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How to not waste your time at Universal Studios–start with a game plan

April 18, 2018

The lines snake through miles of iron bars to get to the ride, as the the sweaty crowds of tourists push and shove to get a glimpse of a fantasy world come to life. Magic and body odor fills the air. This is Universal Studios.

When meandering through both parks, Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure, there are so many attractions that catch a passerby’s eye that a game plan has to be constructed in order to hit all of the rides that everyone in each group wants to experience. So, I took the liberty of constructing a list of my favorite rides to make sure that anyone attending does not miss out on an extraordinary event.

  1. Revenge of the Mummy

The ride design dates back to 2002, but do not let the 16-year gap between then and now sway you to not ride. This ride, hands-down, is my favorite roller coaster of all time. Yes, seriously. If thrill and speed is what you seek, this ride is for you. Revenge of the Mummy blends theatrics, fear and thrill brilliantly as riders face some intense twists on this indoor coaster. On top of everything, because of the age of the indoor roller coaster, the line is relatively short–45 to 20 minutes nearly every time. Revenge of the Mummy counts as a must-do for any coaster lover.

  1. Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey

KALI ROSKOWSKI
Magic. Every Universal Studios attendee experiences it, yet no one can describe it. The Hogwarts Castle, lying in the Islands of Adventure part of the park, is home to the mystical Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey ride.

Even if I was not a fanatic of the Harry Potter franchise, I would recommend this ride. The experience gracefully transitions several times between props and a simulation, each aspect a different part of the wizarding world. The Quidditch pitch, Forbidden Forest and dragon arena from the first task in “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” are just a few of the places that the ride takes place in. The line itself snakes through the Hogwarts Castle (pun intended), through landmarks like the greenhouse where the Mandrakes dwell and past the griffin statue which is the entrance to Headmaster Dumbledore’s office. Though, if the rider is not a Harry Potter fan, she may not understand these references as much, but anyone can see the magic when riding a broomstick next to Harry across the Black Lake.

  1. Poseidon’s Fury

This attraction is not a ride, but a walk-through theatrical experience. I will admit, I was drug into the line by my parents, and was not too excited to try it, because I wanted to get back to Honeydukes, the candy shop that lies in Hogsmeade in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. However, I found myself engrossed in everything that occured. The show starts out as a tour through the Temple of Poseidon from an archaeologist, but soon, the group finds themselves trapped and amongst a battle between Poseidon and an evil force. The drama infused to this attraction will leave the participant eager to find out what happens next, and the experience is enjoyable for anyone who decides to step in line. Because of its unassuming look as a hunk of rock, many Islands of Adventure attendees blow right past it, so the line tends to be generally short, with approximately a 20 minute wait.

  1. The Simpsons Ride

AL ROSKOWSKI
Posing in front of The Simpsons Ride on the Universal Studios side of the park, my mom, Kim Roskowski, and I wonder what awaits.

So many Universal Studio goers are itching to get to the Despicable Me Minion Mayhem ride, but the Simpson’s Ride is quite similar. As someone who has done both, I refuse to let anyone waste their time: The Minion ride is so not worth it. The Simpsons Ride, on the other hand, exceeded expectations. In this simulation, the rider immerses herself in the world of Springfield, and receives a first-hand experience of what it is like to be a character in a Simpsons episode. If park goers are distraught between these two rides and are on a crunch for time, Simpsons all the way. Besides, the line is way shorter.

 

 

 

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