Voted the Number 1 Theme park on Tripadvisor, Islands of Adventure is the one to beat, complete with Marvel SuperHero Island, Jurassic Park and not to mention, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter: Hogsmeade and Hogwarts, IOA has a variety of attractions and rides to suit the whole family.

*Before I start, can I just apologise for the formatting in this blog post, blogger is playing up! So if there is any weird spacing, it is unintentional!*



Islands of Adventure is the sister park to Universal Studios and is set in the Universal Studios Resort, this park is home to famous thrill rides including The Incredible Hulk Rollercoaster, the newly added Skull Island: Reign of Kong and Jurassic Park River Adventure, this theme park is definitely the more animated out of the two and there’s no surprise that it’s the most popular park to visit.


The park is split into different themes which include: Marvel Super Hero Island, Toon Lagoon, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Skull Island, Seuss Landing, Jurassic Park and The Lost Continent.


Fast-passes are available to purchase in this resort as well as Universal Studios, however as previously mentioned they are at an additional charge. Some people find this quite annoying compared to Walt Disney World, who let you book time slots for rides rather than charging a fee. My advice is if you have budgeted to include fast-passes then I would definitely use them, you are allowed 1 fast-pass use per ride and is good to use on popular attractions such as Jurassic Park River Adventure and The Amazing Spider-Man.


*Please note, you can’t use fast-passes on any Harry Potter rides, however if you are staying in a Universal Resort hotel, guests of the hotels are allowed early access to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and selected attractions at the new Volcano Bay water park (T&C Apply).*
If you don’t mind riding the attractions on your own, then going in the Single Rider lines will allow you to skip the queue but you are not guaranteed to sit next to a member of your party.


Marvel Superhero Island


If you turn left into the park, Marvel Superhero Island® will be your first point of call. Here you will find The Incredible Hulk® rollercoaster, Doctor Doom's Fearfall® and the much loved The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man®. For any Marvel fans, this is your place to be if you’re eager to get a photo with your favourite hero, characters such as Spider-Man, Storm and Captain America are seen regularly in this area.


Toon Lagoon


Take a trip through the comics and experience life-size versions of your favourite cartoons, Toon Lagoon® is a vibrant and fun part of the park that lets you interact with the likes of Betty Boop and Popeye and Olive.


The attractions here are mainly water-based including Dudley Do Right’s Ripsaw Falls® and Popeye and Bluto’s Bilge-Rat Barges®, I suggest wearing ponchos for Popeyes as you can get soaked on this ride, Dudley Do Right’s also usually has a massive queue to keep an eye out for wait times if you don’t have a fast-pass.





Jurassic Park


Journey back when Dinosaurs roamed the earth, Jurassic Park® will take you into the hit franchise, they have recently added a Raptor Encounter in this section as well as talks of adapting it into Jurassic World to keep up with the movies.
Here you’ll find Jurassic Park River Adventure®, which is one of my favourite rides, taking you on a river journey through Jurassic Park®, but things aren’t what they seem… You get wet on this ride so take a poncho if you want to stay dry!


Along with this attraction, Jurassic Park® also includes the Jurassic Park Discovery Center® where you can uncover fossils and watch a baby Raptor hatch from its egg. For the little ones, there is Pteranodon Flyer®, this two people ride takes you above the treetops, there is also the prehistoric playground, Camp Jurassic®.




The Wizarding World of Harry Potter


Probably the most anticipated area of the park, this is definitely the most busiest but so worth it! Here you will wander through the snow-covered Hogsmeade and gaze upon Hogwarts Castle, Universal have recently introduced a new display called The Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts, which includes magical projections and music cast upon the castle. (See the official Universal Studios website for dates).


The main attraction in Hogsmeade is Harry Potter and The Forbidden Journey, in this ride you will fly through Hogwarts on a enchanted book case, dive into the Forbidden Forest and take a trip over the Black Lake with Harry. The queue for this ride is part of the attraction, as you weave your way through Hogwarts and explore the castle.


There is also the Flight of the Hippogriff, a small but fun coaster for all of the family! There was another coaster as well, formally known by Florida veterans as Dueling Dragons, this double coaster was converted into Dragon Challenge but has now been removed to make way for a brand new Harry Potter ride! Rumours are that it is a coaster that will take you into the Forbidden Forest and a spokesperson for Universal has described that the new ride will bring you closer to the world of Harry Potter than ever before!
You can have your picture taken with the Hogwarts Express Conductor, visit the Three Broomsticks for a bite to eat and a Butterbeer and hop onto the Hogwarts Express and head over to Diagon Alley, which is situated in Universal Studios.






