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Wizarding World of Harry Potter

A kids guide to Universal Studios

Hollywood, USA

What kid doesn't love theme parks? Especially if they’re a teen or tween. But they’re discerning: like an adult sipping fine wine. Here, our 11-year-old offers his honest assessment of the revamped Universal Studios Hollywood.

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter
There are many things to do here but, personally, I enjoyed the shops. As everything in Universal Studios, it is expensive but worth the money. (Hey, it's Mum and Dad's money, so who cares, right?) I went inside a wand shop (that was as packed as all hell) and bought a Voldemort wand (come on, he is the coolest character!). Then, I discovered I could cast spells at certain locations. This only works for the interactive wands, which cost eight bucks extra. You cast the spells in front of a hidden camera. It only works if you draw the exact same symbol it tells you to. This is really a lot of fun!

Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey
Harry Potter and his friends take you on a 3-D game of Quidditch, when you get attacked by a lot of creatures. Most parts are pretty fast, but don’t worry. My Mum handled it well, so you will! The only scary bits are the ones with the Dementors and the dragon. Unless you have a fear of heights or enclosed spaces, you will be fine. I consider the age limit around 7+. I am a Harry Potter fan, so I give it a 7/10.

Flight of the Hippogriff
First, you have to meet an eagle (the one from “Prisoner of Azkaban”) then go on a roller coaster. It is very fast, but no big sudden drops. The faster it goes the more fun it is, so put your hands in the air! Not scary at all, so you don’t need to worry about that. But if you don’t like speed then do NOT go on this ride. I am warning you. The age limit is around 5+. Pretty sweet ride: I give it 8/10.

Springfield
I think Springfield is the best area in the whole of the park. Me and my sister love watching The Simpsons, and it was cool to explore all the places. Go to the Kwik-E-Mart for souvenirs like t-Shirts and Duff energy drink. Still thirsty? Try Moe’s Tavern for some liquor (alcohol sounds so bad coming from a child like me). If you're hungry, Cletus’s chicken shack will fill you up, or you can go to Krusty Burger and Bumblebee Man’s Taco Truck. Also, try your luck in some of the carnival games. I actually won a Simpsons Bowling ball!

The Simpsons Ride
I love this ride so much because it reminds me of all the scenes in the TV show. It's moderately fast as you go along being chased by Sideshow Bob. It’s definitely not TOO fast because you’re inside a 3-D dome. It’s not scary at all. Well, I guess it might be scary for younger kids, being chased by an evil murderer trying to kill you. Get there early, as the queue is really long. I reckon the age to go on it should be 4+ because of some of the scary scenes. This is one of my all-time favourite rides: I give it a 10/10.

Revenge of the Mummy
I was disappointed by this ride because it was really fake. At first, they try to scare the crap out of you, but it doesn’t work. Then, you go on a crazy fast roller-coaster until it stops. You’re meant to be an explorer going through an ancient temple, but then the mummies come to life! I reckon the age limit should be 8+. I was really disappointed by this ride: I give it 5/10.

Tip
Arrive early. Get the fast pass. Never trust the wait time. Do most of the rides at lunch. Have a great, fun time.

Transformers: The Ride 3-D
This ride was amazing with all the effects they put into it! You're supposed to be a solider fighting against the evil Decepticons. It's pretty fast, so hold on! It's a bit like a roller coaster with fire, water, and any other element they could find. The age limit should be 7+ because it's awesome. I give it 9/10.

Jurassic Park
I really liked this one, but they could be a bit more dramatic at the beginning. It is really, really, really slow until you get to the massive drop. In fact, you get dropped from such a big height that it is insane. It's pretty scary how the place has been wrecked. Warning: You will get wet. I reckon you should be aged 8+. I really licked this ride, so I give it 8/10.

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