15 Japan Theme Parks and Amusement Parks for a Fun Time

15 Best Japan Theme Parks and Amusement Parks for a Fun Time

Expect spins, thrills, and chills.

If you’re venturing into Japan, visiting a theme park or amusement park probably isn’t the first thing on your mind. Well, you’re going to have to change your opinion on that ASAP, because the Land of the Rising Sun has so many amazing ones that you’ll be spoilt for choice. Plus, there’s just something about plunging down a roller coaster or gently cruising on a Ferris wheel that leaves you with the pure, undiluted fun of being a kid again.

From Tokyo and Osaka to other prefectures, here are 15 Japan theme parks and amusement parks we recommend for a fun time.

Also read: 19 New Attractions in Japan to Check Out on Your Next Trip

Best theme parks in Japan worth visiting

1. Tokyo Disneyland

It’s almost impossible to make a list of top Japan theme parks without including Tokyo Disneyland. Like others of its kind, this is a place where the magic of Disney comes to life through a whole set of thrill rides and other attractions.

Image credit (L-R): Roméo A.; Dquai

Classic rides like Space Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain, and the Jungle Cruise will never fail to delight, but Disneyland Japan has its fair share of unique attractions like Monsters, Inc. Ride & Go Seek. You’ll use flashlights to reveal “hidden” monsters as a tram takes you through the offices of Monsters, Inc. and the streets of Monstropolis.

For a tale as old as time, be sure to visit the Enchanted Tale of Beauty and the Beast ride, which is also unique to this Japan theme park. Prepare to be whisked away into the dreamlike recesses of a fairy tale castle and feel like you’ve been transported right into Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.

Also read: A Guide to Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea for First-Timers

2. Universal Studios Japan

universal studios osaka

Image credit: Anton Diaz

Located in Osaka, Universal Studios Japan is a theme park that contains a perfect blend of thrilling rides and fun-filled attractions for all ages. There’s plenty to check out here, such as Jurassic Park: The Ride. Encounter massive dinosaurs, a tour of the prehistoric jungle and a 25-metre drop to save yourself from the jaws of a hungry T-Rex. There’s also the Dinosaur Meet & Greet, where you can come face-to-face with cute little dinosaur babies.  

harry potter world japan

Image credit: Alice_Alin

On top of that, it’s also a great place for Potterheads as it’s home to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. You’ll be able to feel the magic around you as you explore Hogwarts Castle, take a picture with the Hogwarts Express, and perhaps even get your own wand at Ollivander’s.

Universal Studios Japan is also home to the iconic Super Nintendo World. But frankly, that attraction deserves its own spot on this list of Japan theme parks, so read on for the next item.

Also read: 5 Tips to Maximising Your Trip to Universal Studios Japan (Express Pass, Hidden Secrets & More!)

3. Super Nintendo World

Here’s a theme park like no other! Super Nintendo World is part of Universal Studios Japan and it brings the Mushroom Kingdom to life like never before. Basically, if you’re a Super Mario fan, this place is a must-see. Get off to a roaring start with an interactive Mario Kart experience where you can race to the finish line as Mario or Princess Peach, and take out the competition with shells.

For a great family experience, hop on the back of Yoshi and participate in a fun treasure hunt to find three eggs while exploring the Mushroom Kingdom and enjoying the views from Mount Beanpole. Since a lot of the Super Nintendo World rides are based on a video game, you can enhance your visit by getting the Power-Up Band, which will let you enjoy key challenges and collect virtual coins.

4. Ghibli Park

The magic of Hayao Miyazaki’s Studio Ghibli is sacred in the world of animation and storytelling. In the Land of the Rising Sun, get ready to step into that wondrous world IRL at Ghibli Park. Located in Nagakute, Aichi Prefecture, this Japan theme park is a loving recreation of Studio Ghibli’s many memorable films.

Begin your journey at the Ghibli Grand Warehouse, which is a superb collection of all things Ghibli. There’s a screening room where you can watch 10 original Ghibli shorts and visit various interactive exhibits, where you can sit next to No-Face from Spirited Away or walk among the Robot Soldiers from Castle in the Sky. After that, you can journey to the Hill of Youth and discover The Cat Bureau, which is an actual cat-sized building from The Cat Returns. While you’re there, don’t forget to check out the Elevator Tower, which is inspired by the steampunk architecture in Ghibli films like Howl’s Moving Castle.

Also read: 10 Destinations in Asia That Inspired (Or Were Inspired by) Studio Ghibli Movies

5. Sanrio Puroland

Image credit: Alvin Leong

Hello Kitty, anybody? Fans of this famous feline will feel right at home in Tokyo’s Sanrio Puroland. Dedicated to classic Sanrio characters like Hello Kitty, Gudetama, My Melody, and many others, you’ll find plenty of cute attractions and performances to enjoy at this Japan theme park.