Skull Island: Reign of Kong


This is a new attraction for IOA and replaced the classic Jaws ride, which I was sad to see go! However, Reign of Kong takes you on an 1930’s themed exhibition to the mysterious Skull Island, part physical attraction and 3-D, Skull Island: Reign of Kong takes you deep into the jungle with some unusual creators being found along the way…


The Lost Continent


This area of the park looks like a movie set, with the walk-through special effects attraction Poseidon's Fury®, you will go deep into unexplored caves and unleash the Greek God Poseidon. This show is fab for taking a break from the sun and is actually a really good attraction, the wait times are usually low as they allow big groups at a time.


There is also The Eighth Voyage of Sinbad® stunt show and get up close and personal with the Mystic Fountain!


Seuss Landing


Another fun and animated land is the one of all things Dr. Seuss, with bold colours and even bolder architecture, Seuss Landing will drag you right into the books. This land is especially good for little ones and has rides such as the Caro-Seuss-Cel, the Steer One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish and the family friendly The Cat in The Hat™.


So you’ve gone on every ride at least twice and walking around a theme-park can be tiring, so I guess you’re looking for a bite to eat and a cocktail or two? Well the Universal CityWalkis home to a variety of restaurants to sink your teeth into.
Restaurants include: Starbucks, Hard Rock Cafe Orlando®, Bubba Gump Shrimp & Co®, The Cowfish®, Jimmy’s Buffet® Margaritaville®, Voodoo Donut, PatO'Brien's®, and Bob Marley A Tribute to Freedom ®.

The CityWalk™ also has a cinema if you fancy catching a film before you head home!


Universal Islands of Adventure is exactly that, full of adventure and it’s no surprise that it was voted the Number 1 theme-park.


If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below!


Georgia xx

Packing can be stressful right? With all the questions running through your mind of how many pairs of knickers do I need? What if it rains? And do I really need those ten pairs of shoes?

You’re either an last minute packer, which by my definition is the one who always tells their self ‘I’ll do it tomorrow’ when in reality you’re going to be spending the next 24 hours in  a mad frenzy running around your room covered in a heap of clothes and asking your mum where she’s put your comfiest bra. Or, you’re the organised type, you know, those people who pack like it’s a military operation, have everything ironed, packed and have thought of everything under the sun, including a first-aid kit complete with a shit load of tablets that covers everything from a hangover headache to constipation, plasters for those new shoes and an emergency sling, because well, you never know.


The thought of packing can either be daunting or exciting and for me, it’s the latter. I’m not a super organised packer but I like to get everything sorted a few days before, because the thought of forgetting that new bag I bought that goes with the new outfit I strategically put together, would piss me off. I am on the other hand, the most forgetful when it comes to hand-luggage, I always get the Home Alone moment when I’m sat on the plane and suddenly remember that I’ve left something important behind, not as important as my small child but still, you get the idea.

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So, with that said, I’m sure there are a few of you like myself who tend to forget their hand-luggage essentials and because we’re all in this together, here’s a list of must-have items to fill your hand-luggage (first-aid kit not included.)

Passports & Vital Documentation that you’d be f*cked without

Seems like an obvious one, but please don’t forget your passport and check your passport is in date, nothing says holiday from hell like realising you can’t go on that luxury vacay to Santorini because you’ve only just realised that your passport expired in 2012.

Remember to bring any other documentation with you such as a hotel reservation and any other important pieces of paper that you need to travel. I also suggest having everything printed a few days advance including your boarding passes if you’ve checked in online, I know you can get an app which stores your boarding passes, but if your phone gets lost / broke or runs out of charge, at least you have a back-up.

I suggest taking a travel wallet where you can put all your important stuff in, ASOS have a fab one and it’s currently on sale. Don’t forget any currency and/or travel cards either.

Headphones & Charger, because what else are you gonna do other than boast to your Instagram followers that you’re jetting off on your jollies

Ah technology, we would be screwed without it. Make sure you pack your phone, charger and a suitable adapter for when you get to your destination. Check what kind of adapter you need for the country you’re going to before you fly, I once went to Poland and accidentally packed a adapter that only works in the USA.

Don’t forget your headphones either, because who wants to listen to a crying baby for 4 hours? Also listening to music is likely to help keep you cool as a cucumber if you’re a nervous flyer. Be sure to pre-download all that Spotify goodness before you turn on airplane mode as, well, you guessed it, your songs won’t play. This also goes for those who want to Netflix and chill mid-air, don’t forget to download all the Orange is The New Black Season 6 episodes before you hit that airplane mode button.

Books, Kindles, Colouring books, anything that keeps your mind from freaking out that your 10,000 feet above the clouds

What the travel bloggers don’t tell you is that flights, airports and overall travelling can be #boring. Keep your mind occupied with various books, both reading and colouring kind, as once you’re up in the sky there’s only so many times you can play eye-spy.

