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Stay up late

When I tell people why I love Disney's Hollywood Studios so much, I'll often talk about the great attractions, restaurants and entertainment you can find in the park.  There's so much right there to talk about that it ends up being the bulk of the argument but the truth is there's much more and one of the most underrated aspects of what makes the Studos so amazing is the transformation the park takes at night.  

When the sun sets at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Hollywood and Sunset Boulevards are transformed and become, well, beautiful.  With summer coming into full swing, I recommend anyone that is planning a visit to the Studios stay for not just the great attractions but take some time to enjoy what the park offers in the evening.

Photo by Disney Tourist Blog

What really strikes me is the wonderful use of neon in the park.  The Magic Kingdom has always been considered a beautiful park at night but it relies on incandescent light bulbs to illuminate the park because of the time period the park is set in.  Disney's Hollywood Studios, on the other hand, utilizes neon lights because the 1930s and 1940s were when colored neon lights came into popularity and it's an amazing sight to see.

From a photography standpoint, enjoying Disney's Hollywood Studios at night is amazing because of the shadows, bright colors and striking contrasts between the two.  Even as an amateur photographer, it's fun to try to snap up photos that properly capture the look the park has once the sun goes down.

Photo by Disney Tourist Blog

Without a doubt Sunset and Hollywood Boulevard are the place to enjoy the Studios at night but other parts of the park are equally as beautiful.  One of my favorites is Pixar Place, which has a very underrated night time look to it.  It doesn't use neon, but the subtle lighting that is used really accentuates the detail of the street.  In addition, the Echo Lake area is quite enjoyable at night.  It's not as glitzy as it's Hollywood Boulevard neighboor, but there's something really serene and calm about how this part of the park looks at night.

Photo by Disney Photograhy Blog

The great thing about touring Disney's Hollywood Studios in the summer is there's more opportunity to stay late in the park and since it's cooler (temperature wise) in the evening, it really is the best time of the year to enjoy the night time spectacle of the Studios at night.  In fact, you should try to witness the transformation the park takes from late afternoon into early evening as the sun sets and the lights are turned on.  

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About this column

A regular look into Disney's Hollywood Studios, both past and present, with commentary and analysis from Matt Hochberg.


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Posted: Wednesday, June 13, 2012 by