Studio Ghibli new theme park in Japan includes a life-size replica of Howl's Moving Castle
Looking into the future
Now that travel has become one of those pipe dreams we can only plan for in the forseeable future, that also means aligning those plans with attractions that are still in the making. That makes things a tad bit bearable, we suppose. Especially with Studio Ghibi's highly-anticipated theme park set to open in Japan. Located at the Aichi Earth Expo Memorial Park near Nagoya, this is a theme park mapped out in five zones — set to tickle the fancies of anyone who bleeds anime. It includes a life-size replica of Howl's Moving Castle — which won't be moving, and definitely not as massive as the one depicted in the film. That said, it's not something you would call small either.
This theme park was announced in 2017 and was supposed to open in 2020. But due to COVID-19, the grand opening has since been postponed to 2023. Good news is that there will be a soft opening in fall 2022, where you will be allowed to explore the magic castle's interior, among many other attractions.
— otakujp (@otakucalendarjp) February 4, 2021
The park is said to be split into different themed areas based on the studio's acclaimed films: Ghibli's Giant Warehouse, to be decked with all sorts of Ghibli tokens, Princess Mononoke Village, which is based on the 1997 animated film Princess Mononoke; Dondoko Forest from My Neighbour Totoro; Springtime of Life Hill, modelled after The Cat Returns and Whisper of the Heart; and lastly Witch Valley, as seen in Kiki's Delivery Service and the cult favourite, Howl's Moving Castle. For the cherry on top, the park's dining area will be inspired by Spirited Away.
It is undeniably a waiting game, and in the meantime, there's always the iconic Ghibli cult favourites to revisit. Fingers crossed, for 2022.