No doubt, the Tower of Terror has become one of the most iconic rides at Walt Disney World. Located in the Disney’s Hollywood Studios area of the park, the Tower of Terror is the second tallest attraction at Walt Disney World, only topped by Expedition Everest. In fact, the tower itself is exactly 199 feet tall, due to Florida law that any building over 200 feet tall has to have a red light beacon marking the top of the building. The Disney Imagineers thought that a red light would take away from the 1930s look of the building, so the tower goes up to exactly 199 feet. The Tower of Terror in Disneyland is the exact same way – with the exception that in Disneyland it is the tallest attraction at the park and one of the tallest buildings in the whole of Anaheim!
The story of the ride itself is inspired by the Twilight Zone. The Tower of Terror is actually a replica of the Hollywood Tower Hotel – but a lightening strike hit this one on October 31, 1939, transporting a wing of the hotel into the Twilight Zone. After entering the “old hotel,” lightening strikes and a television comes on, and the theme from the Twilight Zone plays, supposedly a “lost” episode of the show. Rod Serling, the host, invites the guests to climb into the “last working elevator” in the boiler room in the hotel and figure out the secret of the Hollywood Tower Hotel. The elevator, of course, ends up being a drop ride.
Obviously, this might not be the best attraction to take young children to, or those who are more faint of heart. But for those who like their Disney vacation with a bit of thrill on the side, the Tower of Terror is sure to deliver!