Stay in a Deluxe Disney Resort
Of course, it goes without saying- but we’ll say it anyways. Stay in a park-area deluxe resort. The proximity and of course, the perks of staying in the deluxe is why we recommend it. You can get early entry and extended evening hours in parks on select days, extending the fun for your whole trip! Our top picks for Hollywood Studios would be the Riviera since it’s on the Skyliner, and and Boardwalk area resorts, since they’re within walking distance.
Hit the Rides Early
Since you’ll be staying at a resort that gives you early access to the parks, you’ll be going in 30 minutes early. In those 30 minutes, you’ll head to some of the most popular attractions to get those knocked out first. These rides depend on your family, but includes Slinky Dog Dash, Tower of Terror, Rock’n’Rollercoaster, and Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway. For this park, we recommend purchasing an individual Lightning Lane for Rise of the Resistance, because most people who head in early are already waiting in line for it. Trust us- it’s worth it to just get that Lightning Lane and not worry about it!
Now that you’ve run around the park, hitting your top rides, you need to recharge so you can make it through the rest of the day. Whether you take a cat nap at your resort, since it’s so close by, or grabbing a Ronto Wrap in Galaxy’s Edge and relaxing at Oga’s, you should enjoy some quiet time in the air conditioning. If you’re a Star Wars fan, you can always try to snag a spot at the Droid Depot and make your own droid companion. The droids interact with many elements throughout Galaxy’s Edge, so they’re fun to have with you in the park. You can also try to get a coveted spot at Savi’s Workshop to build your own lightsaber. Reservations for both of these start booking 60 days in advance. If you can’t get into Savi’s, they do have a store next door to build your own without the show or reservations. We just love the fanfare with the reservations.
Head over to Brown Derby
Now that you’ve had some time to explore the park, and recharged a little bit, it’s time to hit the Brown Derby. You can either make reservations for the restaurant, or do walk up starting at 11am for the lounge. We love the lounge, because you can still order a lot of what’s on the regular menu, but it’s excellent for people watching. You are still totally immersed in the park as you eat. Sometimes Chip and Dale will play on the lawn right next to the outdoor lounge, which is so much fun to watch as you enjoy! Brown Derby is a do-not-miss.
Catch the Shows and Meet-and-Greets
In the afternoon, there’s some awesome shows and meet-and-greet available. Go through, and prioritize what you have to see. We love the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular show. It’s in a covered area, with large fans, so its a great place to get out of the heat of the Florida sun. The show is also a great show for any age, so anyone can enjoy this stunt show. Fantasmic is also slated to come back this fall, but always double check before you get your hopes up!
They have an awesome Olaf meet, as well as Mickey and Minnie, with Mickey dressed in his Sorcerer outfit, and Minnie in her Red-Carpet best. You can also catch Edna Mode and other Pixar pals in the Cavalcade down Hollywood Boulevard. This is one of just two Walt Disney World parks that offers Pixar characters (the other being EPCOT) so be sure to say hi to your favorite pals!
The shopping at Hollywood Studios is great, and gives us some options that we only have here. If you’re looking for Star Wars merch- this is the best place for it. From droids and lightsabers, to spirit jerseys and pins, you can find it here.
This park also has a great assortment of Marvel merchandise, which is great because we don’t really have many Marvel options at all. Here you can find toys, clothing and tons more in the way of Marvel.
Other great options include Pixar-themed shopping, as well as some upscale shopping where you can find Coach Ears, jewelry, and other recognizable and prestigious brands. This is a great park to explore all of the cool options they have!
Go to Galaxy’s Edge and Toy Story Land after dark. Going there after dark is a totally new and unique way to see them. At Galaxy’s Edge, it’s quieter and a little more ominous, and you can appreciate your lightsaber’s glow much more. At Toy Story Land, you almost feel much smaller, genuinely toy-sized.
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