8 BEST Rides at Universal Orlando Resort the You MUST Do (2021)

Are you looking for the BEST rides and attractions that you MUST experience at Universal Orlando Resort?

There’s nothing like a trip to Universal Orlando Resort (UOR). The sprawling theme park complex has two thrilling theme parks, almost a dozen hotels, a shopping and entertainment district, and a beautiful water park.

The best thing is, most of this is all within walking distance or a short bus ride away from each other!

After you’ve checked in to your hotel at Universal Orlando Resort it will be time to hit the two theme parks: Universal Studios Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure.

Both of the parks have must-do attractions, and I’ve narrowed down the list to eight rides that you cannot miss.

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Best Universal Studios Florida Rides

Let’s start with the first park, Universal Studios Florida. This theme park has many classic UOR attractions, many of which made our must-do list. It honestly just wouldn’t be a trip to Universal without seeing a mummy or riding a bike to an alien planet.

Transformers the Ride Universal Studios Entrance with Optimus Prime. One of the Best rides at Universal Studios.

1. Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit

Coasters are one of the biggest draws to Universal Studios Florida, and right when guests walk into the park they will spot Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit.

This massive rollercoaster lets each rider pick a song to listen to from a curated list of music while they flip upside down over the streets of the park.

Universal Studios Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit Roller Coaster on the lift. One of the Best Universal Studios Rides.

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2. Revenge of the Mummy

Another fun rollercoaster not to be missed at Universal Studios Florida is Revenge of the Mummy. Luckily for you, this is located just past Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit, so you’ll be able to hop off one ride and go directly to the next!

Revenge of the Mummy Ride at Universal Studios Florida

This indoor coaster is a little scary, so if you have small kids you might want to consider a rider swap option.

The ride does not go upside down but does go backwards and has multiple fire elements and scary scenes that are sure to make you want to jump out of your seat.

3. Harry Potter and the Escape From Gringotts

A big reason many people head to Universal Orlando Resort for vacation is the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Dragon breathing fire on top of Gringotts Bank in Diagon at Universal Studios. One of the Best Universal Studios Rides.

The land spans across both UOR parks, and has multiple attractions. One of rides not to miss is Escape From Gringotts. This story-coaster takes guests wizzing through the wizard bank as they attempt to defeat Voldemort and his gang.

Making it one of the best rides at Universal Orlando Resort.

4. Men in Black: Alien Attack

There’s something about a ride and a game combo that we cannot get enough of, and we would ride Men in Black: Alien Attack over and over if time allowed.

Men in Black Alien Attack front entrance at Universal Studios Florida

On this ride you’re not only competing against everyone else in your ride vehicle, you’re competing against the vehicle across the track from you.

Don’t forge to push the red button near the end of the ride for a bit of a point boost, too!

5. E.T. Adventure

When fans of Universal Orlando Resort hear the word’s E.T. Adventure they automatically think of the iconic musty scent in the queue of this attraction and beg for the front row of the ride car so they can help bring E.T. home.

ET Adventure Ride Entrance at Universal Studios Florida

On this ride you’ll fly high over the city to bring E.T. back to his home planet that needs saving. Near the end of the attraction you might even hear a personalized goodbye message.

Ready to plan your theme park trip? Watch the best vacation planning tips on YouTube. Get started here!

Best Rides at Universal’s Islands of Adventure

If you’re looking for the newest attractions at Universal then Islands of Adventure is the spot to be.

The Pharos Lighthouse islands of adventure #UniversalOrlando #ThemePark #IslandsofAdventure

With a few new things opening in the past few years, along with an expansive Harry Potter area you could spend an entire day here and not do everything. But there are three rides you absolutely must do at Islands of Adventure.

1. The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man

The beloved Marvel character, Spider-Man has his own attraction at Islands of Adventure. In fact, this is one of the most popular rides in the park with lines that can stretch past the indoor queue on super busy days.

Spiderman ride entrance at islands of adventure. One of the Best Islands of Adventure Rides and Universal Orlando Resort.

The part motion simulator, part track-based ride takes you on a journey with Spider-Man as he swings into action to save the city from some of his most famous enemies.

2. Jurassic Park River Adventure

This boat ride starts out calm and smooth but shortly after departing from the dock things don’t go as planned.

Islands of Adventure Tips Jurassic Park Entrance Gate

A few of the more dangerous dinosaurs get out of their cage and the entire place is put on alert. The attraction ends with a big splash down that will get everyone in the boat wet before getting back to the dock to likely get in line again.

Islands of Adventure touring plan itinerary

3. Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure

The newest ride to open at Universal Orlando Resort is Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure. The fast-paced rollercoaster shows off some of the creatures that are shown in the Harry Potter films including unicorns. Making it one of the best rides at Universal Orlando Resort.

Hagrid Grand Opening Moment Hogsmeade Hagrid's Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure at Islands of Adventure Rides. One of the best rides at Universal.
Photo: Universal Orlando

The best part of the ride is not the actual coaster (which is great!) but the super unique ride vehicles that look like a motorcycle with a sidecar.

Each seat gives riders a completely different experience so be sure to try out both so you can determine which one is better. (We’re team bike!)

ThemeParkHipster Tips for Rides at Universal Orlando Resort

There are a few things that you need to know before going to Universal Orlando Resort to make your day a lot easier and a lot more fun!

  • Get the Express Pass! No one likes waiting in lines, and Universal’s Express Pass will help you not have to wait in line all day for popular attractions like the ones we listed above. This is an extra cost on a day ticket, but completely worth it.
  • Get to the parks early. While many people love the idea of sleeping in while on vacation, the best bet to get as much done in one day as possible is to get to the parks early. We suggest at least 45 minutes before the official opening of the parks since many theme parks will start letting guests in about 30 minutes before the announced park opening.

Ready to start planning your next Universal Orlando vacation? Listen to the latest podcast episode on Apple or on your non-Apple device now!

Wrapping Up…

We hope this guide of the best rides at Universal Orlando Resort helps you on your upcoming trip.

Best rides at Universal Orlando Resort
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Until next time, Happy Park Hopping Hipsters!

About the Author

Megan DuBois Theme Park Writer

Megan is a theme park expert and frequent traveler to magical places. She covers all things Disney and Universal and runs marathons for fun.

She thinks you can tell a lot about someone by the name of their signature lipstick, and hers is NARS Dragon Girl.

You can follow her adventures on Instagram and Twitter.

UP NEXT: Universal Studios Orlando Crowd Calendar: Know When to Go!

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