The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror is an attraction at Disney’s Hollywood Studios at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida. The attraction is based on The Twilight Zone television series created by Rod Serling that originally aired on CBS in the late 1950s to early 1960s.
Towering at the end of Sunset Boulevard, the Hollywood Tower Hotel delights or intimidates guests throughout the day. Each time the service elevator reaches the top, the elevator doors open momentarily, exposing riders before they disappear. Screams echo down the street as guests succumb to the terrifying sequence of drops.
Below, we’ll discuss the specifics of experiencing the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. While this attraction is not a roller-coaster, it is one of the biggest thrills at Disney World.
Below is a quick reference chart for the Hollywood Tower of Terror.
|Twilight Zone Tower Of Terror
|Hollywood Studios Attractions
Yes, with Disney Genie+
Elevator, Dark, Free Fall
Seats Per Vehicle:
Three rows, Seven guests per row
Early Theme Park Entry:
Extended Evening Hours:
High (Big Drops, Thrills, Dark)
Tweens, Teens, And Adults
- Guests in wheelchairs or ECVs must transfer to a wheelchair and then to the ride vehicle. Details for those with mobility issues (i.e., wheelchair, ECVs) can be found on Disney’s site. Video captioning is available. Service animals are not permitted.
- Disney’s Posted Warning: “For safety, you should be in good health and free from high blood pressure, heart, back or neck problems, motion sickness, or other conditions that could be aggravated by this adventure. Expectant mothers should not ride.”
*It is rare to see the extended evening hours benefit offered at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
Twilight Zone Tower of Terror Ride Review
If there were one solitary, iconic structure representing Disney’s Hollywood Studios, it would be The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. Genuinely towering in the distance, the attraction is part of Walt Disney World’s skyline.
Differing from a roller coaster, the Tower of Terror is considered a free-falling thrill ride. The attraction’s entrance is at the end of Sunset Boulevard.
You’ll feel as though you’ve walked on the grounds of a lush resort as you near the opening. Cast members dressed as bellhops are stationed near the entrance.
A sign indicates the wait for the next attraction. Waits typically average one hour on a regular day. However, it’s not uncommon for the stand-by line to reach waits of up to 90 minutes or more during busier times of the year.
If you purchase Disney Genie+, this is a good use of a Lightning Lane. If you’re hoping to ride this attraction multiple times, we recommend heading to this attraction first thing during early theme park entry or at the rope drop when the park opens to regular guests.
With many guests heading to Rise of the Resistance, Runaway Railway, and Slinky Dog Dash first, you might get in a ride or two before wait times begin to build. Depending on the park’s operating hours, you can usually experience the lowest wait times before 10:00 a.m. and after 7:00 p.m.
After you enter the queue, you’ll make your way inside the abandoned hotel lobby. Don’t be surprised to find everything covered in cobwebs. It feels spooky, like the Haunted Mansion.
The Tower of Terror’s backstory is presented while you wait. A pre-show area has a video of a family with a little girl who had taken the elevator to their room when lightning struck the building. They vanished into thin air, and the hotel shut down soon after.
After the pre-show, you’ll make your way to the boiler room. From here, you’ll wait your turn to board the ride vehicle. Each ride vehicle holds up to 21 guests (three rows with seven guests per row). Individual seats have a seat belt restraint. A cast member will check to make sure each seat belt is secured.
Once everyone is loaded, your car will enter the elevator shaft and ascend to the top of the hotel. At the top, you’ll go down a hotel hallway to the elevator drop. Soon, the elevator doors will open, and you’ll find yourself briefly looking out to the theme park.
Briefly is probably an underestimate, as the ride system almost immediately begins. You’ll experience fast drops as the sequence of ups and downs begins. A PhotoPass element will capture the experience for those with the Memory Maker add-on.
Is the Tower of Terror Scary?
Yes, for some, this attraction is scary. You will be in a dark, enclosed space during the ride. For many, the Tower of Terror is a mind-over-matter type experience. It’s a top priority for thrill-seekers.
The ride has multiple drop sequences. If you haven’t ridden it much, each drop is a surprise. Of course, most of the drops feel more intense than they are. Between the falls in the darkness, sudden bursts of light when the elevator doors open, and creepy audio effects, it might be an unpleasant experience for some.
Those with a fear of heights are probably better off watching from afar. However, even watching the Tower of Terror operate from the ground outside can be intimidating.
If you have a divided party, those who do not want to ride the attraction can wait in the hotel’s gift shop. You’ll walk past the attraction entrance to the lower level of the hotel.
Inside, you can browse the gift shop and some theming elements. There is a small seating area toward the back of the gift shop where you can wait.
This is also an excellent place to shop for the latest Hollywood Tower Hotel merchandise. Fans of the ride can usually find branded attraction merchandise.
Other Versions of the Attraction:
Disney Parks offers a few other Tower of Terror attractions worldwide, including a version of the ride themed to Guardians of the Galaxy at the Disneyland Resort. They are as follows:
- The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror (Walt Disney Studios Park, Disneyland Paris)
- Tower of Terror (Tokyo DisneySea, Tokyo Disneyland)
- Guardians of the Galaxy: Mission BREAKOUT! (Disney California Adventure, Disneyland Park)
Make sure to check out the complete list of the Hollywood Studios attractions or enjoy these other individual reviews:
- Rise of the Resistance Review
- Smugglers Run Ride Review
- Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway
- Toy Story Mania Review
- Slinky Dog Dash at Disney World
- Alien Swirling Saucers Review
Additionally, you might consider planning a stay at one of the nearby Skyliner Resorts. If so, try one of these resort reviews:
- Disney’s Riviera Resort Review
- Disney’s Caribbean Beach Review
- Disney’s Pop Century Resort Review
- Disney’s Art of Animation Review
Or you can browse our list of all Walt Disney World Resorts.
What Do You Think?
Will you ride the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror on your Disney vacation? Do you love the nostalgia of this attraction? Is this way too scary for you, or one of your favorites? Share your thoughts or questions below in the comments section.