Hollywood Studios: Echo Lake
Hollywood Studios has 9 different areas. With shops, eateries, attractions and entertainment found in each area. Echo Lake is found in the heart of Hollywood Studios and has a mix of entertainment, dining and shopping.
We love to eat at Backlot Express because of their super cool Darth Vader Waffles. They come with chicken nuggets, and they taste just like Mickey Shaped Waffles. If this isn’t your thing they also have a super cool Galactic Salad, which features R2 on your Crisp Wonton. Backlot Express is beside Star Tours and therefore takes on a bit of a Star Wars theme despite their generic back lot eatery appearance. We’ve seen Storm Troopers inspecting during peak meal times so don’t be alarmed if you’re investigated during your meal here. On the menu you’ll also find cheeseburgers, sandwiches, hot dogs and chicken nuggets. Not the most impressive menu but if you’re a fan of Star Wars then I would recommend adding this to your Star Wars day. Backlot opens at 11am so make sure to eat here for an earlier dinner.
Found in the dinosaur on Echo Lake, here’s the perfect spot to grab a hot dog for a quick supper. Open until 8:30pm, choose between a pulled pork sandwich, foot long hot dog, a chili-cheese hot dog or nachos. Here you can also find the Kahlua Milkshake and Minute Maid Alcoholic Frozen Lemonade. Delicious drinks to cool off on a hot day.
Open at 11am, the Oasis Canteen serves funnel cakes as well as floats. Have your funnel cake topped with ice cream or simply powdered sugar. They also serve alcoholic floats.
This restaurant will put you back in the 50’s with their decor and their food. Here you’ll be dining at your aunt’s, your uncle’s, maybe your cousin’s place. Most of the tables have a TV right at the table, showing highlights of TV shows from the 50’s. Be wary, your server may expect you to set your own table and to finish your veggies before ordering dessert. This restaurant is great for dining out of pocket because it’s low cost for a table service restaurant, it’s actually on our list of worst 5 restaurants to eat at on the dining plan. 50’s Prime Time Cafe is located beside Hollywood & Vine and directly across from Echo Lake.
The only character dining experience found at Hollywood Studios and the only buffet restaurant. For lunch and dinner you’ll have the chance to meet Minnie Mouse and all her friends: Goofy, Donald,Daisy and Mickey. For breakfast you can meet Disney Junior characters. Hollywood & Vine is found directly across from Echo Lake. Hollywood & Vine serves a wide variety of food. You’ll find soups, salads, pastas, carved meats, fish and of course a whole section of sweets. There’s a special section just for younger pickier eaters.
Tune-In Lounge is the waiting area for 50’s Prime Time Cafe but they also serve a full menu along with appetizers. So you can dine here for a quick bite before heading back out for your Hollywood Studios day. They are open until 9pm.
For the First Time in Forever: A Sing-Along Celebration
Found in a theatre in the heart of Hollywood Studios, guests can enjoy a retelling of Elsa and Anna’s Frozen tale. It is told by two citizens of Arendelle and features Anna, Elsa and Sven. The primary songs are screened, with the words spelled out below so you and your group can sing along. This theatre is inside with comfortable seats. Giving you a much needed break from the standing, walking and heat. It’s a fun performance, lasting about 20 minutes. We loved it so much, we went twice. There are a number of performances throughout the day. Generally ten. You can get FastPasses for this stage show. Performances run hourly.
Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular
This stunt show features stunt performers reenacting some of the most impressive scenes from Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark. This amphitheatre is covered and the benches are steel. It is still a very popular show, so if it’s a must do on your list get a fastpass. There are only a handful of performances throughout the day. Guests can participate in this stunt show, which requires a commitment for the length of the show. This show lasts closer to a half hour. It involves fire, fist fights, leaps from tall buildings. It’s a fun and impressive performance. You can find Indiana Jones: Epic Stunt Spectacular just past Echo Lake or past 50’s Prime Time Cafe.
Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple
Young guests looking to learn the ways of the force can become young Padawans during this Jedi Training. Found outside Star Tours, young guests are taught the skills of the Jedi and will have to test their strength in the force against enemies. There are a number of these shows throughout the day giving guests many opportunities to watch or participate. Guests wanting to be a part of this training must be between 4 and 12 and must register at Indiana Jones Adventure Outpost. Registration opens at park open and is a first come first serve basis. Those who don’t want to participate or are too young can still enjoy by watching the training.
Star Tours is found by BackLot Express. It’s right in front of here that they have the Jedi Trials which is for kids 4-12. Star Tours is a 3D simulator ride that has a variety of variations, making the ride different every time you ride it. With C3P0 as your unlikely pilot, guests are taken on an unexpected adventure to return a rebel alliance member safely to their crew. You’ll be jerked around throughout the attraction, you may find yourself hanging on to the handles provided for you along your seat. It’s a fun ride, a wonderful way to expose your child to Star Wars.
Let this larger than life version of Olaf, in his dream spot, the beach. Now Olaf can’t give you a signature but you can get a great photo. There’s no FastPasses for this meet and greet so you can expect quite the wait for this character meet and greet. You’ll find this location on Commissary Lane, across from Star Tours.
Frozen Fractal Gifts
This is a small little shop but it’s got the gifts your Frozen fan will love. I found the BEST dress for our daughter her last January that I would never have found anywhere else. It’s pink and poofy, with a sparkly vest and Elsa on the front. In the shop is all kinds of apparel, toys, books, everything Frozen. It’s found at the exit of For the First Time in Forever: Frozen Sing-Along Celebration or you can find it across from Oasis Canteen. It’s open from 9am until 8pm.
Indiana Jones Adventure Outpost
Found at the exit of the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular, here’s where you’ll find exclusive merchandise. You’ll find whips, toys, shirts, hats, jackets. So much! The best spot for Indy fans.
Indiana Jones Truck
A small truck located at the entrance of Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular has a few plush toys, hats and shirts. Take a glance, this truck may be where you find that one thing you want to take home.
The current place to find your Star Wars merch. Lightsabers, toys, apparel. Tatooine Traders is found at the exit of Star Tours, here’s where you can find those sweet yoda backpacks, darth vader shirts, or build your own droids. This shop is open from park open until park close.
There’s plenty to see and do in this area of Hollywood Studios. You can also keep you eyes peeled for Storm Troopers, they’ll be patrolling this area. For more information on Hollywood Studios take a look at these previous posts: