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Universal Studios

20 Aug

 The first place we visited in Los Angeles was Universal Studios.

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It’s one of those places that you just have to visit and it’s definitely worth the trip.  We really enjoyed it.

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However you paid according to your height.

So both of my, not nearly short enough, children had to pay adult fares.

I hope that kind of thing doesn’t catch on here in Australia.

Or paid parking for amusement parks!

Oh and we also encountered the rudest admission staff I’ve ever come across.  We stood in a barely moving line for a really long time, and discovered that, while people were fading away in the blazing sun, the staff were pressure selling upgrades on everyone’s tickets.  When it was our turn we asked, literally, for 7 adult day admissions – no more and no less.  Well the admissions person went on for another 5 minutes trying to coerce us into something we clearly didn’t ask for.  And not in a friendly ‘my boss insists I’ve gotta do this’ kind of way.  In fact he ranted about us having to spend hours in lines if we didn’t upgrade to their ‘front of the line’ passes.  On and on he went, not handing over our tickets.  In the end he thrust the tickets at us and told us to enjoy standing in line all day.  Not a good start to the day…but rest assured the rest of the park was nice.  (Oh and we did formally complain.)

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High on our list of things to do at Universal Studios was their Studio Lot Tour.  It’s a must do.

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For an hour you ride around in a little bus

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and tour through all of the movie sets

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and experience things like Jaws (the shark), a flash flood, an earthquake and a near miss with an oil tanker.  You know, the standard everyday stuff.

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Actually all of the shows at Universal Studios are impressive and we made sure we saw them all.

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Seeing how the animals are trained to work in the movies was really interesting.  These creatures are better trained than my children!

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The kids really enjoyed the special effects show

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that demonstrated a selection of their movie ‘tricks’.

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We almost didn’t see the Waterworld show.  They had technical difficulties and had to cancel the first showing we tried to attend.

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Thankfully they fixed whatever their drama was and put on a great show…it was definitely better than the actual movie.  🙂

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Universal Studios is separated into two different ‘lots’ by elevation.

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To get from the top to the bottom (and vice versa) you have to take this impressive series of escalators (four if I remember properly).

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They are so steep that I reckon if you had an issue with heights you’d have an issue with these.

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The views from the escalators were breathtaking.

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My hubby (yes, I suppose I’ll claim him) thought they were one of the best rides of the day.

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Brayden loved the water fans located throughout the park.  They were a refreshing treat when you were confined in a long line in the heat.

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Something Brayden didn’t like was the House of Horrors.  🙂

He wanted to back out at the very last minute but all of the adults were keen to walk through, especially after standing in line for so long (I know, bad parents).  Our compromise was that he could walk through behind me, holding on and keeping his eyes closed.  Oh and he did.  He was closer than my shadow, but that’s okay because I was just as close to my hubby clutching the back of his shirt.  I hope someone in our long congo line had their eyes open!   🙂

It’s not so much what you see inside that is scary, it’s the actors that jump out at you along the way.  It’s very well done.  Ethan liked it.

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Another experience Brayden tried to back out of, with a different technique this time (more and more desperate to visit the bathroom the closer we got to the front of the queue), was the new Transformers ride.  We checked with the staff and were assured it was appropriate for children and definitely not a roller coaster.  Brayden actually made us confirm this with each staff member we passed.

Luckily, after an 80 minute wait in the queue, we didn’t give in and Brayden had to ride (it was also the quickest way out at that point).  This ride was the very best ride any of us have EVER experienced.  Even Brayden agreed that it was excellent.  Oh and it was hours before he actually did need to go to the toilet!

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Actually pretty much everything at Universal Studios was excellent…well aside from that fellow at the front gate.

Actually, I preferred Universal Studios over Disneyland.

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