Disneyland has always been a symbol of theme parks that many countries try to replicate and build their own one based on the layout of Disneyland. And Japan is not an exception. In 1961, Japan experienced a post-war economic miracle when the country started plenty of megaprojects and land developments. After a Japanese business man Kunizu Matsuo, the president of the Matsuo Entertainment Company, visited Disneyland in Anaheim near Los Angeles on the second half of the 1950s, he wanted to bring Disneyland to Nara, the old capital of Japan.
However, Disney could not agree on license fees for some famous characters such as Mickey Mouse, Pluto, Donald Duck and Goofy, so the idea about Nara Disneyland was replaced by Nara Dreamland where the Japanese created their own characters. You can see the resemblance with Disneyland. Here you can find similar structures such as Sleeping Beauty Castle, Adventure Land, Main Street USA, Tea Party Cup Ride, Submarine Voyage, Dream Station… Noticeably, the main attraction of Nara Dreamland was Aska roller coaster opened in 1998 that could reach the speed of 80 km/h. The length of the track was 1081 meters, and the height was 30 meters.
Nara Dreamland was opened in 1961 and after more than 20 years of prosperity, the theme park suffered a downfall due to the appearance of many outstanding new theme parks such as Tokyo Disneyland (opened in 1983) or Universal Studios Japan (opened in 2001). The Nara Dreamland was forced to shut its doors on 31 August 2006 due to the low number of visitors. The park has not been demolished, it was just abandoned and everything began to sink into oblivion. Nara Dreamland has become a legendary abandoned place that attracts many curious explorers taking risks to break into the spooky land. The whole park is surrounded by fences and barbed wire. Any unexpected intruders are reported to police and face a large fine.
The entrance, the ticket booths, the tracks of the roller coaster, the monorail, cars, streets… still stand there, nothing has been moved or taken apart. That makes you feel like being lost in a land devastated by the power of time. The oblivion can be evidenced through the rust, peeled off paint and growing weeds.