Tag: Trip reports

Magic Kingdom trip report – August 2014 (Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, LeFou’s Brew vs. Butterbeer, Hub construction)

Magic Kingdom - August 2014.

My Walt Disney World trip this month was to Magic Kingdom last Sunday, on a very sunny, very hot day. Although we did not spend a long day at the park, by pre-planning our FastPass+ attractions, my family and I were able to enjoy ourselves and not have to wait for a lengthy period of time for our preferred rides. When we arrived at the park, the summer version of the entertaining Main Street trolley show was occurring. Talented performers usually ride the horse-drawn trolley and stop at … [Read more...]

Busch Gardens Tampa trip report – August 2014 (World Lion Day, Falcon’s Fury testing, Howl-O-Scream construction, and more)

Busch Gardens Tampa - August 2014.

Last Sunday, we arrived at Busch Gardens Tampa around 10:30 in the morning and found the crowds to be much lower than we had anticipated. The summer travelers are finally starting to thin out, and it’s a welcome sight, indeed. We came specifically that day for the World Lion Day celebration. Add in that it also happened to be the celebration of the two adult females' birthdays (Iris and Rose turned eight on August 15), and this was a great party put on by Busch Gardens. The park set out all … [Read more...]

Islands of Adventure trip report – August 2014 (scoping out Skull Island, riding out Ripsaw Falls + trying out CityWalk’s Bread Box)

Islands of Adventure - August 2014.

This past Saturday, I spent an enjoyable day at Islands of Adventure. But first, I ate lunch in CityWalk and explored the progress of the area's ongoing construction.   Universal CityWalk Since I arrived at Universal Orlando around noon, I decided to try the recently-opened Bread Box sandwich shop. The employees I met were very friendly. I ordered bottled water, a roast beef sandwich, and, based on the recommendation of the order taker, the homemade potato chips. Including my Annual … [Read more...]

Universal Studios Florida trip report – August 2014 (changes to Diagon Alley & Hogwarts Express, surprise shows, and touring Gringotts)

Universal Studios Florida - August 2014.

Looking forward to enjoying thrills and adventures, my family and I visited Universal Studios Florida on a very hot and humid August day this past weekend. Like millions of visitors each year, we thoroughly take pleasure in the area theme parks, but sometimes in a slightly different way. At USF – and most of the other Orlando theme parks – our son, who has autism and cannot speak, usually has a strict routine and order of what attractions he rides. This trip, however, was surprisingly an … [Read more...]

SeaWorld Orlando trip report – July 2014 (summer crowds, the park’s best show, and how NOT to tour)

SeaWorld Orlando - July 2014.

We thought we were so smart – in one of the busiest months for theme parks, we decided to visit SeaWorld on a Friday instead of a weekend. And instead of arriving in the morning, we figured that if we got there later in the afternoon, we would miss any crowds that might have already gone through. Oh, how wrong we were. It was the most crowded day I'd ever seen at SeaWorld. We started our tour by trying the Sky Tower, but it was a 40-minute wait. So we made for Antarctica… which was a … [Read more...]

Disney’s Hollywood Studios trip report – July 2014 (Frozen Summer Fun invades Disney!)


Do you wanna build a snowman? For the first time in forever, you can do just that at Disney’s Hollywood Studios! My family and I visited DHS to celebrate our son’s birthday and to experience the new Frozen Summer Fun occurring daily now through September 1, 2014. Near the entrance to the park, we saw a new large sand sculpture of Olaf, the loveable snowman from the Disney movie Frozen, and it helped set the mood for a cool day. After swiping our MagicBands, we were each given a … [Read more...]

Islands of Adventure trip report – July 2014 (Hogsmeade Station, Kongstruction, fun in Toon Lagoon + a CityWalk update)

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The summer always brings many tourists to Orlando to enjoy all the world-class attractions, especially Universal Orlando Resort. Over the weekend, I joined my fellow travelers and toured Islands of Adventure. But before I got to the park, I took a brief stroll through Universal CityWalk.   Universal CityWalk As CityWalk continues to expand its restaurant and food options, I noticed two new eateries opened since my last report, which provide guests with more quick-service … [Read more...]

A very special Universal Studios Florida trip report – July 2014 (Diagon Alley is here!)

Universal Studios Florida - July 2014.

On Saturday I visited Universal Studios Florida, and what an awesome day it was! The crowds were surprisingly moderate for summer, but the weather was very warm. As I entered the park, I picked up a Diagon Alley Grand Opening commemorative park map (still available, although the actual Grand Opening was July 8) and decided to tour the rest of USF before enjoying this new addition. In Production Central, Despicable Me was shut down due to technical problems but reopened later with a posted … [Read more...]

Busch Gardens Tampa trip report – July 2014 (Summer Nights extravaganza, Rhino Rally reopens, Falcon’s Fury more beautiful than ever)


I’d heard so many great things about Summer Nights at Busch Gardens from last year that, this year, I jumped at the chance to go. Since Summer Nights entertainment doesn’t start until late in the night, we decided to take our time, and we arrived at Busch Gardens in the early afternoon (amazing how short the lines are to enter the park at that time of day). As we walked through Busch Gardens trying to figure out what to do first, we saw a sign we couldn’t believe – Rhino Rally had reopened! … [Read more...]

Universal Orlando trip report – June 2014 (Hogsmeade spell markers, Diagon Alley dragon, Kong-struction & more)

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While I am impatiently waiting for possible soft openings of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley, I decided to report on the most recent updates at both Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios Florida from my visit last weekend.   Islands of Adventure In Seuss Landing, the Cat in the Hat vehicle is spinning again but only turns around approximately three different times during the ride. It is a gentler spin and nothing like past experiences on this attraction. For … [Read more...]

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