Exploring the New Toy Story Land and More at Walt Disney World

In Family, Travel by Kate BaylessLeave a Comment

Are you a Toy Story Fan? Maybe your family grew up with Woody and Buzz or are just now discovering them. Either way, kids of all ages adore the new Toy Story Land open at Disney’s Hollywood Studio at Walt Disney World. On a recent summer weekend, my family and I hopped on a flight from Los Angeles to Orlando to experience two firsts for us: a family trip to Florida and our first time exploring Walt Disney World!

Courtesy of Disney

Explore The Backyard

Open to the public as of June 30th, 2018, the new Toy Story Land has been expertly designed to feel as though you’ve been dropped right in the middle of Andy’s backyards – as a two-inch tall toy! Blades of grass tower over you, K’NEX fences guide you between attractions, and classic game boards pieces peak out anywhere you look. Guests feel like real “honorary toys” in Andy’s backyard. You can even look for the Andy’s oversized footprints throughout the land to help bring you down to size! Between the bright colors and nostalgic oversized toys (TinkerToy lights and Lincoln Log benches, anyone?), Toy Story Land instantly transports you right into the movie set.

Courtesy of Disney

Best Toy Story Land Rides

One of the highlights of the new Toy Story Land is the Slinky Dog Dash, a fun new roller coaster that twists, turns, drops and spins through more toy creations. While the height limit for this ride is just 38 inches, this is not a “kiddie coaster”. The speed, drops, and twists offer big thrills for roller coaster lovers! Slinky Dog Dash does allow FastPass+ and you’ll want to use it! The new ride is popular and quickly builds up a long line.

Other rides in Toy Story Land include Alien Swirling Saucers set inside a Claw Machine where you too can see if you’ll be “chosen” by the claw as well as one of my family’s favorite, Toy Story Mania – a carnival-themed 4D arcade where you can challenge each other to rack up the most points hurling imaginary pies, breaking plates and launching darts. It’s addictive!

Eat & Greet

When you’re ready for a snack, head to Woody’s Lunch box for kid favorites like grilled cheese and turkey sandwiches,  old-fashioned soda floats, and other Toy Story-themed specialties. Don’t be surprised if you run into a few familiar faces walking around Toy Story Land! Woody, Buzz, Jessie and of course those Green Army Men can be found throughout the land. If you want to be sure to catch a glimpse (and a photo!) with one of them, add on the Disney Early Morning Magic package along with your regular admission and you’ll get first access to Toy Story Land, no-wait rides, meet-n-greets with your favorite Toy Story characters and an included continental breakfast.

Other Walt Disney World Favorites

This was my family’s first time to Walt Disney World. With four parks to explore, there was a lot to see! Other favorites at the parks for my three boys were the mind-blowing 4D Avatar Flight of Passage experience at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Big Thunder Mountain at Magic Kingdom, and the Chevy Test Track at Epcot. At the Test Track, each rider gets to design their own virtual car and then see how it scores on different performance tasks. The ride ends with a final race reaching speeds of 65 mph, the fastest ride in the park! My boys loved to see how different tweaks of their car designs changed their score in the performance tests. And of course, how awesome your car can look with racing stripes, monster wheels and turbo speed!

Test Track of Our Own

In addition to the Chevy Test Track, my family got the chance to do a little test driving of our own in a new 2018 Chevrolet Traverse. We didn’t get to race it on a race track, unfortunately. However, we took it out for the day out to Cape Canaveral to explore the Kennedy Space Center. While I’m admittedly not much of a car person, the Traverse had some family-friendly features that impressed me. I realized why Parents and Edmunds named it one of the best family cars of 2018.

Our family needs lots of space

With 3 growing boys, interior space for kids and gear matters to my family. This midsized SUV boasts seating for 8 (or 7 if you opt for the second row bucket seats). You get plenty of leg room, dual skylights, and an ample trunk. Cool Smart Slide Seats let you slide the second row up to access the back row — even with a car seat installed! Both the second and third row fold down flat for when you need to pick up that new big kid bed.

Moms appreciate safety features

The Traverse comes with a number innovative safety features that I appreciated. Some of my favorites were the 360° Surround Vision Camera to get a birds eye view of the entire car before you move, Lane Assist that actually nudges your car back into its lane if you start to drift, and the Teen Driver features (not just for teens!) which helps encourage safe driving habits by limiting speed and distractions.

Technology makes road trips more enjoyable

The Traverse offers lots of tech features. Drivers love a full-service touchscreen, complete with audio, maps, weather, and OnStar. I loved the in-car 4G LE Wi-Fi service (available for daily or monthly rate). So that long day of driving to grandma’s house? The kids can stream videos all day and you can finish up that work presentation. With the myChevrolet app you can even remotely start your engine, unlock your doors, or set a parking reminder. Genius!

I’m not going to lie about one of my favorite feature on the 2018 Chevy Traverse. See that picture in the bottom right corner? Yep, I need to rave about butt coolers. And during our hot, humid Florida weekend, it was a feature we certainly enjoyed! I appreciated all of the Traverse’s cool safety, tech and style features. The Traverse would let my family travel just about anywhere — even to infinity and beyond!

Courtesy of Disney

Disclaimer: Thanks to Chevrolet and Disney for hosting our visit. All opinions expressed are my own.

Meet the Author | Kate Bayless

Kate Bayless is a Southern California-based writer and a mom of three. She writes regularly about beauty, travel, health and wellness for both digital and print outlets.

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