Toy Story At Disney World: What To Do At WDW For Fans Of Woody And Buzz Lightyear

Woody and Buzz in Toy Story.
(Image credit: Disney/Pixar)

When Pixar released its first feature film, the studio could not have possibly guessed just how big Toy Story would become. The fact that Toy Story 5 is currently in development three decades after the first film's success shows just how many fans still love Buzz, Woody, and the rest. And over the last three decades, Toy Story has become a bigger and bigger part of Disney Parks, to the point now that the franchise doesn't simply have its own ride, but has several different rides in parks all over the world. 

Some people are all about Mickey and Minnie at Disney World while some might be incredibly passionate about Frozen at Disney World. If you're a Toy Story fan then you're going to want to experience all that Walt Disney World has to offer. The good news is that, while there is a lot of Toy Story fun to be had, it's limited to just a few places in the larger resort. You won't find anything Toy Story-themed at Disney's Animal Kingdom or Epcot, so you can focus your energies elsewhere. Here's a rundown of all things Toy Story that you can find at Walt Disney World today.

Toy Story At Disney's Hollywood Studios

Buzz Lightyear statue in Toy Story Land

(Image credit: Dirk Libbey)

If you want to experience Toy Story up close and personal, then there is one place you absolutely must go, and that's Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Here you'll find an entire land dedicated to the franchise. With Toy Story Land you get everything you could want from Toy Story, fun attractions, cool character moments, and even food that feels like it belongs in Toy Story

Toy Story Land

From the entrance of Disney's Hollywood Studios, you'll find Toy Story Land in the back of the park, right next to the theme park's other new land, Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge. It's designed to make you feel like you are a toy yourself, with everything oversized so you feel tiny. The story of the land is that you are in Andy's backyard and he's built everything that you see around you as part of his imaginative play with his toys. 

Toy Story Mania

This ride actually predates Toy Story Land, but it was given a significant overhaul as part of the new land. It combines carnival games, a ride, and 3D effects, to create something quite special. Ride vehicles travel to various “playsets” where guests can pull the string on a popgun mounted to their vehicle. This shoots off a variety of different projectiles onto a 3D screen, like rings for a ring toss, darts for a balloon-popping game, or baseballs to throw and plates in order to shatter them. Targets earn you points and everybody in the same ride vehicle competes with each other. Various Toy Story characters appear in each playset and cheer you on. There’s also an animatronic Mr. Potato Head that’s not to be missed. 

Slinky Dog Dash

One of two roller coasters found at Disney's Hollywood Studios, what sets Slinky Dog Dash apart from many is that it's a coaster that is suitable for the park’s smaller guests. It's got a height requirement of only 38 inches, but it doesn't skimp on the thrills. It may be the perfect coaster because older riders will still enjoy it but younger riders can give roller coasters a try and see if they like them when they can't ride many of the other more thrilling rides in the park. Slinky Dog does tend to have one of the longer wait times at Disney World though, so be prepared for that. 

Alien Swirling Saucers

One ride that even smaller guests can experience is Alien Swirling Saucers. This ride lets guests spin around in vehicles being pulled by the green aliens from Toy Story, while "the claw" hangs ominously overhead. The ride structure is identical to Mater's Junkyard Jamboree found in Cars Land at Disney California Adventure if you're familiar with that one. It's actually really fun and while it may be the smallest attraction in the land, it's worth checking out. 

Woody's Lunch Box

If you’re looking for a quick bite in Toy Story Land then the place to go is Woody's Lunch Box. It’s a quick service spot that provides just the sort of food you'd expect a kid playing in the backyard would eat for lunch. It's got grilled cheese sandwiches, tomato soup, snack cheese, and tasty tarts for dessert. Pretty simple, but tasty, comfort food. 

Roundup Rodeo BBQ

If you’re looking for a meal a bit more substantial than Woody’s Lunch Box the newest restaurant at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, the Roundup Rodeo BBQ is a must visit location. From ribs to brisket, this BBQ joint has everything you’d expect, plus you get to experience it all from the point-of-view of Andy’s toys.  

