Disneyland will always have a spot in everyone’s hearts as “The Happiest Place on Earth,” but if you’re looking for something more unique than Mickey Mouse and his posse, you’re in luck! Asia’s got a few zany theme parks that just might catch your fancy. A world stranger than fiction is waiting to be discovered with thrilling rides, bizarre attractions, and unique performances. The spectrum goes from absolutely cute to more niche themes, reaching its climax at a few eyebrow-raising curiosities. One thing’s for sure, it’s a delightfully weird world after all!
Updated a year ago
Hino, Japan • Recommendation • 29 May 2018
Join Hello Kitty and friends in a whimsical world as all things “Kawaii” (ka-wa-ee, meaning cute) find themselves at Sanrio Puroland in Tokyo, Japan! Those who didn’t grow up under The House of Mouse may find their tribe with the pastel pack of Sanrio. The beloved characters, from classic Hello Kitty and My Melody to the newcomers Gudetama and Aggretsuko, find their place in Puroland. Various games, shows, shops, and attractions inspire even the tamest fans into a frenzy of fan-glee! Check their website for the day's operating hours as times vary quite a bit.
1 Chome-31 Ochiai, Tama, Tokyo 206-8588, Japan
Tokyo, Japan • Recommendation • 29 May 2018
An arcade on steroids, Joypolis takes your childhood SEGA games to Boss Level. Race like Sonic the Hedgehog on the Sonic Treadmill game, survive the zombie apocalypse in The House of The Dead SP, or explore the various virtual reality games they offer. It’s paradise for gamers!
1-6-1 Daiba, Minato-ku, Tokyo
Skudai, Malaysia • Recommendation • 29 May 2018
Go on an adventure and build your way through a world of Lego! You can be a ninja, a racer, or an inventor at their many attractions. Malaysia’s was the first Legoland in Asia, to which they’ve since added a water park to! The resort incorporates its various products into a fully rounded experience. Their Ninjago line was crafted into a full-fledged ride where recruits can enroll in Training Camp and get their journey well underway! The various attractions encourage even more creativity in little builders that love Lego’s products, with workshops and Lego labs brimming with the colorful bricks!
7 Jalan Legoland, Medini, Nusajaya, Johor, Malaysia
Pattaya, Thailand • Recommendation • 29 May 2018
Not only does this water park have crazy slides sure to throw you in a loop, they also do so with your childhood cartoons! Cute comes in the form of the Cartoonival Zone where the Powerpuff Girls and Princess Rainicorn ease beginners into the park’s zanier slides. When you’ve gathered up the courage, climb up to the Goop Loop and free fall into a spiral. If it’s speed you need, The KLR8-TOR slide is the way to go! Whatever age you are, kid or kid-at-heart, you’ll find an aqua adventure just for you at the Amazone Waterpark.
888 Moo 8 Najomtien, Chonburi, Thailand
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates • Recommendation • 29 May 2018
At Ferrari World in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, whether you're a parallel parking pro or a budding racer, you’re in the driver’s seat of your own adventure! Get a proper rush of adrenaline at this amusement park as many rides are sure to send a thrill tingling through your spine. Enroll in the Karting Academy and zoom through the tracks or drag your soul through soaring heights on the Formula Rossa roller coaster. It’s heart-stopping speeds at Ferrari World all the way!
Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Shenzhen, China, People's Republic • Recommendation • 29 May 2018
Like the famous Disneyland attraction goes, “It’s a small world after all!” Travel the world in less than a day with replicas of the Eiffel Tower, Colosseum, and Great Pyramids in close proximity—each alternating between a scale of 1:1, 1:5 or 1:15 of their original size. Window of the World is tucked away in Shenzhen just above Hong Kong, linking the mainland to the coastal city. Apart from its main attractions, various festivals and international restaurants also offer a fleshed out exploration of our diverse world.
9037 Shennan Road, Nanshan District, Shenzhen, China
Dubai, United Arab Emirates • Recommendation • 29 May 2018
Anyone who’s seen a full-blown Bollywood film knows the extravaganza it can be: elaborate settings, dancing, singing, and acting. Those who’ve yet to see a film from India are in for a treat. Bollywood Parks captures all of the movie magic. The Rajmahal Theatre stages intricate live shows, while The Lagaan: Champaner Cricket Carnival recreates the joy of a fun fair with a mini carousel and ferris wheel for the tots and toddlers. On Bollywood Boulevard, a café rests upon two sculpted elephants and the thoroughfare has some scenic architecture for great photo opportunities.
Dubai Parks and Resort, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai
Singapore, Singapore • Recommendation • 29 May 2018
Unravel the lore that colors China's rich history through dioramas like no other. Haw Par Villa’s showstopper is the Journey to Hell where the green creature, “Hu Fa Shi Zhe,” doles out punishments for the afterlife. According to Chinese lore, there are 10 courts of Hell. The first, just to whet your appetite, is for thieves and gamblers frozen in a block of ice. Each diorama at this Singaporean park goes into intricate detail, the elaborate tableaux scattered along the theme park detailing the many customs, values, and myths of the region.
262 Pasir Panjang Road, Singapore
Khu Du Lịch Văn Hóa Suối Tiên
Bien Hoa, Vietnam • Recommendation • 29 May 2018
Wizened men, majestic dragons, and other heavenly creatures populate what is the world’s first Buddhism-themed water park. Apart from religion, the park also features characters from Vietnamese lore. Take a dip in the pools under the shadow of a mountain where an ethereal head emerges from it. Feed the crocodiles or simply explore the attractions that are not quite of this world.
120 Hanoi Highway, Tan Phu Ward, District 9, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Changzhou, China, People's Republic • Recommendation • 29 May 2018
Explore a world that transports you back to when dinosaurs ruled our lands, long-necked reptiles towering over visitors as they roam the ground. Aside from the prehistoric creatures that litter China Dinosaurs Park in Changzhou, China, thrilling rides also rise around the area, zooming to and fro. After all the fun, drop by the China Dinosaur Museum for a peek at some real fossils! Explore and discover what gets your heart pumping harder: the rides or the life-like dinos?
60 He Hai Dong Lu, Xinbei Qu, Changzhou Shi, Jiangsu Sheng
After a bit of rain in the morning, I love walking around in different areas around the quainter parts of the city. I find town too commercialised, but there are such nice little spots cropping up all over, as the “sea turtles” (people who study abroad and bring ideas back) make their way home. The slower relaxed ambience of retirees and quiet helps me take a deep breath and relax. That sense of peace that washes over me is intoxicating and I need more days like that. Happiness. Like this cat.
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