Consider starting off with the Wisdom Tree on the first floor. Here, you can ring a bell that echoes out across the entire park, which is also shaped like Hello Kitty from above. It’s also a great place to take pictures.

Another attraction you don’t want to miss is the Nakayoku Connect, which is an amazing concert performed by Hello Kitty and friends. This only happens twice in a day, so make sure you’re there because the lights, energy and great music make for an unforgettable show. A couple of other places to visit in Sanrio Puroland would be the Lady Kitty House, Fairyland Theatre, and of course, the Sanrio Character Boat Ride.

Also read: 10 Places Every Hello Kitty Fan Should Visit

6. Nijigen No Mori (Awaji Island Anime Park)

Otakus of the world, welcome to paradise! You can find the amazing Nigijen No Mori on Awaji Island in Hyogo Prefecture. This sensational Japan theme park is entirely inspired by popular anime and manga.

Train as a shinobi in the Naruto & Boruto Shinobizato area, which is a faithful recreation of the Hidden Leaf Village from the popular ninja anime. You’ll be able to engage in all sorts of “training” activities including powering through obstacle courses, solving puzzles, and more. Don’t forget to grab a picture with the various displays around this section too, like the Nine Tailed Fox and a replica of Hokage Rock, a monument that all Naruto fans will recognise.

But the fun doesn’t end there. You can also check out the Crayon Shin-Chan adventure park, where more obstacle courses are also paired alongside family-friendly attractions for younger children to safely play in. This area features a replica of Futaba Kindergarten where Shin-Chan and friends go to study.

Or, you can take things to the ultimate extreme and there’s only one way to do that – Godzilla! Yes, Nijigen No Mori features a massive, gaping Godzilla head that’s so huge that part of the attraction is being able to zipline right through its mouth.

7. Huis Ten Bosch

A Japan theme park with a Dutch twist, Huis Ten Bosch might just be one of the most beautiful places you’ll find in Nagasaki. It is named after one of the three official residences of the Dutch royal family and was built to honour the friendship between Japan and the Netherlands. There’s a whole parade of attractions to enjoy at Huis Ten Bosch, starting off with flower power.

The park is decorated with millions of flowers at any given time, all of which will change according to the seasons. During spring, you’ll be greeted by blooming tulips as far as the eye can see. Meanwhile, there are fields of sunflowers in the summer, beautiful roses during autumn, and violas in the winter. 

At dusk, Huis Ten Bosch comes to life as a dazzling, wonderland that’s filled with amazing light shows and projection mapping. This Kingdom of Lights show is only made more stupendous by the regular fireworks displays that take place here weekly.

There are also plenty of popular rides and attractions to enjoy, including the famous Sky Carousel, and Jurassic Island where you can have an augmented-reality battle with dinosaurs. For a more whimsical experience, visit Fantasy Forest, which is perfect for family fun. If you’re looking for something a little more thrilling, check out Horizon Adventure, which gives you a front-row seat to a simulated storm created with 800 tons of water.

Also read: 12 Flower Fields and Parks in Japan to Spot Springtime Flowers

8. Gundam Park

Image credit: Leung Po Chan via Canva Pro

The name says it all – here’s a Japan theme park that’s quite literally been built for Gundam fans, and is actually perfect for all mech fans. You’ll easily find it at the LaLaPort Fukuoka shopping centre, thanks to the 24.8 metre-tall, life-sized Gundam mecha that’s standing by the park entrance. As of writing, it’s the tallest Gundam statue in the world.

Inside, you can begin your adventure at the first section, VS with G. Here, you’ll find a whole bunch of sport-themed video game stations to get around. That’s probably because “VS” stands for Variety Sports, but don’t worry. Most of them are no less difficult than your average Wii sports session.

There are even more games to play in the second section, the NAMCO arcade. Once again, expect more Gundam-themed installations, including one which simulates you sitting in a cockpit and piloting a mech. Lastly, there’s the Gundam Side-F area that features plenty of Gundam exhibitions to geek out over, and a shop where you can purchase Gundam merchandise.

Also read: 10 Must-Visit Museums in Japan for Anime and Manga Fans

Japan amusement parks for an adrenaline rush

9. Fuji-Q Highland

Here’s what you need to know about the adrenaline-inducing annals of Fuji-Q Highland. This popular Japan amusement park in Yamanashi Prefecture is a must-visit for roller coaster lovers.

First of all, it’s home to the steepest roller coaster in the world: the Takabisha, which has a 121° drop from a height of 43 metres and a top speed of 100km/h. As if that wasn’t enough, you can also ride the Eejanaika. This roller coaster has the most number of inversions compared to any other in the entire world.

There’s also the slightly quirkier Tentekomai ride that lifts you up into the air and gives you manual control of a set of wings. You can then use these to flip yourself upside down, as many times as you want.

