10 January 2016

Universal Studios Singapore Trip Report

I've never made it any secret that I'm an unashamed theme park fan. Therefore, for the other crazy theme park fans like me, I decided to give our day at Universal Studios Singapore a post all to itself.

None of us kids knew that we were actually going to Universal during our Singapore trip until the morning of. I was imagining that a trip to Universal was out of the question since we were in the country on a holiday weekend, but my parents' theory was that New Year's Day was a great time to go to Universal Studios since surely no one else would want to wake up so early after partying all the previous night. Besides that, it was promising to be a cloudy, rainy day, the kind of day when theme parks are traditionally avoided.
Universal Studios Singapore

So, we headed out, and arrived and got in line to purchase entry tickets about an hour before park opening. Once tickets were purchased, we wandered around the Resort World entry area, taking photos and taking in the sights. Sarah, who had been to Universal back when she was a little too short for some of the rides, was in a state of blissful excitement, jumping up and down, and telling Mom and Angel and I (the uninitiated) about all the wonders we were about to experience.

We got in line, about 20 people back from the main gates, and they started letting us into the part about 15 minutes before official opening. "Elves" were handing out candy canes to everyone at the gates, and we also grabbed a time schedule for the day's shows. Since it was the first of January, all of the Christmas entertainment was still going on, which meant a few extra shows and festivities.

As we'd previously planned, we headed straight for the Transformers ride, rushing through the beautifully detailed Hollywood and New York lands. We loved the details in the queue of Transformers, but we didn't have much time to see them as the wait was less than 5 minutes.

Universal Studios Singapore

Universal Studios Singapore

Universal Studios Singapore

After that, we headed for BattleStar Galactica, where Angel, Rebekah, and MaryGrace went straight for the Cylon track while Dad and Sarah went on the less-intimidating Human track. Mom and I sat this one out. Mom waited patiently and I waited not-so-patiently for them to get off of their ride. Since I had a few minutes, I wandered back into New York and took a few photos, including a selfie with Vin Diesel since no one else was around.
Universal Studios Singapore

Universal Studios Singapore

Universal Studios Singapore

Universal Studios Singapore

We headed to the Mummy ride next. Mom sat out this one again, as Sarah warned her that it was quite intense. I thought it was not as scary as Sarah's dire warnings made it seem, but still fairly intense. Disney roller coasters are pretty much my comfort threshhold, I'm not one for extreme rides, but this one was okay for me.
Universal Studios Singapore

We headed into Jurassic World next, where we braved the water ride without buying ponchos, since those cost money and who minds getting wet on a water ride? Dad opted out of this one, staying dry and carrying all of our stuff that we didn't want to get wet. This was a really suspenseful ride, but not a particularly wet one. We hopped off, still mostly dry, and went straight to Far, Far, Away, to get in line for the Puss in Boots Coaster.

We were just about at the front of the line for the coaster when the heavens opened and the clouds that had been threatening all morning turned into a downpour. I was worried that they'd close the ride and our time in line would have been in vain, but they didn't, and we proceeded onto the coaster, where every single one of us got completely and utterly soaked. This coaster in the rain was much more of a water ride than the actual water ride, we all agreed. I posted a photo on Instagram of a rain-soaked Angel and I after the ride.

It was still raining heavily when we got off, but we really wanted to make the first showing of "Waterworld" which Dad claimed was a really cool performance. We left "Waterworld" with Rebekah claiming that when she grows up she wants to be the actress in the show. Rebekah also happened to make a friend during the performance, one of the villains came up and sat next to her and tried to use her as a human shield. All of the rest of the family found that quite amusing. We then visited Donkey LIVE and Shrek 4-D Adventures, both of which we found less-than-amusing, primarily because my entire family universally thinks that Shrek is a highly overrated film.

After the shows, we were getting a bit hungry, so we stopped for a shared meal at Mel's Diner, where everyone else split burgers and Sarah and I discovered the wonders of cheezy fries. I still think those cheezy fries were the best food I had in all of Singapore. You can't judge until you've lived as an expat long enough in Southeast Asia to appreciate some plain old American diner food. ;)

Becausewe're only happy once we're seen all the shows in the park, we hustled straight to "Sesame Street Saves Christmas" immediate showely after lunch.

Universal Studios Singapore

And right after the show, we stayed on the Sesame Street theme and went to the Spaghetti Space Chase. This ended up being one of my favorite rides in the park, and we went back again in the evening to ride it.

Universal Studios Singapore

I loved the funny details in the Spaghetti Space Chase queue.

