Monday–Autumn-Winter-Spring Itinerary

By Dave Shute

Summary    To-Do List    Sat    Sun    Mon    Tues    Weds    Thurs    Fri    Sat    Sun


A very full day at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Because you are a Disney resort guest, you can stay 2 hours later than non-resort guests.

Update April 2013: the Hollywood Studios afternoon parade had its last scheduled run on April 6, 2013. In case a new parade returns–and I’m not sure if one will, see this–I’ve left a spot for it in your day. See the second half of this for how to change your day while there is no afternoon parade.


  • Get up early and eat breakfast in your room
  • Be at the hotel bus stop by 7:30 am, and take the bus labeled “Studios” or “Hollywood Studios”


  • Arrive at the park by 8:15a
  • Get in line and await the opening
  • After the 9:00 opening, pick up a “Times Guide”–a schedule–and park map, walk to Toy Story Mania on Pixar Boulevard, fastpass it, and come back later
  • Ride Rock N’ Roller Coaster
  • Ride the Tower of Terror
  • See Walt Disney: One Man’s Dream
  • Based on today’s show schedule, return for your fastpasses, and see Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular or Lights Motor Action (see the other later this afternoon). Work in lunch at the Backlot Express (counter credit) when you can, and, If you have time, see Sounds Dangerous
  • See note on parade at top of page!
  • Watch the 3p parade from the Sunset Boulevard side of Mickey’s hat
  • See the 3:30 Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage
  • American Idol ExperienceSee the American Idol Experience
  • If you have time before dinner, see Playhouse Disney Live on Stage (don’t worry if you end up skipping it)
  • Have dinner at 6:15pm at the 50s Prime Time Café, where your waiter will interact with you in a comic way (table credit)
  • See the Great Movie Ride
  • Grab another dessert in the Sci-Fi Diner (cash), which is unlike any other restaurant you have seen
  • See the Voyage of the Little Mermaid
  • See Star Tours
  • See the Muppet Movie
  • Return to any other rides that are open you want to do again—e.g. Tower of Terror, Rock N’ Roller Coaster
  • Return to your hotel




1 Carol { 01.31.13 at 6:08 pm }

Do you recommend going to Hollywood Studios on a extra hours night if you are not staying onsite? I assume the park will be crowded because of this. But I’m thinking after the Fantasmic show some will stay to take advantage of the extra hours and not leave right away. Thus making it a little bit easier for those who are not staying onsite to leave the park. FYI..we will be there the 2nd week of April. What do you think? Should we visit on a non extra hours night?

2 Dave { 02.01.13 at 7:31 am }

Hi Carol! You are on to something, and your approach makes sense. However, since you’ll be driving, the post-Fantasmic crush is less of an issue, as it much more affects people taking Disney buses…just avoid the trams and walk to your car instead…

The other wya to do it is to see Fantasmic at the first show on a night when it has two shows and closes after the second show. Plenty of people will be sticking around after the first show, so the exits won’t be as mobbed. The second week of April that works on (non-EMH) days April 10 through April 12…

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3 Dave { 02.01.13 at 3:34 pm }

When do parks start decorating for Christmas.

4 Dave { 02.02.13 at 7:28 am }

Hi Dave, at MK they begin right after they’ve got the Halloween decorations down, in the first week of November, and everything is up everywhere by the Friday after Thanksgiving

5 Bill { 04.29.13 at 9:54 pm }

Hi Dave,

We will be driving down and arriving in Orlando Saturday evening 5/18/13 and staying a week departing on May 25th. We have 2 girls (4 and 7) and since they are somewhat younger we are not sure if they can make it 5 or even 4 full days without tiring out. We plan on visiting 3 days or 4 days during the week, either M – W/Th or T – Th/F. My question is, would you recommend the M – W/Th or T – Th/F? We mostly want to see MK and HS. Also, since we are only visiting the park 3 or 4 days, do you think your itineraries would still be applicable? (i.e. Hollywood Studios on Monday, followed by MK on T and W) or are there other adjustments you would recommend.

Thanks so much, This site is great with soo much info!!


6 Dave { 04.30.13 at 8:25 am }

Bill, thanks for the kind words!

My itineraries are for older kids, and not easily adaptable to kids as young as your 4 year old. See this for why and see this for some thoughts on what the 4yo will like and should avoid:

WDW is less busy during the week than on weekends (and Mondays), so I’d advise Tues-Fri if you can do it, and Mon-Thurs as your next best choice.

Hope this helps!

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7 GeorgeyBoy { 05.07.13 at 10:05 pm }

Careful, EMH is Sun Oct 27th! not Mon Oct 28th!

8 Danny { 05.08.13 at 12:34 pm }

Hey Dave

Just to let you know, Beauty and The Beast Show is at 3pm now instead of 3:30pm. Also about indiana jones, and lights motors action, you said see the other later, but you didn’t specify when to see it later? Or do you mean anytime when the time for that show is about to play?

9 Maily { 03.28.14 at 8:12 pm }

When should I make my itinerary for April 2015?

10 Dave { 03.29.14 at 6:46 am }

Maily, it’s best to wait until Disney releases its calendar for then, which it will do about 6.5 months before. When it does so, I’ll recommend a base itinerary over here:

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