I know you’ve all been dying to know what happened after Nate and I visited Universal’s Islands of Adventure in Orlando. So here goes. At about 11:30, we walked right through Dr. Seuss landing and out of Islands of Adventure, the future home of Harry Potter’s Wizarding World, and briskly walked over to Universal Studios and started experiencing the attractions there (at Universal Studios, you do more experiences than traditional rides).
Twister – at this first attraction we visited, we experienced a simulated tornado complete with strong winds, swirling fog, breaking glass, large fiery explosions — and even a cow flying by which had been caught up in the fake tornado — pretty fun!
Revenge of the Mummy – this ride was awesome, especially since we ran from the beginning of the line and got right on; the line infrastructure snaked through museum-type halls and other cool stuff, but we ran right through it. We faced a bunch of “animatronic” mummies, fireballs and scarab beetles from an ancient tomb. Lots of fun. Click here to check out a video about the ride.
Disaster – this attraction gave audience members an opportunity to participate in making a movie. I volunteered and Nate took pictures while I got up on stage and I, along with half a dozen others, were filmed doing different things in front of a green screen. They filmed me floundering in a big basin of green balls. Later, we got on a train and entered a subway station where we experienced a simulated an earthquake, during which time they filmed the audience’s reaction. After the earthquake, they showed audience members a trailer to a fake disaster movie in which all the volunteers were featured. They superimposed water on the green balls that they filmed me in and I looked like I was being washed away by a mega flood. Nate and I had a good chuckle about that.
Fear Factor Live – we raced over to the live stage show based on the hit TV series”Fear Factor.” They had four main contestants that were park guests and they did all the usual stunts of that challenge physical challenge and tolerance for eating gross things. For example, they made a smoothie that included all kinds of nasty things like crickets, rotten octupus and sour milk — all mixed together in a blender that resulted in a chunky concoction. Two out of the four drank it right down, but one girl actually puked on stage… Very odd stage show, but highly entertaining…
Jaws – this boat ride was actually quite fun and the special effects were really cool; Jaws came after us on numerous occasions and we enjoyed ourselves.
E.T. – this ride on which we rode flying bikes through the forest to help save E.T. was quite enjoyable. I had been on it before at the Universal Studios in California, but Nate and I had fun with it. Ironically, we waited in line for that ride longer than any other.
Terminator 2 – I’ve wanted to experience this attraction for many years now and it did not disappoint. It was an exciting mix of stage show, movie and 3D experience. The live actors, meant to look like those in the movie, gave the show a lot of energy and the 3D special effects, explosions, gunshots and everything were quite engaging.
After that final attraction, we ran to the parking garage only to realize, to our dismay, that we hadn’t made note of where we had parked that morning since we were so anxious to get into the park. We asked security to help us out and eventually we found the car and raced to the airport. Luckily, my flight was delayed by half an hour, otherwise I might not have made it. As I sat down on the plane, I was exhausted, but quite satisfied that in six hours, I had been able to get my money’s worth in two major Orlando theme parks!
Here are a few pictures we took during the trip: