Thursday, April 21, 2011

Top 5 Hollywood Studios Attractions

5. The Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular

Okay, I've decided there's really no point in me doing a long winded descriptions of each attraction, haha. But I will give you my opinions and maybe a few tips. This show is a lot of fun! The stunts are impressive and the show itself is very funny. Enjoyable for adults and kids a like. If you want to be a part of the show then make sure you come about twenty minutes before showtime. They just might pick you.

Also I suggest trying to sit in the middle section (to do this you probably need to be there about fifteen minutes before show time.) Don't worry once you sit down you can leave and go get a snack (as long as you have someone to save your seat). Coming fifteen minutes before showtime may sound like a drag, but it's a great time to rest. The theater is shaded and usually cooler than a few other places. So I suggest showing up early with a cold drink and a pretzel. Relax and enjoy some (much needed) time to slow down.

4. Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith

The Rockin' Roller Coaster is my dad's favorite ride in all of Disney World. He thinks it's the coolest ride in all of the Disney. I remember the first time we rode it. We were waiting in the queue and there was a "limo" waiting to be launched. Dad looked away for a split second and when he turned around it was gone. His eyes went wide and he grinned like he just knew he was going to enjoy this coaster. And he was right. Every time we go as a family this is the ride he wants to ride over and over again. I love it too, of course. I think the Aerosmith pre-show is a lot of fun. The ride itself is amazing though.

My advice: be sure to keep your eyes and ears open on this one. There are fun neon signs and Aerosmith music pumping to the beat of your zooming ride. Also, have a couple of bottles of water handy while you're waiting in line. The Florida heat can be brutal and this line can be long. If you're group's not opposed to riding separately you there is a single riders line. That line usually moves faster, and don't forget that there's always the option of Fastpass.

3. Hollywood Tower of Terror

The Tower of Terror...this ride opened when I was in about third grade and I remember the ads like it was yesterday. I thought if I ever went to Disney World then no force on Earth would ever get me to ride that thing. Turns out I was wrong. There was a force that could get me to ride it. I call her Aunt Donna. When I was fifteen and finally go to go to Disney World, she and my Uncle Wayne and my mom were the first people to ride Tower of Terror with me. It was a lot of fun, but I remember being terrified. The picture they took as we fell was of myself and my aunt Donna looking at each other and screaming bloody murder.

It's a can't miss attraction at Hollywood Studios for both the attraction itself and it's amazingly detailed themeing. Here's a tip: If you're a hidden Mickey seeker you'll find at least one as you enter the Hollywood Tower Hotel's lobby. Keep a sharp eye out. It's there.

This queue is not too bad. It's shaded by trees for the most part, but having water on hand is always a good idea in Florida. Also look for a graceful statue while your waiting in the outdoor section of the queue. Watch her and then tell me what you see. I believe I've seen her blink, but I could be wrong.

2. Toy Story Mania

Before the relaunch of Star Tours this was the newest addition to Hollywood Studios. It's a blast, and definitely something for the whole family. It's so interactive that you sometimes forget it's a ride at all. And unlike some "shoot 'em up" attractions, such as Space Ranger Spin or Men In Black Alien Attack, you can actually feel where to aim. The shooting mechanism feels as though you are actually launching something and gives you greater control. Definitely easier for little ones to use.

This line can be long so I suggest getting a fast pass for this one as soon as you enter the park. Fastpasses go quick. They're extremely worth it for this attraction as this line is almost always over thirty minutes. Another tip, for those guests without little ones, is to hit this ride as you're leaving the park. The sign may say 25 minutes, but more than likely it will be a shorter wait than that. And, as a guest at the parks, you're able to get in line for a ride until the very minute before the park closes. Once you're in line they have to let you ride.

1. Fantasmic

Fantasmic was my favorite nighttime show as a teen. I hadn't quite come to appreciate IllumiNations yet and I thought I was a bit old for Wishes, but Fantasmic was exciting and so much more than a display of lasers and fireworks. This was a show with a very real story and actors. Fantasmic is still one of the most exciting night time shows in the World.

This show is only performed about every other night now. Be sure to look up the show times schedule before you leave for your trip and plan ahead for this show. It's can't miss. Also if you plan on seeing the first of the two shows be sure to get in line at least half an hour early (preferably more). That's the most crowded show on any given Fantasmic night. I suggest going to the second show if you're sans young children. It's less crowded and a bit easier to get into. I also suggest getting a snacks to take with you just before you get in line. More than likely you'll be in line for a while. You can always get more snacks once you're seated (they have concessions inside the theater).

Also (a tip I learned the hard way), if you're seeing the show anytime from late November to January be sure to bring a blanket. Believe it or not, it can be down right cold in Florida. If you don't bring a blanket, a hat, or gloves you'll be buying them because you won't be able to stand sitting in the cold with out them. Trust me.

Honorable Mention:

Muppet Vision 3D

Muppet Vision receives an honorable mention because it is pure family fun. Every one will enjoy it. The pre-show is just as good as the actual show so definitely don't miss that. Also, this attraction usually has a short wait so it's great for people who need to kill time in between Fastpasses. Don't forget to visit the Muppet store as you leave. Be sure to look around and up, you'll see actual sets and props from Muppet Movies through out the store.

The Can't Miss Seasonal Attraction:

The Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights

While I was on my College Program I visited these lights often. There were an amazing sight to behold. There were every where. So, when my parents came to visit I just knew I had to take them to see them as well. They were the Christmas event that my dad was the most impressed with in all of Disney World (and we went to the Christmas Party). This is definitely something you have to do if you're visiting the resort around the holidays. It's included with the price of your Hollywood Studios ticket so there's no extra fee to view it. Buy your self a cookie and some hot cocoa and take a stroll through these dazzling lights. You won't forget it. It will truly make your holidays much much brighter.

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