Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Mr. Movies (Robert Knapp’s) Greatest Spring Break Ever: Two Year Anniversary


                                                                       
    Two years ago, I had the greatest Spring Break ever. Me and my family spent all week if Orlando Florida and it was such an awesome experience, that I wanted to share a little of what the theme parks are like.
First there was “Islands of adventure”: from “Universal”
                                                                       
   This was a fun way to start the vacation, we were rushed for time because we were going to Universal Studios in the same day but we still got plenty out of the experience. The “Jurassic Park” area was a lot of fun (I'm the one runing from the T-rex photo shown above) and the ride was pretty cool, it was really relaxing at first watching a bunch of very realistic looking robot Dinosaurs followed by a massive droop into freezing water. The Best part by far was this one section entirely devoted to Marvel comics, if you’ve read my early Marvel post then, you can imagine the joy I was going through walking amongst all these giant statues and pictures of my favorite superheroes. There were four rides in this place, there was an “Incredible Hulk” rollercoaster and let me tell you, it was far more incredible then “The Hulk” can ever hope to be. Then there was an “X-Men” ride centered on “Storm” but it was no more than your average teacup ride, just with lightning decorations, what a disappointment, the greatest Marvel comic gets the weakest ride. Well, fortunately the “Spider-Man” ride was outstanding. It was a an indoor ride, with the passengers riding in a cart alongside Spider-Man on a mission to stop the sinister six and at the same time it was a 3D show, making this a one of a kind experience. Finally, there was a Fantastic 4 ride themed around Dr. Doom, it was your standard tower drop, nothing special. Overall, “Island of Adventure” was a lot of fun but where just getting started.         
     Then it was off to Universal Studios:
                                                                                                                               
     If you can believe it, things just got better when we got to Universal. There was a hilarious “Shrek 4D” film that is actually one of the best things to come from the series. There was a really cool “Twister” simulation (based off the film), we go into this open area that was a recreation of a set from the film and then it simulates a twister with stuff blowing everywhere, it’s raining and people just go running all over the place. The “Jaws” ride  was just okay nothing special, and for a ride set in a water location, it was really hot because we were driving by all kinds of burning buildings. But the best part of Universal and honestly one of my favorite parts of the vacation was “The Mummy” rollercoaster. If you read some of my earlier posts then you know how much I loved that film, well the ride went beyond even my biggest expectations, it was so firkin amazing that it made the “Indiana Jones” ride at Disney land look like your average drive to school.
Next we went to the first of the four Disney Worlds: Epcot
                                                                  
   I never understood why that giant gulf ball was the main attraction of this place but let’s be honest, seeing it up close in person was awesome. So what can be said about the Epcot park, well, it’s more of a vacation within a vacation. All the sections in this park are recreations of actual world locations, ranging from “China” to “Germany” to “Canada” to “Mexico” and that’s just to name a few. They do such a great job crafting all these places that you actually begin to forget that you’re in a Disney park or even America. I’m not kidding, it’s like you’re on a world tour without leaving the country. The only thing really Disney about Epcot is this section that’s completely dedicated to “Finding Nemo”. The main Finding Nemo ride was just okay but the actual section was my favorite part of the park, there are so many cool things to do and discover, best of all is this talk with “Crush”. Yes, the actual cartoon character from the film talks with the audience and he really talks with them, I wouldn’t have believed it if I didn’t see it for myself, it was just as technically awesome as it was funny. Then there was this future game house, were you can insert your digital image into a computer and then you get to play a video game with you being the character shown on the video game screen, it was a dream come true. Then there was the “Mission to Mars” ride that simulated the feeling of being ejected to a planet, I can’t even describe how great that was! The highlight was the night show, we all gathered around the lake and we were all treated to laser lights, fireworks, great music and everything you need to put you in a good mood.      
 After travelling the world without leaving America we were headed to: “Disney’s Animal Kingdome”
                                                                                 
              There really isn’t much to say about this place, it wasn’t bad at all, it was just my least favorite of the theme parks we visited. It was essentially a big zoo with a few rides thrown in, most notably the rollercoaster themed around Mount Everest. The tree in the center of the park was amazing to see in person (photo shown on top) and my favorite the four giant theme park symbols and that’s really all I have to say about Disney’s Animal Kingdome, it was just good.
 Following after those parks was “Disney’s Hollywood Studios”.
                         This was the best of the 4 Disney theme parks by far! The main Icon of this park was Mickey’s big wizard hat (photo shown above), defiantly the weakest of the theme park icons but who cares, this place was awesome. There was a fun “Star Wars” themed area with a full sized (model) Imperial Walker (photo shown above) and I couldn’t even one of the greatest treasures of my child hood up close and in full size, plus it blasts water at people. Then there was this section dedicated to the greatest animated movie ever, “Toy Story”! The Toy Story ride was a lot of fun but things were only going to get better. There was the “Twilight Zone Tower of Terror”, it was fantastic, you get a cool look at this awesome hunted hotel and it all ends with an outstanding final drop. Then there was the “Rock’n Guitar Rollercoaster”, which is easily one of the all time greatest rollercoaster’s ever! But Kick ass rides aren’t the only things this place had, it also featured three of the most kick ass shows ever! There were two amazing stunt shows, one focused on recreating scenes from “Indiana Jones” and the other one was a vehicle destruction stunt show (photos shown below). This was to cool to be real, there were car chases in this little model city, cars crashed through windows, people fell off buildings, people were set on fire, cars sailed backwards over a broken bridge, there were a lot of motorcycles, gun fire and explosions, holly crap, my life was complete after this! And we still had more awesome things on the way! The day ended with the worlds coolest night show called “Fantasmic”, there were a lot of Disney characters, a lot of colors, lots of great music, it was like every great feeling from childhood all rolled into one experience. Bottom line, if you go vacationing in “Orlando”, make sure you go to “Disney’s Hollywood Studios”, it firkin rocks!               
Finally, it all ended with the main “Disney land” park! 
                                                                                          
   Everyone knows about the timeless castile in the center of the park, not as cool as the tree of life from “Disney’s Animal Kingdome” but it was far more of a spectacle then the gulf ball at “Epcot” and defiantly better than the wizard hat at “Disney’s Hollywood Studios”. Now I grew up in San Diego California and have visited the Disney Land there on several occasions. So when I visited this Disney land, it felt like a step below the other, everything was changed around in a way that I didn’t care for (especially Toontown) and I hated the new Tiki Room featuring both “Iago” and “Zazo”. To be fare, there were some improvements with some rides, especially the “Haunted Mansion”. It may not have been the same great Disney Land I grew up with but it still had the same magical air and enchanting feel. Well that concludes my trip to Florida, the theme parks were great fun and the end result was the greatest Spring Break I’ve ever had (to date). So if you can afford it, go to Orlando Florida and have a great Spring Break just like me!

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