So you’re taking a trip to Disney World – how exciting! But it can also be overwhelming, especially if you’ve never been.
When planning your trip, you’ll want to make sure you figure out which parks you’re interested in going to, and what you want to do in each park. Here’s a quick rundown of the four parks:
- Magic Kingdom: This one is the most like Disneyland, centered around Cinderella’s Castle. The park is broken up into six lands – Main Street, U.S.A., Adventureland, Liberty Square, Frontierland, Fantasyland, and Tomorrowland.
- EPCOT: Epcot was designed as a glimpse into the future and is divided into two lands. Future World celebrates technology and World Showcase features 11 different countries and offers native food and drinks from – Norway, Mexico, China, Italy, Germany, the United States, Japan, Morocco, the United Kingdom, France, and Canada.
- Hollywood Studios: This park is designed to celebrate old Hollywood (Ironic since it’s on the opposite side of the country. It’s almost like Disney should build a park near Los Angeles…). It’s broken into seven lands – Hollywood Boulevard, Echo Lake, Grand Avenue, Toy Story Land, Galaxy’s Edge, Animation Courtyard, and Sunset Boulevard.
- Animal Kingdom: This one is pretty self-explanatory, it’s all about animals. The park is broken into five different lands that feature animals from different parts of the world – Africa, Asia, DinoLand U.S.A., Discovery Island, and Pandora – The World of Avatar.
Since you’re reading this article, you’ve probably decided Hollywood Studios is on the itinerary. It’s a great choice for any guest because, in true Disney fashion, the park features coasters for just about all ages. Let’s take a look at the five thrill Hollywood Studios rides they have to offer, from the calmest to the craziest.
Slinky Dog Dash
Hollywood Studios’ Toy Story Land is a perfect example of Disney Park magic. As soon as you walk past the giant Woody leaning on the area’s entryway sign, you’re transported into a whole new world (pun intended). You immediately feel like you’ve been shrunk down to the size of a toy, with large wooden toy structures towering overhead. Keep walking and you’ll find Andy’s Mega Coaster Play Kit, where Slinky Dog is waiting to take you for a ride.
Riders only need to be 38 inches tall to ride Slinky Dog Dash, which makes it a great option for families with younger kids who still want to experience a thrill ride. When you board, you’ll sit between the Slink’s spring coils while he zips up and down hills and around curves on the coaster’s red track. As the ride comes to an end, Wheezy the toy penguin serenades you with the film’s classic song, “You’ve Got A Friend In Me.”
As with most coasters at the park, Slinky Dog Dash has a camera that snaps a photo of you during the ride, and you have the option to purchase souvenir photos at a booth as you exit.
Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run
These next two rides are both located in Hollywood Studios’ Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. There’s no doubt about it – whether you like Star Wars or not, Galaxy’s Edge is all kinds of impressive. It truly makes you feel like you’ve walked into the Star Wars universe and are standing on Batuu.
The magic for Smugglers Run begins as soon as you enter the land, where you’ll see the giant, infamous Millennium Falcon ship sitting there in all its glory. Guests can have their photo taken in front of it, and it’s even become a popular proposal spot for Star Wars fans. But if you want to take it a step further, you can hop on board.
Walking through the queue truly feels like you’re walking through one of Batuu’s spaceports, with crew members decked out in full gear and droids bustling about, working on rusted, dirty-looking props and parts that look like they’ve been getting dust blown over them for years. While you’re in line, you’ll meet Hondo Ohnaka, a character from the Clone Wars TV show, who explains the backstory to the ride (skip the rest of this paragraph if you don’t want spoilers for the ride!) – He made a deal with Chewbacca to borrow the ship and steal some cargo. Eventually, you arrive at the Millennium Falcon where you board into the cockpit (cue the goosebumps).
The ride offers three different experiences, depending on where you sit. The cockpit has six seats, with three different roles: the pilot, who is responsible for the flight; the gunners, who shoot at targets; and the engineers, who fix things that get damaged as the ship is attacked.
As the ride begins, the ship moves, and the realistic screen through the windshield shows you what’s going on, so it truly feels like you’re on the ship. And the story will change, depending on how your crew handles their jobs. Long story short, this is more than just a ride. It’s a whole experience.
Riders must be 38 inches tall to ride this attraction.
Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance
Another Hollywood Studios ride is the one themed after Star Wars. Like Smugglers Run, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance is located in Hollywood Studios’ Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. And again, like the previous ride, Rise of the Resistance is an immersive experience that begins as soon as you get in line.
Now, if you don’t want spoilers about the storyline of the ride, skip this paragraph. Rise of the Resistance is set during the sequel trilogy of Star Wars and includes many beloved characters like Rey, Poe, Finn, BB-8, Kylo Ren, and General Hux. You’re experiencing the story as a member of the Resistance commissioned by Rey to fight against the First Order. You start in Batuu and your ship is ambushed on its way to General Organa. You’re taken captive and have to escape the Star Destroyer.
The queue for Rise of the Resistance leads you from the outdoor experience of Batuu into a spaceport where you’ll ultimately board your ship. On the way, you’ll see familiar characters and be clued in on the backstory you need to know. The technology and design are impressive, and they truly make you feel like you’re in a Star Wars movie. Nothing feels cheesy or overdone, it all just feels like true Disney magic.
Many people love the interactive aspect of Smugglers Run, with the opportunities to play different roles and change the way the ride plays out each time you go. But if you’re looking for a more straightforward coaster that just brings you along for the ride, Rise of the Resistance is perfect for you.
Riders must be 40 inches tall to ride this attraction.
Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith
So here’s the story: Aerosmith is finishing up a recording session when their manager lets them know that they’re late for a concert on the other side of town. They have to get there fast, and they invite you to join them on the ride as VIP guests with a backstage pass to the show. This high-speed coaster features cars that make up a stretch limousine, and it takes you through loops and corkscrews and past famous Hollywood landmarks, all indoors.
The band’s famous rock music blares while you zip across the tracks – according to Disney, the cars are “decked out with a 125-speaker, 24-subwoofer, 32,000-watt audio system” that play a variety of Aerosmith hits, including “Walk This Way,” “Dude (Looks Like a Lady),” “Sweet Emotion,” “Back in the Saddle,” and a rendition of “Love in an Elevator” that was rewritten as “Love in a Roller Coaster.”
Each limo plays a different song, so you may have different experiences each time you ride:
- 1QKLIMO plays “Nine Lives”
- UGOBABE plays “Love in a Roller Coaster” and “Walk This Way”
- BUHBYE plays “Young Lust,” “F.I.N.E.,” and “Love in a Roller Coaster”
- H8TRAFFIC plays “Back in the Saddle” and “Dude (Looks Like a Lady)”
- 2FAST4U plays “Sweet Emotion”
The queue for Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster leads you through Aerosmith’s recording studio and into the back alleys where you wait for your limo to pick you up. Once you’re boarded and buckled in, the ride counts down from five before blasting you from 0 to 60 in under three seconds. You’ll continue through the 3,400-foot track that includes the only loop in the park.
Pro tip: If you get a FastPass for Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, you’ll get a personalized poster in the rotunda of the recording studio when you enter the ride!
Riders must be 48 inches tall to ride this attraction.
Now you have a detailed guide to all the Hollywood Studios Rides that you can refer to whenever needed. Hollywood Studios is a great park for the whole family, and it has thrill rides for all levels. So go check it out, and be sure to let us know what you think. Have fun, and happy exploring!