The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Hollywood opened on April 7. I’m already planning a trip to try Butterbeer and Chocolate Frogs, Sugar Quills, and all the Harry Potter memorabilia that I’m planning to spend my Galleons on. It almost feels like I (finally) got my Hogwarts letter in the post, and I’m heading back to wizardry school in the fall…hey, a girl can dream!
In order to celebrate the arrival of yet another immersive theme park, we’ve compiled a list of our favorite pop culture attractions.
Current Theme Park Attractions to Enjoy:
Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye
This attraction was created as a result of a joint partnership between Disney and George Lucas. Based on the film franchise, guests board a military troop transport that takes them through a Bengalese temple in search of Indy himself, who has since gone missing during an earlier excavation. CAUTION: Avoid if you are fearful of snakes.
Back to the Future: The Ride
Sadly, this ride closed in 2007, but up until then guests had the chance to travel through time with Back to the Future‘s Doc Brown in his eight-seater Delorean time machine. Their mission was to stop Biff from creating a time paradox after he stole one of the time machines and went on a time traveling joy ride (again!). You would think Doc would’ve learned to keep his inventions under lock and key by now…
Star Tours: The Adventure Continues
With the Season of the Force in full swing, you definitely don’t want to miss getting on this 3D, motion-simulated space flight. Not only does the ride allow guests to “visit” new destinations such as Tatooine and Naboo, but it also includes a brief cameo from one of the new characters from The Force Awakens.
An homage to the beloved movie by Steven Spielberg, the ride is an extended version of the scene where Elliot and his friends try to avoid the authorities while on their bikes. It even includes a brief visit to E.T.‘s home, the Green Planet. Don’t forget to bring Reese’s Pieces!
The Twilight Zone: Tower of Terror
For those of you who fear elevators, beware! This is a simulated freefall drop ride that was inspired by The Twilight Zone television series. The hair-raising ambiance is maintained by the creepy ride operators who deliver the usual Disney safety spiel in deadpan voices and ask for questions just as the elevator doors close…
Jurassic Park Water Ride
Guests participate in a raft tour of Jurassic Park but are are redirected for safety purposes when the dinosaurs somehow escape containment. Be prepared to get wet as you experience an 85-foot drop at the very end. And if you’re expecting to be saved by Chris Pratt, you’re SOL (sorry!).
Be on the Lookout for These Upcoming Attractions:
Star Wars Land
At this themed area, guests will be able to board and pilot the Millennium Falcon and even participate in battles against Stormtroopers! Construction is currently under way for this new addition to Disneyland and Disney World, so it’ll be a while before we’re able to travel to a galaxy far, far away.
It was recently announced that Nintendo has partnered with Universal Studios to bring attractions based on their popular characters and games to Universal Studios. Specific details are currently unknown, but we’re excited none the less!