Jessie’s Trading Post

Once you've done everything there is to do in Toy Story Land, you may want to bring home proof of your time spent there in the form of merchandise. Somehow Toy Story Land was initially built without a major gift shop, but that has been rectified. Jessie’s Trading Postis attached to Toy Story Mania, and you can exit through the gift shop when you leave that ride or check out the shop on its own just as well. 

Toy Story Characters At Disney's Hollywood Studios

Seeing and hearing Toy Story characters in the various attractions are all well and good, but it just wouldn't be the same if you couldn't actually meet your favorite Toy Story characters and give them a hug and get a picture. Meet and Greet opportunities are usually available inside Toy Story Land to meet Woody, Buzz, and Jessie as fully costumed characters. 

In addition, the Green Army Men are also a regular presence inside the land. You'll find them performing as the Green Army Drum Corps, as well as getting interactive by playing games with some of the younger guests. 

Toy Story At Magic Kingdom

Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin at Disney World's Magic Kingdom

(Image credit: Walt Disney World)

While there's certainly a lot of Toy Story fun to be had at Disney's Hollywood Studios, that's far from the only place you can enjoy Toy Story and its characters. Magic Kingdom is also home to another Toy Story-inspired attraction, which can be found in the park's Tomorrowland. 

Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin

Before Toy Story Land, Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin was the place to compete against your friends and try to make them look bad. The ride sees guests shoot at targets in much the same way as that ride, but rather than using 3D glasses and screens, Space Ranger Spin uses physical props with targets and guests take aim with toy blasters firing IR beams. Different targets are worth different amounts of points, and you can compete with one other person to see who can score better. 

Toy Story Characters at Magic Kingdom

Along with his attraction, Buzz Lightyear can sometimes be found in Tomorrowland taking pictures with guests, though he's the only Toy Story Character you'll still sometimes find here, as all the others have moved over to Toy Story Land (Woody and Jessie would sometimes appear in Frontierland before the new land was built) 

Happily Ever After

Magic Kingdom's Happily Ever After fireworks show is so much more than just fireworks. Yes, the pyrotechnics are impressive but the projection mapping on Cinderella's Castle and the music combine with those fireworks to make something special. Basically, every Disney character you love appears at some point, but that includes Buzz, Woody, and the gang and a bit of the classic "You've Got A Friend In Me."  (Show is currently on hiatus during the holidays but will likely return in 2024)

Disney's All-Star Movies Resort

All-Star Movies Resort, Toy Story area

(Image credit: Walt Disney World)

If you want to take your Walt Disney World vacation and your love of all things Toy Story to yet another level, then you may want to consider staying at the All-Star Movies Resort. You've got to stay somewhere, right? This hotel has an entire section dedicated to Toy Story including massive statues of Buzz, Woody, and other Toy Story characters outside, as well as references to those characters, and others, inside the rooms. The All-Star Movies Resort is one of Walt Disney World's less expensive hotels so getting the Toy Story experience isn't even that expensive. Although you can't usually book a room specific to the Toy Story section, you can make the request, and either way you'll be able to wander over to check out the Toy Story theming.

If you're looking to have not only a Walt Disney World vacation but a Toy Story vacation, there is so much to enjoy it can very easily take an entire trip to experience it all. And keep your eyes open because Walt Disney World is adding new experiences all the time, so there may be even more Toy Story to experience when you next find yourself at Walt Disney World. 

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian, Dirk began writing for CinemaBlend as a freelancer in 2015 before joining the site full-time in 2018. He has previously held positions as a Staff Writer and Games Editor, but has more recently transformed his true passion into his job as the head of the site's Theme Park section. He has previously done freelance work for various gaming and technology sites. Prior to starting his second career as a writer he worked for 12 years in sales for various companies within the consumer electronics industry. He has a degree in political science from the University of California, Davis.  Is an armchair Imagineer, Epcot Stan, Future Club 33 Member.