Post # 1
Hello bees! We’re thinking of going to the Harry Potter theme park in Universal for part of our honeymoon, but could anyone give me some travel tips? I haven’t been to Orlando since I was a kid. Should we get there right when it opens to avoid massive crowds? And realistically how long would you spend there? I’m debating if we would have time to do Harry Potter in the morning, and then maybe Seaworld in the afternoon. Or is that pushing it on time? I don’t want to feel rushed, but then again I want to make the most of the trip! After Orlando we are probably going to go to Amelia Island or Jeykll Island, and then on to Savannah for a few days. I’d appreciate any advice!
Post # 3
We went last spring. I am an ok fan for HP and FI was not a fan at all (I dragged him to see HP haha). We went to the park right when it opened and went on the Hogwarts ride first. I think it’s one of the best part of the park. Even then we had to wait for a good 20 mins wait (on a normal weekday). And then we went out to other side of park for breakfast and came back to the HP section. Looking at the same line (was going to ride it a second time), it has become 1 hr 30 m wait now. Boy, aren’t we glad we did it first thing in the morning huh.
We talked to a very rude guy who works at the locker next to the train and he did tell us if the park gets too many people, they had to turn away guests from entering the HP park. It didn’t happen to us that day, but scares me not to be able to see everything. I think we spend first half of the day staying in the HP section. I am no fan of roller coaster, so the only ride I like is the Hogwarts one haha.
I think if you are not a die-hard fan, you can spend a good half a day at the HP park and left with satisfiction.
I haven’t been to the Orlando Seaworld, but I only been to San Diego one. I am a big fan of zoos and aquariums so last trip we went to Seaworld for 1 1/2 days and we didnt’ see everything. So I guess it’s up to you what you want to see and if you feel bad if you couldn’t catch a certain show, you know. Cus those shows you probably need to go there 15-30 mins before the show to get a good seat and whatnot…
Post # 4
Harry Potter theme park was amazing!! I’m no die-hard and we spent a good couple of hours there. I’m pretty sure you can go around it for half a day! We went there this past August and since it was close to the start of school…there weren’t a lot of people and the line-ups were so short! The earlier the better I find, it gets busier as the day progresses.
The ride inside Hogwarts was really cool and even though FI isn’t a fan…he had a great time.
Here are some pics! Sorry there are so many…I took a lot!
Post # 5
Thank you for the advice! FI is a huge fan of Harry Potter so it was on his “must see” list if we went to Florida. I don’t like rollercoasters so it’s good to know we could see pretty much everything in a half a day or so and still enjoy ourselves. The pictures look really fun, thanks for sharing!
Post # 6
@Westwood: While I think you could technically fit both parks into a day, that’s going to be one long day! Especially if your FI is a HP nut, he’s going to want to eat in the Three Broomsticks, see the various shows in the shops, do the rides, go through the gift shops, etc. You could easily spend more than a half day there and I think it might be overwhelming to do both. Plus, HP isn’t a stand alone park; there is more to the Islands of Adventure than just HP World, so you’re going to end up spending more time than you might think.
Post # 7
The HP park is very cool! I would suggest staying at Universal’s resorts. Not only are they very nice but you get priority access to the HP section (among other things I’m sure) and priority resevations at the Three Broomsticks (the HP restaurant).
Good luck!! It will be a blast 🙂
Post # 8
You’re welcome! I agree with @inspiredcreationsbyhaley, the HP theme park is only a part of Universal and depending on whether or not you guys want to explore the rest of Universal I would give it a good day to do so. When we went, we spent the whole day in Universal and saw everything!
You also have to keep in mind the line-ups to the shops (SUPER LONG) and the rides as well!
Post # 9
@csperry2: ditto this! Your room key when you stay at a Universal resort is a fast pass to get you through most of the lines! Also, if you don’t bring a bag with you (fanny pack only!), then you get to skip to a shorter line at the HP ride.
Post # 10
@inspiredcreations: That is true, and good advice, but the fastpass thing does not work on the Forbidden Journey rollercoaster. People say to go right when the park opens, go on the forbidden journey ride first, then do everything else after.
Post # 11
@GoldfishPie: yeah that’s what we did, we went straight to the HP park when it opened. It was quite a walk from the entrance to the upper right section of the park though!
There were still a line but 20mins vs 1h30m wait…that’s a big difference!
Post # 12
From what I have been researching (im going to orlando soon) start at the back of the park and work your way backwaords… I also heard that hp world is less crowded later in the day because everyone tries to get there early.
Post # 13
We spent a full day at universal with the fast pass two park ticket and still were pretty rushed and had to skip some stuff. The actual Harry potter partwhat’d just opened when we went so wait times were much longer but it only took a couple hours if you’re not interested in the rest of the park
Post # 14
We went to Orlando last October and stayed at Universal (Portofino). If you can afford it I would definitely recommend staying there. You get ferried around to the parks on a water taxi, and your room key acts as a Fastpass AND gets you into the parks an hour earlier. The day we went to HP, we made sure to get there before the park opened to general admission, and we headed straight to the Forbidden Journey b/c you can’t use the Fastpass. We didn’t have to wait long at all – I actually wish it had taken longer because there was so much cool stuff to see while “waiting in line” and we sped through a lot of it. I am a huge fan, my husband isn’t but he really enjoyed the Forbidden Journey ride (he is not really one for crazy rides either). It was so much fun!
Post # 15
The HP world is pretty cool. The others are right on the line- no fast pass so get there either early or later in the day. One thing I was p*ssed I didn’t have enough time to do- tour the castle!!! The ride was shut down and they didn’t know when it’d be back up so we bailed (came back and got in) I wanted to do the tour in the meantime but no one else was a HP fan and thus I was overruled. All you do is ask the greeter at the main entrance.
Post # 16
I went two years ago and it was a random weekday. It was awesome but crowded. Hopefully the crowds have died down some. We didn’t want to wait in all the lines so we didn’t get to experience everything, but it was still amazing. Definitely wait in line for butterbeer. So yummy! I know there are knock-off recipes out there but we enjoyed sipping our butterbeers while surrounded by HP ambiance. It is all part of the magic!