If you’ve got a kindle then you’re gonna save so much room in your hand-luggage, if not, then I’d highly suggest buying one as they are so light and you can read a multitude of books while you’re mid-air,  plus think about the trees.

Lotions, potions and other items that makes you not look like shit

Flying leaves your skin and body feeling very dehydrated and if you’ve got an early flight, you’re probably looking a bit on the rough side (if you look like a Goddess in the morning then I sincerely envy you and want to know your secret).

Pack a few bits and bobs that will leave you looking a million dollars when you leave the plane, including:
  1. 100ml Toothpaste & toothbrush 
  2. Lipgloss, lipstick or vaseline 
  3. Mascara (100ml) 
  4. Moisturiser (100ml)
  5. Hair brush and bobbles
  6. Pair of spare undies (accidents happen)
  7. Clear plastic bag for your liquids (Yes, Vaseline is classed a liquid)
Boots and other retailers sell travel packs where you can transfer all your lotions and potions into travel approved bottles. Like this one.

A pillow, a sleeping bag, your ex’s jumper… Anything that helps you sleep

I can’t, for the life of me, sleep on planes. I find it is a skill I do not possess and in severe cases, resort to the alcohol trolley to cure my insomnia. (Please try to avoid this as getting pissed on a plane will either knock you out or create a Bridesmaids scene scenario, if you haven’t seen Bridesmaids then shame on you).

I find that taking the correct sleeping accessory can help battle the flying insomnia and might get you an hour, maybe two hours tops. If you can sleep on the plane then this is gonna be a breeze for you.

I’d suggest investing in a decent travel pillow that you can use on all flights, don’t be fooled by the pretty packaged, complimentary sleeping kits that they offer you (I mean, by all means take one, it’s free!) but they aren’t as good as the real deal. Exhibit A.

I would also suggest bringing: An eye-mask that will help block out the lights, ear-plugs for screaming babies and compression socks. Wear a hoodie or cardigan that can also double up as a blanket as flights can get a bit chilly.


Other bits and bobs that you also might find useful

Other bits to pack could include:

  • Sweets - for when your ears pop
  • Camera / laptop - Anything that is of value, keep on your person
  • Pens - Incase you need to fill out any forms on the flight
  • Feminine hygiene products - This one's obvious
  • Any contraception pills you usually take - Again, obvious
  • Small mirror - Just in case you need to re-apply any lippy mid-flight
  • Sunglasses - To hide those bags and channel your inner movie star
Oh and please make sure you check the hand-luggage regulations of your chosen airline before you board.


Products: 

Skinny Dip Pineapple Tote - www.skinnydip.com 
Vaseline - Any boots stores
Plastic bags - Linked in blog post 



So, you're heading to Prague? Whether you're on a couples retreat, a family break or a weekend away with your mates, this vibrant Czech city will leave you wanting more. 



There are many misconceptions about Prague, when I told my Dad I was going, he immediately pulled a face and instantly thought of the seedy nightlife and numerous amount of rowdy stag parties that wander the streets in search of beer and girls. But like any city, there are always going to be stereotypes and stories about what to expect, Prague is exactly the same. Now I'm not going to sit here and deny that there were groups of rowdy men (and women, may I add) stumbling out of the clubs at all hours, but don't you get that with any city? It's just Prague is a bit more better looking.

I went to Prague with three of my University friends on a three day trip, booked through Jet 2 as a City Break package holiday and we got the flights and accommodation relatively cheap, the hotel was basic, clean and nice enough for a short break in the Czech Republic.

The good thing about Prague is you get a lot of bang for your buck, the exchange rate is 1 GBP = 28.6865 CZK, so you'll get a lot of Czech Koruna and it's pretty cheap once you're there. For the British people reading this, it's average 35 CZK for a pint which works out as £1.22, so you be the judge. 



Things to Do: 

There are a number of activities to see and do in this vibrant city, from cultural activities to beer tours, you will find a variety of things to suit everyone. 

The must-see cultural attractions include: 

  • Old Town Square 
  • Prague Castle 
  • Charles Bridge 
  • St. Vitus Cathedral 





For those looking for something a bit more... interesting: 
  • Sex Museum 
  • Grevin Museum Prague 
  • Museum of Medieval Torture 
  • Prague Beer Spa  
  • Prague Zoo 

Food and Drink 

Some of you may know, Prague is home to Absinthe and there are plenty of Absinthe bars dotted around the city, there are also a number of pubs and clubs in the Old Town Square, for casinos head over to Wenceslas Square, it's half a mile long and filled with restaurants, bars and shops. For more familiar eats, Prague has a Hooters and Hard Rock Cafe, which is in the Old Town Square.  

