Worth the Trip: Toy Story Land

Slinky Dog’s coils twist and turn around the curves, hills, and drops of Slinky Dog Dash at Toy Story Land at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. (Photo by Matt Stroshane)

Pixar’s most lucrative franchise receives a themed land worthy of its acclaimed movies

Imagine stepping foot onto a whimsical land and finding out that you have been reduced to the size of a green toy soldier. Everything is oversized and larger than life. The first thing that jumps out at you is the nearly 20-foot “rootinest, tootinest cowboy around,” Woody.

Toy Story Land at Walt Disney World Resort’s Hollywood Studios turns visiting guests into “honorary toys” from the hit Pixar franchise, and allows them to play in Andy’s backyard. As you walk the streets, you run into Andy’s enormous shoe print along with giant building blocks, Tinkertoys, yo-yos, game pieces, even popsicle-stick benches.

Little green Aliens from Pixar Animation Studios’ Toy Story films pilot toy rocket ships in the Alien Swirling Saucers attraction. (Photo by Steven Diaz)

Built over two years and unveiled this past summer, Toy Story Land is arguably the buzziest theme-park land to open since “Avatar Flight of Passage.” There are three main ride attractions in Toy Story Land: Slinky Dog Dash, Alien Swirling Saucers and Toy Story Mania. We explored all of these shrunken treasures.

SLINKY DOG DASH: For the family that thrill-seeks together, Slinky Dog Dash is a family-friendly roller coaster that packs a punch. Don’t let the childlike design fool you: This is a thrilling ride, and even includes two launches.

ALIEN SWIRLING SAUCERS: Here’s another winner: On this ride, guests swirl about in their own toy rocket ships, alongside little green men, while “The Claw” hangs overhead. Guests are rapidly spun in every direction as they absorb the extraterrestial sounds and upbeat tunes.

TOY STORY MANIA!: This ride is great for all family members, even grandma. There are no dips, and a minimum of sharp turns. The carnival-like ride uses virtual objects, from baseballs to cream pies, to hit targets in a variety of quirky scenarios.

WOODY’S LUNCH BOX: Toy Story Land’s on-site restaurant serves various tasty meals, including a breakfast and lunch/dinner menu, with many on-the-go options. As you dine you are surrounded by Andy’s favorite toys and a giant vintage thermos. Woody’s even offers adult-toy drinks (try Grown-Up’s Lemonade, complete with flavored vodka) and various beer options.

Woody’s Lunch Box is a quick-service food and beverage location serving tasty meals and old-fashioned soda floats.(Photo by Matt Stroshane)

GALAXY QUEST

Next year Hollywood Studios will premiere the 14-acre Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. This park will allow guests to visit Black Spire Outpost, a remote trading port on the edge of the cosmos, where Star Wars characters and their stories come to life—and where guests will find themselves in the middle of the action. Also coming in 2019, Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway is the first Mickey-themed ridethrough attraction in Disney Parks’ history. It will feature new technology, dazzling visual effects and mind-boggling transformations that put guests in the wacky and unpredictable world of a Mickey Mouse cartoon short.


HERE ARE SOME COOL TIPS TO HELP MAXIMIZE YOUR ADVENTURE AT TOY STORY LAND

USE THE APPS: These two apps make Disney life easy: Disney Play app, and My Disney  experience app. When waiting in long lines—and 60- to 90-minute waits are standard, especially if you’re not a FastPass holder—download and open the Disney Play app (through the Apple Store and/or Google Play). Turn your wait time into play time at the parks. On the My Disney Experience app, you can see realtime wait times, view  showtimes and park hours, link photos, get Fast Passes and more. You can even order your food through the app, and get a notification when it’s ready, all without having to step foot in a line.

DISNEY MAGICBANDS ARE MAGIC: You can use your MagicBand to unlock the door of your Disney Resort hotel room, enter theme and water parks, connect Disney PhotoPass images to your account, and charge food and merchandise to your Disney Resort hotel  room. Invest in the bands to speed in and out of parks, and for the use of FastPasses.

If you’re looking for the best Instagram-worthy pic in Toy Story Land, take it outside the Scrabble bathroom. Its colorful nostalgic backdrop will totally give your followers FOMO. (Here’s the secret: The urinals in the men’s bathroom are actually kids’ size.)


This story is from our March/April 2019 issue of Boca magazine. For more content like this, subscribe to the magazine.