Jennifer has the opportunity to make a number of trips to Walt Disney World each year (she claims this is for business/research, but nobody’s buying it). As a family we try to take at least one week-long Disney World trip each year, normally in the late summer or early fall.
These trips are a combination of work and fun, and to Jenn’s credit, she tries to make sure (the amazing mom and wife that she is) the kids and I have plenty of fun.
On one trip a few years ago we were staying at the Yacht Club. She took the kids and made for Hollywood Studios early one morning to get our crew signed up for the Jedi Academy, and she encouraged me to stay back in the room, relax, and join them a little later.
I took her up on the offer.
A Bloody Mary may have been included (though a single one only, I’m sure).
I set out from the Yacht Club planning to catch one of the boats from the Epcot Resort Area to Hollywood Studios, but alas, Disney was hosting a VIP (I believe it was the current first lady) and the boats were running on a delayed schedule, so I decided on the approximately 20 minute walk to Hollywood Studios.
A few minutes into the stroll I realized that the walk was indeed the way to go.
We modern folk tend to fly, drive, or sail on our travels these days. Walking is the original form of transportation though, and today it can have a meditative impact, and the walk to Hollywood Studios can be pleasantly secluded as compared to the rest of Walt Disney World.
The rest of this post will assume that you’re headed toward Hollywood Studios from the Yacht Club, but you can easily modify the directions from the other Epcot Resort Area accommodations.
First, let’s get oriented and take a look at the map:
The top center of the map shows the Epcot Resort Area (that’s Epcot’s World Showcase around the lake in the upper right corner).
The bottom center of the map features Hollywood Studios.
The walk from the Resort Area to Hollywood Studios follows along the east (right on the map) side of the narrow body of water running from the Resort Area, between the Walt Disney World Swan Resort and Disney’s Boardwalk Inn and Villas, under E. Buena Vista Dr. to Hollywood Studios.
Let’s begin on that sunny fall morning when Jenn and the kids were securing a spot in the Jedi Academy.
When you reach the lake, head to your right.
A little closer view from the map, with the Yacht Club near the center of the map:
On the map you’ll be strolling along the left side of the lake after leaving the Yacht Club (the brown color on the map represents the wood of the boardwalk-style decking surrounding part of the lake).
Here’s the view just after leaving the Yacht Club:
Take a left near the end of the wood portion of the walkway, and cross over the bridge headed toward the Boardwalk. That’s the Dolphin Resort straight ahead and to your right as you cross over the bridge.
Looking from the bridge across the lake to the Beach Club Resort
Once you make it across the bridge, you might have a moment of confusion. There’s a spot where you can take a left and walk towards the Boardwalk.
You’ll see the following sign/arch:
Just walk under the arch and keep to your right. The walkway is a bit like a traffic circle.
Take the first sidewalk to the right.
Take the sidewalk just past the hedgerow, which looks as if it will lead you next to the waterway.
You’ll then see this sign:
Follow the sign!
You’ll now have a leisurely stroll of about 15 minutes along the waterway that connects the Epcot Resort Area with Hollywood Studios.
I’ve walked this way to Hollywood studios 10 times or more and I almost never see more than a few other folks taking this path.
The path runs around the rear of the Boardwalk Inn past the pools and the tennis courts, and then along the sidewalk beside the waterway.
You’ll also pass under Buena Vista Drive.
Then you will be able to see your first glimpses of Hollywood Studios (that’s Tower of Terror on the right).
You’ll also see the “friend-ships” ferrying other guest back and forth.
Soon you’ll be nearing the bus stops for Hollywood Studios and you can follow this path and join everyone else headed into the park.
After some time inside Hollywood Studios, you’ll probably opt for the boat trip back to the Epcot Resort Area (or on to Epcot). As the boats stop at all the resorts, the walk takes just about the same amount of time as the boats.
If you need a little break from the crowds, consider a walk to Hollywood Studios.
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