My heart was thumping in anticipation the day I woke up in Singapore and realized I was going toÂ Universal Studios. It was bright and sunny outside: perfect for a day of fun and adventure.
Universal Studios Singapore attracts throngs of people not only from Singapore but from the world over. As such, I made sure to purchase tickets online beforehand.Â The process is completely hassle-free and ensures entry to the park. Tickets (2010 prices) cost S$66 for a weekday single visit and S$72 for a weekend single visit. There is also the option of a two-day pass for a price of S$118. Rates are significantly lower for children (4 to 12 years old) and senior citizens (65 years old and above).
From our hotel in Singapore, we rode bus 100 to the HarbourFront Stop in front of the Vivo City Mall.Â Other bus lines that ferry visitors to Universal Studios include 10, 30, 65, 80, 93, 97, 131, 143, 145, 166, 188, and 855.Â The public transport system operates from 6:00 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. and costs about S$2 for a round trip. If by MRT, one simply has to reach the HarbourFront Station.Â From here, we took the Sentosa Express Train (S$3 per person).
The Genting Group-built Universal Studios theme park is on Sentosa Island and is part of the massive Resorts World Sentosa leisure and entertainment megaplex.Â The second Universal Studios theme park in Asia is divided into seven zones: Hollywood, New York, Sci-Fi City, Ancient Egypt, Lost World, Far Far Away, and Madagascar. Each has all the inherent souvenir shops, restaurants, rides and attractions to thrill the very young and the young at heart.
HOLLYWOOD â€“ This area mimics the “Golden Age” of Hollywood and is the primary retail district of Universal Studios.
NEW YORK â€“ The streets of Manhattan come alive in this zone complete with gas lamps and newspaper stands.Â As guests, we were given the chance to peek behind the scenes of certain movies and television programs.Â My personal favorite was the Lights, Camera, Action show hosted by Steven Spielberg. In this feature, we were shown how special effects can transform a regular stage into the setting of a hurricane about to hit New York.Â As for restaurants, guests can try Louiâ€™s NY Pizza Parlor or KTâ€™s Grill.
SCI-FI CITY â€“ Science fiction fans will truly enjoy this zone, especially avid followers of Battlestar Galactica. Unfortunately, only the Accelerator was operational at the time of our visit: a disappointment as I was eager to ride the “Battlestar Galactica: Human vs. Cyclon” roller-coaster. Look for a “Transformers” ride here in 2011.
ANCIENT EGYPT â€“ This zone transports you to the land of pharaohs, embalmed corpses, and pyramids. I had the time of my life on the “Revenge of the Mummy” indoor roller coaster, which just so happens to be set in total darkness.
THE LOST WORLD â€“ The Lost World is a favorite among park-goers.Â Here, guests get to re-live the adventures of Jurassic Park as well as Waterworld.Â The “Jurassic Park Rapids Adventure” is a must-try river raft ride that guarantees to soak thrill-seekers and leave them thirsty for more.Â The “Canopy Flyer” is another adrenaline-pumping attraction that simulates the experience of riding on the wings of a Pteranodon. Another favorite of mine was the Waterworld show which was laced with awesome stunts and deafening explosions.
FAR FAR AWAY â€“ Anyone who wants to hang out with Shrek, Fiona, and Donkey must head to Far Far Away.Â The most famous attraction of this zone is the 4-D Shrek Adventure.
MADAGASCAR â€“ A visit to this zone is the perfect finale to the Universal Studios tour.Â Here, guests can meet the wacky cast Madagascar characters like Alex, Gloria, and the notorious penguins. Strictly for those who â€œlike to move it, move itâ€.