Universal Studios for tweens & family. #FamilyForward PDF Print E-mail
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Wednesday, 28 August 2013 22:34

We just returned from what was an amazing vacation in Universal Studios, Orlando. It's a vacation that we dreamed about for years but didn't want to take the plunge until our children were old enough to truly enjoy. We've heard from many friends that Universal Studios is geared toward the tween/teen crowd and after spending five days there, I wanted to leave my mark on the world wide web - from venue, hotel to the theme park. I have a lot to say.

 

Let me introduce you to my clan. That's Feenie age 6, followed by Lola age 9 and Jay catching the most air at age 11.

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VENUE:

Our family was extremely honored to win a family vacation to attend the Family Forward Retreat. It's exactly what we needed - a weekend full of bonding, exploring, talking, playing, laughing and engaging with one another without any interruptions. There were so many creative ways to interact as a family that we grew stronger by the minute and by the end of the week my eleven-year-old was sticking up for his tribe. That's priceless!

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HOTEL:

We stayed at the Loews Royal Pacific Resort. After many vacations to Orlando, and even more vacays throughout Central America, the property was very tropical and quite a delight. The grounds were so plush with wildlife that my children cared more about chasing lizards, snakes and frogs while I had first-world-problems like moving palm trees that obscured my views of them.

 

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The best part about staying on site at a Universal Studio hotel is that you are close enough to take a break throughout your day. Although my husband would argue and say that the best part of staying on site is that you get a UNIVERSAL EXPRESS PASS ride access that allows you to skip the regular lines. For example: it took us five minutes to go though the Minion ride although everyone else had to wait 65 minutes. 

 

If you are staying on property - take advantage of it. There are craft hours.

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And numerous amounts of contests that rewarded winners with smoothies.

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Not to mention late-night-movies by the pool.

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THEME PARKS:

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Universal is really for the tween/teen age. The lack of strollers makes it super easy to navigate and you're able to get through the park. Most of the rides are movie simulators where the floors shakes, you twist and turn, while watching a short movie sometimes in 3D and frightened my six year old. My nine and eleven year old were perfectly fine on all the rides.

 

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Although there are a handful of rides that are okay for little kids and my six year old was never bored because my husband and I split up a couple of times to keep everyone happy.

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I was super impressed with the professionalism of each and every person at Universal that described, to my sensitive son, how long/hard/scary each ride would be. My son asked some super important questions like, "I saw this ride on youtube and I wanted to know if..." and every single person at Universal answered his question and calmed his nerves. Priceless. They went above and beyond to describe the ride better then my son expected and it truly was such a gift.

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We were able to actually enjoy quality family time at the park because we didn't wait around for hours in lines (using our fast passes via the hotel), it was much easier to navigate the park because there weren't crowds of strollers and we took advantage of staying on property by taking a long mid-day break to relax every single day (highly recommend). It was such an enjoyable vacation that the kiddos are already planning a visit back. I have to admit, the parents are too!

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Last Updated on Thursday, 29 August 2013 08:12
 

Comments  

 
# Managed Chaos 2013-08-29 07:57
Our family absolutely loved Universal...it was definitely our favorite theme park (even better than Disney or Cedar Point). I loved that it had so many rides that our whole family could participate in (without it being all roller coasters).
 
 
# JMH 2013-09-01 07:44
We are taking our kids (ages 9 and 12) on a surprise vacation to Orlando (Disney) in January. We will spend one day at Universal. What are the "must see/do" attractions if you only have one day? The main reason we are going is for the Harry Potter world...other than that, what do you recommend?
 

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Author

Pauline Karwowski.

Is a self proclaimed globe trotting, minivan driving, SAHM stiletto ho.

Happily married mother to 3 Cleveland natives: Jay the son, Lola the daughter, and Fifi the banshee.

Now in Chicago, IL.

The content on this blog is the opinion of the blogger.

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