Vacation Travel Tips & Advisories

Harry Potter – Universal Studios

Harry Potter at Universal

I have to admit, I purchased a magic wand (Professor Dumbledorff) and a Gryffendorf scarf, so needless to say I am a big Harry Potter fan.  For me, the Harry Potter attraction at Universal was a MUST SEE!  However, while the shops are awesome, and the Harry Potter items are very cool, the main ride was a bit of a let down for me.  The Harry Potter exhibits are in Islands of Adventure, and the smaller roller coaster was pretty cool, but the old Dueling Dragons roller coaster has become the main Harry Potter roller coaster, so there is no big change there.

Hogwarts Express


The main ride is a combination of a physical ride thru the castle and a visual simulation ride thru a myriad of Harry Potter stories.  The problem is that it moves so fast that it is difficult to focus on very much at one time.  While seemingly riding a broom stick, you do tend to have pretty good visuals, but then once the ride races through the many movie scenes, it is difficult at best to enjoy.  It seems they tried to cram too much into this one ride, and while it is a unique experience, it is not one of my more favorite rides.   For me still, the better rides are at the other park where the Mummy and the Simpsons rides are far more exciting and rewarding.

Regardless of age, there is much to enjoy at Universal Studios whether you are at the Islands of Adventure or Universal Studios.  The one main complaint I still have there is after 4 visits to Universal Studios, I have yet to ride the Spiderman attraction as it has been down almost every time that we were there.  We stood in line 30 minutes one day to have it go down just as we got in to where you board the ride.  Universal either needs to fix it or scrap the ride and come up with something else.  Shrek 3D is awesome and entertaining, and definitely you have to do the Simpsons ride, followed by the Mummy.  Those are by far, my favorite attractions.  Hope this helps some of you with your choices.

Hogwarts Castle


The Shops


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