It’s Christmas Eve in Japan. Where do you go? Universal Studios of course! Liam and I purposely chose to visit USJ on Christmas Eve to inject some kid-like Christmas fun into our holiday. And boyyy was it fun!
Before you even get to the park, you feel like a kid! When you get to JR Nishikujō station, most of the trains bound for USJ are covered in movie and cartoon characters like Spiderman, Harry Potter, Snoopy and Sesame Street! It’s amazing how pumped you can get just by riding on a Spiderman train. Two quick stops later and we had arrived at Universal City!
City Walk, the broadway style area between JR Universal City station and the main gates has a lot going for it and because it’s not inside the park, it’s free to visit. There’s a ton of restaurants, cafes, arcades and shops all waiting to be explored. We arrived early and everything except Starbucks was closed, so we headed straight to the main gates to get our tickets. But not before stopping to get the obligatory photo in front of the revolving Universal globe. You’ll notice throughout this post that I like to make Liam stand in front of things.
Gotta get the shot!
When the gates opened we followed basically everyone and raced to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. I’ve decided to put our Harry Potter adventures into a separate blog post otherwise this will quickly become a novel. So after you’ve finished reading this post, click here to check out the HP one.
After spending what felt like a lifetime at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, we set of for Amity Village. While there’s not a lot do to in this area, it is home to one of my favourite rides, Jaws. Even though I have ridden this ride before, I still (figuratively) shit my pants every time *spoiler alert* Jaws lunges at the boat. Ahhh good times.
A giant wreath for a giant shark.
Next we headed over to Jurassic Park. I absolutely love this area of USJ! The theme music gets me in the feels every time! I just wish the Jurassic Park Ride wasn’t so damn steep/scary/steep/terrifying/steep/scary. Needless to say, I didn’t ride it, but Liam did! There’s a single rider line so it doesn’t take long at all to get on. Whilst in this area, we noticed that turkey legs seem to be a big thing here. Not sure if it’s like that in other Universal parks, but nearly everyone we saw were chomping down on turkey legs. You can even buy turkey leg keychains! Weird.
Look at this cool cat lol.
Looking at all those turkey legs made us hungry, so we decided it was time for lunch. On the way we saw that the Backdraft ride had no wait, so we went on it. Well.. we watched it, cos you can’t really go on it. Damn I forgot how hot that ride is! It’s worth noting that all the attractions/shows are in Japanese so if you don’t speak the language, prepare to be mildly confused.
Lunch was a quick bite of pizza before racing over to the Water World show. I seriously love this show! Even though I don’t understand half of what is going on, the performances are amazing! Oh and if you don’t want to get wet, don’t sit in the splash zone.
*secretly willing me to stop taking photos*
We managed to get in a quick ride on Back to the Future before the Christmas parade started. This parade was so epic that I nearly cried! I don’t know what was wrong with me! All the Christmas songs and Christmas music and Christmas cheer nearly had me in tears. Imagine that… A grown woman crying and waving at a Hello Kitty Santa Claus. Poor Liam.
So damn Christmas-y!
Ahhh too cute!
After I had composed myself, we jumped in line for the Spider-Man ride. The queue was a 60 minute wait, which was probably the longest wait of the day if you’re curious. But I think it’s the worth the wait! It’s actually one of the few rides I can go on without getting motion sick.
After grabbing another quick meal for dinner, we wandered around the shops buying souvenirs for friends and family before heading home. I mean it’s Christmas Eve remember, got to be home before Santa arrives!
How to get here:
From JR Ōsaka take the Loop Line to JR Nishikujō and transfer to the Yumesaki Line bound for Sakurajima and get off at JR Universal City. Follow the signs to City Walk/USJ.
Date of visit: Wednesday 24 December 2014