Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Universal Studios Day #2, Part #1

Today I am recapping Day #2 of our KID FREE trip to Florida last week! 

We woke up REALLY early so that we could be on the bus and get to Universal Studios for the opening!  One of the many advantages to staying on property is you are able to enter Universal Studios one hour before the park is open to the public.  You will need to show your ticket and your room key!  The only part of the park that is open at that time is the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, so you get to see it before the crowds! 

Before getting on the bus, we stopped at STARBUCKS right inside our hotel!  I seriously cannot say enough how wonderful it was to have a Starbucks right inside the hotel.  Of course there is one right when you walk through the gates of CityWalk and there is also one inside each park! 


We rode the bus and got off at CityWalk.  You have to walk through CityWalk before you can enter Universal Studios or Islands of Adventure.  You walk through a metal detector and the actually pass your bags through a scanner as well.  In the year 2016, I truly appreciate the extra security measures! 
This is what CityWalk looks like during the day!  Mostly everything is closed this early in the morning.  Just a Starbucks and a Cinnabon were the only things open! 

We walked through CityWalk to the Universal Studios gates.


Once you are through the gates, you have to walk to the back of the park to get to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter!  There's a small area outside of the actual Harry Potter area that is made to look like London! 

Then you walk through this hole in the bricks (which sounds as if the bricks are actually moving) and you enter Diagon Alley!



The Leaky Cauldron! 

The main ride here is Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts!  This ride is inside Gringotts Bank, and it did not disappoint! 




 After the ride, we got Butterbeer!  I got HOT Butterbeer and John had FROZEN Butterbeer!  The hot was AMAZING and I highly recommend it! 




 Outside of Diagon Alley is King's Cross Station!  This is where you go to ride the Hogwarts Express!  In order to do this, you must have a park hopper because it takes you to Island's of Adventure (Universal's other theme park).

Getting on the platform!

It creates an illusion like you are truly walking through the wall! 

PLATFORM 9 3/4!!!!

On the Hogwart's Express!

When you get off the Hogwart's Express in the other park, you are in Hogsmeade! 

They made this AMAZING! It's so cute! 

You walk through the little town of Hogsmeade and arrive at HOGWARTS! Inside Hogwarts is the main ride for this side - Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey!  THIS was my favorite ride!  Even the wait in line as you walk through the castle is spectacular!  They have free lockers outside of this ride and they make you empty your pockets completely before riding! 

I loved that they had these little signs all over for PRAM parking!  And all of the elevators are called LIFTS!  It really set the tone! 

I know that right about now if you don't like Harry Potter, you are probably so bored!  But we did do some other things too!  

We rode the Transformers Ride (which was amazing) and the Simpsons Ride! 



We walked through Seuss Landing and the reading specialist in me was sooooo happy! 




Then we had seriously the BEST burgers I have ever eaten at this restaurant is Island's of Adventure - Confisco Grille!  

We took the Water Taxi back to our hotel! 
Back at our hotel we grabbed another STARBUCKS! 

Then it was time to head to DISNEY!  Come back tomorrow as I recap Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party!


Are you thinking of planning your own trip to Universal Studios in Orlando?  I would love to help!  All of my travel concierge services are 100% FREE!  You can check out my travel page HERE and email Lindsay@magicfamilygetaways.com for a quote today!

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