The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™
August 27, 2019
When you visit Universal Resort in Orlando, you can not avoid seeing the Harry Potter area called “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™”. This area actually spans both Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. There are different rides and attractions at both parks. I will warn you that I am not a huge fan of the Harry Potter movies or books, however the experience that Universal put together is fantastic. Since the two areas are connected, I am not going to separate them by parks, instead just write about the entire Harry Potter experience.
The Hogwarts Express train connects Hogsmeade (Universal Studios) to Diagon Alley (Islands of Adventure). The train actually travels across the backlot of Universal and not really a train at all! Spoiler alert!! It is actually a funicular. There are two trains on the same track with a split in the middle. The trains are pulled by a cable system connected via pullys. This insures that both trains will always arrive and pass each-other at the same time. This ride dose require that you have a Park to Park ticket since you will be leaving one park and entering another park. On the Universal Side of the ride, the que and entryway are themed after London’s King Cross Station.
The Experience Changes in both directions, so make sure you ride it both ways. The line is generally not too long. You will sit with a group of 8 in an air conditioned coach for the trip. It is a great way to break the heat for a little bit and get some shade.
Next, Over at Islands of Adventure head to the Hog’s Head (Bar) and go to the counter. If Zach, Kayla or Jordan are working, tell them “No Roasted Wasted” (Thanks Melanie) and then order a “Hogs Tea” . Its an item not on the menu but is really good! (Basically a Long Island with Tea instead of Coke).
I did attempt several times to ride the new “Hagrids Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure” but the line was always a 120 – 240 minute wait. There was also no single rider line available either. The ride looks good and it is on my list to try out, once the hype dies down and the lines shorten to under 60 minutes.
My Favorite ride is “Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey”. This ride is a “RoboCoaster” as you are seated 4 people onto basically what is a Robot Arm like they use to assemble cars, that is attached to a vehicle on wheels that follows a track. This ride features 3D feeling videos and is very smooth. There is a great “how it works” video on youtube.