Florida Guide > Universal Parks
Harry Potter - Universal Studios Orlando
One of the newest rides in Universal Studios Islands of Adventure is the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Build on the back of the huge movie and book franchise, the ride is one of the most impressive and popular in Florida.
No expense seems to have been spared to make the ride as authentic and true to the films. Just looking at Hogwarts Castle makes you think you are really entering the World of Harry Potter. When we visited it was still extremely busy with queue times ranging from 1 – 1 ½ hours. On the plus side the time does seem to go down quickly and there is always something to look at and view. This does tend to help keep you occupied. Wherever you tend to look you see something from the films (talking animated pictures on the castle walls being the most interesting). Once into the Queue you initially start outside in the courtyard and work your way into the castle and great hall areas. Once inside the queue tends to go quicker and it is not soon after you board your brooms.
Each person boards a moving conveyor belt and mounts their individual brooms, before taking off. Movement and effects on the really gives you the impression you are actually flying through the castle and grounds area. If you do not like motion rides or feel sick easily, Harry Potter is probably not for you. At times you really do loose your bearings! This just adds to the realism in my view and adds to why this ride is so lifelike. To experience something closer you would actually have to go into the film itself!
During the ride you are taken through all the places you see in the film and even if you have not watched the films before (as I had), you still understand the characters and what is going on. Just experiencing the ride is enough in my view to make it a great ride, add in all the effects and it turns a great ride into a fantastic one.
It’s safe to say you all make it back in one piece (although a little wind swept and disorientated). But you do feel like you have experienced one of the best rides in Orlando. To say the attention to detail on this ride is first class is an understatement, every area is designed to immerse you into the film and it does a great job. Even the enthusiastic attendants get involved, which in typical Universal Studios style adds on top of the overall experience. It is certainly a ride that needs to be visited when you visit Orlando, just make sure you get there either first thing in the day or late to avoid the big queues.
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