Oh, what we wouldn’t give to make this dream a reality. An online artist, @takumitoxin, recently released an original drawing on his Twitter of what he thinks a Studio Ghibli theme park could look like. While he isn’t the first person to come up with this idea, his ‘park plan’ is one of the most complete and realistic. So, let’s take some time and break down a few parts of this wonderful dream.
First, it’s easy to see one of the biggest influences for this piece of artwork:
It’s very hard to believe that this Studio Ghibli map was not based off of the Disneyland layout. For starters, both have a huge castle in the center, many branching paths, and areas that are color-coded. These similarities are just the tip of the iceberg. Even the most oblivious person would be able to recognize the commonalities between the two parks. However, the reason the Disneyland layout was presumably chosen as an influence is very simple: it works.
In the middle of the map is the titular castle from Howl’s Moving Castle. Presumably, the castle would function in a similar way to Sleeping Beauty‘s Castle from Disneyland: mostly a centre piece where people can pose for pictures, but one would still be able to enter the castle and explore a walk-through.
The right side of the theme park includes the lands from My Neighbor Totoro, Spirited Away, and Princess Mononoke. The Totoro area would most likely be a family-oriented land, similar to Mickey’s Toontown in Disneyland or Cars Land in California Adventure. One can picture Totoro themed bounce houses and bumper cars that would easily please children and parents alike. Beside the Totoro area is the bathhouse from Spirited Away (which the artist calls Aburuya), which seems to be more of a cultural area filled with Japanese artifacts and different traditional foods. If there were to be a ride in this area, a dark ride similar to Peter Pan’s Flight or Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride would be the best fit. Lastly, there are Iron Town and the Great Forest from Princess Mononoke. Nothing would excite us more than having a high speed roller coaster zooming through the barren and harsh Iron Town and then suddenly flying through the incredibly lush and mythical forest filled with legendary animals of Japanese folklore.
The left side of the theme park includes attractions from Castle In The Sky, Tales From Earthsea, Porco Rosso, and Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind. Hotel Adriano from Porco Rosso would definitely be a high class, expensive restaurant that couples would go to or it could serve as a banquet hall for the inevitable weddings that would take place in the park. The attraction from Tales From Earthsea is called ‘Dragon’s Tail’ and looks to be a simple boat ride the swings back and forth, going higher every time. The attraction from Castle in the Sky, which is called Automobile Mountain, seems to be a ride similar to Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and, hey, we’re good with that! At the far south part of the picture lays the Toxic Jungle from Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, which could include rides on Nausicaa’s hang-glider and interactions with the huge, frightening (but disgustingly cute) Ohmu bugs from the movie (which would, of course, be robotic).
While there is still much more of this map to explore, I think I will stop my rambling for now. To me, this map looks perfect and, if the building of a Studio Ghibli theme park ever was to happen (which isn’t too crazy a thought from what I have heard in Japan), I would love it to look similar to this map!
What do you think of this Studio Ghibli layout? Would you take a trip to Japan to go and see it?
Edited by: Hannah Wilkes