Universal Studios Orlando with Kids
I would recommend a day
for each park, Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure, especially if it is a time of the year when the parks are
offers kids of all ages a journey into many wonderful movies and TV
Series through attractions and shows. You will see unforgettable
and unique tributes to Jaws, ET, Shrek, Twister, Men in Black, and Fear
Factor. The six themed areas include Production Central, New York,
San Francisco/Amity, World Expo, Woody Woodpecker's Kidzone and
Hollywood. In each of these areas the streets and buildings are
theme oriented and they feature a combination of shows, rides,
restaurants, stores and character appearances. The magic of the movies
is felt throughout this entire park. Be sure to look at the names
of stores and restaurants because many will have a link to some movie.
It does help young kids to relate to the rides if they saw some of
these movies prior to your visit, so think about some movie
nights before you go.
In the Hollywood section
you are enjoy the shops and boutiques of Beverly Hills Rodeo Drive and
Hollywood Blvd. Check to see if you can find the star of your favorite
actor or actress.
It is also home to the Universal
Horror Make-up Show which we found to be very entertaining. Tricks of the trade are
shown in a comedy fashion. My kids loved it. Shows run at a
specific time so be sure to check the schedule.
Lucy - A Tribute is a
showcase to the life of Lucille Ball with great memorabilia. The Great
Terminator 2 was a great attraction with live action as well as video
New York offers street
vendors, Fifth Avenue stores, restaurants, show and rides. It is home to Revenge of the Mummy, thankfully it
was one of the rides where I opted out, which is a roller coaster ride set
in the darkness of an Egyptian pyramid.
Twister which was a very cool walk
through attraction where you see the effects of a twister with wind,
rain and falling debris.
The Blues Brothers outdoor show
was lots of fun with Jake and Elwood (Blues Brothers), the famous car,
great music and of course attitude. This is a scheduled show so be
sure to check the times so that you do not miss it.
Production Central is the park's main entrance area.
In this area you will find Shrek 4D which was quite entertaining with
minimal motion, and neat effects.
it is home to the Universal Music Plaza Stage which is a permanent
stage used for live concerts at various times in the year. We
happened to be there during the four month long Mardi Gras celebration
and therefore were able to catch the Beach Boys in concert. This
was probably the highlight of the trip for my kids. They expected
fun at amusement parks but they never expected to see a real concert.
We were very close to the stage and totally enjoyed the atmosphere,
songs and overall experience.
This is also the area where the
Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit resides. A must do roller coaster for
the thrill seekers in your group.
When you travel to San Francisco
you will find Jaws, Beetlejuice Rock and Roll Graveyard Revue, Disaster!
A Major Motion Picture Ride ... Starring You, and Fear Facor Live.
Beetlejuice is a live show featuring Dracula, Frankenstein and his
Bride, Wolfman and of course Beetlejuice. It is a cute show with
fun music so be sure to check the schedule for show times.
was one of our favorites it located between San Francisco and World Expo. If you are interested in participating
in the show they have auditions earlier in the day so check when you get
there for information. Six participants perform demanding,
possibly unpleasant, stunts until they are eliminated. As an adult
my advice is DO NOT volunteer as an audience helper unless you have
nerves of steel and a stomach of stone. It is ok for the kids to
volunteer all of their participation is shooting water guns at
participants. This was a great live show that was lots of fun to
watch. Be sure to check the scheduled times for this show to fit
it into your schedule.
Disaster is a casting call for the latest
feature film "Mutha Nature", starring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson.
Guests are chosen to portray villains for the film and then you are on
to an earthquake in an underground subway setting. So how does
this all fit together in the end you view a movie clip featuring YOU in
the midst of this disaster flick.
In Jaws the great white shark is
loose in the water and you are on a boat. Of course your boat
eventually gets attacked and the shark comes right up to you. You
may want to keep small kids away from the side of the boat. Also,
depending on where you are seated you could get wet.
Woody Woodpecker's Kidzone is a combination of live shows, water attractions, a
playground and rides. The youngsters in your group will love this
area. Shows include A Day in the Park with Barney that pre-schoolers
will love and Animal Actors on Location, which highlights how animals
are trained for films.
Curious George Goes to Town is a
water-based interactive playground. You might want to consider
bathing suits for this area. Woody Woodpecker's Roller Coaster is a
coaster designed for kids. The E.T. Adventure ride, where
you are taking a bike ride with ET to save his friends, is definitely
for young kids but is very cute. Both of these rides are popular
ride so lines could be long.
World Expo is home to
three attractions: The Men in Black Alien Attack, Fear Factor and The
Simpsons Ride. The Men in
Black Alien Attack is a ride where you take part in a cyberspace battle to
shoot aliens in order to save New York City. The second
attraction here is The Simpsons Ride which is a motion simulator which
takes you along with the Simpsons as they visit a theme park called
The best way to see the
park is by getting there when it opens.
Wear comfortable shoes.
You should have sun
block, sun glasses and even a hat.
You are allowed to
bring water bottles and snacks into the park and I would advise you to do so.
Food is expensive.
Preferred parking gets
you close to the entrance especially if you are there when the park
Do your homework in
advance and know where in the park you want to start to try and avoid
crowds and lines.
Lastly, if you are
traveling with older children or all adults try using the "singles only
line" for the rides. We did this for the first time this trip and
it cut the wait time from 40 minutes to 10 minutes. I was worried
at first that we would get separated but we were within a minute of each
other at all times. We did this on the high intensity roller rides
where you really can't talk to the person next to you anyway.
The single line just fills in the ride when there are not enough for an
individual group to fill it. For instance if the ride holds 4
people and there is a group of 3 they will take one from the single line
to fill the ride. Works great so give it a try!!!