Located at Universal Studios Hollywood in California on the lower lot is a little slice of paradise called Jurassic World. This immersive area includes the thrilling attraction, Jurassic World—The Ride, Raptor Encounter, and the tropical restaurant Isla Nu-Bar. You will feel like you have stepped right into the movie! To get there, you’ll take the Starway (a fun escalator experience in itself) all the way down where you will see stunning views of the San Fernando Valley, plus a really cool birds-eye view of Jurassic World.
For me, this area of the park is an absolute favorite as Jurassic World holds a very special place in my heart — I love these films so much, I even had the film score played by a violinist as I walked down the aisle at my wedding, which took place in Costa Rica. My husband is also a big fan of the Jurassic Park franchise. On one of our first trips together, we made time to see the first “Jurassic World” opening day, even though we were on a small island in Hawaii. We can’t wait to see “Jurassic World Dominion” on opening day this year at CityWalk.
Most recently, we traveled to Oahu, Hawaii, where we were able to take a tour of a few remaining sets from the original Jurassic World. It was an incredible experience to see the film locations, but I must say experiencing Jurassic World—The Ride makes you feel as if you’re inside the movie itself.
Jurassic World—The Ride is a thrilling ride that features an original story that takes place within the theme park as depicted in the blockbuster Jurassic World films. From the cafe to the Raptor Encounter to the ride, you will feel like stepped onto Isla Nublar.
On the ride, you will enjoy a daring cruise to tour through dense vegetation to see incredible life-size dinosaurs mere steps away. In Jurassic World fashion, something goes wrong as the new Indominus rex has escaped from her paddock. She stalks you through the jungle as you continue through the ride — in a boat… with no possible way to escape. Not to worry, as Claire Dearing, Owen Grady and even Blue are there to save the day. You’ll witness an epic battle between the Indominus rex and Tyrannosaurus rex before plunging 84 feet down a waterfall. Keep in mind, this is a water ride and there’s a pretty good chance that you will get wet — whether it’s from the big splash down at the end or from mist and dinosaur spit along the way.
As I mentioned, you’re on a tour of Jurassic World, a relaxing and exciting boat ride to see life-size dinosaurs. You start by entering the underwater exhibit for the jaw dropping Mosasaurus during feeding time — you know, the apex predator of the deep. Full disclosure, I cried some during this part. It’s such a beautiful way to start off the ride. Did I mention I love dinosaurs?
The tour continues with another tear jerker as they announce the new baby Stegosaurus being welcomed to the park.
After dodging some geysers and a surprise visit from a Parasaurolophus, it seems something has gone wrong! An alarm starts to sound and we see a crashed Gyrosphere along the path with a few Compsognathus (also known as Compys) fighting over some clothes.
We are now headed into Predator Cove and it seems something is really not right. Claire Dearing tells us to remain calm as we continue making our way into Predator Cove and straight toward Tyrannosaurus rex Kingdom. It seems that the Indominus rex has escaped her paddock and she’s on the hunt for… us! This can’t be good.
You make your way up a ramp as Owen Grady tells you not to panic. But of course, I panicked! You’re then greeted by some Velociraptors causing trouble and a surprise visit from the Indominus Rex stalking your every move. A few Dilophosaurus spit at you as you’re close to reaching the top of the waterfall when you see Blue trying to help you. All of a sudden, a larger than life battle breaks out between the Indominus rex and the Tyrannosaurus rex. As you watch the fight take place over your head, you suddenly plummet 84 feet down to a huge splash.
If you’re looking for some souvenirs (like I always do), take a stroll through the gift shop to get a photo of your terrified expression as you plunged 84-feet. There also are some great Jurassic World souvenirs, including dinosaur sculptures. I love the Mr. DNA long-sleeve shirts and the plush dinosaurs that I bought for my nephew.
JURASSIC CAFE AND ISLA NU-BAR
After riding Jurassic World—The Ride, don’t forget to check out Jurassic Café or grab a tiki cocktail at the Isla Nu-bar. During my last visit, I had a delicious Tropical Roasted Chicken Salad. It had Iceberg lettuce, shredded cabbage, avocado, house-made citrus vinaigrette, garnished with pomegranate seeds and queso fresco. (Michelle Tip: I asked them for a side of the Chimichurri aioli and put it on top of the chicken as well. It was so delicious and the perfect amount of food to still enjoy more snacks around the park later.)
I also ordered a tasty Bird of Paradise Cocktail at Isla Nu-bar. I asked for it in a souvenir tiki cup that I proudly display on my bar cart at home. Then of course, I decided to go on the ride again!
If you have little ones that are not able to ride Jurassic World—The Ride, there is Child Switch available upon request. This is when one adult rides while the other adult waits with the child, then you switch. There is also a DinoPlay area where kids can run around and excavate giant dinosaur fossils at a discovery dig site. They can explore a full-size T. rex skull and dinosaur eggs, play in a jungle gym area and more.
Another really cool element in Jurassic World is being able to meet Blue, the beloved Velociraptor. She comes out to greet you with a Raptor Handler and this makes for a great photo! You also might have the opportunity to meet a very large and friendly Triceratops as well as a Baby Raptor. The baby was just the cutest little thing!
Here’s a list of Dinosaurs you might encounter on this attraction…
- Indominus Rex
- Tyrannosaurus Rex
- Must be at least 42” (107 cm).
- Children between 42” (107 cm) and 48” (122 cm) must be accompanied by a Supervising Companion.
- Child Switch is available upon request
- Universal Express is available
- Single Rider Line available
- Water Ride
What’s your favorite dinosaur? Let me know in the comments! And if you’re also a big fan, check out some of the other blogs I’ve written about my love of Jurassic World and Jurassic Park here.