After that, we went to Lights, Camera, Action! with Steven Spielberg (if you saw the instagram post about Sarah trying to hypnotize away Angel's 'fear' of Steven Spielberg, this attraction is what inspired that event). Then, in quick succession, we rode Madagascar: A Crate Adventure (Loved the detail and design of the queue, good thing, too, because this line was a little longer than most on this day), and Enchanted Airways.

After that, we wandered through "A Scrooge Christmas Splendor." I love the design of this 'show,' in which actors in the costumes of Scrooge's London wandered through the street, interacting with guests. This guy, in particular, was really funny, and had a whole conversation with Sarah. Here he is inquiring how she got all the way from Malaysia to London and asking how long the boat journey took.

Universal Studios Singapore

It was after the Scrooge performance when my parents showed signs of slowing down. They opted to sit in one place for the next hour and a half until the evening Christmas entertainment started, while Angel, Rebekah, and MaryGrace opted to head off for a couple of rides, and Sarah and I headed off in a different direction to ride the rides we preferred. Angel and the girls repeated Battlestar Galactica and Transformers, while Sarah and I preferred to increase our total ride count by accomplishing the Canopy Flyer in The Lost World and Treasure Hunters in Ancient Egypt. After we got out, we wandered Hollywood, checking out the gift shops, until hunger impelled us to rejoin our parents and share another order of cheezy fries from the diner.

Once everyone had regrouped, we spent the majority of the evening watching the night's special Christmas performances, which included a light show, stilt walkers, along with a number of stage performances. In between shows, we ducked into Transformers and Spaghetti Space Chase and Lights, Camera, Action! for a 2nd taste of fun, since lines were very short by this point.

We left the park at about 9:30 p.m. after the close of the final performance, thereby, according to our definition, successfully "opening" and "closing" the park. We tend to figure amusement park tickets are only really worth it if you're in the park before it opens and stay until after it closes.

My ride count (unique rides) was 10 for the day, with 2 rides repeated. Sarah beat me by one, since she was brave enough to ride Battlestar Galactica and I wasn't.

Have you been to a Universal Studios park anywhere in the world? How did your experience compare to my tales from the Singapore park? Are you a park opener and closer like we are, or are you content with a shorter, less exhausting, day?
Tayrina @ His Purpose In Me said...

While reading and seeing these amazing pics, I think I need a vacation ASAP! - I have not been in any Universal Studios Park and they look fantastic!

AnneMarie said...

This looks delightful, especially the Scrooge Christmasy section! I like theme parks because of the interesting themes (well, duh, I guess that's in the name haha), which is especially nice since I'm not into roller coasters or very intense rides. Even the log flume terrifies me! (though I've gone on it before) So, if there aren't shows, I usually am fine with doing a shorter stay at a theme park, though it's hard to feel I get my "money's worth" that way. One time, though, we went to a theme park in Oklahoma that features a night of concerts with Christian rock bands in the evening, and I liked that-we could wander around, go on rides, and then hang out at a cool concert!

Mica said...

You definitely packed a lot into your day! It's great the lines and crowds weren't too bad as well, they can really ruin the day if you feel you spend most of it waiting around! :)

I'd love to visit universal studios, one day! :)

Away From The Blue Blog

Unknown said...

Looks like you and your family had a blast! I have been to two Universal Parks: Universal Hollywood and Universal Orlando. I am personally more of a Disneyland fan because I have grown up 30 minutes away so I have been spoiled with a pass my whole life. My favorite adventure from Universal would have to be going to Islands Of Adventure and getting to adventure around Harry Potter World. I can not wait until it opens up in Universal Hollywood, I am so excited!

Colleen said...

I loved reading this vivid description! It sounds like so much more than I would anticipate but then I have never done anything quite like this before. :) What a memorable and exciting day! I am kind of a wimp when it comes to rides but I almost think I would have to try some of these ones.:)
Wishing your family a wonderful new year and many more happy experiences!:)

Christa @ said...

What a wonderful day! I love roller coasters but I'm not sure I could have done the one in the pouring rain! You are brave!

Glam Karen said...

HOW much fun... love theme parks!
Karen |

Lilly's Home Designs said...

What an awesome day with your family! You guys must have been wiped out from being there all day, but making these memories are priceless!

Caravan Sonnet said...

Such a fun day! Thank you so much for sharing your experiences! I love theme parks and have enjoyed Universal Studios in Florida so this was a fun read!
Blessings, Rebecca :)

Unknown said...

I absolutely love Singapore! I didn't get to go to Universal Studios while I was there, but I did go to Disneyland Tokyo recently and, in my experience, theme parks abroad are really similar to their American counterparts.