Also read: 5 Must-Ride Roller Coasters in Asia to Make Your Stomach Spin

10. Nagashima Spaland

Part of the larger Nagashima Resort, Nagashima Spaland is a fairly unique Japan amusement park located in Kuwana, Mie Prefecture. It combines thrilling rides with the opportunity to visit a relaxing spa when you’re overloaded with adrenaline. Here, you can ride the Steel Dragon 2000: the longest roller coaster in the world with a total length of 2,479 metres.

Once you’re done screaming your lungs out while riding the Dragon, feel free to cool off at the aptly named Joyful Water Park. You can splash about in 15 different pools and slides, including a jumbo ocean pool, family pool, and children’s area.

11. Hakkeijima Sea Paradise

South of downtown Yokohama, you’ll be able to find the Japan amusement park known as Hakkeijima Sea Paradise. Think of it as a traditional amusement park artfully combined with an aquarium, resulting in a hybrid attraction that’s fun for all ages.

Let’s start with the Aqua Resorts section, which is split into Aqua Museum, Dolphin Fantasy, and Fureai Lagoon. Across all these, you’ll be able to view various sea creatures such as whale sharks, walruses, sea otters, giant turtles, and polar bears.

Next, we have Pleasure Land, which features plenty of amazing attractions. Feel free to freefall from a height of 107 metres at the Blue Fall, or ride the Surf Coaster, which has a loop that goes out over the sea. But if you’re in the mood to chill, you can always just hop on the Merry-Go-Round.

12. Asakusa Hanayashiki

Sitting pretty with a history that dates back to 1853, Asakusa Hanayashiki is Japan’s oldest amusement park. You won’t find many crazy rides here, but even the roller coaster has over 60 years of history behind it, having been in operation since 1953.

Be sure to check out the haunted house too, which continues to portray the tale of a vengeful spirit and a cherry tree, just like it’s been doing since the Edo period. There’s a sense of charm and wonder in knowing that this amusement park has been going strong for so long. Hopefully, it continues to provide people with joy for many years to come.

13. Tokyo Joypolis

tokyo theme parks

Image credit: IQRemix

Tokyo Joypolis is a classic indoor amusement park that has three floors of rides and virtual reality experiences for all to enjoy. You can enjoy a simulated experience of what it’s like to ride a halfpipe (minus any bumps and bruises) at the Tokyo Halfpipe. Just prepare to get a little dizzy, because there’s a lot of spinning and flipping involved.

On the second floor, you can also try the Storm G. This attraction gives you a thrilling, virtual sled ride from the future, with some crazy twists attached. And of course, since this is a SEGA-based amusement park, you’ll also find plenty of Sonic arcade games scattered about.

You’ll discover even more VR-based experiences on the third floor of Tokyo Joypolis, like the Wild Wing experience that starts you off on a simulated glider flight, but takes a sharp left into a crazy adventure midway through the journey. There’s also The Room of the Living Dolls VR attraction, but stay away from that one if horror isn’t your wheelhouse.

14. Tokyo Dome City Park

Another entertaining Japan amusement park, Tokyo Dome City Park is part of the much larger Tokyo Dome City, which consists of a mall, stadium and hot spring. Neat, eh? Now, the park itself has its fair share of signature rides.

You can try out the Thunder Dolphin roller coaster, which has a top speed of 130km/h and at one point on its route, goes through the Tokyo Dome stadium. Alternatively, enjoy a relaxing trip around the park’s Big-O centreless Ferris wheel for a bird’s-eye view.

15. Yomiuri Land

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Image credit: Zengame

Tokyo’s Yomiuri Land has a pretty decent amount of fun rides and attractions. But the secret of this particular Japan amusement park is what happens when night falls during the winter season. Yomiuri Land features illuminations across the entire park that were put into place by world-renowned lighting designer, Motoko Ishii.

As such, when the sun goes down in winter, Yomiuri Land’s Jewellumination comes to life in a dazzling array of colours that makes for an experience unlike any other. You can enjoy this dusk-induced radiance with a ride on the Bandit roller coaster. If you’re ever in Tokyo during this season, this will definitely be one of the highlights of your trip!

Be sure to also check out the Crossing Diamond Passage for some amazing Insta-worthy photo ops, and watch the Fountain Show, which runs every 15 minutes. 

Also read: 11 Underrated Destinations in Japan That Are Worth Discovering

And there you have it folks, the best Japan theme parks and amusement parks for a fun time. Of course, you don’t have to hit all of them in a single visit. But the best part about that is that you’ve now got many more reasons to keep coming back. I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling ready to hop on a roller coaster!

About Author

Jeremiah Patrick
Jeremiah Patrick

A journeyman wordsmith wandering the creative lexicon, looking to craft a masterpiece. The only thing on par with Jerry’s love for a good story is the time he spends playing dauntingly difficult video games, reading works of fiction, and listening to horror podcasts. His mood shifts between dark brooding and cheery quips, depending on how much caffeine swirls in his system.