As you make your way through Universal’s Islands of Adventure, you’ll come upon a mysterious — and somewhat foreboding — presence of ancient ruins adorned with skulls. This island is home to one of the iconic legends, King Kong, in a thrilling ride that explores the secrets of Skull Island and brings you face to face with the treacherous creatures.
Here’s everything you need to know to prepare you for your encounter with the island’s inhabitants and the mighty ape on Skull Island: Reign of Kong at Universal Orlando Resort.
Congratulations! You’ve been invited to join the 8th Wonder Expedition Company on their research mission to find evidence of prehistoric creatures on Skull Island, a tropical island layered with rumors of colossal creatures battling for dominance. What could go wrong? Your journey will take you deep into the island where you’ll discover just how this strange land got its daunting name.
You can read the full story behind Skull Island: Reign of Kong here.
The first part of your adventure has you entering dark ruins, which echo with the rhythmic beating of drums and a haunting chant. Uneasiness may creep in as you discover hundreds of skulls embedded into dark alcoves and signs of a native presence (although it’s unsure whether you’ll encounter them or not). You’ll finally come across the base camp of the expedition company and board your vehicle to embark on your mission.
Fun Fact: There are 887 skulls throughout the attraction. That’s a whole lot of skulls to keep track of.
You’ll board your expedition vehicle and take off with your driver to rendezvous with your expedition leader. Your journey brings you to ancient temple ruins, through a dark labyrinth of caves, and into the thick of the jungle. The entire time you’ll be faced time and again by the predatory creatures that inhabit Skull Island, culminating in an epic battle between the Vastatosaurus Rex and the colossal ape of legend, King Kong. You’ll be surrounded on all sides by the action, which is enhanced by the 4-D special effects. In the end you’ll discover the answer to the question that surrounds Kong: Is he your friend or your foe?
Fun Fact: When the ride opened in 2016, it created a first for Universal with a ride vehicle that operates on a completely trackless system. You’ll work your way across the rugged island without a rail or guidance track in sight, further immersing you into the story.
– Minimum height requirement of 36″ (92 cm) to ride
– Universal Express Pass is accepted
– You can take your bags on this ride (woot!)
– Child Swap is available upon request
As I mentioned above, you’ll encounter a number of voracious creatures during your expedition on Skull Island. Here’s a rundown to prepare you.
- King Kong: We’ll start with the king himself. Kong is a Megaprimatus, an ancient species of giant ape standing approximately three stories tall. He expresses human-like emotion. You’ll notice distinctive scars likely from battles with Vastatosaurus Rex.
- Arachno-claw: These carnivorous arachnids move throughout the swampy underworld of the island’s dark caverns, foraging for dead or injured creatures. The six-legged scavenger uses its crab-like claws to crush its prey before feasting on the remains.
- Carnictis: The giant, slug-like Carnictis lacks eyes or facial features. But its gaping, oozing mouth — ringed with sharp, jagged teeth — is a distinguishing feature that allows this slow but relentless creature to feed on dead and wounded beings that have succumbed to the wretched, murky chasms of the island.
- Decarnocimex: One of the largest and most aggressive cave-dwelling inhabitants on the island, the Decarnocimex will attack anything smaller or weaker that dares to cross their path. These vicious insects tear apart their prey with their razor-sharp mandibles and two-bladed forearms.
- Terapusmordax: These are the largest flying predators on the island, with wingspans up to 10 feet. They live in colonies within the island’s interior caverns and are easily provoked. Spearing victims with lethal talons, they use large carnivorous fangs to penetrate anything — or anyone — caught in their jaws of death.
- Vastatosaurus Rex: The V. Rex is the largest, most intimidating dinosaur that roams the island’s dense jungles. Despite its large, bulky head and tough leathery skin, it’s an agile predator, changing direction at high speeds and ripping into its prey with razor-sharp teeth.
Will you survive Skull Island and your confrontation with Kong? Remember, this is his territory, and you’re at his mercy.