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Old 29 Mar 18, 09:31 PM  
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LostPrincess
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Garth and Louise's Graduation Celebration June 2017 - Day 11 - Islands of Adventure and Universal

Welcome to my trip report! The index is here, and day 10 is here.

Friday 23rd June Ė Day 11

I woke up at 5am this morning but managed to doze back off before waking properly to the alarm at 6am. We got ready super quickly this morning as we were heading back to universal for the last time. We wanted to use the 14 day Disney tickets on our check in and check out day so we needed a day in the middle not using them. Today was that day! We also had an early entry voucher we hadnít used from last week so we could get in from 8am. We left the room at 6.35am and headed straight to Sassagoula Floatworks.


Sorry for the blurry pic but it was empty! We ordered 6 beignets and got a chocolate sauce for dipping. This would have come to $7.48 but we used a snack credit. Mia served us again! Garth got some coffee in his refillable mug but I didnít bring mine down today. We sat down on the high tables to eat.


I miss beignets so much! After weíd eaten we went to the front of the lobby and ordered an uber. We waited a few minutes and Wilson arrived just before 7am. Garth still had coffee in his mug and weíd read horror stories about uber drivers charging customers for spillages so he hid it in a Disney carrier bag and just didnít drink from it for the journey. Wilson was quiet and we arrived at 7.16am, the journey costing us $13.54. It was very quiet at security. We set the security scanners off but it was just our celebrating badges so we took them off, went through again and all was fine. Garth retrieved his coffee from the carrier bag and it had leaked in there so I turned it inside out to shake it just as a gust of wind blew it all into me! 100% Garthís fault We headed onto an empty CityWalk.

We were coming back here for lunch later!


We took several pics to get the ĎUniversalí facing the right way!



Would have been a fab picture if he wasn't blinking!

We got to the opening gates at half past and we waited patiently until they let us in at ten to 8. We hadnít got the Minions ride done last week so that was our first priority. We were actually the very first people in!

She let us through the express line as there was nobody else there. It was on our bucket list to be the very first people on a ride at park opening and weíd done it! And not for the first time this trip as you will soon see I was very proud of us for this achievement

Being a ride like Minions we had to wait for the room to fill up anyway. It didnít take too long though and we were on and off in 10 minutes! It was fun but I wish Garth could have gone on the Jimmy Neutron ride when it was still here. Although we both like the Despicable Me films I think he would have enjoyed the old ride more. The park was still lovely and quiet.


We used the loos by Richters and they smelled lovely this early! We were aiming for Gringotts so we went into Diagon Alley.


Ooops hi Garth. We got to the queue at 8.27.

So creepy but so clever! While we were waiting Garth got up touring plans to see how we could get the most out of our day here. Heíd been sceptical about Touring Plans when I paid for the subscription thinking itíd make our days too regimented but he was really getting into it now! We had a short wait and when we got to the front we got put in row 4. The back row was empty so we asked if we could go to the back. It was sooo much fun at the back the drop at the start feels so much more intense. I looooove Gringotts. We Ďescapedí by 9. The queue was still only 10 minutes on our way out! It takes longer to get through it all though so we moved on. Next up it was ice cream time- nope 9am is not too early for ice cream when youíre on holiday!



They have some unusual flavours here. I guess Garth went to the loo first as I took some pictures so I presume I was waiting for him.

We both got butterbeer ice cream- I got mine in a cup and Garth got a waffle cone. It came to $12.76.

Last week our butterbeer drinks came to $15. These ice creams were yummier, more filling and cheaper than the drinks! I always have to get ice cream in a cup because I canít eat it quick enough and it melts everywhere in a cone I just feel less rushed this way. We relaxed in Diagon Alley eating our breakfast pudding We went towards Kingís Cross to get the Hoggie.

Heís off to the Ministry!

As we scanned our tickets the man called Garth Captain America because of his tshirt, and then asked me if he knew I was coming in behind Cap. Garth will definitely take that as a compliment! Although seeing the pics for Infinity War, there is no way Garth could pull it off with his slight inability to produce facial hair We waited 2 minutes before getting on the train.

And had arrived at Hogsmeade by 9.23.

We went straight to Forbidden Journey to see a 15 minute wait, fab.



I just love Hogwarts! Iím currently reading all the HP books again for an essay on my masters. Iím looking into house-elves and how theyíre allegorical for the people oppressed by the chattel slave system in 18th/19th century America. Itís made me completely fall in love with the books all over again and because Iíve read all the books in just a few weeks I feel intensely part of the Harry Potter world all the time While we were riding we stopped just at the part with the dragon. Iíve never been stopped on this ride before so it was a bit odd. Then as we got to the moving walkway at the end we saw staff members with bags and cleaning spray so it looked like someone had thrown up! Lovely! Iíd be devastated if that happened to me. We went straight to Dragon Challenge afterwards. Iím really glad we took the time to do this again now itís closed! We went for the red side and we walked on. I felt woozy coming off again and I feel like maybe I was getting too old for this ride anyway We had a quick pit stop to drink, pee and suncream and then headed towards Jurassic park. We walked on and this time we got to sit together hurrah. Last time we got split up The lady sat next to me was so nervous and funny and she made the strangest noises at every drop Sometimes the people youíre sat next to just make a ride hilarious. After Jurassic Park we walked round to Spiderman via Toon Lagoon. Looks like Garth had some fun on the way!


