Universal Orlando Trip Report: Sep 15th & 16th

Universal Orlando: Trip report to IOA, USF, and City Walk.

From Brent Moody
Posted September 25, 2012 at 4:12 PM
My Wife and I flew into Orlando late Friday night and stayed on site at Lowes Royal Pacific. I had never stayed there before although I had stayed at Hard Rock Hotel. The décor and landscaping outside the hotel and inside the lobby was amazing but much like the Hard Rock the rooms are just kind of average at best for a $220 a night room. And don’t get me started on the bathrooms in these rooms.
On Saturday morning we went into IOA to take advantage of the early park admission and got all the way to the will call kiosk and forgot to get the conformation number for my tickets out of the hotel room so I had to run all the way back to my room and and back. That took about 15 to 20 minutes but at least I got my much needed work out in. First thing we did was head to Forbidden Journey and only had to wait about 15 minutes in line to ride that. I have ridden it many times before and still love the ride each and every time. Then we got a butter beer and waited in line for Olivanders wand show. This was the first time I had done this and it was just ok I guess. We only waited about 15 minutes and I wouldn’t have wanted to wait much longer for that average of a show. We then went and ate breakfast at the Three Broom Sticks. It was a bit pricy but was pretty good food. Then my wife had never rode any of the Dr. Seuss rides and she wanted to ride a few. So we rode the sky high trolley and the worker was telling us that they had totally re-done the ride before the ride even opened because they didn’t like the original ride. And if that is the ride they were happy with afterward then I would have hated to see just how bad the original ride was before. We then rode the Cat in the Hat ride and it is a pretty good ride. We then went on to the New and improved Spiderman. The screens were a lot more clear than they were before. I think it was a pretty good improvement. Then we rode storm force, my wife loves this ride but it is the only ride in the park that makes me a bit nauseous. We then rode Popeye's and rip saw falls, and as soon as we got off rip saw falls it started raining. Since we were wet we really didn’t care that much and went and rode JP ride. We then went back to the hotel and changed closes and then went into City Walk to eat at Bubba Gumps. Next we went to USF and rode Despicable Me. I loved this ride a lot and thought that it had one of the funnier pre-shows I have seen. Then we walked over to where they are building the rumored Transformers ride and looked through a gap in the fence. There were at least 25 guys I could see running around working and the crane never stopped the entire time I was at the resort. We also watched the parade and it was pretty lame compared to a Disney one for sure. It was to short I thought. Then we went back to the hotel to take a nap.
We then went that night to City Walk and played the Ghostly Greens putt putt course. It was really fun but pretty busy. It took us about an hour to play the 18 holes. We then went a ate at the Nascar restaurant.
Next day on Sunday we went to USF and rode Rip Ride Rocket since it doesn’t have the express pass. Then we went to Twister which was just ok. Then we rode the Mummy and it was really good as usual. We then walked past all of the work going on at the HP2 (old Jaws) area. It didn’t look like there was quite as much going on there as there was at the Transformers area. Next we rode MIB and it was pretty fun as usual. Then we rode the Simpsons ride. I absolutely love that ride for some reason. I know some people may think I am crazy but I think this was my favorite ride of this trip. We then went and rode E.T. This was the first time I have ever ridden this ride and I was also surprised by how much I really liked the ride. We then rode Shrek which to me is just an ok ride. Next we went and at at Finnegan's. If you have not ever tried this place you really should. It is really good food and only cost us like $38 for 2 people with tip and everything. We then went back into IOA and did some shopping and got another butter beer.
That evening we ate at Hard Rock Cafe and the next day we left for the port to go on our cruise!

From Brian Emery
Posted September 26, 2012 at 5:57 AM
Thanks for posting. I also think the Simpsons ride is one of the funniest attractions around.

I have eaten at Bubba Gump’s 3 times – the first time was great. The second and third time, we thought it was average.

From Mark Fairleigh
Posted September 26, 2012 at 9:01 AM
Great report and welcome to the E.T. Adventure Appreciation Society! Hip hip! Hooray! Are you still smelling that intoxicating pine-scent in your mind? :)

From Kelly Muggleton
Posted September 26, 2012 at 9:12 AM
Have to agree Brent, I thought Spiderman looked good too. I had actually forgotten all about the visual improvements until I got on the ride, so it was obviously a noticeable difference.

From Andrew Dougherty
Posted September 26, 2012 at 8:44 PM
Awsome trip report really want to go back to USO.

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