Our 7-hour tour started with complimentary valet parking and a private security checkpoint- keep your valet ticket handy so it can be validated at the VIP check-in office. After walking through the shops and restaurant area of Universal Citywalk™, we took some photos of the iconic Universal Studios™ globe and headed over to the VIP check-in. Our tour started at 9:30 am, but we were allowed to check-in as early as 9 am so that we had plenty of time to eat the included continental breakfast at Café La Bamba, located just inside of the Universal Studios Florida™ gates.
This tour is semi-private, meaning there is a maximum of 12 people in each group. We were all seated together for breakfast, and I must say it was nice to get to know the other families we would be spending the day with. Once breakfast was over, our fantastic tour guide Todd took us to our first ride, Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit™! That was quite an invigorating way to start our day! Make sure to check out your personal roller coaster video at the kiosks once you’re off the ride, it’s sure to amuse you and your friends!
Our guide didn’t go on any of the rides with us but instead was the keeper of the bags – purses, camera bags, shopping bags – so we didn’t have to mess with the bag lockers at the rides. I must admit that I felt like a total rock star when we had immediate access to the front of the lines and we were able to skip everyone in the queue.
Todd made sure to tell us about the history of the parks, and backstories to the rides and attractions. I haven’t seen any of the Transformer movies, but he told the story so well that once we were on the ride it was like we were all a part of the movie, and knew exactly what was happening! We sped through NYC on the new 3D motion-simulator Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon™, chased Krusty the Clown on The Simpsons Ride™, and zapped aliens on MEN IN BLACK™ Alien Attack™.
We made our way to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ – Diagon Alley™ for a quick ride on Harry Potter and the Escape From Gringotts™. The tour comes with a preloaded dining card that includes 1 quick service lunch & drink, 1 snack, and 1 additional drink for each person. We decided to eat at the Leaky Cauldron™ where my husband and I shared the Cottage Pie and Fish & Chips; both were so delicious! The Tongue Tying Lemon Squash was a sour yet refreshing lemon drink, while the Pumpkin Juice™ was full of sweet pumpkin flavor. We also used one of our snack credits for a yummy Frozen Butterbeer™!!
We had an hour lunch break where we explored the nooks and crannies of Diagon Alley™ and even bought a souvenir wand. Once the tour resumed, we headed over to the Hogwarts™ Express King’s Cross Station for a ride over to Hogsmeade™ Station at Universal’s Islands of Adventure™. We continued to ride all of the most popular rides including Skull Island: Reign of Kong™ and The Incredible Hulk Coaster®.
After we conquered 13 amazing rides and attractions at the Universal Orlando Resort™ theme parks, our wonderful tour had come to an end, and we had to say goodbye to our guide. We had some time left in the day, so we headed over to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ where we eyed the candy in Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes™ and practiced our spell casting skills with our interactive wand that we purchased earlier. As we were winding down and getting ready to leave, I remembered that we had a snack credit left so we used it for a giant plate of warm and sugary Funnel Puffs – a special treat offered during Universal’s Mardi Gras celebration!
Whether you are looking to have a personalized park day with someone guiding you along the way, or you just want to ride as many rides in a day as possible without having to wait in the queues, the VIP Experience is an incredible way to experience Universal Orlando Resort™! Talk to your Key to the World Travel® planner today to add this on to your vacation experience.
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