Universal Orlando is a massive complex with two theme parks, half a dozen hotels, a City Walk entertainment district with shopping and dining, a water park, and more. It's no surprise that it's one of the most popular resorts in the world. But then again... who wouldn't want to fully immerse themselves in popular movie franchises like Harry Potter or Marvel? Accio butterbeer!
“go beyond the screen”
Go behind the scenes, beyond the screen, and jump right into the action of your favorite movies at Universal Studios®, the world's premier movie and TV based theme park. It’s everybody’s fantasy… to leap through the screen and find yourself in the middle of your favorite motion pictures. Here at Universal Studios®, YOU become the star of some of the greatest movies and TV shows ever made.
An earlier review informed me that the Jaws ride is no longer operating. That's totally bogus. Out of all the rides I remember from a former visit, the Jaws and the Back to the Future ride were incredible.
There's wayyyy too much stuff to do at Universal Studios to only spend a day there. So I recommend spending at least a couple days at the park. Lots of people skip the park in favor of Disney World, but honestly Universal is fantastic. Just as clean as Disney, but with more thrill rides. Warning, it's pretty busy so expect long waits in lines. For instance, the Harry Potter ride had a wait of 480 minutes this summer. Definitely go for the Express Pass. Basically you go to each of the rides you wanna go on and grab a pass that gives you a time when you should come back to ride it.
Universal Studios is must for your Orlando theme park trip. I like to stay at an on-site hotel for the unlimited Express Pass your room key grants you. It's also really nice to be able to walk (or ride the water taxi) 5 minutes to the park gate without needing to park a car. Highlights for me in the park include Revenge of the Mummy and the Rip Ride Rocket coaster. I hope to add Gringott's to that list in a few weeks. Mel's Drive-In and Krusty Burger are good for a decent hamburger. The Flaming Moe at Krusty Burger is not the best tasting drink on the menu, but the novelty of a smoking, bubbling, and hissing drink is worth the price once. Don't miss the Horror Make-Up Show. In reality it's a lot less a make-up show and more a comedy bit so adjust your expectations. The Beetlejuice stage show wasn't so hot last time I saw it so maybe skip that one if you're short on time.
*Note - If you're traveling around late September/October and a fan of horror and haunted houses, go to Halloween Horror Nights. It's the biggest and arguably the best event of its kind. It's deeply discounted if you're already going to the parks. You won't regret it.
I'm a sucker for theme parks in Florida (mostly of the Disney sort), but Universal is a blast for those seeking more thrilling rides. Revenge of the Mummy is one of my favorites, and the Hollywood Rip Ride Rocket is a great ride (they film you during the ride and you can watch it afterward). They no longer have Jaws, which is a letdown for sure, but it's still a park worth checking out.
To be honest, I rank this place way higher than Disney World. I had so much more fun riding things here than at Disney. Sure, it doesn't have the Disney image, but it makes up for it with fun and exciting rides. Super depressed they took out Back to the Future!
This place was okay. I was way more into pretty much everything at Islands of Adventure, which is a sister park, but it's a different admission fee.
Disney for adults! I visited in 2010 when the first part of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter opened. I want to go back to see Diagon Alley! The park was kept clean and the staff was friendly and helpful. You need to spend a minimum of 3 days to be able to get to everything.
The park itself is great, bus if you're going on a crowded day, weekends typically, then be prepared to spend most of your day just standing in queues. Or pay extra for express passes. When we were there, the HP ride was breaking down every 30 minutes. Super frustrating. Many other rides were breaking down too, although not that often. Worth a one-time visit, not to come back. If something bad happens though, make sure you complain to guest services for free express passes. These saved our day after making into just 1 ride during the first 5 hours.
In my opinion, the Universal Studios parks are better than Disney. My kids always have the best time at these parks!! There are always more characters walking around the park.
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Universal Studios Orlando
- Sun - Sat: 8:00 am - 10:00 pm
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