10 Tips for Spending a Spectacular Evening at Hollywood Studios


All of the Disney parks take on a new character when you visit at night. There is something about walking into a park and seeing your favorite attractions awash with light and checking out various nighttime shows and experiences. Visiting Hollywood Studios at night, however, offers a entirely different experience with the entire park awash in neon glow. So, the next time that you are visiting Hollywood Studios at night, here are our ten tips for spending a spectacular evening there!

10 – Outdoor Dining – when we visit Hollywood Studios at night, we enjoy getting there around 5 PM and heading to the Brown Derby Lounge and having a drink and a small plate outside and watch the people walking in and walking out. The seating area is located in the shade, so you won’t have to worry about getting too hot in the sun. The menu has some amazing cocktails and small plates, as well – it’ll be a great start to your evening!

9 – Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular – the new Star Wars entertainment at Hollywood Studios is an amazing combination of fireworks, projections, and lasers. Guests will definitely want to make sure that they get their spots for this show in time. We aren’t huge fans of having to stand the entire time waiting for the show to start, but it is definitely worth it considering the show that they put on!

8 – Tower of Terror at Night – no matter the weather, we cannot pass up riding the Tower of Terror at night. We love getting to the top of the tower and looking out over all of the park and seeing all of the buildings lit up in neon and seeing the park completely covered in color. The park looks completely different from this vantage point at night! You’ll love it!

7 – Lounge Hop – Hollywood Studios is home to two great lounges for guests to relax and grab a drink – the aforementioned Brown Derby Lounge, but also the Tune-In Lounge located next to the 50’s Prime Time Café. Both have amazing drinks and a wonderful atmosphere to enhance your enjoyment of the park. Guests should also remember to check out the drinks available at the other counter-service restaurants, too!

6 – Fantasmic Dining Package – Fantasmic is a very popular nighttime attraction at Hollywood Studios and guests who want to ensure prime seats should consider participating in a Fantasmic Dining Package – this package entitles guests to a reserved seat for Fantasmic, as well as dinner at your choice of three restaurants. You must reserve this experience early or else you will have to try and snag a good seat via FastPass or general admission.

5 – Moonlit Stroll – if Epcot is open late or if you are staying in the Crescent Lake area, we love walking the path from the Studios back to the Boardwalk and Epcot area. You’ll see the Friendship Boats cruising by (which also can be great fun, too)! Sometimes walking can be a quicker means of transportation – even quicker than a bus, boat, or car!

4 – Fresh Popcorn – no trip to Disney is complete without popcorn, but this is even more true when we visit Hollywood Studios – something about being in a park themed to movies makes us crave it a little more – our favorite stands are the ones located right around the Great Movie Ride – be sure to snag a bucket before getting in place for the Star Wars show or before heading to Fantasmic!

3 – Dessert Party – the dessert party can be a great experience as well. Guests are treated a variety of Star Wars treats at their own private reception at the Star Wars Launch Bay. There you will remain air-conditioned until about five minutes before the show starts when you will be led to a special viewing area for the show. This experience is at an additional costs – we have not tried it yet, but according to friends who have, it is a great experience and an awesome way to avoid the long lines and sweltering heat!

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2 – Outdoor Queues – a lot of the queues at Hollywood Studios have some amount of the queue outside. We enjoy wandering our always through them at night so we can appreciate the details and see things that we don’t see when going through the queues during the day.

1 – Limited Experiences – with Hollywood Studios going through a lot of changes, we like strolling around the park to take in things while they still exist. Obviously visiting at night lessens the crowds you have to contend with, but also allows guests to view the park in a different light.

Have you visited Hollywood Studios at night? What is on your itinerary for a spectacular evening?

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About Tyler

Tyler is a lawyer living in South Florida who visits Disney World at least once a month. He enjoys re-living classic Disney experiences and discovering new things about the parks when he visits. Friends and family always ask him to plan their trip for maximum Disney magic!

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