Tournament 2018: What's the best Disney park in China?

March 7, 2018, 10:50 AM · Today we kick off the first round of the 2018 Theme Park Insider Tournament with a match-up between Disney's two parks in China: Hong Kong Disneyland and Shanghai Disneyland.

Hong Kong Disneyland opened in 2005 and languished for a few years until the park invested in a three-land expansion that culminated in the premiere of Mystic Manor, our 2013 Theme Park Insider Award winner for the world's best new attraction of the year. Hong Kong Disneyland continues to expand, with work underway on a new Ant Man theme for Tomorrowland's former Buzz Lightyear ride, an enlarged Sleeping Beauty Castle, and new Marvel and Frozen attractions to come.

Shanghai Disneyland opened to huge crowds and strong reviews in 2016, with its Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for the Sunken Treasure winning our Theme Park Insider Award for Best New Attraction that year. A new Toy Story Land is opening next month and Disney is duping Shanghai's Tron roller coaster for Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom in 2021.

Theme Park Insider writers have visited each park, if you haven't and would like to learn more about them:

And if you have visited either of these parks, we invite you to rate and review them:

You'll need to register with Theme Park Insider to leave reviews (and to participate in our Discussion Forum), but anyone can submit a rating.

Time to vote!

Later today, we will vote on "Which is the best 'indie' theme park?" with Dollywood, Holiday World, Knoebels, and Silver Dollar City in the mix. The Tournament continues all month on Theme Park Insider as we vote to determine the world's best theme park.

Replies (8)

March 7, 2018 at 12:20 PM ·

I really like HK Disney. It's an underrated park.

March 7, 2018 at 12:55 PM ·

I know Shanghai is an amazing park...but Mystic Manor!!! In my book, you just can't compete with that! Hong Kong FTW!! ^_^

March 7, 2018 at 2:21 PM ·

I want to start by saying that while the Disney park in Hong Kong may have been sub par when it first opened, it is a vastly under rated park nowadays. It is definitely worthy of the Disney moniker: it has some outstanding attractions, two great parades, fireworks, and is a much more pleasant experience than Shanghai (because it's not in mainland China). Of course the drawback is that it is still small and lacks things to do other than the park itself.

That being said Shanghai is clearly the bigger and more flashy of the two. Eisner went the cheap route with HK and Iger went all-in with Shanghai. Unfortunate for the taxpayers of Hong Kong.

March 7, 2018 at 5:08 PM ·

Right now, Shanghai is where I want to go. Once all the expansions for Hong Kong are done, then it'd get my vote.

March 8, 2018 at 12:20 AM ·

Right now, due to the expansion work on the castle, Ant-Man/SHIELD ride transformation and Moana stage show work, the whole HKDL looks like a work-in-progress and fireworks has stopped.

So if you ask me which park I would go TODAY, then I would say Shanghai.

March 8, 2018 at 3:11 AM ·

Rather than focusing exclusively on the park itself, I tend to look at it as an entire resort experience. At Shanghai Disneyland, I know that I can always get out of the park if I want to take a break or get cheaper (often more delicious) food for lunch or dinner because there’s Disneytown right outside. Moreover, Disneytown is a really nice place to simply hang out and even watch the fireworks. This is not the case with Hong Kong Disneyland. When you’re there, you’re there and that’s it. Nothing outside the park other than the hotels and the in-hotel restaurants, which are expensive.

I think Shanghai wins hands down... for now. Let’s hope the new expansion at Hong Kong can change all that.

March 8, 2018 at 4:34 PM ·

I just left Shanghai Disney yesterday, was there for three days . Best Disney experience I have ever had. And that’s coming from someone who spends almost equal time in Japan and Florida every. Year. Seriously , I just can’t go and take my kids to Florida or Tokyo anymore . Just can’t . Amazing experience in shanghai. Hope to check out Hong Kong next year or so to compare

March 11, 2018 at 7:45 AM ·

Hopefully the expansion helps HK even more. I think Mystic Manor and Big Grizzly Mountain are one of the best ever and from what I’ve heard, but Shanghai looks more superior as a whole. Pirates and TRON look amazing and I would probably rather go there currently.

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