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My Universal Orlando / Islands of Adventure Updates


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Does anybody know exactly what will be the "headline" attraction in the new Harry Potter area at IOA? I heard some sort of motion simulator type ride.

 

Some sort of weird hybrid of Spiderman and Indiana Jones that's on a robot arm.

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Im guessing since it was black history months "the color purple" movie was playing since its one of the most beloved black movies out there...

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Does anybody know exactly what will be the "headline" attraction in the new Harry Potter area at IOA? I heard some sort of motion simulator type ride.

 

Some sort of weird hybrid of Spiderman and Indiana Jones that's on a robot arm.

 

 

That's odd. I can't wait to see what it ends up being!

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Im guessing since it was black history months "the color purple" movie was playing since its one of the most beloved black movies out there...

 

 

Oh yeah, now that makes a lot of sense.

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  • 3 months later...

I would gather that this update is really three years in the making. If you have lots of extra time be sure to start this thread from page 1. I honestly can not add really much more to what has already been discussed other than I really liked the new area. It should be noted that I am a Harry Potter fan as I have read all the books and seen all the movies so far. The big question that everyone has been asking is, "How does the ride work for people who know nothing about Harry Potter." I would answer that it probably does not work very well at first, but after several rides I think they will be able to follow along. As much as I liked the new ride, and the fact that I know quite a bit about Harry Potter, my very first ride still felt very chaotic as it seemed to try to do too much in its 4 1/2 minute ride time. I simply could not fully comprehend the storyline in how each scene was supposed to flow into one another. However, after multiple rides (and seeing all of the backstory stuff in the queue), the experience really came together for me. I think that you will have to ride it several times before you can really give it a genuine opinion. With that said, I think that the biggest fault about the ride is that the storyline is not as accessible as Spiderman, The Mummy, or countless other fantastic licenced dark rides out there. If someone knows nothing about Harry Potter, their first ride will probably feel like it is a ride with bunch of really cool but disjointed scenes and effects that you get to see while riding in an awesome ride vehicle. It will probably not make a lot of sense.

 

After riding it 6 times during my visit I think that the Forbidden Journey is excellent and I think it is the only dark ride (that is not a coaster or drop tower) in Orlando that comes close to rival Indiana Jones at Disneyland. Yes, it reminds me more of Indiana Jones with a more unique ride vehicle rather the Spiderman. While there are movie/simulator sections of the ride they only last about 1:30 for the total ride time. Everything else is full solid effects and sets. Anyways, I won't bog you down with a bunch of information that you probably already know so let us head on over to the photos.

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You know you are early to the park when you park your car in King Kong.

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This would be the recent batch of movies at CityWalk.

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The open the gates at 9 and we are greeted by a large Harry Potter TV set.

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I am happy to see the Mythos water effects working again.

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Current Menu.

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Yeah, the Harry Potter area is now open to the public and running during park hours.

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Almost there!

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Just in case you already forgot what this area used to look like a few years ago.

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We present to you: Hogsmeade.

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Otherwise, do not cast any crazy spells in this area.

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Can you tell where Harry Potter officially begins?

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Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey.

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The wait time never was more than 20 minutes that day. Yes, they also have an awesome single riders entrance.

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Yeah, the entrance is quite impressive.

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This sign will become history on Friday.

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Let us head on inside.

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This is what you see if you look backwards from the main entrance.

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Thia would be the outside section of the queue. I should note that the line always seems to move. I was impressed that the ride is really high capacity.

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Who let these people into the park?

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The queue is really amazing for Potter geeks.

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F.U. LIVES!!!

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Yes, I failed.

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The sorting hat reviews the ride's rules before boarding.

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It will always be F.U. to me.

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The area around the coaster really looks different now.

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Especially since there is now a huge castle sitting right next door.

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You can hear Hagrid and his dog Fang make noises out of his house.

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Vekoma Wicker Coaster.

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Yes, the wheelchair seat is still there.

Edited by Erik Johnson
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Potter Update Part 2

 

This is pretty much an overview of the rest of the area.

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I am glad that all the construction walls are down.

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I am a huge Dueling Dragons fanboy so I really was not impressed with the new entrance.

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This is what is used to look like.

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The new theming really does fit with the whole Goblet of Fire book's theme though.

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Entrance into the castle.

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As seen in the second movie.

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The Goblet of Fire.

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Triwizard's Tournament Cup.

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Want to check out the bar?

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These would be all the beers on tap. Let us see how good you are and guess what they have.

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I tried Butterbeer. It tastes like cream soda with a little bit of butterscotch and vanilla.

