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6 Reasons We Love Echo Lake at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Action! The Echo Lake area in Hollywood Studios is definitely the place to be if you are looking for some excellent action and memorable moments. Here are 6 reasons we love Echo Lake at Hollywood Studios… see if you’re favorite makes the list!


1 – “Crazy California” Design

When many of us think of Echo Lake, we immediately think of that huge, green dinosaur rising from the water. Well, did you know Echo Lake was designed with novelty architecture known as “Crazy California.” Crazy California was all the craze during the Hollywood Golden Age, where large animals or objects were used as the building formats for shops, restaurants, and even homes. Hollywood Studios matched that Crazy California architect with the dinosaur serving at an ice cream shop and even a boat serving at Min and Bill’s Dockside Diner.

The newly reimagined Mickey Shorts Theater in Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The venue features “Vacation Fun,” a new “Mickey Mouse” cartoon celebrating favorite vacation memories of Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse. Credit: Kent Phillips.

2 – Mickey Shorts Theater

The newly reimagined Mickey Shorts Theater debuted on March 4, 2020, with a one-of-a- kind animated short featuring Mickey and Minnie, “Vacation Fun,” celebrating those true originals’ favorite vacation memories, plus a few new adventures. “Vacation Fun” is exclusive to Disney’s Hollywood Studios and includes new animation as well as clips from favorite “Mickey Mouse” cartoon shorts. The show was a whole lot of fun and the theater is adorable. It’s well worth a stop inside to see this cute Mickey Short. After the show, you can make even more memories by stepping into life-sized versions of beloved animated “Mickey Mouse” shorts, where you can pose for photos with family and friends.

3 – Excellent Food Selections

Within Echo Lake, you’ll find a few of our favorite Hollywood Studios dining options! If you are looking to put your feet up and rest, you’ll want to snag a reservation at one of the table services restaurants, which include 50’s Prime Time Café and Hollywood and Vine. 50’s Prime Time Café has always been one of our family favorites with fun servers that make you set your own table and remind you to keep your elbows off of it – plus, they serve up some incredible milkshakes and even adult beverages at Tune-In Lounge inside. Hollywood and Vine has delicious food, plus it’s a character dining spot! Enjoy dinner with Minnie, Mickey, Donald, Daisy, and Goofy. Not in the mood for a table service and want something easy to grab and go? Check out one of Echo Lake’s quick-service dining options, which include Backlot Express, Min and Bills Dockside Diner, and Oasis Canteen. In other words – you won’t go hungry while browsing Hollywood Studio’s Echo Lake!


4 – Frozen Mania

This one is for all those that can’t stop singing “Let It Go” from Disney’s animated movie Frozen. We understand – we have a daughter too! You’ll want to be sure to take your Princess to “For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration” located in Echo Lake. You’ll have the chance to watch some favorite moments from Frozen and sing-along as the lyrics appear on the screen. Plus, you’ll be able to actually see Anna, Elsa, and Kristoff as they make an appearance during the show! But what about Olaf? No worries, as one of the latest Hollywood Studios crazes is the new Celebrity Spotlight with Olaf, which is also located in Echo Lake! Once you’ve had your fill of your Frozen friends, you can stop by Frozen Fractal Gifts for just about every type of Frozen souvenir you could image. We’re just surprised Echo Lake hasn’t frozen over with all of these Frozen opportunities!

Jedi Training Academy

5 – Star Wars Force

Editor’s Note: During the phased reopening of Walt Disney World, Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple is temporarily suspended.

When thinking of Star Wars in Hollywood Studios, you may immediately think of Star Wars Launch Bay, which is located in Animation Courtyard or Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge. But, don’t forget about the Star Wars action taking place in Echo Lake! One of our favorite attractions at Hollywood Studios has to be Star Tours, which takes Star Wars fans on a simulated adventure of a lifetime. Plus, you can ride this attraction over and over again and possibly get a different outcome each time! Young Jedi’s will want to train before they are tempted by the dark side with Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple. These Jedi’s will have the opportunity to fight Darth Vader or even Kylo Ren! Finally, you’ll feel the force pulling you into Tatooine Traders located at the exit of the Star Tours attraction. Here you will be able to build your own lightsaber and find the perfect Star Wars souvenir.

6 – Indiana Jones Action

Editor’s Note: During the phased reopening of Walt Disney World, Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular is temporarily suspended. 

The Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular first kicked off this incredible stunt show in 1989 and has been drawing in Disney crowds ever since! Over 30 years later, we find ourselves still enthralled with the action-packed live show. Watch Indy during his brave performance and all of the stagehands that make this show spectacular! Plus, the Indiana Jones Adventure Outpost is a gift shop full of fun Indiana Jones souvenirs.

What is your favorite part of Echo Lake in Hollywood Studios? We’d love to hear from you!

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About Mike & Jamie Sylvester

We are Disney nerds. Two kids at heart who love the magic and the memories of Walt Disney World! We follow all things Disney and have great experiences with being Annual Passholders, Disney Vacation Club Members, and RunDisney participants. We enjoy the vacations, day trips, weekend getaways and geek out over the planning of such events. From lodging to dining to Fastpasses we have a spreadsheet for every occasion. Mike’s frivolous Disney goal is to acquire as many MagicBands as possible while Jamie’s goal is to experience as many Disney desserts as possible. Usually there isn’t a day that passes without some discussion of the master plan of our next trip to the happiest place on earth. Most people think we’re normal – until they travel to Disney with us. We have been married for 13 years and are blessed with two children - our 8-year-old daughter and soon to be 2-year-old son. As a family we thoroughly enjoy the magic and the memories at Walt Disney World and are here to help others experience the magic as well.