Universal drop parking prices after 6.00pm

Hey Thrill Seekers,

We know as well as you do that parking at the theme parks can be a nightmare sometimes. SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment realised that offering free parking with selected tickets would help them out and it seems Universal are doing their best to keep up now.

They have announced that if you arrive after 6.00pm you will no longer need to pay any parking charges. If you arrive before 6.00pm, you will still have to pay for your days parking i’m afraid  🙁


With Universal CityWalk growing immensely, free parking after 6.00pm will make accessing CityWalk so much easier for guests. Universal CityWalk has a large variety of entertainment and restaurants making it a great place to spend your evening!

Parking at Universal covers access for guests visiting Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure, CityWalk and soon to be Volcano Bay so this is going to make a lot of guests extremely happy!


One event that won’t be included within this free, evening parking is going to be Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights 🙁

Disney Springs has free parking so maybe this is why Universal have made these changes? Disney Springs is one of their largest competitors when it comes to evening entertainment, especially for tourists. Hopefully we will see some further changes across the board when it comes to parking!

Smiles Included…


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Oooh! Check Out Volcano Bay’s Hours

Hey Thrill Seekers,

We were delighted to report last week that Volcano Bay’s official opening date has been moved from 01/06/17 to the 25/05/17. The only negative I can think of is less time to get that beach body…

Now I don’t think I’m going out on a limb here when I suggest that the first couple of months will probably see the park reach capacity. With this in mind I took a little look at the proposed opening hours and got a very pleasant surprise…


Yup! You’re reading that correct… its going to be open to at least 8pm! Who can say “boozy lazy river”…


The late opening hour does perhaps hint at some night time shows and of course will help with footfall.

We’re expecting some more news this week regarding TapuTapu so we’ll talk soon yeah!?

Smiles included…


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Universal Confirm Volcano Bay Opening Date

Hey Thrill Seekers,

To say we’re excited about Volcano Bay is a mahoosive under statement. The new Universal water theme park was rumoured to be opening on June 1st 2017 however in true Universal style they dropped this bomb last night via their social channels.


Yup that’s right, this years major opening (sorry Disney) is actually going to open on May 25th 2017… *insert screaming fans*.

Here’s a lowdown on what we can expect;

The Volcano
At the heart of the island stands Krakatau™, the mighty Fire and Water Volcano. Towering 200 feet above the tropical landscape, Krakatau streams waterfalls during the day and fiery lava effects at night. Inside the cavernous volcano the Waturi people dare you to brave a variety of heart-pounding water slides.

Krakatau™ Aqua Coaster
Honorary Waturi can experience the power of Krakatau™ on this amazing ride. Four-person canoes slide upward through the mists and into the dark twists and turns within the volcano before emerging with a plunge through a shimmering waterfall.

Ko’okiri Body Plunge
Join in the centuries-old tradition of honoring the volcano god, Vol, by braving the incredible Ko’okiri Body Plunge. Featuring a 70-degree fall through a drop door and 125 feet of screaming, white-knuckle fun, this dizzying descent ends with a watery tribute from Vol himself.

Kala & Tai Nui Serpentine Body Slides
Join Kala and Tai Nui where sea and sky meet and take a leap of faith from high atop the volcano. Twin trap doors simultaneously drop two guests down clear, intertwining tubes before sending them joyfully splashing into the turquoise waters below.

Punga Racers
A favorite among Waturi children of all ages, Punga Racers send single riders on their manta ray mats sliding down four lanes through underwater sea caves.

Wave Village
This peaceful escape overlooks the sparkling waters of Waturi Beach at the base of the volcano.

Waturi Beach
Locals know — the surf’s always up at Waturi Beach. Swim, splash and relax right along with them in the sparkling waters and warm waves of this sparkling lagoon at the foot of mighty Krakatau™.

River Village
The scenic River Village has fun for people of all ages, including the very youngest Waturi.

Honu ika Moana
Just like the ancient Waturi people who rode the ocean waves on friendly sea turtles and whales, guests can enjoy these two twisting, turning, multi-person slides. Honu sweeps up two massive walls, while ika Moana sprays water on riders from the center of the raft.

Tot Tiki Reef + Runamukka Reef
The little ones can frolic among the splashy slides and fountains of the Tot Tiki Reef toddler play area, while Runamukka Reef delights older children with its bubbling geysers, water guns, slides and dump cups.

