Tower of Terror

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The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror stands as one of the most iconic and thrilling attractions at Walt Disney World’s Hollywood Studios. Legend has it that on Halloween night in 1939, a bolt of lightning struck the Hollywood Tower Hotel, causing an entire guest wing and an elevator carrying five guests to mysteriously disappear. This chilling event gave birth to the Tower of Terror.

A Journey Through the Twilight Zone

Opened in July 1994 at what was then known as MGM Studios, the attraction originally featured just one heart-stopping free fall. In 2002, Disney Imagineers transformed the ride experience by introducing a computer-controlled drop sequence, making each ride unique with varying numbers and styles of drops. Whether you experience multiple short drops or fewer, longer plunges, the unpredictability adds to the thrill of this five-minute journey.

Guests begin their eerie adventure walking through the hotel’s decadently aged lobby before entering the library, where Rod Serling, recreated through the magic of Imagineering, invites you to step into the Twilight Zone. It’s said that the Imagineers watched all 156 episodes of the Twilight Zone series twice to perfectly capture the spirit of the show in the design of the attraction. After the library, guests move to the boiler room, where they board the service elevators—your last chance to escape before the descent begins.

Experiencing the Drop

Once securely inside the elevator, the ascent begins. The doors open briefly to reveal the ghostly apparitions of the five guests who vanished in 1939, enhancing the spectral atmosphere. The elevator ascends again, moving forward into what feels like another dimension. At the apex, 157 feet high, guests experience the thrill of a 13-story drop in just about two seconds, only to be shot back up and then dropped again, repeatedly.

Visitor Tips for the Tower of Terror

  • Height Requirement: Guests must be at least 40 inches tall to ride.
  • Health and Safety Notices: This dark, intense ride may not be suitable for guests with a fear of the dark, heights, or claustrophobia. It is also not recommended for guests who are pregnant or have heart conditions, back, or neck problems.
  • Rider Switch: This feature allows parents to take turns riding while one stays with children who are either too young or too frightened to ride.
  • Accessibility: Guests using wheelchairs or ECVs will need to transfer to a ride vehicle.
  • FastPass: Available to help minimize waiting times.
  • Immersive Theming: The attention to detail in the theming is meticulous. From the cobwebs in the corners to the eerie music and period-specific decor, every element enhances the spine-chilling ambiance of the Hollywood Tower Hotel.

The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror not only offers a heart-pounding ride but also a deep dive into the golden age of television horror, making it a must-experience attraction for thrill-seekers and fans of the supernatural at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

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