The Dark side……… Part 2

the dark side

So With Islands of Adventure sufficiently looked at and a map of how to tackle the park in their heads we clicked the link for Universal Studios itself. I know I heard Duh Duh DUHHHHHHH when I clicked it (at least in my head). At the time we started looking The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Diagon Alley had not opened though it was previewed all over the page. What we did see again had the oooh’s and aaahhh’s going with three Disneyfied teenagers.

Transformers!! Oh did we geek out on this as they fell in love with Bumble Bee in the original movies so that went on the must do list (not a coaster, but a simulation 3D ride), along with Revenge of the Mummy and Rip Rocket Roller Coaster. It was all about the coaster factor again I said I’d wave and wait in the kid swap area.

I saw ET Adventure and said yup this is the one I’d be torturing them with at this park. I have at least one at every park. By far the ride that got the most hooting and hollering was Men In Black Alien Attack. MIB-Universal2Who wouldn’t love to shoot Aliens in a car that spins on it’s own!!

When you think Universal Studios you think Hollywood and shows and with one drama major both in school and in life we took a peak at a few of the descriptions of shows. She spotted Horror Makeup Show lick split. Myself I noticed another blast from my childhood The Eighth Voyage of Sinbad. Sweet a couple of shows to get us out of one of Orlando’s sudden rain storm or crazy heat, because lets face it we’re in Florida and it’s going to rain at some point and it’s going to be warmer than home. The boy found Beetlejuice’s Graveyard Review and then asked me who the Blues Brothers were. I thought holy cow I’ve failed as a parent in not having my child sit down and watch this classic, score another Mom torture tool!!

Food is always a necessity with teenagers as if they are awake they are hungry. Click and a look at Universal Dining revealed amazingly food!! Burgers, dogs, pizza, the standard fair for quick service as at Disney. Happy teenagers! But along with those quick places I notice Margaritaville, Bubba Gump Shrimp Co and a place called Methos. Again a margaritavilleplace to get in out of the weather and into the a/c for something other than a burger and fries. At this point they were happy with thoughts of food and it was time to find a place to lay our heads. Being Disney experts we wanted a nice place but our expectations weren’t high as after all this was Universal and it couldn’t beat Disney.

There are 4 hotels on the Universal property : Cabana Bay, Lowe’s Royal Pacific, Lowe’s Portofino Bay and Hard Rock Hotel. Of course they ogled over Hard Rock and I being the Mom said “This is our budget” which at the time Hard Rock did not fall into. We looked at Portofino Bay and Royal Pacific next. Both beautiful resorts with amazing theming and within our budget. We looked at Cabana Bay last. We looked through the pictures of the resort 010-cabana-bay-beach-resort-entrance-lobby-1957-oiand the kids were like book it as the resort has a funky 50’s and 60’s theme with two pools and a lazy river!! “Mom Disney Value Resorts doesn’t have a lazy river!!” I didn’t tell them that there is a lazy river at the Yacht and Beach Club pool. They were sold and so was I. I kissed them goodnight and pulled out the credit card to book the vacation package with a few extra surprises. What’s a vacation without a few happy surprises?

To find out how our adventure to the dark side went stay tuned for part 3…..

mvbm dpi

Amanda Casey Travel Specialist

Planning Magical Vacations one guest at a time.

https://www.facebook.com/MagicalVacationsByAmanda

  404-414-6213

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Going to the Dark Side……. part 1

the dark side

I’m a Disney fanatic and have gone to Disney for years. I’ve always said Universal was the Dark Side of Orlando. That was until those cute little kids that I took to Disney all the time said they wanted to try something new. (This was back when Fantasyland was still under construction). The Disney Geek in me cringed..Universal was never an option. Well given that the children asking were now 15 and 14 years old I could understand their need for a new adventure as “Disney is for babies, Mom” had been mentioned I decided to start doing some research.

So my little family and I sat down in front of the computer one night and went to the Universal Website. We were minion lovegreeted by Minions.. Sweet!! We love them!! We hit Universal Studios Orlando and The Wonderful World of Harry Potter greeted our eyes.. Sweet we love us some Harry Potter here in the house…(No Harry is not part of Disney though many people seem to think so). Rides..rides.. We need to know about the rides!!! Ok ya’ll breath and I clicked the rides and had to choose on of Universal Studios Orlando’s two parks : Islands of Adventure or Universal Studios… It was at this point after the clicking of Islands of Adventure (because it was on top) that the oohing and aaahing began.

Islands of Adventure has three roller coasters.. Teenagers love to see how many times they can get flipped upside down before tossing their cookies and this place had three of them! The Incredible Hulk Coaster and Dragon islands1234Challenge, which is two coasters racing against each other! I told them I’d wave at them from the Kid Swap areas my stomach does not like flipping as much as it used to. They laughed and called me old. I was actually ok with it.

Islands of Adventure also has The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Hogsmeade tucked away. This is where Dragon Challenge is as well as The Forbidden Journey. I will admit to Youtubing this one after they went to bed and decided my old self could do it at least once since it was Harry Potter related and if there was a revolt the restrooms didn’t look to far away on the map.

The boy saw that they had a Jurassic Park ride he loves dinosaurs and you get wet at the end of the ride. A win win since he likes to walk around in squishy clothes and shoes…That was when I saw names from my childhood: Dudley Do Right’s Ripsaw Falls and Popeye and Bluto’s Bilge-rats Barges two more water rides… The Mom brain was already thinking do all of the other rides and end with these three rides so we weren’t in squishy shoes all day long to end up with pruned toes.

Another blast from the past…  The Cat in the Hat and Seuss Landing.. Now this is more my speed!!! This brought out the groans and them saying you are going to make us ride The Cat in the Hat and One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue fish aren’t you? My instant reply. Yup! I do the same at the Magic Kingdom with It’s a Small World. With Islands of Adventure sufficiently covered we clicked over to Universal Studios…..

Watch for the Dark Side Part 2 Universal Studios……

mvbm dpi

Amanda Casey Travel Specialist

Planning Magical Vacations one guest at a time.

https://www.facebook.com/MagicalVacationsByAmanda

404-414-6213