|Universal Studios Japan (since 2001)
|Sakurajima 2 Chome-1-33
With the increasing success of the Universal Studios in Hollywood, plans to open a similar attraction all around the globe started. While the studios in Orlando were under construction, sites for another park in Europe, as well as in Japan were also considered – including Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation (NSSMC) sites in Kitakyūshū and Sakai. While the Space World theme park was built in Kitakyūshū, the Sakai site was abandoned in favour of an urban development project in Osaka. At the end of 1994, Osaka Universal Planning Inc. was founded and two years later renamed USJ Co., Ltd. Arnold Schwarzenegger broke ground in October 1998 and Universal Studios Japan opened in March 2001.
In the first year alone, more than 11 million visitors came to the park, an unparalleled success. However, the number of visitors dropped to 8 million in the second year and stabilised at this level until 2011. With the construction of the children’s area Universal Wonderland in 2012, the average number of visitors changed to 10 million. In 2014, the inauguration of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme area was followed by a jump in visitor numbers to 12.7 million visitors and 13.9 million visitors the following year. In 2021, the highly immersive Super Nintendo World theme area will open to the public.
Universal Studios Japan is famous for its numerous shows and attractions, including the Hyper Coaster Hollywood Dream – The Ride and the Flying Coaster Flying Dinosaur by B&M. In addition, the theme park always offers new and exciting event attractions that can be tested for a short time in the park. In particular, popular manga are taken up. The roller coaster Space Fantasy also gets a new theme quite frequently.
If you want to experience the park for yourself, the easiest and fastest way to reach the amusement park is by train to the JR station Universal City. From here there is only a short walk though the leisure centre Universal City to the theme park.
Fun Fact #1: The opening of The Flying Dinosaur roller coaster, led to waiting times of up to 750 minutes at the roller coaster.
Fun Fact #2: You can experience the ride on Hollywood Dream backwards, when queuing up for the backdrop ride.