Happy New Year everyone. We hope the holidays have been sensational and you’re ready for what 2014 brings. One of my goals this year is to ensure we’re back up to one kids’ adventure blog a week. It’s not always easy getting the time to do it, but I’m going to try.
Anyway, we finally took the boys to Universal Studios and of course, they loved it. In fact, we did too. It’s something we’ve avoided since it opened, mainly because we didn’t want to deal with heart ache when the boys were rejected from rides for not being tall enough. They’re both fine now, although I didn’t realize the rides were designed in such a discrete way, so they probably wouldn’t have noticed being shuffled past anyway. Here’s a link to height requirements.
We combined this activity with our staycation at the Rasa Sentosa, which meant we were able to go a couple of time over a three day period, and I have to say, I was impressed. I’ve never been to a Universal Studio anywhere else in the world, so have nothing to compare it to, but having it right on our doorstep will see us going back many times.
As such, the first thing we did was buy an annual pass and we paid the additional Express free. I’m so glad we did, because it makes such a huge difference, and we only need to go two-three times to get the value back. Seriously, anyone with active kids knows that lines can kill any experience, and some of the lines were painfully long, so it would’ve spoilt the experience not just for the boys, but for me too. I am definitely not a line lover. Therefore, I encourage you to pay the extra and your experience will be a million times better. Going straight to the front of the line every time was awesome, and if the boys really loved a ride, we could head to the front of the line again, and again and again. So that’s tip number one.
Another thing I was impressed with was the diversity of eating options available. We tended to eat at decent places before going inside, but next time, I’d probably look to get meals when onsite. All sorts of things are available, including a curry house associated with Ancient Egypt. While perhaps not the best selection before a roller coaster ride, it’s good to know you can get a decent feed if you need one. Of course, there is plenty of junk food too – hey it’s an American theme park, it’s got to have junk food!
We went on a ton of rides, with Steve happily volunteering to do the roller coasters– which Lex was keen on doing. Jax was happy with a more sedate pace, and that was fine by me. Actually it was really cool watching the boys experience the rides for the first time. They were very stoic – often after the fact – regularly holding on for dear life when on board. No question I’ve bred two little men.
Steve and I had a favorite ride – The Transformer. It’s brilliant and while the boys hated it at the time, they were ten men afterwards.
I braved the Canopy Flyer, and while not so challenging, the Dino-Soarin ride as well – heights ain’t my thing. The other roller coasters I left to Steve and Lex. The big roller coaster wasn’t working though, and I’m not sure what’s going on with that, but the Jurassic Park Rapid Adventure is a lot of fun, although the boys absolutely hated being wet afterwards. Oh and The Waterworld Show is definitely worth a watch too. Surprisingly good.
We did a lot while we were there, but there were many things we didn’t do, so it’s good to know we have more options to explore next time we visit.
The one thing I will say, after the price of the ticket, is it’s not a cheap day out. Every ride has a gift shop on exit, the food and drinks aren’t cheap, and it’s almost impossible to escape without putting your hands in your pockets for extra. I think most people appreciate that this is what these parks are about, but can imagine some people struggle with this. Just wanted to let you know.
Also, if you can manage it, try and be there for the Hollywood Dreams Parade – it’s great, and there is a fireworks show on some Saturdays and public holidays as well. I’m sure we’ll go see this at some point.
As always in Singapore, take hats and sunblock if going during the heat of the day, as well as lots of water. It’s definitely hot work, but the Park has been designed to be well-shaded, and there are lots of options to escape the heat. The one thing I would say is try to avoid it during the Singapore school holiday period. I expect it to be murder at this time, although an Express pass will certainly help.
So there you go, our experience at Universal Studios. It definitely won’t be our last and it’s great having it as an option in Singapore today. Ten years ago, when I arrived in Singapore, Sentosa was a very different place. It’s got so much to offer a family these days.
What’s your favorite ride? Any highlights? Any bad experiences?