Kopiko Wai Winding River
Take a slow ride on the Kopiko Wai Winding River. Sprays of water surprise along the way, and beneath the lava rocks, Stargazer’s Cavern reveals the magical night sky above.

Rainforest Village
Rainforest Village stretches along the shores of an action-packed river and features the perfect mix of relaxation and exhilaration.

Ohyah + Ohno Drop Slides
Test your mettle and get into the Waturi spirit. Ascend cliff side and plummet down the twisting waters of Ohyah before dropping out four feet above the pool below. To achieve even greater bragging rights, brave the rope bridge and plunge down Ohno, a serpentine adventure that ends six feet above the pool below. Be sure to yell your battle cry on the way down.

Maku Puihi Raft Rides
Ready for the high adventure of the Maku Puihi lava tubes? This six-person rafting adventure is a favorite of Waturi families, but it’s not for the faint of heart. Choose one of two paths or try them both—just be ready for a thrilling ride. Puihi careens through a dark, winding tunnel before the stomach-flipping thrill of zero gravity hang time. Maku slides you through a deep volcanic gorge before spinning wildly around bowl-like formations.

TeAwa The Fearless River
Up for an adventure? Take a thrilling whitewater ride along TeAwa The Fearless River. Race along a roaring, watery onslaught of churning rapids and choppy waves hanging tight to your inner tube.

Taniwha Tubes
There’s a place where the puka trees grow abnormally tall. Inspired by their twisting roots, the Waturi built four twisting water slides called the Taniwha Tubes. Riders can try all four twisting tracks, but beware — mischievous tiki statues spray jets of water when you least expect it.

I can’t wait for this….

Smiles included…


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Our Top 10 viewed blog posts of 2016

Hey Thrill Seekers,

We’ve been busy little bee’s here at OAT towers this year but never forget to post a blog for you all to keep you busy too!

So I have put together our top 10 most viewed blogs of 2016!

1. What is Disney’s MyMagic Plus and how does it work?

2. 2016 & 2017 Special Offer SeaWorld Introduce FREE Parking

3. What will my Orlando Attraction Tickets look like?


4. What is Disney’s Memory Maker and how does it work?

5. How much does it cost to park at the Orlando theme parks?

6. Universal confirm opening date for Volcano Bay



7. Orlando Attraction Tickets releases iPhone App

8. Full details of the Hulk coaster relaunch

9. What can we expect from Universal’s Volcano Bay?

10. How do E-Tickets work at SeaWorld parks?

So there we have it, our blogs that you guys have been most interested in!

Smiles Included…


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New Universal Patents

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Over the weekend we have discovered that Universal City Studios – which is the sister patent-filing division of Universal Orlando Resort have some possible new patents which points toward some really cool things that could mould the future of Universals attractions.

The new patents seem to indicate a strong connection with the Nintendo and Marvel brands. Some even point towards water rides which would make sense seeing as Volcano Bay is due to open in the summer!


It looks as though Universal have been busy bees when it comes to these new patents, they have filed 5 patents since October to November, all looking at different, unique ways to allow guests to have a better experience.. A lot of them are based around interactivity and how they could maybe base rides around the Mario Kart and Iron Man brands. Now I would LOVE to see a Mario Kart ride!! There is even some speculation that the music aspect of Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit coaster may be bought to a water ride at Volcano Bay!

I have taken a look into the 5 patents and what they could involve:

Drift Racers – This patent instantly points straight at Mario Kart. This looks like it would be a two-rider car based attraction with one passenger seated in-front of the other. Each passenger will have a different experience as the front driver would have a steering wheel and pedals which will control some aspects of the ride and the rear passenger will have an array of buttons to use throughout the ride that can affect the car they’re in and also impact other cars on the track. – Imagine attempting Rainbow Road in real life 😉


Simulator ride – This one looks as though it would be an interactive experience and sort of points towards an Iron Man theme. It looks like it would require guests to get in to a ‘flying simulator’ on a moving track which will look like a suit (probably helmets, chest and arm pieces etc). The patent states examples such as flying through asteroid fields and fighting dragons that may cause sensations in the suit such as heat and vibrations from explosions and dragons. Now I know Iron Man doesn’t have a reputation for fighting off dragons but the images in the patent quite closely resemble Iron Man.


