Trains, Plains, and ... Boats?
Getting from your resort to the parks is a breeze at Universal. Their motto has always been you are never more than five minutes away from the fun when you stay on property, However, with the new Endless Summer Resorts --that changed to you are only minutes away from the fun. Because, the ride from Endless summer can be a whopping 7 minutes at times!
Seriously , you are staying IN the fun!
You have more than one option at most resorts,(that means all but endless Summer), Let’s start with one of my favorites - the Garden Walk!
My first experience with the Garden Walk was on our first stay at Hard Rock in 2020 in October. How did I not realize this gem was here?! A very relaxing stroll through a lush tropical garden (not to mention a Butterfly garden!) along the river, ending at a security checkpoint at the gate to Universal Studios!
Even stopping to read some of the name tags at some of the beautiful plants, it was less than a 10 minute leisurely
stroll. (and on the scooter as a rain shower was coming in - less than 5)
This Garden Walk connects all the resorts (except the Endless Summer ones). From Cabana Bay it is about a 15 - 17 minute walk or scooter ride with the speed set on medium. The pathway is well lit and I felt completely comfortable going alone at night.
The only downside - in the mornings you must go back towards City Walk to get in line for either park as the lines at opening as well as early opening are backed up over the bridges. This is a small downside as the lines move very fast!
My next favorite is the very pleasurable Water Taxi. While this is not easily accessible from all resorts it is within an easy walk from all except, again, Endless Summer. You go through a Security Check point prior to boarding. It services all the Premier Resorts as well as Sapphire Falls with a direct non stop journey.
The ride is a very relaxing (much too) short ride along the river going through the property. Again, you are dropped off in City Walk, avoiding the long walk through City Walk and the lines (albeit short) at the central Security checkpoint.
The only downside is that the Water Taxis do not operate during storms. And we all know Florida has its normal afternoon storms during the summer, so plan accordingly!
My least favorite means of transportation is the bus.
Except during extremely busy times (park opening and park closing during holidays) there is usually less than a 5 minute wait at your resort. In fact, I’ve never experienced a wait at all. There is usually a bus waiting behind the bus I’m getting on. Of course during storms, at opening and closing of parks, during holidays and busy busy times - your wait time may be longer. The bus ride itself is always less than five minutes (except for the before mentioned Endless Summer Resorts).
My biggest con is the long lines at the central security checkpoint and the long walk through City Walk. In fairness, the lines are fast and there is a moving sidewalk for about half of the long walk.
Now for the reason that the transportation options are so important -- once you park your car at your resort… unless you are like my family and forget to get something and have to go back to the car to get something… you will never see your car until it’s time to go home! Why? Well, you COULD drive to the parking garage at City Walk ( but that will take you a good 10 to 15 minutes); then you would have to find a parking space (and remember which garage you parked in); and you would have to walk to the Central Security checkpoint ; then walk all the way through to City Walk; oh and did I forget to say you would also have to pay for parking in the parking garage even though you are paying to park at the resort?
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Most of the content is written by people at JMorris Travel. Every once in a while we will have a guest blogger, usually it is part of our 'family'.Always with a nod to Family Travel!