Life Roadtrip to Florida and Day 1 at Universal Studios: Hogsmeade! July 19, 2017

Universal Studios - day 1 at Hogsmeade!

Hello, friends!

 

I am so sorry for my long absence. I had a post all planned out before I ventured off on my vacation, but I didn’t think it was quite done yet. So I said “what the heck!” and just decided I would either write on my trip or wait until after I was home to catch you guys up.

 

While I still plan to post that one, I will wait until next week since it’s an “evergreen” topic, and just jump right in to what I am doing now.

 

A few months ago, my family invited me to go to Orlando, FL with them so we could experience Harry Potter World and everything else that Universal Studios has to offer.

 

I told them to count me in because I have a ton of vacation days left and we are already through more than half the year!

 

We left on pretty late on Friday, July 14th and drove to Louisiana, then woke up early on Saturday and drove the remainder of the trip.

 

My entire family decided that driving is NOT worth it and we will just skip it and fly on a plane next time. Orlando from where we left in Texas is a little longer than 16 hours! We were exhausted when we arrived to say the least.

 

We tried to make as few of stops as possible, but since my brother is young, we wanted him to experience a few things. We stopped in Mississippi at the Infinity Science Center. We didn’t actually take a tour because we were short on time, but exploring the few things we did and walking around outside was beautiful! They had a great campus.

 

We made it to our Condo in Kissimme Florida at around 12:45am on Sunday morning. Talk about LATE. We have been staying at the Vacation Villages here, and they have been nothing short of amazing and accommodating.

 

The pools at this resort are clean and big, so it never feels overcrowded.  They also are so quick to clean our rooms and take out our trash.

 

We ended up spending all of Sunday resting since we knew we were going to have a busy few days. I just laid out by the pool and did normal vacation things. 🙂

Universal Studios - day 1 at Hogsmeade!
Is it really a vacation without La Croix and tanning?

When Monday came around, we were so ready for Universal Studios!

 

We had a late start, but everything still went smoothly. We decided on our first park to be Islands of Adventure … AKA the best one!

 

When we walked into the park, a rush of anticipation just hit us. All of us wanted to do EVERYTHING. But, first thing’s are first and we had priorities – Harry Potter.

We trotted our way right through the Dr. Seuss area and found ourselves walking right under the arch and into Hogsmeade where Harry Potter World begins.

Universal Studios - day 1 at Hogsmeade!
Although we didn’t do anything here, I had to take a picture of the cute and bright arches leading into Dr. Seuss Landing

Immediately, my sister Taylor and I convinced our little brother Hayden to ride the Dragon Challenge roller coaster. He has never ridden a coaster before, and this was a great first-timer! He had a blast and we all wanted to go again, but decided to wait until we tried out more rides.

Universal Studios - day 1 at Hogsmeade!
My first ever butterbeer!

We went through the wand choosing at Olivander’s, bought ourselves butterbeer (frozen is the way to go, by the way) and walked all around Hogsmeade, taking it all in. It was truly magical.

Universal Studios - day 1 at Hogsmeade!
Did you even go to Harry Potter World if you didn’t get a butterbeer?

It was so fun to see everyone dressed in their Harry Potter gear, and some even took it as far as wearing actual House Robes from their chosen house. I wish I was that dedicated, but it was too hot.

 

I might be biased, but my favorite ride was definitely the Dragon Challenge, and my favorite simulation ride was the one that was inside of Hogwarts.

 

It was all truly amazing and nostalgic (I am a die-hard Harry Potter nerd).

Universal Studios - day 1 at Hogsmeade!
I drink and I know (Harry Potter) things

We did take the time to ride more rides, but I think experiencing Harry Potter was the most memorable and something I would do a hundred times over and over.

 

It eventually did start raining and after going through some indoor rides, we called it a day and went back home.

 

My clothes were dripping and my feet were definitely waterlogged by the end of it, but my heart was so full and I am so glad I was able to experience it with my family!

 

The best part about this day was that even though it was over,  I still had a whole day left after this to experience Diagon Alley and the original Universal Studios park! I can’t wait ti share that with you all next on the blog! 🙂

 

Tell me:

 

Have you experienced Universal Studios/Harry Potter World? If so, what was your favorite part?

 

Thank you for taking the time to read about my time here in Florida!

 

Xo Jordan

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