“It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.” ⚡️ Today, I welcome you to the magical wizarding world of Harry Potter. Before we get into it, I have heard you loud and clear, you are liking all of the Egypt content but want me to mix it up a bit. Well, your wish is my command (while I still have a backlog of travel content that it is) and I wanted to highlight my favorite parts of our two day trip up to Universal Studios. I mentioned our visit in my March post about our Florida holiday but it really deserves it’s own. In fact, I knew after only 20 minutes in the park i was going to write about it and spent two days taking notes so I would make sure not to miss anything! And to confirm,, yes, we went with four adults and no kids – without further ado:
1 | Beat the Lines Arrive early or stay late to get away from the lines which can extend for hours. For example, on our second day we rode the Escape from Gringotts ride twice by 8:32am. The first time the four of us went in the regular line and in the second time we went single file in the singles line which was less than five minutes (four minutes of which was walking the length of the queue). But if early does not work for you then try late – on the end of our first day we got in line for the Hagrid’s Magical Motorbike Adventure past 7pm Islands of Adventure theme park closes at 8 p.m.) and the ride in the near dark created a nearly different ride. Plus at dusk Hogwarts Castle is gorgeous on it’s towering position on a hill.
2 | Buy a Park-to-Park Ticket Buying a park to park ticket means you get to experience both aspects of the park, Hogsmeade at Islands of Adventure and Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida. There are unique attractions on both side and you get to take the Hogwarts Express between the two which is a ride in and of it self complete with death eaters!
3 | Wear the Right Clothes This is a very spread out complex (never mind the rest of Universal) and as you will see in the photos despite my hatred of them – I wore sneakers both days. however, given the amount of walking (10 miles plus) and the fact that many rides did not allow flip flops I was glad I did. In addition, you can bring snacks in (do it, park food is expensive and not nutritious) and also a a water bottle (all restraints will fill the up, and you will save a ton of money). And don’t worry about the rides – there are lockers otuside each of the rides that are free for two hours – though be careful, only the small ones. Oh, and make sure you have pockets as you will need your card ticket quite often! Take a look at what I wore – day one and day two:
4 | Plan Ahead for the Key Rides: I would say there are four key rides; Forbidden Journey, Flight of the Hippogriff, Escape from Gringotts, and the newest is the Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure. Try and go on all of them and as I mentioned, the single’s line can really help with the line – it said 95 on the side for Forbidden Journey and we got through In 18 with teh single line.
5 | It’s Not Just about the Rollercoasters – While the rides are awesome – like playing Quiditich with Harry – there is so much more to this amusement park! You can see real life chocolate frogs at Honeydukes, get a frozen butterbeer at The Three Broomsticks, go to Ollivanders and get fitted for your perfect wand, and on the other side of the park pick up an ice cream at Florean Fortescue’s Ice-Cream Parlour. Plus there are photo worthy backgrounds all over!
And the last two tips for the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, while not picturesque, are still worth nothing:
6 | Get Techy with It Download the Universal App before your first day and check the wait times for each of the rides which change in real time. In addition, to expedite things you will scan your finger for rides and purchases – make sure you know what finger you use for the sensor.
7 | Note the Kid Requirements – We saw quite a very kids devastated (or gutted as the Brits say) that they were not able to go on rides due to the height requirements so make sure to check these out before you go. Also, unless kids have read the books / watched the movies this may not be as much fun for them (this is more age 7-12 then age 3-6). That siad, the little kids running around quoting the books just did me in – “honestly, am I the only person who’s ever bother to read Hogwarts: A History?” ⚡️
And now next up I really want to take the Warner Bros. Studio Tour, located just outside of London to see The Making of Harry Potter though with the current situation, this is a ways out!
Does the Wizarding World of Harry Potter sound like somewhere you would want to visit?