Taking a tour around Toy Story Land at Disney's Hollywood Studios!
As most of you know, Toy Story Land is the newest Walt Disney World offering. It’s a new land inside of Hollywood Studios. The theming – beyond, obviously, Toy Story – is that you’re in Andy’s backyard, and the land is constructed out of his toys.
Going into this, I wasn’t sure what to expect. As a child, I loved Toy Story, but it wasn’t a movie that really stuck with me as I aged. I knew that Toy Story, as a theme, would lend itself to a more simplistic look, vs the intricacies of Carsland in California Adventure. So I wasn’t 100% sure what I would think of the land. I’ll take you guys on a little virtual tour of our day there, and give my thoughts on both the individual pieces and the land as a whole.
So what did I think of the land?
- It was a lot cuter than I was expecting it to be. I don’t dislike Toy Story at all, but I’m not a huge fan of it, so I was unsure how I’d feel about the theming. Overall, I liked it!
- Slinky Dog Dash is such a fun coaster. In terms of intensity, I’d rank it around Mine Train – it’s very smooth, but does have two (minor) accelerations, so it’s a little crazier than Mine Train but not by much. It’s overall just really fun.
- The line for Slinky Dog Dash is fantastic. You really feel like you’re wandering around toys and toy boxes.
- Alien Swirling Saucers is a copy of Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree from Carsland, in terms of what ride it is, but it’s a lot of fun. I call it I-4 the ride, in terms of merging and rapid lane changing, ha! I knew it wasn’t as in depth of a ride as Slinky, but I was pleasantly surprised how fun it was.
- Woody’s Lunch Box was a cute eatery – I forgot to take photos, but it was really cute and had a nice selection of food items vs your usual burger and chicken nugget quickservice meal.
- The land isn’t very large (three rides, no shops aside from two small stands), but it feels large.
- It’s cute in the daytime, but really pretty at nighttime. Really good lighting design.
- They have a cute giant fence up that you don’t really notice unless you’re on the Slinky coaster, but it does a great job blocking off most of the park (I only noticed Tower of Terror, the Chinese Theater, and Galaxy’s Edge) and making you feel like you’re in an enclosed ‘backyard’.
- They did not prep for Florida sun. Everything is outside and un-air conditioned, minus Toy Story Mania and the restrooms. For the Slinky line, they had to stick a bunch of umbrellas along the line to shade us (which was appreciated, but obviously looked temporary). About half the line in both the Slinky coaster and Alien rides are uncovered. The Jesse and Woody meet and greets are also unshaded, as is Woody’s Lunch Box (minus a few umbrellas).
- Woody’s Lunch Box is full of Babybel Cheese. I know, I know, it’s the sponsor of Disney snacks, but there is SO MUCH BRANDING in it that Babybel is the first thing I noticed before the lunchbox itself or the thermos propping it up. It’s in the lunchbox, it makes up some of the seats, etc. There’s just a lot of cheese. (I do love Babybel but I was surprised how it seemed to stand out more than other corporate sponsorships Disney does).
- This is a picky, picky, picky thing, so please note I know I’m being silly – but the giant toy statues work because you’re supposed to be the size of a Green Army Man. But then Jesse and Woody meet outside and the scale is thrown off. I KNOW I’M BEING SILLY, it’s less an actual complaint and more of a “hey I noticed”, but since they don’t have an actual indoor area for a meet and greet it’s a necessity for them to meet outside. I own my pettiness.
- I mentioned it above, but I have no idea what the Alien Swirling Saucers toy was supposed to be! It definitely felt like a Buzz ride, very in line with Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin, but aside from being told that it’s a “toy from Pizza Planet”, it’s the only area of the land that I had no idea what toy was supposed to be represented. If anyone knows, please let me know! We also attended just a couple days after opening and the Alien line was showing signs of wear (buttons that looked like they could move but weren’t had small holes pushed in them already from people pushing them). I was surprised to see signs of wear that early on, but it may have been fixed already!
- A tragic missing case of no Al’s Toy Barn. Instead they converted Sweet Spells (RIP), the best candy shop at Walt Disney World in my opinion, into a Toy Story store. It’s not located anywhere near the land and is just weirdly disjointed instead of building an in-theme shop in the actual land. GAH.
My overall thoughts: It’s a cute land, and gives Hollywood Studios a lot to do. I can see areas where I wish it had a bigger budget, but overall it’s very cute, and the Imagineers and rest of the team did a fantastic job with the nostalgia factor. There were toys from the 90s that I remember, and more old school toys beyond that. If you’re looking for something huge and epic like Pandora, it may not fit that bill, but it’s a cute land that will definitely appeal to anyone who loves Toy Story and loves toys.
Also, it butts right up to Galaxy’s Edge and I am dying to know what that transition is going to look like!! There’s a construction wall blocking it off but it looks like there will be an entrance…so that makes three entrances to the land, potentially? By Pixar place, in Toy Story Land, and by Grand Avenue. The GA one looks like the ‘main’ entrance, but I believe the other two will be entrances (or at least look like they will be). We’ll have to see!
I hope you guys enjoyed my thoughts on Toy Story Land. Let me know what you thought of it, or if you have any questions. ♥