In October I went to Florida for two weeks and spent a lot of time at Universal Orlando. In this post I’m going to tell you what my favorite rides were in the two Universal parks – Universal Studios and Islands Of Adventure.
Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit
This is a really awesome roller coaster that is right at the front of the park. It actually goes up to the top straight. Going up 90 degrees feels very weird, and is probably the worst part of the ride. The best thing is it allows you to choose music while you ride. The speakers are in your seat so you get to hear it pretty loud. You basically choose a category from dance, hip hop to metal and more, sit back and enjoy the ride. The also includes a loop too which looks like it goes upside down but doesn’t actually. A word of warning this ride is really rough, especially if you get put right at the back. Because you only have a bar around your waist it means you can move about really easily. Keeping your head back against the seat is really hard and it very easy to hurt your neck on this one.
Despicable Me Minion Mayhem
If you love Despeciable Me, you will love this ride. It’s a 3d simulator ride featuring many of the characters from the movie. On the ride you get changed into a Minion which is really fun. On the way out I also got my photo taken with a few Minions which was fantastic.
Harry Potter And The Escape From Gringotts
This is a 4d roller coaster ride through Gringotts Bank. It features many characters from the Harry Potter movie. This is much gentler than Harry Potter And The Forbidden Journey and is a fantastic ride. The lines can get long and as it isn’t on Universal Express, I recommend going on this as soon as the park opens or using the single rider line.
The Simpsons Ride
This one is an amazing ride and a must for any Simpsons fan. It’s a roller coaster simulator ride that features a lot of the characters from the tv show. Sideshow Bob is basically trying to kill you and The Simpsons, including giant mutated Maggie.
Kang And Kodos Twirl N Hurl
This one is extremely fun as you go around in your flying saucer trying to hit the targets that are located around the side of the ride. If you hit the targets they spin around and make a noise. Targets include Grandpa, Groundskeeper Willie and Nelson.
Men In Black Alien Attack
I just love this ride as you go around with a laser shooter and have to hit the alien targets that are located around the room. Some of the targets are not easy to hit and it is possible to max out your score on this one. Don’t miss the boss at the end of the ride where you can get a bonus score. Can you become a Galaxy Defender?
Islands Of Adventure
The Incredible Hulk
This happens to be one of the best and is must if you love roller coasters. It features a couple of loops and even takes your photo. Unlike other roller coasters where to get to the top it goes up slow, this one launches you out of the tunnel and goes into a twist right away. The ride is 34m high and goes to a speed of 108km/h.
Doctor Doom’s Fearfall
This is one of those drop tower bounce rides. I like this one better than the traditional bounce ones as instead of going up slow and dropping you down, this one blasts you up to the top and drops you down.
Jurassic Park River Adventure
This is probably one of the best themed water rides I have been on. It starts out as a nice relaxing boat ride where you see all different dinosaurs. Then halfway along, one of the dinosaurs knocks your boat off course into the Raptor containment area. You then get taken up really high into this building where you will find all different dangerous dinosaurs including a T Rex. Then your boat goes into a 26m drop at 80km/h, where it is possible to get wet. Don’t miss the big splash at the end.
Harry Potter And The Forbidden Journey
This one is a must for any Potter fan as it takes place in Hogwarts Castle. The ride queue is really impressive as you get to walk around the castle itself. This is the only ride at Universal that makes me feel ill when I come off. I can go on Hulk and other fast roller coasters time and time again. But when it comes to this one I feel very sick. I’ve heard it makes a lot of other people ill too.
Formerly known as Duelling Dragons this features two side by side roller coasters that do all different sorts of fun things like loops and twists. There are two different tracks Chinese Fireball (red) and Hungarian Horntail (blue). I’ve ridden the two and definitely think Chinese Fireball is the best as it is more intense. If you have seen Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire you will recognize the Triwizard Tournament theming. Waiting a bit longer and riding front row is a must do. Both are 38m high. Fireball reaches speeds of 96km/h while Horntail is a bit slower at 88km/h. This is my favorite ride at Universal.
Flight Of The Hippogriff
This is a really family friendly coaster and great for people who don’t like fast roller coasters. In the queue you will go past Hagrid’s Hut and just before you start to go up the hill you will see Buckbeak the Hippogriff himself.
In both parks is the Hogwarts Express, allowing you to travel from Islands Of Adventure (Hogsmeade) to Universal Studios (Kings Cross) and back. It’s a very realistic recreation of the Hogwarts Express and if you look out of the window you can see all different people and interesting things from the Knight Bus, Hogwarts and Malfoy Manor.
So these are my favorites at Universal Orlando. Most of them are on Universal’s Express system meaning you can skip the regular line and get on faster. The only rides out of these which were not on Express were Harry Potter And The Escape From Gringotts, Harry Potter And The Forbidden Journey and Kang And Kodos Twirl N Hurl.
Have you been to Universal Orlando. What are your favorites there?