A Ghibli Theme Park Is Finally Opening in Japan! Here’s What You Need to Know!

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  • Good news for all Studio Ghibli fans out there! Japan has a new attraction coming up that is surely going to be one of the must-visit places in the country soon. A new theme park completely dedicated to Ghibli animation is in the works, ready to be public in a few years. Finally, what fans have been waiting for! To find out the latest information about the planned Ghibli Park, continue reading!

    Ghibli Park

    Studio Ghibli came out in the mid-’80s and made some remarkable animated series and movies that captivated the whole world. It took them several decades to finally set up a park after their name, just like Disney did.

    However, unlike Disney that set up its park near Tokyo, Ghibli has chosen a city near Nagoya instead. There are a few reasons behind this decision:

    • There are already many places in the capital where you can have unique Ghibli experiences such as the Ghibli Museum.
    • The proposed site in Nagakute City, Aichi Prefecture has actually been a famous spot itself as it hosted the 2005 World EXPO.
    • The park has a larger land area than Tokyo Disneyland i.e. 200 hectares, which is huge. It also already has many attractions such as a water-themed playzone, an ice rink, and best of all, a real-life replica of the house portrayed in the Ghibli film, My Neighbor Totoro, where the adorable characters Mei and Satsuki reside.

    Founded with the name “Aichi Youth Park” nearly five decades back for locals to hang around at, the Nagakute Ghibli site has also been known as “Aichikyuhaku Kinen Koen (Aichi Commemorative Park)” or “Moricoro Park” since the EXPO.

    The Ghibli Aesthetic

    In Japan, there is an official park designed after almost every famous movie or character, such as Universal Studios Japan where you can catch some amazing wonders based on their franchises like Final Fantasy, Sailor Moon, and others. However, Ghibli has stayed away from all the pressure about having its own theme park for so long. Well, until now.

    According to the official leaks released to the media, the artwork and construction are going to be spectacular, envisaging different popular aspects of their movies. Here’s what they have in store for fans (as of now):

    There will be multiple re-creations that will stun you as you enter the park, the main ones being a replica of the castle that flies in Howl’s Moving Castle at the immediate entrance, followed by a bunch of vintage-looking elevators reminiscent of steampunk literature and influence that take you into the main area of the park. There will also be some places inside the park from where you can get a broader view such as the shop that the lead from the ’90s hit Whisper of the Heart, Shizuku, finds while chasing a cat. And as mentioned earlier, fans of Totoro can see a house that looks exactly like the one in the movie.

    What to Expect

    The studio has released some interesting aspects of the park’s design that fans would love to see. There could be more surprises to be publicized at a much later date.

    In the pictures they released, you could see a traditional teahouse, a humongous spider, and what seems to be the Catbus. You can also expect some special zones where you could see real-life imitations of houses, streets, shops, gardens, ponds, etc. from different Ghibli movies, including Princess Mononoke and Kiki’s Delivery Service.

    The Ghibli Park is a long-time dream come true for many fans, and it will surely be a major attraction like Disneyland as many people from various countries are already showing immense interest in visiting it in 2022. Nagoya is often neglected as a tourist spot, but from now on, it will be an equal contender to Tokyo and Osaka because of this giant park.

    Moricoro Park Website *Automatic translation available

    *Featured Image: jp.fotolia.com/