All the Best,
Allison |

Charlene Maugeri said...

Your family does amusement parks like mine! I'm glad New Year's day ended up being a good one for the park. My family only ever goes to parks on off days. Like the middle of September of February. Or the week after Christmas and before New Year's. Also we like to open and close the park and see if we can get to all the rides! I went to Universal Orlando in October 2014 with my college roommate. We opened and closed the park both days and spent most of our time in Harry Potter World. Having only 2 people in our party who were both 20 something female best friends, we had a lot of fun and skipped the kiddie stuff in order to do the Harry Potter and other big, fun rides multiple times. I thought October would be an off time but it turns out a lot of people were there for the Halloween celebrations. But it was still fewer people than it would have been in the Summer. And it wasn't as hot! :)

Tayler Morrell said...

How fun!

Rachel Gault said...

So neat to read about Universal in another part of the world! I live just over an hour away from the Orlando one and go there quite a bit. Crazy that there are quite a few similarities but then totally different things at the one in Singapore!

Neely said...

so fun! Looks like an absolute blast!

Pellerini said...

I go to Universal Studios in Florida with my family and we love it! Sounds like Singapore has a lot of different rides than we do :)

Unknown said...

I LOVE Universal. My family and I were actually just discussing going back sometime this year. I would love to see the Singapore location at some point!

Unknown said...

What a unique experience! I don't know that I'll ever get there so thanks for sharing!

Unknown said...

Looks like a fun trip! I wish I could go to Universal Studios! I've always wanted to go.

Becky @ Disney in your Day said...

This was really interesting! I've been to Universal in Florida so it was cool to see what was the same and what was different. Looks like such a fun time!

Crazy Shenanigans-JMO said...

That looks like it was a blast!

Kari said...

Looks like a great day!! You guys planned it just right and got the most out of everything!

Lily Fang said...

Oh, I haven't been to an amusement park in ages--this sounds too fun! The planning was so strategic too; that was my same reasoning for heading to a popular cafe on new year's day. I'm glad you all had a full and fun day--good thing you were in line for a water ride when it was pouring; how lucky! And it's lovely that you were able to get a taste of home with the fries. I'm hoping to go abroad next year, and I know I'll definitely miss some of the great eats here.

imperfect idealist

Unknown said...

How I miss going to theme parks!!!!!

Michelle said...

Oh my goodness, Jurassic World! I remember going on that when I was 8 at Universal Studios Hollywood. I didn't get very wet on the ride, but I stood in the splash zone next to it afterward and got soaked watching it. I loved it.

Unknown said...

OMG this looks so fun!! I am uber jealous of this gorgeous trip!

elle jo said...

This looks like soooo much fun! And in singapore too. I've never been to anything like this before.

liz @ sundays with sophie

Erica said...

My sons are crazy about transformers. I'd like to show them sci fi city :) Thank you for detailed review. Universal studios feel like place for happiness.

chelsea @ the new wifestyle said...

i love that your family is dedicated to the whole day experience - i don't think mine would last that long! i am not a huge fan of amusement parks because i don't really love rides but i'll take harry potter world any day!

Alexandra S said...

Sounds like such a fun trip!! I was told that the mummy ride was super tame so I went on it (I'm not a huge fan generally) and while I wouldn't say it was too crazy, tame isn't how I would describe it either haha

Suzanne said...

Wow! What a fun day! We have gone to Universal in California quite a few years back and loved it. We decided to get VIP pass which ensured we never waited in lines and included lunch and special entry to all the shows. It was well worth the high price tag because we were able to see everything we wanted in one day.


Melanie @ Life's Sweet Words said...

What an awesome trip! I have always wanted to go to a theme park in another country! What a cool check off the bucket list!!

Budget Splurge Beauty said...

sounds fun! I've never heard about this universal location so thats cool. I live near the orlando one but havent been since I was a kid. I really want to go soon! However I do have disney passes, so I prefer shorter more leisurely days. Since I know I can come back multiple times. Also it's funny how different new years day is over there! Because all of the parks here in orlando were PACKED (some to capacity!) on new years day!

Mrs.AOK said...

It looks and sounds like you and your family had a lot of fun!! I haven't been to Universal Studios, but I'd like to visit one.

Brita Long said...

Dan & I went to Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure in Orlando in October for the first time. (Well, I'd done Islands when I was in the 8th grade, but a lot has changed since then). I had a cold and the first/only roller coaster I went on made me feel so much worse. Dan & I split up a few times so he could ride the coasters. The single rider line definitely helped there. I didn't have to wait for him long, and he got his thrills in!