I'm finally writing about the end of my vacation! YES!!! XD. That will be very liberating :)
Okay, so on our last day of vacation, we got up and drove to Universal Studios to visit its Islands of Adventure since we wanted to see the Harry Potter theme park(we are all Harry Potter fans).
The Adventure Begins
Unlike our days at Disney, our day at Universal's Islands of Adventure was a sweltering, rainless one. Even though it was very hot, we were glad the heat only came to us on this day since it would have been miserable if we'd had to walk around in the same temperature on our days at Disney World(it was sort of hot on our days at CVI but we were inside and I was wearing a Jedi cosplay).
While Universal is definitely aimed for at older children and adults, the Dr. Suess area is a great area for little kids(and for people who like the stories).
The set ups in Universal all looked really cool and realistic- I really enjoyed looking at them
The above fountain talked in a really weird voice. Not sure what film it comes from.
Since we wanted to get to the Harry Potter theme park before the major crowds showed up(luckily we went on a thinner-crowd day), we made a quick bee-line through the park to the opening of "The Wizarding World of Harry Potter" which was pretty far back.
The "Wizarding World of Harry Potter" was really cool and well done, though I do wish it could have been larger and the castle(as well as Hagrid's Hut) more accessible.
The Hogwart's Express
At the front is the conductor of the Hogwarts Express(geez, I nearly wrote the Polar Express) and you can have a picture made with him if you want. Here are my siblings and I with him :)
Hogsmeade!! It was a really well done place- the shops and the restaurant were amazing(but I'll get to that a little further down).
Hogwarts castle. Magnificent! :D
Since we knew the lines for the ride were going to be long later in the day, the first thing we did was run over to the ride "Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey". While you wait in line, you get to see various parts of Hogwarts castle(dormitories, hallways, the entrance to Dumbledore's office, etc). It was all really well done and I wish we could have looked around at it more instead of only being able to see it while waiting to ride the ride.
About to go inside the castle.
House Point's Counting system(I think this is based on Pottermore- though currently Hufflepuff is winning XD XD).
Entrance to Dumbledore's Office
The Great Hall with the moving photographs on the walls
The Pensieve. Pretty! :)
Before you go into the ride there was this thing were Harry, Ron, and Hermione were talking about 'letting muggles in' which I didn't care too much for. I guess its my actor part of me(since I've never liked it), but I don't want to be involved in roleplay unless I'm IN COSTUME or I fit into the setting somehow. Okay, but enough of that, on to the fun stuff! :D
The Defense Against the Dark Arts Classroom
Since my brother was too little to ride the ride, my Mom and him left the line at the end(my Mom wanted to see the inside of the castle) and my dad, sister, and I continued on to the ride.
And it was AWESOME!!! :D Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey is a simulation type-ride and, as I mentioned in past posts, my favorite kind! :) It involves Quidditch, dragons, spiders, chases, dementers, and excitement!! :D It was definitely one of the best simulation rides I've been on and I would recommend it :)
The school colors(for all the Hogwarts Houses)
Hogsmeade village. It is kind of funny to see snow on the rooftops when its blazing outside. XD
Even though it was small, Hogsmeade village was done very well and the buildings you could go into were very well decorated on the inside with all kinds of cool things you could buy(it was almost like actually stepping into one of the stores in the books/movies).
The Hog's Head
The Monster Book of Monsters. Bwhahahahaha!!! XD
We went into the Owl Post and looked around at the different things you could get. A really neat place :)
At around eleven(since we wanted to eat before the lunch crowd) we went to the restaurant "The Three Broomsticks" for lunch. And let me tell you, the food there is AMAZING!! :D :D I got Shepherd's pie and a salad which was REALLY good!! :) Two other things I tried were the Fish and Chips my dad got and the Cornish pasties my sister got and I loved those dishes as well! :)
However, the best thing we got was the Butterbear. That stuff is the best drink(after water, of course) I've ever tried. Whether you get it frozen or not, it's one of the best things I've tried and I hope to have some again someday :)
My Shepherd's Pie and salad.
