Attractions Blog: My favorite attractions at Universal Orlando

By Ashley Carter, Digital Media Producer
Last Updated: Friday, March 17, 2017, 1:07 PM EDT

When people think of Orlando theme parks, Disney World and Universal Orlando are automatic.

And despite my love for Disney, when I think of thrill rides (and coasters) it's Universal all the way.

I decided to put together a list of my favorite attractions at Universal. I like many of the attractions at the theme park, but these are the top four.

Revenge of the Mummy (Universal Studios)

The Mummy is my favorite ride at Universal. It’s a fast, special-effects heavy, indoor roller coaster, and it doesn’t get enough love.

As you travel through the dark, you encounter mummies, fire and other creatures as you try to escape Imhotep. Oh, and the theming for this ride is top-notch. You feel like you’re in a dark, winding tomb.

It’s not as intense as the coasters you’ll find at Islands of Adventure, but that doesn’t make it any less fun.

Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts (Universal Studios)

I know people who swear that Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey is the best Harry Potter ride. Everyone’s entitled to their opinion, but for me, it’s Escape from Gringotts.

The queue takes you through the lobby of Gringotts bank, which is filled with animatronic goblins.

The ride itself is an amazing, immersive experience that takes you through the vaults of the bank. Along the way you encounter trolls, Ron, Harry and Hermione and Voldemort.  The multiple special effects combined with the 3D elements make it one of the more complex attractions at the park.

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter-Diagon Alley (Universal Studios)

This Universal expansion is a must-see for Harry Potter fans. You are transported to the streets of London—complete with Knight Bus and red telephone boxes—before entering Diagon Alley where you’ll find wands, robes and other wizarding trinkets. Grab a butter beer, buy a chocolate frog or eat at the Leaky Cauldron.  You can even visit Gringotts bank, which has one of my favorite rides, Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts.

The cobblestone streets, the Harry Potter-theme costumes, the music from the films and the architecture adds to the immersive experience.

For even more Harry Potter, hop aboard the Hogwarts Express and visit The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Islands of Adventure.

Dragon Challenge (Islands of Adventure)

I must admit, I miss Dueling Dragons. The intertwining coasters traveling at 60 mph, coupled with a few “near-misses” was a thrilling experience.

Re-themed to Harry Potter and renamed Dragon Challenge, the ride is still fun. Coasters no longer duel, but they are still fast, with plenty of twists of loops. Which one is better, the Chinese Fireball or the Hungarian? It’s hard to say since both are completely different rides. But, definitely ride both.