Functional mat racer – This is one for the water rides. It looks as though it could be equipped with lights, a screen and audio! How hi-tech is that!! The patent suggests that the lights could be used for various reasons such as ‘to illuminate the riders’ path or light up the water beneath them to help set the environment they are in.’ The patent states that the mats could come with display and audio elements that could “show images of other riders in the ride experiencing a thrilling section further along in the ride while a speaker may play captured audio from those riders to build anticipation,” It also suggests that you may be able to save your preferred lighting and music choices to a ‘park identification bracelet.’

Slide entry system – This patent looks as a new entry in to a drop slide – my guess is that this will be effective in Volcano Bay. It looks absolutely terrifying but also pretty thrilling! The glass enclosure will slowly fill with water before the trap door opens. The patent states “Not only is this thrilling for the rider, but the image of the rider being enclosed in a fluid-filled space may also provide excitement to the observers” Now that would be one for true thrill seekers.

Boom coaster – This points towards a ‘arm’ and it’s ability to attach to a vehicle that looks as though it is on a track system (but is actually controlled by a separate arm) If this is confusing just picture yourself on a coaster with a element of the story being that your path has been destroyed or there’s a break in the track that you need to ‘jump’. “Because the passenger may believe that the simulated ride surface controls a path of the passenger vehicle, the passenger may fear or anticipate that the passenger vehicle may crash or otherwise incur damage as a result of the elevated gap” Many people have taken it upon themselves to say this looks like it could be a Donkey Kong themed ride using the mine cart idea’s. What do you think?


Although these patents seem pretty well thought out, theme parks file patents on a regular basis and many are not acted upon straight away and some not acted upon at all. I thought it was worth having a nose into these ones though as they all seem pretty fitting due to the opening of Volcano Bay and the proposed Nintendo land.

We will definitely be keeping our eyes peeled.

Smiles Included..


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Wow! Volcano Bay Looks Awesome!!

Hey Thrill Seekers,

We heard that Universal would be dropping some more Volcano Bay news next week however it looks like they’ve jumped the gun a little bit…

BUT OMG the news is awesome, check it out…


Krakatau Aqua Coaster

Krakatau Aqua Coaster will be a first-of-its-kind aqua coaster in Florida — and it’ll be a fun adventure for the entire family. You’ll board specially-designed canoes that seat up to four. Then, you’ll be propelled downwards – and upwards – through the volcano’s interior peaks and valleys. You’ll twist, turn and plummet along dark passageways, be launched through sparkling waterfalls and so much more.

And here’s a cool fun fact for you techies out there: Krakatau Aqua Coaster will use linear induction motor technology. This technology launches the canoe uphill before it immediately sends riders into a downhill plunge. This technology is also used in some of your favorite Universal attractions – like Revenge of the Mummy – and now we’re bringing it to a water attraction.


TapuTapu Wearable

One of the main goals for Universal’s Volcano Bay was to eliminate long lines and hassles so you can focus more on having fun. And with the TapuTapu wearable, you’ll be able to do just that.

When you arrive to the park, you’ll receive a TapuTapu wearable (at no extra charge) that will allow you to do the following with a simple tap:

  • Virtual Lines

You will be able to virtually wait in line while you play in other areas of the park. The wearable will alert you when it’s time for you to ride so you can head to the attraction.

  • Tap to Play

Volcano Bay features various “tap-to-play” experiences– all designed exclusively by Universal’s award-winning creative team. With just a tap of TapuTapu, you’ll be able to trigger special effects throughout the park. You can control streams of water spurting from whales in Tot Tiki Reef, shoot water cannons at other guests snaking down Kopiko Wai Winding River and illuminate images in the volcano’s hidden caves.


I’m so excited to visit Volcano Bay, this news and this video (below) have only made me even more excited!!!

Smiles included…


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What We Can Expect From Universal’s Volcano Bay

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Yesterday we confirmed that Universal’s brand new Water Park Volcano Bay will open on the 1st June 2017 and over night Universal have sent us further information.

Lets take a closer look at what we can expect from Volcano Bay.