For those looking for a night out, there are plenty of clubs and bars including the Ice Bar, La Valmont Club and Lounge, M1 Lounge Bar & Club, there is also the Clock Tower Bar Crawl which is around 25 CZK and takes you in underground bars around the city. You get 1 hour in each bar to enjoy free drinks including spirits and wine and they also have beer pong, oh and you get a free t-shirt.


Final Thoughts

Prague may have a bad reputation but in all honesty, it's not that bad! This city offers a selection of cultural and diverse attractions and experiences to suit everyone, whether you're off on a chic city break or a boozy stag do, Prague is affordable, beautiful and a place where everyone would enjoy. 

Have you been to Prague? Let me know you're thoughts below!


Flying long haul can be tedious and let's face it, incredibly boring. Although you're probably jetting off to somewhere amazing, the prospect of sitting still for a long period of time can be daunting for most people and it's important to stay occupied throughout your flight so it doesn't feel like you've been sitting on a plane for a lifetime. These top tips will have you feeling fresh and keep you busy as you fly above the clouds. 




Hand-Luggage 

Usually for long-haul flights, the airline will allow you to take a carry-on bag with you on your flight, for long-haul, make sure your bag is big enough to carry all your essentials in. For short flights, I tend to stick to a cross-body bag which is small enough to put under my seat or carry on my person. For longer flights, a tote bag or backpack is ideal and can be stored under your seat or in the over-head lockers. 

If you flying for business or have a lot of equipment such as cameras / laptop, then I'd suggest bringing a sturdy backpack with extra zips and pocket compartments. 

Most airlines have a weight limit on these bags, so be sure to check before you board. 



Freshen Up

Flying can take it's toll on your skin and often leaves you feeling not so fresh. I always suffer from dry skin and lips on flights and feel really grotty after I get off. To avoid this, pack some skin essentials in your hand luggage including: 

Tooth brush / Small tube of tooth-paste 
Mints / Chewing Gum 
Moisturiser 
Vaseline 
Mascara 
Hair Brush / Bobble 

If you're taking any liquids including tooth-paste, Vaseline or mascara, make sure they don't exceed 100ml. 

I'd advise freshening up about 1 hour - 30 mins before landing to avoid the last-minute toilet queues. 




In-Flight Entertainment 

Long haul flights can feel endless, which is why filling your time with something is important. Usually most long haul flights will offer in-flight entertainment which includes a selection of films, TV programmes and music channels. Of course, you can always use your iPhone / tablet etc to listen to music. 

If you want to watch a film on your own device, make sure you directly download it a few days before as you won't be able to have access to the network. If you're an avid Spotify listener, the same goes, make sure you download all your songs so they play in aeroplane mode. 

You can also use flying to learn a new skill such as a language (many apps such as Duolingo) are available in aeroplane mode, take a diary or journal, have a selection of books to read or adult colouring books can be extremely relaxing, especially if you're a nervous flyer.



Get some shut eye 

I can not sleep on planes at all! It's the most frustrating thing when you're absolutely exhausted and can't seem to get to sleep. For those who struggle like myself, it helps to pack some essential items just in case you feel like visiting the land of nod. 

I would recommend taking an eye-mask to block the light out, some ear plugs to distract yourself from any crying babies and an inflatable neck-pillow. All which can be purchased in the airport but you're probably better hopping on Amazon and finding one for half the price. 

If you also have trouble sleeping, then I suggest taking a sleep aid such as Nytol tablet or sleeping spray, alcohol also helps me get to sleep, but be sure not to have too much as you tend to become more dehydrated due to low air pressure. 



Stay Hydrated 

This leads me on to how important it is to stay hydrated whilst flying, as I mentioned before, flying can really dehydrate not only your whole body but also your skin too. Try and skip out the in-flight Cosmopolitans and stick to water instead!


What to Wear 

I will never understand how some women can attend a long haul flight dressed to the nines in a pair of heels and a fancy outfit. This may seem like an obvious one, but make sure you wear something comfortable like leggings or joggers, I prefer to wear slip on shoes so I can take them off and put on some flight socks, I also take a jumper / cardigan as I find that planes get really cold. You can also use this as a pillow / blanket when you fancy a nap. 

If you have enough room in your carry on, then I would suggest taking an outfit change for when you land, if I'm flying from Manchester, I'll fly out in leggings and put shorts in my bag so I can change into them before we land and vice versa. 

Some airlines give out socks, blankets and pillows so be sure to look out for these in-flight as they will make your journey so much more comfortable!

Last but Not Least!

Before you fly, make sure your passport is in date (obvs) and that you have all the required travel documents with you. Some places require that you fill out an immigration form before arrival, this is usually done in-flight, so it might be worth taking a pen or two as the aircraft may run out! 

If you have any suggestions or tips, please leave your comments below!

Georgia xx


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