If you’re planning a trip to Orlando, you may be thinking about what activities you will take part in. Many individuals and families choose to spend time at one or more amusement parks. I recommend spending some time exploring the Universal Orlando Resort parks. With 3 awesome parks to choose from, there’s something for everyone. Today I’ll share with you some information on each park, to help you make a better choice before your Orlando adventure! You may even find yourself visiting all three of the parks.
Universal Studios Florida
This is the park that you’ve probably heard about most! Universal Studios Florida opened in the summer of 1990. This park focuses on the movie and entertainment industry. All of the rides and attractions carry this theme. This park is perfect for visitors of all ages because there’s so many things to do. There are rides, shops, shows, and restaurants to enjoy. You’ll also find characters here to meet and greet and get photos with! 🙂
This park is also home to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter: Diagon Alley. If you’re a Harry Potter fan, you’ll LOVE it!
Wondering what some of the top rides are?
- Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts
- Transformers: The Ride
- Despicable Me Minion Mayhem
- Revenge of the Mummy
Universal’s Islands of Adventure
Next up, is Universal’s Islands of Adventure! This park is actually right next door and easily connected. If you have a multi-park pass you can hop right over. I recommend riding the Hogwarts Express train between parks. It’s a ride in itself! 🙂
This park opened in the summer of 1999. Here you can enjoy rides and activities with more of an adventure theme. At Universal’s Islands of Adventure, there are a lot of superheroes and magic touches with the rides and attractions. Just like Universal Orlando Florida, there are many rides, activities, shows, restaurants, and shops to enjoy at this park.
This park is also home to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter: Hogsmeade. Another must-see for HP fans!
Personally, I’m more of a thrill rider, so I really enjoy this park!
Wondering what some of the top rides are?
- The Incredible Hulk Coaster
- The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man
- Jurassic Park River Adventure
- Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey
Universal’s Volcano Bay
The newest addition to the Universal Orland Resort family is Universal’s Volcano Bay! This is a family-friendly water park that is full of adventure for all. Enjoy a variety of slides, wave pools, and rivers. There’s a mix of shops and restaurants as well. You can even rent a private cabana if you’re bringing the whole crew. As this just opened at the end of May 2017, I was super excited to check this park out.
What are the top slides and attractions?
- Waturi Beach
- Ka’okiri Body Plunge
- TeAwa the Fearless River
- Taniwha Tubes
If you want to know what else to expect at this brand-new park, check out my detailed guide on Univeral’s Volcano Bay.
Here’s What Else You Need to Know!
No matter what park you go to (but seriously, they all rock!) I recommend purchasing a Universal Express Pass. This made life so much easier for me. If you hate waiting in lines for long hours, the express pass will be your best friend. How does it work? For select rides and attractions, you can skip the regular line and wait in the Express Pass Line. With an Express Pass, I never waited more than 15-20 minutes f0r a ride when visiting at the end of June (on a weekend!). This means I was able to ride so many more rides and better enjoy my visit.
Before planning a trip, you should also know about Universal CityWalk! This is what I’d consider to be the center of all of the park fun. It’s located between both Universal Orlando Florida and Universal’s Volcano Bay parks. Here you can enjoy amazing shows (like the Blue Man Group!) and shop and one of the many shops or enjoy a delicious meal. Some of the must-visit restaurants include Emeril’s Orlando, Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville, and Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. Restaurant and Market. There’s something for everyone here and you can visit this area even without a park ticket!
There’s a lot of fun to be had. No matter what park you choose to visit while at Universal Orlando Resort, you’re sure to create many special memories! I hope this guide helps you better plan for your own adventures.
Disclaimer: I partnered with Universal Orlando Resort to bring you this content. While I was invited for a complimentary visit, I truly think you’ll have an amazing time at all of their parks! 🙂