One Upcoming Night In Orlando - Advice

Sunday, April 9, 2006 7:22 PM
Greetings everyone!

I mentioned a few months ago that I will be heading to Orlando with the family for 3 days during Spring Break. We leave on Suanday, April 16. (I already expect large crowds just about everywhere).

I will be taking one night - from 5 PM till the night ends to seperate myself from the family and do the "Enthusiast thing."

I am not staying at Universal - (Actually, The Nickelodeon Hotel) and they won't have their fast lane or fast pass or whatever they have up and running - except for thier resort guests during this time. (I also should mention that I'm renting a car)

I have never been to Islands of Adventure or Universal before and I know that Wet and Wild closes at 7, so it won't make too much sense to go there. (Sea World we are doing as a family - though I expect at least one lap on Kraken) - So...what is the most efficient way to spend my limited time alone?

Think of it like this...if I were coming to my local area, I would tell me to go to GreatAdv, invest in a Gold bot, start at Nitro and enjoy the night.

Also - And this is WAY off topic - but are there any good Chinese Buffets in the area? (I can personally affect the national demand of crab legs, shrimp and lobster sauce and egg-drop soup.)

I promise trip reports for all when I get home.

Thanks (as always) for your help and replies.


Sunday, April 9, 2006 9:07 PM
If I remember correctly, the Universal parks are open later during the evening than the Disney parks (or maybe they are the same, I can't remember). If you are looking to get the most done in a short amount of time, I would recomend going to one of the Disney parks, taking full advantage of the Fastpass system, and riding as many rides as possible in the time alloted to you. On all of my visits, the Universal parks have had a tendancy to have long lines for the "star" attractions, namely Spiderman and Men in Black.
Sunday, April 9, 2006 9:29 PM
I was just there about a week and a half ago. Kraken is amazing, take as many rides at night on it as possible, but be sure to hit Journey to Atlantis as well.

As far as the enthusiast thing, since you have limited time, I would have to say your best bet would have to be Universal Islands of Adventure. Start with the Incredible Hulk and work your way through the park clockwise. The wait will be hefty for the Incredible Hulk, but right after that you should be able to get on Spiderman no problem as long as you go in the "Single Riders" line. From there you can go on the Jurassic Park River Adventure in under 1/2 hour and then over to Dueling Dragons. If I had to chose between Fire and Ice, I would always go Fire! If you have time Dr. Doom is pretty awesome at night as well as riding the Hulk again.

The problem with doing Disney at night is that by 5:00 a lot of the FastPass attractions have sold out and unless there is a parade or fireworks show going on, the lines will be horrible. Also, all their "Thrill" attractions are so spread out between parks, it would be too hard to choose just one park to go to. However, if you decide Disney is for you, be sure to visit Animal Kingodm's new ride: Expedition Everest, it is absolutely unbelieveable. Enjoy your trip! *** Edited 4/10/2006 1:30:47 AM UTC by WildStangAlex***

Sunday, April 9, 2006 9:54 PM
If you choose Universal, you should be able to fit in most of the attractions by taking advantage of the Single Riders line.

In late-December 2005, my group started at the back of the park with MIB and Back to the Future. From there, we hit Jaws and Earthquake, ending the night with the Mummy and Twister. We also squeezed in Fear Factor Live while at the back of the park. The time spent was just over 3 hours, without being rushed.

As for Chinese buffets, we tried the one next to Ripley's Believe it or Not on International Drive. My family definitely went for the crab legs (I'm not a fan). *** Edited 4/10/2006 1:57:14 AM UTC by chiatrain***

Sunday, April 9, 2006 10:23 PM
I had no idea that Universal / Islands of Adventure had a single's rider line.

I remember last summer at Kennywood that actually was a liability, and I had no shot at a front or rear seat on the Thunderbolt.

I'll take any advantage I can get - and from what I'm expecting in tems of crowds, I'm gonna need it.



Chiatrain - Uh... Please pass the drawn butter!

Sunday, April 9, 2006 10:44 PM
As far as seating, it doesn't matter at any parks in Orlando from what I observed. My party of 6 went in Single Rider's line for Everest and one of my friends and myself ended up next to each other Last row!!!
Sunday, April 9, 2006 11:50 PM
Its a tough choice, if youre going to go to a Universal Park they are both open until 10 so its definatly IOA over Universal because:

Coaster frong: Dueling Dragons + Hulk>Mummy
Spiderman>Any dark ride at Universal
Plus IOA has some great water rides

If you decide to do a Disney park, dont choose one because of the roller coasters choose one because of the night shows and be aware the parks close at different times (MK-midnight, Epcot-9, AK-8, MGM-10) because MK has two night shows (Spectro Magic and Wishes) and people who went there for Easter are going to be pooped by the evening and leave the park and its open the latest I would choose it. If you go here, do the high capacity dark rides/shows (Haunted Mansion, Small World, Pirates, 3D show in Fantasyland) first, then do the Frontierland Mountains which should bring you up to the first Spectro, which rolls through Frontierland and the crowds are usually light in this section (as opposed to Main Street,) by now (10ish) catch the fireworks show from the Hub (courtyard in front of the castle) and then head to Fantasyland the kiddies should be going home so you can do the low capacity Fantasyland dark rides with a much smaller wait, and then finish up in Tomorrowland with Buzz and Space Mountain.

If I were you I would pick 7 hours at a park vs 5, but I also am a huge Disney fan. *** Edited 4/10/2006 4:22:22 AM UTC by Touchdown***

Monday, April 10, 2006 11:26 AM
MK and AK - best with family.
IOA, D-MGM, Epcot and USO - potential solo locations.

Pro - most thrills, including water rides. Great single-rider queues.
Con - no people-eating theatre attractions. No Disney crowd-control.

Pro - Tower of Terror, Rock 'n' Roller Coaster, Star Tours (can be rough). Awesome night show: Fantasmic. Stunt shows, Backlot Tour and Muppet-Vision 3-D also good. Great capacity for crowds.
Con - Only 1 coaster. Getting seats for Fantasmic may be challenging, unless you reserved a seat (by reserving a meal at a full-service restaurant inside the park).

Pro - Soarin', Mission to Mars and Test Track. Illuminations is a great evening show (not as good as Fantasmic). Single-rider line for Test Track (possibly others). Huge park disperses crowds.
Con - no coaster, although Test Track is similar.

Pro - Thrills: Revenge of the Mummy, Men-in-Black Alien Attack and T2. Other good rides: Jaws (cheesy - love it or hate it), Shrek 4-D, and E.T.
Con - Expect lines for Revenge of the Mummy, Men-in-Black, and E.T.

And if you're like me, you will want great food, often too expensive or unusual for family dining. Mythos (in IOA) and Brown Derby (in Disney-MGM Studios) are top notch (reservations recommended). Epcot has more restaurants than attractions. Nothing inspired me at USO. *** Edited 4/10/2006 3:27:31 PM UTC by greatwhitenorth***


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