We were in the queue for Spiderman at 10.50.

And we were off at 11.20. I got Garth to do a Spiderman pose so I could have the time stamp on the photo!

We walked through Port of Entry to Seuss Landing. I donít know if I mentioned it on my earlier days but whenever we used water fountains and there were 2 together weíd wind each other up. When both are going the water pressure is low, but then when one comes off the water pressure goes back up and hits the other one in the face. We probably spent 10% of this holiday at water fountains getting each other in the face with the varying water pressure, and I have in my notes here that we ďplayed the water fountain gameĒ It's little memories that make me smile! Anyway we went on Cat in the Hat next.

The popcorn smelled soooooo good on this ride. Next up was the High in the Sky Trolley train. It says 25 minutes but Iíd guess that Touring Plans suggested otherwise as I donít think weíd have waited this long.

I'd love to work on this ride. I was taking these picture from the ride 10 minutes later.


What a nice view!

We were getting peckish (despite our breakfast pudding!) so we headed out of Islands via the Christmas shop. Weíre such big Christmas fans and have planned our next Orlando trip for November timeÖ whatever year it may be! That depends on 1) If Iím able to get a job after uni, 2) If Garth gets funding for his PhD, 3) If weíre able to get a mortgage anytime soon, or 4) If we win the lottery and nothing else matters I could spend forever in shops like this.


Counting down the days!


We have a red and white theme for our tree so we got a Cat in the Hat decoration. He was $16.99 and they wrapped him up nicely for us so heíd be nice and safe. My notes for some reason stop at this point so unfortunately Iím going off memory and pictures. Iím sure theyíre somewhere and I just canít find them, typical of me! But weíll see how I go. We made it to Bubba Gumps by half 12 and after flashing our Landry card we were seated instantly.

The receipt says Misty was our server. The manager came over again like at Yak and Yeti to introduce herself! We felt very important having the Landry card. Garth fancied a drink so we looked at the cocktails. Garth ordered a watermelon coronarita and I ordered a starboard sunrise. Weíd bought our passports along for ID. For food I chose Mamaís southern fried chicken (I donít like shrimp!) and Garth ordered a ribs combo with shrimp. Our drinks came first.

Garthís was in a souvenir cup- he loves souvenir cups. Our suitcase space doesnít though! They were both really tasty. We donít drink much at all so it was a nice treat. While we were waiting for our food we saw this shrimp guy out the window.

I wouldnít want to be approached by him! Our food arrived at 1.10.


Mine was soooo good. We went back to Bubba Gumps in London for my birthday and we both had the chicken! The batter was just scrummy and the mash and gravyÖ mmm. I could never write a food report. I never know what to say other than it was SO good! Pretty sure I ate everything on my plate which didnít happen often on this trip! Garth really loved his too, but not as much as my chicken. The glaze on his ribs was really tasty though and he always loves getting fries with his dinner. After we'd eaten Misty came over with the quiz and I'm pretty sure we got all the questions right... with a little bit of help from Misty Our check came to $72.27 and we left a $14 tip in cash. Feeling stuffed we rolled back onto CityWalk and back towards the parks.

We were going back to universal first. There was a good atmosphere with these guys playing their music.

With no notes and a big gap in my pictures itís hard to remember what we did! Judging from the time stamps and locations of the photos Iíd guess we did Transformers.

I then having nothing in until 5.30! Bad trip report skills I can deduce that by half 5 we were walking away from Gringotts and out of Diagon Alley. I can only assume those missing hours were spent mopping things up in Universal like Simpsons and ET, finishing off with a trip on Gringotts. Now I think of it actually, we definitely had a single rider go on Gringotts and waited something like 10 minutes to go on it. Anyway, back to half past five, we were saying goodbye to Diagon Alley.

And then saying goodbye to Universal Studios.



I feel like I have to take photos of everything when Iím leaving for the last time in who knows how long!

Even the floor apparently! Iíll let Garth take the responsibility for that one We still had things to finish off in Islands so we walked over.



We didn't end up eating here this trip. Maybe next time. We hadnít done Poseidonís Fury this trip so as part of our desire to tick everything off the map we walked on into the show.


This always hurts my feet because itís just standing around on already tired and achey feet. Itís a cool experience but a bit cheesey and I donít know how long itíll be around for. It is a good way to cool off in the aircon though. Forbidden Journey was 35 minutes which was worth the wait for our final chance of the trip.

Will I ever have enough photos of Hogwarts? We had a sick-free trip this time and were heading sadly back into Hogsmeade by 7.25pm. Again we took loads of pictures as we sadly said goodbye.


We wanted to get some sweet treats from Snookers and Snookers in Seuss Landing on our way out. I have no pics of the treat cabinet but Garth chose a red velvet whoopee pie and I chose a gourmet smore thing. It came to $8.42 all together. We put them in our bags to take home with us. With it slowly approaching 8pm it was time to head home. We had a big day planned tomorrow! We had originally planned to go to Disney Springs tonight but as it turned out we wanted to stay as late here as we could. We solemnly walked out the park.

