6 Things You Need to Know About Universal's New Harry Potter Coaster
Wands at the ready, Potterheads! We’ve got an exclusive look at new details for Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure opening this summer.
As if the butterbeer wasn’t reason enough, Harry Potter fans around the world will want to apparate to Universal Orlando this summer. The park’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter will open a brand-new coaster, Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure, on June 13 in the Hogsmeade area of Islands of Adventure. Today, Universal revealed magical new details in a video with Harry Potter film star Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy) and it’s safe to say this coaster will be unlike anything we’ve seen before. Here’s everything you should know about the new attraction.
1: Fly Through the Forbidden Forest
The new ride will journey through the Forbidden Forest, known as a dangerous area of the Hogwarts school grounds that is typically off-limits to students in the Harry Potter series. And this won’t be 3D video. Guests will actually zip through a forest of more than 1,200 live trees.
2: Interact With Hagrid
Hagrid is one of the most beloved characters in the Harry Potter franchise, and you can already find the Hogwarts’ gamekeeper’s hut on display at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in the line queue for Flight of the Hippogriff. But for this attraction, Hagrid will actually have a presence throughout the ride and it all starts by joining the gamekeeper’s Care of Magical Creatures class.
3: Two Ways to Ride
Instead of traditional coaster seats, guests will hop on Hagrid’s enchanted, flying motorbikes. And just like in the movies, the motorbikes will have a sidecar. You’ll want to ride more than once as there will be different experiences throughout the ride depending on if you’re driving the bike or riding in the sidecar. No matter the seat, the height requirement will be 48 inches.
Wizarding World of Harry Potter
Based on the "Harry Potter" books and films, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is a $200-million theme-park at Universal Orlando that had its grand opening on June 18, 2010. The park includes rides like the Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, Dragon Challenge and Flight of the Hippogriff. Diagon Alley opened July 8, 2014.
Triple-Decker Knight Bus
Hop aboard the Knight Bus if you're a stranded member of the wizarding community. To hail the bus, a witch or wizard can just stick their wand up in the air in the same manner that a muggle would do to hail a taxi. It is possible to book tickets for travel on the bus in advance.
Diagon Alley includes the thrill ride, Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts. This attraction combines 360-degree themed sets, high-definition animation, state-of-the-art 3-D projection systems and live effects with characters and moments form the final "Harry Potter" book and film. And make sure you visit Gringotts Bank (pictured) -- it's the only bank in the Wizarding World owned and operated by goblins.
Flying Ford Anglia
After Ron and Harry miss the Hogwarts Express in the "The Chamber of Secrets," they steal Mr. Weasley’s flying car in an attempt to make it to school on time. Unfortunately, the car never made it back to The Burrow, the home of Ron's family, but now resides here, trapped amongst the trees.
4: Freewheeling Coaster
The new coaster is designed to make guests feel the “freedom of flight.” And these bikes will be fast. The coaster will reach top speeds of 50 miles per hour and the bikes will twist, turn and rush forward and even travel backwards through the dark forest.
5: The Story
We don’t know much about the story for this immersive ride, but what we do know is that in true Hagrid fashion, things don’t go as planned. Guests will hurl past “challenging obstacles” and even become entangled in a thicket of Devil’s Snare that fans will remember from Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.
6: New Characters and Creatures
In the Harry Potter series, the Forbidden Forest is home to tons of magical, mythical creatures, and during the ride, guests will encounter some of the wizarding world’s “rarest, magical creatures.” So far, the creatures revealed include a centaur, mischievous Cornish Pixies and Fluffy, a three-headed dog. Universal also revealed that the ride will feature a creature that’s never been seen in the films.