Honeydukes sweet shop. A very neat place- one of the coolest candy/dessert shops I've been into; If I wasn't off corn, I'd want to try everything in the store. Just look at the below pictures.
Since most of the treats had chocolate in them(the ones we wanted, anyway) we came by later and got our Harry Potter treats :)
Honeydukes is connected to Zonko's Joke Shop which is were I am in the above picture. (I love this shirt- it's so cool! :D)
We left the Wizarding World of Harry Potter to look around at more of the Islands of Adventure. The first thing we went to do was the show/ride "Poseidon's Fury". My Mom took my brother to the Dr. Suess section since this show was sure to scare him, so my Dad, sister, and I did it. It was a really cool experience, the effects and story were well done, and overall, I found it very unique and I'd love to do it again. Plus, Poseidon is one of my favorite Greek gods, so that was a plus :) (I also really like Athena and Artemis)
Poseidon's Temple in ruins
Next, my Dad, sister, and I went around to the various sections of the park, such as the comic book section(Marvel!! :D), the comic section, Jurassic Park, etc. The Marvel section was really cool and I enjoyed knowing several of the superheroes names. The Spider Man was the ride we got into line for first and while it took awhile, it was really fun since in line they play what I suppose is an episode in a sort of prelude to the ride(giving the ride a story which was pretty awesome!). The ride was itself was, of course, totally awesome!!! :D You're basically in a car with a bunch of other people who were supposedly recruited to get news for the Daily Bugle on what was happening and...well, villains and our neighborhood Spidey come in quite a lot ;)
Since neither my dad or sister is all that into roller coasters with twists and loops, I went and rode the Hulk Roller Coaster by myself. The stuff they had while waiting to get in line was cool, especially this lever you could turn to make this big glass tube glow. The coaster was really fun, filled with awesome loops and a water mist sprayer. Go Bruce Banner! :)
Me in front of the roller coaster
Just so you know, a lot of the pictures were taken when my Mom and brother rejoined us which happened a bit later.
CAPTAIN AMERICA!!! :D :D :D
I'm not sure who this is, but I like his suit
Jurassic Park area. We ended up meeting back with my Mom and brother here later in the afternoon. We were going to ride the ride but it was a water one and since we didn't want to get our clothes wet, we decided to not do it that day.
Once we were all together again, we popped back over to Suess land so we could all ride the Cat in the Hat ride(as well as another one) that my brother had really liked. Then my Dad, sister, and I went to wait in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter while my Mom and brother went to ride this flying dinosaur ride in the Jurassic Park area(it was sort of for little kids).
While we did that, I rode the Dragon Challenge Roller coaster(Harry Potter section). It was also a really cool coaster! :) However, waiting in the hot sun wasn't that much fun, but that's okay.
My brother in front of the ride he was going to go on
The three of us before the Jurassic Park jeep. Watch out for the dinosaurs!
Us in front of the castle. :)
We were finally able to go into Honeydukes to buy our sweets. I'd already decided I wanted to get a Cauldron Cake(I remember that being something I thought sounded so good when reading the books) and luckily they were there behind the glass counter.
Here we are with our treats(mine is in a box). I got a Cauldron Cake, my sister a Chocolate Frog, and my brother a lollipop.
Here we are leaving after a fun, but hot, day :)
Here's what my Cauldron Cake looked like. It turned out really good and had an interesting mixture of tastes. :)
The next day, my sister and I met up with Arda one last time at Panera for breakfast before leaving. We had a great time and I was thankful for the chance of getting to spend more quality time with one of my friends, especially since I might not get to see her in long time.
We drove for the rest of the day and while I was hoping we could do the trip the way we'd planned but we ended up having to spend an extra night on the road which bothered me since I was getting tired of being couped up in a car for hours on end(I'm a bit claustrophobic when it comes to people; I like tiny spaces, though).
Here we are, finally home!! XD (this is totally posed, by the way)
So, here I am, finally at the end of my vacation posts. I had a really wonderful and amazing vacation and I have to say, it was one of the best times of my life :D
What parts were your favorite to read about?
May the Force be with You...Always :)