Since Harry Potter World opened in Universal Studios Japan Osaka back in late 2014, many on TripAdvisor have complained about long queues and not being able to enjoy their time in the theme park. So here’s a guide on how you can take ALL your favourite rides in 1 day!
Do note that I’m a 30 year old solo guy with a Express pass (Elaborated in next paragraph). I was inside the park between 830am~830pm, managed to take all the rides and will be ranking them below
Ok now more about the USJ Express pass, which you can find more information here. It’s important to get passes that includes the timed entry to HP wizarding world, so do go for the Universal Express Pass 4 (Standard), Universal Express Pass 4 – The Flying Dinosaur or any type of the Universal Express Pass 7. Another advice, try to avoid visiting USJ over Japanese holidays or weekends as queues tend to much longer on these days
Ranking of all rides in USJ (rides to use express option will be marked in brackets)
1) Hollywood Dream (Express) – The only *real* roller coaster in the park. Option to ride backwards is awesome
2) Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey (Express) – A ride where you experience quidditch, dementor attacks and other fabulous stuff while *flying* in the skys above Hogwarts. Even the waiting area is fun to explore with the many iconic rooms in Hogwarts
3) The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man – Best 4D ride where your superhero dreams come true with friendly neighborhood Spiderman
4) Terminator 2:3-D (Express) – After a rather long but good rapport building introduction in Japanese, you sit in a nice auditorium to catch a half live action half 3D animated movie. Transitions are cool
5) Space Fantasy (Express) – The pleasant surprise. A fun rail ride in a colorful space environment that reminds me of a old Sega game ‘Into the Nights’
6) Jurassic Park the Ride – Robotics abit outdated but still good for the big splash at the end
7) Flight of the Hippogriff – A ride aimed at kids which doesnt justify the long waiting time. Hagrid’s hut in the waiting area is a nice touch but is’nt enough to keep people occupied. Will be a nice touch if they can find a Hagrid to interact with the folks waiting!
8) Shrek’s 4-D Adventure – Standard 4D ride which is not too bad really. would rank higher if I haven’t already taken the ride previously in other theme parks
9) JAWS (Express) – Again outdated robotics, with loud noises thrown in this time. Though the ride operator did try her best to maintain suspense during the ride
10) Backdraft – A staged explosive show to let people feel the *heat* faced by fire fighters in their line of work. However the introduction in Japanese is far too long and the explosive scenes at the end can be too off putting with un-fun loud bangs. Ranks highly only if you like to see stuff burn
11) Back To The Future the ride – Terrible ride unless you like being shaken up for no real reason. Do not eat before getting on this un-fun ride
Ranking of all ‘Other’ rides
Others 1) Ollivanders wand choosing experience – Too short to rank but I reckon it aint bad for a sub 30mins wait. The chosen audience seem to get a free wand from this so do not hesitate to volunteer IF asked (Kids only)
Others 2) Woody woodpecker show – In Japanese only. Rather ok if you understand, otherwise its skippable
Others 3) Magical Starlight Parade – Do stay for the parade at the end of day for some good photo taking opportunity. Try to view from the place where the parade starts so you can be the first to leave and head for the train station when its over
That’s all for Tripeon’s first theme park guide, hope this helps in planning your day at USJ. Do let us know in the comments if you would like to see more theme park guides here on Tripeon Travels!
* Visited 2015