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Me and my wimpy drink.

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Noted.

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This is called theming.

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I know you wanted to see it.

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They have two small shows that appear every 30 minutes.

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All these characters are from the 4th book/movie: The Goblet of Fire.

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The other show is The Frog Choir

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Sid Vicious morphed into an Indiana Beach logo.

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The Three Broomsticks is now open for lunch. It is quick service, and the food is pretty good.

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No Coke products to be found. I did find the pumpkin juice to be very refreshing.

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This would be my lunch.

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These are some of the choices for eating.

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Three Broomsticks entrance.

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While kind of cool, the wand presentation is really not worth more than a 5 minute wait.

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It is just like a scene out of the first book/movie.

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The Joke shop was unusual

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I think they only had around 10 different items for sale. Some of the items I could not remember from the books like the strange looking Japanese Robot.

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Right next door was the sweets/candy store.

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Ok, I know this one.

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These are plain evil.

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The lockers for Dragon's Challenge are located in the train station.

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How do you do sir?

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Dork.

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You can buy Butterbeer outside as well.

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Many of the shop windows have stuff going on inside.

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Post Office.

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Many owls can be found here.

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Recreation of the ride. I was not sure if it was for sale.

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Brromsticks for kids sure were though.

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So do you like this?

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Or these better?

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Ok, it is time to go.

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We now leave you with a picture of the most sought after coaster themed merchandise ever created. Now a collector's item.

Edited by Erik Johnson
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We now leave you with a picture of the most sought after coaster themed merchandise ever created. Now a collector's item.

 

We're going to the Candy Mountain!

 

Thanks for the all the pictures, Erik. I'm looking forward to checking this place out--and sampling some of that awesome-looking food.

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Glad you got to ride the forbidden journey ride. I spent 30 minutes this morning walking through Hogworts only to eventually end up in a very packed gift shop. The ride had problems right before we hit the que area. Beautiful theming of the land. I was highly impressed with it. I only have two faults with the land. All the stores are small and crowded, and they shut down the back half of the area in the afternoon so they can rehearse for the grand opening this Friday.

 

Frozen butter beer really hits the spot on a really hot summer day!

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  • 2 months later...
  • 2 years later...

It really has been a long time since I have updated this thread. I honestly have not been able to hit the Orlando parks as much as I used to, but I thought it would be fun to revive this thread with a few new photos.

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It is always good to remember where you park.

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New constructions walls are now up around the front entrance into the Potter area.

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This is where the rumored expansion of the train area is supposed to be.

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I finally got to check out the new ride. I thought it was a pretty good replacement for Jimmy Neutron.

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There are a lot of new cranes around the park. This one is working on the rumored Transformers: The Ride attraction.

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They are really moving fast on this attraction.

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Looks like the have done quite a bit of work on the 2nd phase of Potter Land.

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Another big crane.

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Potterland: Phase 2

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Potterland Phase 2.

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Halloween Horror Nights starts in a few days.

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Clever.

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It is true in that the construction for Transformers is going on 24/7.

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Night time construction shot.

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Working hard at night.

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The night time show did remind me a lot of a smaller budget World of Color.

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Night time new attraction.

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Boy, has the park changed.

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It is almost time for HHN!

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It's amazing how much construction they have going one at once at Universal, I really hope it all works out in the end. As much as some people despise Harry Potter it certainly seems to move the turnstiles and justify purchases for rides like Transformers, Despicable Me, Rockit and whatever Gringots London coaster they are building so that's a good thing right ?

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The park really has changed. I believe with all these new additions, Universal Resort may even start to be a 3 day park. 2 days for both parks and 1 day for just Harry Potter lands.

 

It be cool if they use the construction sites to there advantage for HHN. Maybe through in a few crazy looking construction workers. I'm sure they already thought of that.

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The park really has changed.

 

Tell me about it.

 

Once these 3 projects are done, not to mention Despicable Me just opening this summer, nearly a quarter of the park will be brand new. ...quite impressive if you ask me.

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  • 6 years later...

Just a quick revival my very old thread. I really had been away from this thread. Sorry about that. I figure I could post a few photos of my last visit. Feel free to click back to page one as this thread does go back to 2007. There are a ton of older park photos in here.

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Happy 20th Anniversary Plus One Day Universal.

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I never get tired of walking through this sign.

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I just wanted to post a few photos of the Jurassic Park area. There has been a ton of clearing in this area in preparation for the new coaster.

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Just a couple of weeks now till Hagrid opens.

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Great updates throughout the years! I just read through the entire thread and it's amazing to see how much Universal has changed in the past 12 years!

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