Friday, October 8, 2010

ALOTT5MA TRAVEL AND LOGISTICS DIVISION:  In conjunction with my firm's retreat in Orlando this weekend, I will have a 3-4h window Saturday afternoon at the Universal Studios theme park.  My goal is to see as much Harry Potter stuff as I can, and then whatever else there's time for, and I've been told we have whatever the Universal equivalent is of a FastPass.  Give me a plan.


  1. Marvel Island. The Hulk is the most intense roller coaster I've ever ridden.

  2. gretchen9:05 AM

    No plan -- just a request to post about the Harry Potter stuff!

  3. The difficulty is that I understand the two big Potter attractions (the big ride and the Olivander's) are not FastPass-able (the ride because the waiting area is important/themed and Olivander's because it's so small).  The theming of the rest of the area is supposed to be spectacular, but the other two rides are just "reskinned" old coasters.

  4. Watts9:23 AM

    Now, see, you set me loose in Universal with a Fast Pass and I'm hitting every big rollercoaster as often as I can.  I mean, check out the twisting, upside down loop on Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit:

    And, mike, you're right - Hulk looks v. cool:

  5. Genevieve10:51 AM

    My question will be, how much Harry Potter stuff can you see if you're not able to ride roller coasters?  My understanding is that the coaster is what takes you through Hogwarts, but I could be wrong about that.


  6. My understanding is that the "Forbidden Journey" ride isn't a roller-coaster per se, but more a more intense variation on the sort of technology used in "Soarin'" over at Disney World--no inversions or ultra-high-speed stuff.

    There's apparently A LOT of "streetmosphere" to pick up on as well.

  7. Hi group.  I am a long time lurker, but having just been to WWoHP-  thought I would chime in with a post.  The Forbidden Forest ride in Hogwarts Castle is the the must-see element.  I was there on a Monday in September and the line wasn't nearly as bad as what a Saturday might be-- we only waited in line 30-45 mins.  As I did not have a fast-pass, I wasn't paying enough attention to realize whether there was a fast-pass line there- but even if there is, you don't want to miss the walk through the Castle which is pretty great.  They make you store belongings in a locker prior to enterting the line-- keep your camera if you have one.  It's worth it. Also, if you get motion sickness-- be prepared.  
    We skipped Ollivanders-- it was blistering hot and my group couldn't tolerate the heat for the wait and while I am sad to have missed it, the line seemed never-ending and I made a decision to do the Forbidden Forest ride a second time rather than Ollivanders. 
    The Hippogriff ride is not worth it if you're pressed for time.
    The Dragon Challenge roller coaster literally took my breath away, and I believe is fast-passable-- very worth it.  The shops have great and authentic goodies- but they are small and literally jam-packed with people, so it takes patience to get a good look at everything.  Don't miss getting a postcard stamped from Hogsmeade at the Owlery. They were an affordable and very coveted souvenir for all my harry potter friends back home!
    The Butter Beer lived up to the hype-- it's worth standing in line for-- the pumpkin juice is awful and the food in the Three Broomsticks is an easy miss. 
    The entire "World" is very well done and I found it chraming and authentic although it's not overly large.  If the Forbidden Forest ride does not have a very long wait, you should be able to see and ride everything.  If you do have extra time, the Hulk coaster was a hit with my family, although I did not ride it.  It seemed to me that many of the rides have a water element to them-- and you get drenched- so if you don't want to be soaken wet, stay away.  We also did the Spiderman ride, which I suspect, prior to the Harry Potter ride was very high tech, but now, in comparison, seems lame. 
    We missed the Dr. Suess attractions all together-- that part of the park is en route to Harry Potter--  and we never made it back- so I can't speak to anything there, although it was adorable and well done.  The Rock-it coaster is not in the Islands of Adventure part of the park- which was a disappointment for me. 
    Have a great time! 
    My mom and I are huge Harry Potter geeks and we were beyond thrilled that we had a family event in the Orlando area that allowed us the opportunity to get to the park.  Even the non-potter people with us enjoyed it. 

  8. Anonymous12:04 PM

    Start at Marvel land, which is to the left when you walk in. Do the Hulk and Spiderman rides. Spiderman's controlled vehilce, special effects and 3-D graphics are well worth it. Go back counter clockwise past where you came in, walk through Seussland and that will get you to Potterville.


  9. Marsha2:21 PM

    You should de-lurk more often!

  10. Genevieve3:34 PM

    Great descriptions, KB!  I am saving your write-up for when we go in the next year or so.
    One question for you -- was the Forbidden Forest ride coaster-like at all, meaning was it jolty, did it have whiplash effects, etc?  I speak as a big HP geek who would hate to miss it, but who has to skip the kinds of rides that say "persons with back or neck problems should not ride."

  11. Scott3:53 PM

    The Rockit coaster is AMAZING, but in the other park.  Worth it if you have the time, though!

  12. Go to this forum:
    and post your request for'll find dozens of experts and afficianados willing to give advise. Also you could scroll through the threads and I'm sure you'll find enough of what you're looking for.

  13. Anonymous10:49 AM

    Genevieve-- It was a bit on the jolty side.  However, my mom is newly recovered from a broken shoulder said that the restraints there were able to keep her stable.  They have a sample seat outside the ride that you can try to see how you feel.  However, that said, it does tip you backwards and sideways and all around. 

  14. Genevieve11:09 AM

    Thanks very much!