Iím getting really emotional writing this. We love Universal and Islands so so much. Itís special to us being the first place we went on our first holiday alone together. We could spend two weeks here alone! I know Disney has the magic but Universal really has something special too.

Still smiling though! On the walk out this guy was doing some extreme pogo jumping and gathered quite a crowd.

We didnít stop to watch though. We got to the taxi collection point and ordered our uber. Our spirits were heightened by the fact we still had a good amount of holiday left and we had an amazing day at Magic Kingdom planned tomorrow. Vinicio (his name sounds like a Harry Potter spell ) was with us at 7.57pm and we got home at 8.21pm, costing us $13.79. On the way we tried to get a picture of our Rosen Inn building on the way past!

We got to the room 5 minutes after being dropped off. The blessing of having a tiny resort! Out the car and in bed within 5 minutes I took this picture on the way in, probably for the time stamp.

I picked up my refillable mug and Garth cleaned his out from earlier. We went down to fill them up, Iím guessing we had hot chocolate this time of evening (8.30pm and hot chocolate is our beverage of choice- we arenít typical 21 year olds!). When we got back to the room it was time for teaÖ

Last nightís left overs It was every bit as yummy the day after! And then of course it was pudding time.

Our treats from Snookers. I should have got 2 really, Garthís was so much bigger than mine! His had a gorgeous texture to it. Mine was weird. I think I prefer mine and Garthís version of smores. We use chocolate digestives and marshmallows- not too sure if I liked the graham cracker in this one! By 9.30pm it was time for baths and bed and we conked out ready for the wonders that tomorrow would bringÖ

Tomorrow we do the Keys to the Kingdom tour and spend the day at Magic Kingdom

Steps today: 24307

Edited at 05:54 PM.
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Old 29 Mar 18, 10:09 PM  
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A great last day at Universal, sounds like you got everything done that you wanted to. Looking forward to reading the next day, sounds like it's a good one!

(Also I have family near the New Forest, it's a gorgeous area to get married in!)
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Old 30 Mar 18, 08:08 AM  
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What a great day at both ioa and uni. The meal at bubba gumps looks tasty. We have 2 of their souvenir glasses in the cupboard...must remember to get them out again!
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Old 30 Mar 18, 11:02 AM  
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Another great day
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Old 30 Mar 18, 05:53 PM  
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Another lovely day. I miss Beignets too
I prefer Jimmy Neutron to Minions but my favourite was when it was Hanna Barbera!
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Old 30 Mar 18, 11:12 PM  
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LostPrincess
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Originally Posted by MrsSilverStar View Post
A great last day at Universal, sounds like you got everything done that you wanted to. Looking forward to reading the next day, sounds like it's a good one!

(Also I have family near the New Forest, it's a gorgeous area to get married in!)
Yes it was a brilliant but sad day saying goodbye to universal! Knowing we had Keys to the Kingdom the following day definitely made it easier.

It's so beautiful isn't it! We live an hour away further along the south coast and I'm not sure all the family are happy about the 1 hour car journey but hopefully they'll see that it's worth it when we're having our ceremony in the gardens with the forest behind us (touch wood no rain! )

Originally Posted by Goldia View Post
What a great day at both ioa and uni. The meal at bubba gumps looks tasty. We have 2 of their souvenir glasses in the cupboard...must remember to get them out again!
Don't we all have cupboards full of souvenir glasses They are a nice little reminder of holiday fun though

Originally Posted by yellowrose78 View Post
Another great day
Thank you for reading!

Originally Posted by Unexpectedpenny View Post
Another lovely day. I miss Beignets too
I prefer Jimmy Neutron to Minions but my favourite was when it was Hanna Barbera!
Nothing can fill the beignet shaped hole can it

Do you know, I never even knew it was something else before Jimmy Neutron! I didn't go to universal until 2010. I've just had a little look on Wikipedia though and it looks great. Makes me wonder what the ride will be in another 10 years time!

Thanks to everyone for reading and commenting xxx
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Old 30 Mar 18, 11:37 PM  
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Excited to read about your experience on KTTK!
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Old 31 Mar 18, 01:26 AM  
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Just caught up on your trip report. Looks like you had the most amazing time!

Looking forward to reading about your Keys to the Kingdom tour, itís something Iíve wanted to do for a while.
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Old 5 Apr 18, 09:12 AM  
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Originally Posted by collybird View Post
Excited to read about your experience on KTTK!
Thank you! Thanks as always for taking time to comment

Originally Posted by kat90 View Post
Just caught up on your trip report. Looks like you had the most amazing time!

Looking forward to reading about your Keys to the Kingdom tour, itís something Iíve wanted to do for a while.
Thank you, it was amazing

I recommend KTTK to anyone with a love for Disney history, I hope you enjoy reading about it!
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Old 13 May 18, 07:27 PM  
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Your Beignets photos keep making me feel hungry

Nice early morning park shots today. Never too early for ice-cream on holiday; another cup person here, I always end up a sticky mess with a cone
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