Florida Guide > Universal Parks
A preview of The Harry Potter park.
As I write there has been no date fixed for the opening of the new Harry Potter park, but all signs are pointing to spring 2010.
This long awaited park stand in the grounds of the Universal Islands of Adventure and has been styled by the artists and directors of the Harry Potter films. These include Alan Gilmore and Stuart Craig.
J P Rowling has been consulted all along the way with the organisers making trips to London to speak with her. In the 2007 licencing agreement Universal were granted the privelege of using footage from The Order of the Phoenix and High Blood Prince. Although this has not been confirmed it seems likely that this footage will be used in some way in the park.
So here is a little insight in what you might expect.
The Forbidden Journey is a collection of scenes and sets that you access through Hogsmeade. As you enter listen for the steam and whistle. Above you is a turretted building that appears to be 700 foot high.
And it is here that you will find a Dragons Challenge twin roller coaster for speed fans. This is themed on the Triwizard Tournament from the 4th Harry Potter book.
Next we visit Hogsmade: this is where you can ride the Flight of the Hippogriff. The Hippogriffe has a horses body and the head of an eagle and this ride is described as suitable for the whole family.
Other attractions at this new park will include shops and cafes all themed on the H. P brand. There will be a joke shop, a sweet shop and an English restaurant that serves Butter beer.
One nice little touch is that you can send letters home franked with the Hogsmeade post mark.
Not long to wait now til we can enjoy this new attraction and how nice for us Brits that this is a home grown idea that has caught the imagination of the world.
One nice story about J K Rowling that desrves re telling happened on one our trips to Florida. An American fan was terminally ill and not likely to last til the publication of the next Harry Potter book. When Joanne heard this she phoned the small girl every night and read her the chapter she had just finished. What a nice lady!
And as a final flourish; it is not known what this park has cost Universal but experts have placed the final costs at somewhere around three million dollars. . . . wow!
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