Orlando this Winter! – Universal Studios

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Orlando was Aravind’s official trip. Boston winter forced me to join him since weather change was something I was looking forward to.

Right from the time we landed in Orlando from Boston , jackets were a burden to carry around. Weather in Orlando for the week was between 70F to 80F. What a blessing! . Mornings until 11 am and evenings after 6 pm are the most pleasant times of the day. Sun at 80F or above feels a little harsh for those from colder places .

Since this was his business trip , I could go around with him only on weekends. Orlando’s public transport is not that great.So rental car was the only option.

Orlando is a land of theme parks and resorts. So the first thing to do is figure out which theme parks  you are interested in. We were not so keen on Disney land. Hence chose Universal studios. Universal again has 2 theme parks. Universal studio and island of adventure.

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It is not a good idea to cover both the theme parks the same day. Too much for a day and you might miss out on certain attractions. One theme park per day itself is too much for the legs.

Universal studios as we all might know, is a studio setup.More like a city with houses,shops,restaurants and a lake to add to the beauty of the place. Because this place is open for public they have activities to engage people of all age groups.

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The best part of universal studios are the simulated rides. Most of these places have 4D simulations . That is exciting. We didn’t miss any. The experience is like us being part of the movie scene that is playing .

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My favorite was the transformers.You are given 3D glasses. You are made to sit an automated vehicle and action begins.Watching 3D movies itself is so engaging. Imagine feeling part of it. It is a fantastic experience.

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One other place you wouldn’t want to miss is the disaster studios.They pick actors from the audience, shoot a short clip in 10 to 15 mins. This was the place where we were part of disaster scene. The scene that was directed, played and enacted was named ‘muth earth’ pronounced as Mother Earth. Here is how it goes.

1. Director picks actors from audience .
2. Move on to live screenplay stage. Based on directors instructions , actors perform and the expressions are captured. At this stage the scenes are never related.You would not know what is happening. Just follow instructions.
3. Next,sound effects.
4. Final action – audience is made to sit in a train ( more like subway train).

Passengers are traveling like normal people on an everyday basis.Suddenly there is a lightning ,thunder and fire. People look scared . In a second another train comes crashing and stops just before our train . Water gushes from somewhere(flooding).  Then the Ceiling breaks down and one can see city lights and buildings collapsing . All expressions are captured. This was Mother Nature .A massive earthquake scenario. Finally all the shots captured are played together and presented to us as a short movie. Amazing work put together.Water gushing, train crashing, ceiling breakdown, fire. All Of it is simulated.

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There are many other simulated rides at the studio, you don’t want to miss.
Shrek 4D,Transformers,MIB,Mummy returns,Disaster studios,The Simpson Ride and many more.

Wait times were not too long. Mostly 10 to 15 mins in each place. They have eateries for lunch and snacks.

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At 5 pm in the evening there is a parade of all the animated characters in the studio.  They look cute.Don’t miss.

One day is good enough for the universal studio. Island of adventure is another day on its own. I would go there next time.

I am not done with Orlando yet !.

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