Enormous fun in a mini-world: SMALL WORLDS TOKYO
Add this little gem to your bucket list.
Poised as “the world's largest indoor miniature theme park”, SMALL WORLDS TOKYO is the newest attraction to check out if you’re in Tokyo this season. It is conveniently located in Ariake, which is best known as the area next to Odaiba—home of the giant Gundam statue.
Due to its central location, you can easily add this to your itinerary if you’re in downtown Tokyo: simply hop on the Tokyo Metro Yurakucho Line from Yurakucho Station to reach Toyosu Station, then transfer to the New Transit Yurikamome and alight at Ariake-Tennis-no-mori Station. The facility is just a 3-minute walk away.
Multiverses under one roof.
True to its name, SMALL WORLDS TOKYO houses several “small worlds” that are truly bewitching, especially to anime fans who will immediately recognise the familiar landscapes of classic titles like “Neon Genesis Evangelion” and “Sailor Moon”.
Can’t bear to leave? Live here!
Yes, you’ve heard that right. Visitors can buy residency rights to “live” here, but not in the literal sense where one might overstay their welcome and get arrested for unlawful behaviour and trespassing.
As part of their opening special, SMALL WORLDS TOKYO has introduced a scheme whereby visitors can make a 1/80th scale figurine of themselves to “live” in the miniature world for an entire year.
Visitors who register for this program will get to experience a full-body scan using state-of-the-art 3D scanning technology to create a mini-you. After which, you’ll get to choose which of the following three worlds mini-you would like to “live” in: the Global Village Area, Space Center Area, or Kansai International Airport Area.
One of the perks of living in the Kansai International Airport Area is the guaranteed first-class plane-watching experience that beats any other viewing gallery in the world. (Image credit: SMALL WORLDS)
Due to the exclusive perks of this “residency”, adult visitors can enjoy a special discounted rate of ¥12,630 (tax-inclusive) until the end of June 2020. Despite its steep price, it’s definitely a novel idea for couples and families who wish to commemorate their visit—I mean, that’s one way to leave your mark on the world, am I right?
Bonus tip for Evangelion fans: there’s a separate residency plan for you. Go on and fulfil your childhood ambition of being a NERV staff member, or simply a legal resident in the city of Tokyo-III. You have my blessing.
Doors to open in June 2020
Unfortunately, travellers who were eager to visit SMALL WORLDS TOKYO would have to wait a little longer. The attraction has decided to postpone its grand opening from 24 April to 11 June 2020 due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, with its new date set on the assumption that the state of emergency would be lifted by then.
Nevertheless, it is never too early to start planning for future trips to Japan! Stay tuned to their latest updates here.
SMALL WORLDS TOKYO (スモールワールズ TOKYO)
Address: Ariake Butsuryu Center, 1-3-33, Ariake, Koto-ku, Tokyo 135-0063
Nearest station: Ariake-Tennis-no-mori Station (有明テニスの森)
Opening hours: 9am–8pm**
Admission fee: From ¥2,700 per adult
(**Note: Open from 11 June 2020 and subject to change due to Covid-19.)
Header image credit: SMALL WORLDS