The guys and girls who were the brains behind the Wizarding World of Harry Potter have also had a hand in creating Volcano Bay, the poor loves had to travel Bali, the Middle East, Europe and all across the United States to take inspiration from some of the most beautiful resorts and awesome water parks our little planet has to offer.

The park will have 18 attractions spread over 28 acres of a tropical oasis. Universal have thought long and hard about making their third park as unique and modern as possible.

One of our first goals was to eliminate hassles for guests so they can focus on the fun. So we found a way to get rid of long lines. We made it so you don’t have to carry your tube. We spread amenities like dining throughout the park, so you don’t have to hike up to the front of the park for a bite to eat. And we brought the mindset of designing a world-class resort to create a water paradise.


Universal Confirm Opening Date For Volcano Bay

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Opening a new attraction isn’t cool, you know what’s cool? Opening up an entire new park now that’s cool and in 2017 that’s exactly what Universal will be doing.

volcano bay

Today in New Orleans at IPW (International Pow Wow) Universal confirmed that Volcano Bay will open on the 1st June 2017!!!

Universal also confirmed that the park will feature 18 attractions although didn’t go in to details, they did mentioned that they’ve looked in to ways of reducing queue times (we took a guess at this last year) and complete remove the need for visitors to carry water tubes.

At the moment full details haven’t been released but we’re expecting an update over night.

UPDATE: Full details were released, click here for more Volcano Bay news.

Smiles included…


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Disney Looking To Expand Typhoon Lagoon

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Could we be looking at a war of the water parks? We all know that Universal will be unveiling their much anticipated water park Volcano Bay in 2017 but could Disney be looking to combat it with an expansion of their own.

We’re hearing that Disney are looking at expanding an area just behind Typhoon Lagoon approximately 2.28 acres of land, the plans set out state a construction of a new guest area, including a water feature, sidewalks and landscaped area. We’re also hearing they’ll be a new ride…


The new attraction is said to be a family raft ride which will include an elevated flume track, whatever that means and will be located wet of Crush N’ Gusher.

So with Universal and Disney both investing in water parks it seems to be a good time to start getting that beach body… and if you can, could you grab me one too!

Smiles included…


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What We Hope Universal’s Volcano Bay May Include

Hey Thrill Seekers,

As I’m sure regular readers of the blog are aware 2017 will see the opening of a brand new water park, Volcano Bay. The Universal owned property which will replace Wet N’ Wild as Universals official water park still hasn’t been given an exact opening date, although we are expecting news in June when the industry gathers at POW WOW.

Universal have promised that the new park will feature radically-innovative attractions, peaceful moments of relaxation and an experience that we hope will change the way guests think about water theme parks.

Hmm… very interesting, although it doesn’t really tell us much. So what I did was ask around OAT hq and hit up our facebook friends to ask what their hopes for the park are.

Here’s what we came up with;


Here’s what I’m thinking… A Tube ride meets Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts! The trend in attractions at the moment seems to be for a 3D rides, take a look at Universal’s next big release Skull Island: Reign of Kong which is another 3d based ride. So could Universal be looking to create the very first 3D tube ride!?

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Multi Passenger Rides

One of the best things about Wet N’ Wild is the sheer amount of multi person rides it has in the park. Hitting a water park with my family and being able to share the experience together gave Wet n’ Wild a special place in my heart. I hope Volcano Bay offers the same.

Rumour: I’ve heard that Universal are looking to introduce a couple of never before seen raft rides!!!

Active Volcano

You know when you’re at a water park and a horn sounds, it generally means the wave pool is about to kick off. I’m hoping Universal have something similar planned for the Volcano.

With the Volcano being the focal point of the park you’d hope Universal would come up with something pretty special and a regular active volcano (not lava) would be something to see. It could have the same reaction as the dragon at Diagon Alley.

Late night opening

Rumour has it that Universal maybe looking to open Volcano Bay later than your average park and some filings seem to suggest Universal may introduce glowing sand! Imagine how great that would look!?


Universal at the moment are the kings of theming. From Potter to Skull Island: Reign of Kong Universal are knocking it out of the park and I’d imagine Volcano Bay will follow suit.

I’m hoping for mouth dropping design that also include interactive elements, taking inspiration from the interactive wands at the Wizarding Worlds it would be cool to be able to say speak to an Easter Islands head, think night of the Museum.

What would you like to see at Volcano Bay?

Smiles included…


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