Thursday, June 3, 2010

Theme Park Update: The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

© 2010 Universal Orlando Resort. All Rights Reserved.
Continuing our theme park update we head out to Universal Orlando as they prepare for the opening The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.  The official opening is scheduled for June 18th, however in order to accomplish this they need to see how the area runs with park guests.  That means that they are now having soft openings of the park for a few hours each day.  They have been doing this with Universal Hotel guests only for a little over a week now, but are now starting to open it to regular park guests during this testing period.

As we stated, do not expect this area to remain open for the whole day.  They are only opening it for a few hours in the morning and that is it.  This also means that since it is a testing period expect some places to close, some attractions to break down or possibly not open.  This is all necessary for them to get everything just right for the official opening.

If you are planning on being there opening day, here are a few things...

Get there EARLY: Guest Services says that they are planning on opening their parking garages at 6:30 am that day.  Currently the park is scheduled to open at 9:00 am.  Be sure you're at the right park too.  WWoHP is in Island's of Adventure.  We say get there early because there are a lot of people expected here opening day and weekend.  You have the guests who were already going to be there along with the Harry Potter faithful and theme park enthusiast's from around the world who will be there.

Expect long lines: This is an opening that people have been looking forward to since it was announced.  So you can expect at least 90 minute+ waits for attractions and other locations.  Also, it'll be warm so be sure to drink water along with your butterbeer.

Rides Break Down: Yes, it's true.  In a theme park rides break down (excuse me...I meant to say experience down times).  Why?  Well for a number of reasons, especially when you're opening a new ride.  A slow guest getting on, technical problem, operator error, Window's name it.  So be patient with the R.O.'s (Ride Operator), they want this to run smooth just as much as you do.

Bring lot's of $$: This area will be loaded with things that you'll want to either sample of take home so be sure you have extra cash to do this.

Have fun: All of those things can try your patience, but just enjoy it all.  As long as you approach your day knowing these things and prepare yourself for it, you'll still have a great time.  The stars of the Harry Potter movies enjoyed themselves:

For more information, take the jump to Universal Orlando's web site.

Have you already been inside the WWoHP?  Let us know what you thought.

In line for Butterbeer
Jungle Jesse

UPDATE: This Sunday at 7:00 PM (EST and PST) NBC will air a half hour special about The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.  More details can be found at

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