Visiting Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Disney’s Hollywood Studios is a Walt Disney World theme park that is not to be missed! Home to Galaxy’s Edge, Toy Story Land, and the classic Tower of Terror, guests can enjoy one unique experience after another at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  Visiting Hollywood Studios during your Disney trip will be magical with these tips!

Previously known as MGM, Disney’s Hollywood Studios is the theme park that, in my opinion, has undergone the most change over the years.  What used to be a half day park, has turned into a full day or multi day park with the additions over the last few years. 

Star Wars; Galaxy’s Edge, Toy Story Land, and the addition of the Skyliner have made this park much more “worth it” in the eyes of many Disney fans. Still home to favorites such as Tower of Terror and Star Tours, Disney’s Hollywood Studios certainly offers something for everyone in your family.

Getting to Disney’s Hollywood Studios

There are several ways to get to Disney’s Hollywood Studios!  The most common way is via Disney motorcoach.  Guests of the monorail resorts, Animal Kingdom Lodge, Coronado Springs, as well as the All Stars and Port Orleans Resorts will take a Disney motorcoach to start their day at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

A very popular mode of transportation to Disney’s Hollywood Studios is via the Skyliner.  The Skyliner brings guests to the park from Disney’s Riviera Resort, Caribbean Beach, Pop Century, and the EPCOT Resorts.  

If you are lucky enough to be staying at the Yacht/Beach Club or the Boardwalk, you have THREE modes of transportation to Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  From here you can take a Friendship Boat over to the park.  Or, there is a very nice walking path as well!  Neither of those?  Hop on the Skyliner from the International Gateway area of EPCOT and you can breeze over via the Skyliner.  

Best Tips for a Great day at hollywood studios

Once you arrive at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, you’ll find it is very easy to navigate.  It is the smallest of the four Orlando parks, but it has two of the BEST themed lands! It’s definitely a popular park, and Park Pass Reservations quickly fill up for Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

Arrive at Disney’s Hollywood Studios early! Take advantage of the 30 minute early park opening for ALL Disney Resort guests at EACH theme park!  This is a great benefit!  With the change in Rise of the Resistance going stand by {for the time being}, and the new Disney Genie+ around the corner, it’s really important to get to the park early!  I highly suggest heading to Slinky Dog Dash or Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway.  If you want a taste of Star Wars in the morning, Millennium Falcon; Smuggler’s Run is a good option as well. Save Rise of the Resistance for much later in the day!

Plan time at night at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  The entire park is wonderful at night. The Tower of Terror is gorgeous, the Chinese Theater is worth seeing, and I LOVE Toy Story Land at night. Although, my favorite area is Galaxy’s Edge at night!  I love to wander Galaxy’s Edge at night.  Also, ride on Slinky Dog Dash gives you beautiful views of Toy Story Land and the entire park at night!  It’s definitely a different experience riding Slinky Dog Dash at dark versus during the day!

Galaxy’s Edge and Toy Story Land

I could write an entire post about EACH of these! Disney’s Hollywood Studios is home to the two BEST themed lands in all of Walt Disney World!

Plan a lot of time in Galaxy’s Edge.  Whether you are are a die hard Star Wars fan, or you just think BB8 is super cute, Galaxy’s Edge is worth the visit.  Galaxy’s Edge thoroughly immerses guests in all things Star Wars. You will want to slow down and take in all the details!  The Millennium Falcon makes for a great photo backdrop.  Docking Bay 7 is so good for a quick service lunch.  And you can’t miss the sounds of ships landing nearby! Plus, you have to stop and get a Coke in Batuu! It’s definitely worth a good chunk of time!

Toy Story Land is a great stop first thing in the morning! Toy Story Land does not have a lot of shade.  So, we prefer to visit this area either first thing in the morning, or at night when the sun has gone down.  It is my FAVORITE place at Hollywood Studios for photos.  It’s just so much fun!  Also, Slinky Dog Dash is worth the wait. The outdoor queue for Slinky Dog is not well shaded, so be sure to get a snack or some water to have while you are waiting in line!  Toy Story Midway Mania is one of our favorites as it gets warmer and sunnier during the day!  This classic Hollywood Studios attraction is our favorite way to be immersed in Andy’s toy room!

Dining at Hollywood Studios 

When visiting Hollywood Studios, you will need to eat!  Disney’s Hollywood Studios is home to several table service locations, well themed quick service, and snacks!  My personal favorite Table Service is 50s Prime Time Cafe.  The theming is spot on, and guests feel as if they have stepped back into the 1950s.  Everything is authentic, including the black and white tvs at each table playing episodes and clips from classics such as “Leave it to Beaver” and the “Andy Griffith Show”.  The wait staff makes it fun, by reminding you to keep your elbows off the table and to finish your veggies.  The food is excellent, kid friendly, and feels “worth it” in terms of value to quality ratio.  The friend chicken is  my “go to”, and it pairs perfectly with the milkshakes!

If you are looking for a great Quick Service, that is a toss up for me between Woody’s Lunchbox and Docking Bay 7. Both of these are in the best themed areas of Walt Disney World……Toy Story Land and Galaxy’s Edge.  Breakfast at Woody’s Lunchbox is stellar, with the lunchbox tarts being the best item on the menu.  If you need something a little more substantial, the breakfast bowls with eggs, tater tots, and brisket are wonderful, too! Woody’s Lunchbox also serves lunch, with the BBQ Brisket Melt and Grilled Three Cheese Sandwich giving you good, atypical theme park foods. 

Docking Bay 7 is worth the visit for lunch or dinner as well! It is definitely a unique dining location, and it fits perfectly with the overall theme of Galaxy’s Edge.  You can dine indoors in the hangar bay, or outside in the shaded courtyard.  The food is really good, and “normal” foods are presented in a unique way.  The chicken is my favorite, but it has something for everyone! Docking Bay 7 is a bit on the pricey side, but the atmosphere and portions are worth it, I think.  The overall quality of the food is a step up from regular quick service.  

Best offerings at disney’s hollywood studios

My favorite offering at Disney’s Hollywood Studios is hands down, Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway.  This replaced the Great Movie Ride, and I am not sad about it!  This super cute, fun attraction is the only one in the Orlando parks to feature Mickey and Minnie!  The “runaway train” takes you through the classic Mickey and Minnie cartoons we have all come to love. Mickey and Minnie’s is smooth, has interactive scenes, and beautiful details!

Alongside Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway, my favorite entertainment is the Frozen Sing Along.  This indoor show brings your favorite Frozen characters to the stage as they lead you through your favorite Frozen songs! Guests are also highly entertained by the hysterical jokes and humor of the characters.  It’s worth seeing for everyone in your family ~ whether or not you have Frozen fans.  The humor is fantastic, and it gives you a break from the heat!

Disney’s Hollywood Studios has risen to the top of my list of preferred parks at Walt Disney World.  It used to be a “half day” park, or even one we may have skipped, but not anymore!  It has SO much to offer, and is 100% worth a day of park tickets! So much great dining, the best themed areas in ALL of Walt Disney World, and the classics like Tower of Terror and Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage….it’s definitely a park your family will love!

Carrie Hurst

Married to my high school sweetheart, we are raising two pirates and a princess. A lifelong Disney fan, lover of good food, and all things creative, I hope you will join me in sharing joy and making memories everyday.





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