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Florida Guide > Universal Parks

Universal Studios Revisited

Many years ago, before we started our family, my husband and I enjoyed a visit to Universal Studios. We had a great day enjoying attractions such as Back to the Future, King Kong and Jaws. Though we have been to the Orlando area several times since then, we had never returned to Universal Studios because we were waiting for the kids to get a bit older. On our most recent trip, we decided to take the family and revisit this park and I have to say that apart from a few remaining memorable attractions including Jaws, E. T. and The Blues Brothers performance (one of my favorites – I got to dance with Jake! ), it was an entirely new experience!

My first surprise came upon entering the park as we passed by all the enticing establishments of City Walk with the huge roller coasters of Islands of Adventure looming ahead. That was only the beginning!

As we experienced our day at Universal Studios, we found that a few of the old attractions had been updated and revamped such as “Disaster! A Major Motion Picture Ride starring You” which was formerly “Earthquake – The Big One! ” Earthquake closed in 2007, however, several of the main elements of the ride are the same incorporating a new theme and some additional special effects. Some attractions were entirely replaced such as the old “Back to the Future” which in March of 2007 was replaced with “The Simpsons Ride” and “Kongfrontation, ” which closed in 2002 to be replaced by “Revenge of the Mummy” which according to my son is a pretty “awesome” indoor rollercoaster (I don’t do roller coasters). The “Funtastic World of Hanna-Barbera” is now “Jimmy Neutron’s Nicktoon Blast” which is a wild simulator ride through the worlds of everyone’s favorite Nicktoon characters (it was great fun though I had to close my eyes a few times). “Alfred Hitchcock: The Art of Making Movies, ” closed in 2003 to make way for “Shrek 4-D” which is a fantastic adventure with all the special effects you come to expect from 3-D (or in this case 4-D) that takes off from where the popular movie ended.

Men in Black: Alien Attack was brand new in 2000. You enter this ride under the pretense that you are at the World Expo about to view a presentation called “The Universe and You, ” but you end up being an MIB trainee. This ride is similar to the arcade-style Buzz Lightyear in Magic Kingdom as you travel in vehicles shooting up aliens with your laser gun trying to score as many points as possible – fun!

Some outdated sets such as the Bates Mansion and Swamp Thing were gone but the kiddie area called Woody Woodpecer’s Kidzone had expanded to include the Nuthouse Coaster and the Curious George interactive playground.

Sadly, the Boneyard had disappeared. I remember how much I enjoyed viewing the discarded props from some of my all time favorite films. This has been removed to make way for the entrance to the coming attraction, “Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit. ” Out with the old and in with the new as they say!

We had a great day and loved the new attractions. We will no doubt return very soon!

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Page added on: 20 August 2009
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