I took my sister to the Wizardy World of Harry Potter at Universal’s Islands of Adeventure on Saturday. They do a good job, but I think Disney would of done a better job.
Things I liked:
The ride is awesome. People are going to get hurt on the conveyor belt that puts you on the ride. It’s super fast with no railing and you have to transfer to another belt that is moving at a different speed, but other than that….its awesome. Take your sandals off!!!!! They don’t tell you this….you just have to know. My toes were just holding on for dear life to my flippy floppies. It’s super innovative, it incorporates a little something from every style of amusement park rides available and it’s pretty intense and would scare me when I was kid.
Butter beer: It’s just plain great. I really liked it and may try and make my own. I’m sure there are recipes out there.
The park employees: Universal has a program for interns that brings students in from England. That way they have an authentic Harry Potter land…..very clever!
My sister and I both feel that they did a good job, but something was missing. A gay man or multiple gay men or just an anal retentive somebody to really nail down the little details. This is why we believe Disney could of done it better. I hate picky people, but now I see why they are needed. We both feel it could be due to the scale of everything. Maybe they didn’t have a ton of space, but things just seem small. Maybe children will feel differently over this factor….as they should (they didn’t make the movie or park for adults).
I understand that the point of anything in business is to make money, but Universal really rakes you over the coals. For example: Disney has free fast passes for almost every ride. At Universal you have to pay quite a bit more money to have a fast pass, but then (without notifing the purchaser) they don’t work on the new Harry Potter ride. The price to get into the park went up to around $90 a ticket just for Islands of Adventure when the new section opened which just sucks to pay that much for a single day. They try to upsell you go to the basic Universal Studios….which is the lamest park in the world (they got rid of some of their best rides….specifically King Kong).
Tips and Tricks
The main trick I would say is get to the park about a half hour before it opens so that you can walk to the Harry Potter section. The line was only 45 min which isn’t bad for a new ride. At one point it was at 2.5 hours. Also, it is super duper hot right now. I live in Florida and the heat was just terrible this past weekend. If you are able to push it off till October or November it will be worth it to wait. Maybe in that time lines will go down and Universal will go through and tweak things a bit to button up some of the loose ends my sister and I saw.
Lines are going to be crazy. Just be ready for it. The line to get into the Harry Potter gift shop was over a 1.5 hour wait that wrapped around the whole area. The candy store on the other hand was like a 5 min wait….I bought the Every flavor beans which I thought was a joke, but its not…the first one I ate was Lima bean followed by black pepper and then potato….mmmm delicious.
If you go have fun and enjoy.