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East Meets ACE – Part 15: Universal Studios Japan/ユニバーサル・スタジオ・ジャパン

East Meets ACE – Part 15: Universal Studios Japan/ユニバーサル・スタジオ・ジャパン On Tuesday, October 2 we headed to our next park, Universal Studios Japan in Konohana, Osaka, Japan. Operating since 2001, this was Universal’s fourth park and first outside the U.S. We arrived around 8:30 that morning and stayed until closing at 10:00 that evening. Like at Disney everyone was required to arrange their own transportation back to the hotel. This was the first of two parks on this trip not visited on the 2005 ACE trip with ECC. It has a similar feel to the two movie based parks in the […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 14: Nagashima Spa Land / ナガシマスパーランド – Continued

East Meets ACE – Part 14: Nagashima Spa Land / ナガシマスパーランド – Continued This is a nice park and based on our visit, it is run pretty efficiently. This was one of the best park experiences of our trip. I definitely want to get back here to ride the new RMC and try to catch the two credits we missed. David, Richard and I decided to buy a fast pass to get a third ride in on Steel Dragon 2000, and just as we sat on the train, there was an issue and we had to get up. As the […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 14: Nagashima Spa Land / ナガシマスパーランド

East Meets ACE – Part 14: Nagashima Spa Land / ナガシマスパーランド On Monday, October 1, we had survived the typhoon and it was time to resume our trip. We checked out of the Hilton Nagoya that morning as we prepared to move to Osaka.  We had enjoyed good breakfasts at this hotel, although not as elaborate as the ones in Tokyo.  Our park this day was slated to open two hours late due to the storm, so once again we were concerned the storm would impact another day.  We left a little later than scheduled that morning, but arrived at […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 13: Typhoon & Missed Credits at Parque Espana / 志摩スペイン村

East Meets ACE – Part 13: Typhoon & Missed Credits at Parque Espana / 志摩スペイン村 The next morning, Sunday, September 30, we would not be able to go to Parque Espana-Shima Spain Village in Shima, Mie, Japan, as it would close at noon, most coasters would not be running and the three hour drive back could leave us on the road just as the typhoon hit.  We missed four credits (bringing the trip total to 11) including: Pyrenees (Bolliger & Mabillard, Inverted,1997), one of the more anticipated coasters of the trip with its six inversions; Gran Montserrat (Mack Rides GmbH […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 12: Suzuka Circuit / 鈴鹿サーキット

East Meets ACE – Part 12: Suzuka Circuit / 鈴鹿サーキット We arrived at Suzuka Circuit in Suzuka, Mie, Japan early Saturday afternoon, with rain coming down steadily.  With a large number of the rides here being various sorts of go-carts, we expected to see most everything closed.  We just hoped we could get to ride the coasters.  As we entered the park we were happy to find out that not only were the coasters operating, but so was almost everything in the park in spite of the rain.  We presented a plaque to the park, and then we, of course, […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 11: Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens / 東山動植物園

East Meets ACE – Part 11: Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens / 東山動植物園 On Saturday, September 29 we boarded the busses and headed out for a short drive to Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens Nagoya, Aichi, Japan.  Rain was starting to fall lightly as the beginning waves of the typhoon began to be felt.  We wondered how this would impact our day.  From the forecast it looked like only light rain in the morning, so we hoped we would get in the first park, but we worried about the second park in the afternoon when heavier showers were predicted.  Once […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 10: Sea Paradise / シーパラダイス

East Meets ACE – Part 10: Sea Paradise / シーパラダイス Our final park of the day was Sea Paradise in Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan.  Operating since 1993, this is a marine park with a few rides spread out over a very large space, somewhat reminiscent of Marineland in Canada.  We had about an hour and a half here. We presented a plaque to the park when we arrived.   Surf Coaster Leviathan (Togo, Steel Sit Down, 1993) Previously known as Surf Coaster, it has a length of 4,170’ and a height of 144’. With a triple helix and 2 double helixes, […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 9: Yokohama Cosmoworld

East Meets ACE – Part 9: Yokohama Cosmoworld Our next stop was Yokohama Cosmoworld in Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan.  An interesting park that straddles a river, we had about two and half hours to sample their attractions. We presented a plaque to the park when we arrived.   Diving Coaster: Vanish (Senyo Kogyo Co., Ltd., Steel Sit Down, 1999) With a dive through an underwater tunnel, this coaster looks quite stunning.  It has some rough transitions, made painful by OTSR, but the dive is quite good.  I did not hear of anyone having a problem with the age limit of 64 […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 8: Tokyo Joypolis / 東京ジョイポリス

East Meets ACE – Part 8: Tokyo Joypolis / 東京ジョイポリス On Friday, September 28 we left Keio Plaza Hotel for the last time.  This was a very nice hotel, and of particular note they offered three breakfast options:  Western, Mixed and Japanese.  The first morning we had gone to the Western Breakfast, which was very good, but the rest of the mornings we went to Mixed Breakfast, which gave us the opportunity to sample Japanese items without forgoing all of our Western favorites.  As the Japanese Breakfast started later and since we had a later departure, we decided that this […]

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East Meets ACE – Part 7: Tokyo DisneySea / 東京ディズニーシー – Continued

East Meets ACE – Part 7: Tokyo DisneySea / 東京ディズニーシー – Continued Mermaid Lagoon This section is geared toward children and is mostly indoors. Flounder’s Flying Fish Coaster (Togo, Family, 2001) – Good family coaster, and it is outdoors – 1 ride. We did not make it to Mermaid Lagoon Theater for King Triton’s Concert. Attractions include Ariel’s Playground; Blowfish Balloon Race; Jumpin’ Jellyfish, which was closed for maintenance; Scuttle’s Scooters; and The Whirlpool. Mysterious Island This is perhaps the most intriguing section as it is set in a volcano that erupts periodically along the river. Journey to the Center […]

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