Doctor Who' theme under his breath, and rewatching 'Friends', 'New Girl', and 'The West Wing'.


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