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E.T. Adventure

E.T. Adventure is a suspended dark ride in Universal Studios Florida. It is the only functioning version of the ride in Universal Parks. Other versions were opened in the Universal Hollywood and Japan parks but have been shut down since.

Go on an expedition with E.T. and help him aid his home planet. Be careful of what you might run into during your journey, however.

The motion simulation and effects combine for a pleasing time on this ride. It is kid-friendly and the whole family can enjoy this thrilling but lightweight attraction.

The story of E.T. Adventure is based on the chase scene from the popular 1982 movie E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial as you help him reach his home, The Green Planet.

The ride does a great job of condensing the theme of that movie into a few-minute presentation in the form of this attraction.

Woody Woodpecker’s Kidzone

The E.T. Adventure ride is located in the Woody Woodpecker’s Kidzone area. As you can gather, it is a kid-friendly area with various fun activities.

The area also features a live 20-minute stage show called ‘Animal Actors on Location’

that consists of trained animals showcasing tricks and sequences.

Aside from that, the area contains SpongeBob StorePants – a merchandise shop based on the insanely popular SpongeBob SquarePants and KidZone Pizza Company – a pizzeria.

A lot of other attractions, including Woody Woodpecker’s Nuthouse Coaster, the child-friendly mini-coaster, Shrek 4D, Fievel’s Waterslide and play areas were closed to make way for a new themed area called ‘Dreamworks Land’.     

Still, Woody Woodpecker’s Zone remains an area where a family can go and enjoy live shows, rides, restaurants and more. 

Queue

The queue for E.T. Adventure Universal Studios Orlando is divided into two parts, with a pre-show in between. 

There is the exterior queue followed by a pre-show and the interior queue before the ride begins.

The exterior queue is quite simplistic. The building that encompasses E.T. Adventure, along with the queue, is themed to a sound stage where E.T. is getting filmed.

Trivia about E.T. is shown on television along with interviews of the film cast and production staff from the 30th-anniversary re-release of the movie.

This is followed by a pre-show hosted by Steven Spielberg, the man behind the movie. 

He appears on multiple TV screens to explain to the guests about the story of the ride. E.T. has to go back to his home planet that faces extinction. 

E.T. has a healing touch that can save the planet and the people. So, at the behest of E.T.’s teacher, Botanicus, you must bring him back home.

The ride back home is to be made by bikes (ride vehicles) and to receive an interplanetary passport, and you can give Spielberg’s name to one of his assistants.

You then move on to the next room to receive your passport. The names on these passports are read aloud by an E.T. animatronic on the ride later. 

The ride used to have a different queue and pre-show until its refurbishment in 2002.

Before the ride, there is an interior queue. 

It features a dark forest similar to the one shown in the movie. There is a smell of pine.

E.T. avoids the police as an animatronic of Botanicus appears behind some fog and lighting effects and requests E.T. to return to his planet.

There are more props that likeness to the film, such as a communication device called the Green Planet made by E.T., the glowing red heart of E.T., and other creatures and scenes.

You arrive at the loading platform to board your ride vehicle for this journey.

Ride Experience

The E.T. Adventure Universal Studios ride seats visitors on a seat that looks like a bicycle. The lap bars act as handles.

The vehicle travels past NASA and is spotted by police, who give chase and a pursuit ensues. As the police close in, the bicycles take flight and get airborne.

You then come across a portal with lights flashing around it. Through the portal, you enter The Green Planet and meet up with Botanicus.

E.T. uses the healing touch to help his friends and the planet as the inhabitants celebrate.

After an intense start to the ride, the climax is much more joyous as you experience light water sprinkling effects and happy music playing.

An animatronic E.T. thanks all the guests and names all of them personally as a light flashes and you are returned to Earth.

As you leave the ride, you can hear E.T.’s voice saying, ”I’ll be right here”.

The characters are voiced by the original actors who played them in the movie.

Height Restrictions/Other Info

In Universal Studios Florida E.T. Adventure height restrictions state that one must be 34 inches tall at least, to be on the ride.

Since this is a kid-friendly attraction, the height restrictions are set very low.

Those under 48 inches also require a guardian to accompany them on the ride. The ride is fit for people of all ages.

While more child-centric, adults will also find the ride pleasing.

The ride is accessible in a wheelchair, Universal Express Pass is also eligible for it.

Ride Design

E.T. Adventure was developed in tandem with Steven Spielberg after the success of Universal Studios Hollywood’s ‘Earthquake: The Big One’.

For a fun and wholesome experience filled with adventure, the chase scene from the movie was chosen to be the theme.

The height of the attraction is 12 feet and it seats 12 riders per vehicle. E.T. Adventure Universal Studios Florida has a ride duration of 4 minutes and 30 seconds.

The ride travels at what is described as a gentle speed of 5 miles per hour to be comfortable for the kids as well as all the others.

The ride utilizes animatronics, special effects and motion simulation.

Review

E.T. Adventure Orlando has mixed to positive reviews. It is not high on the priority list of those seeking thrills but is beloved as a classic ride by many.

The ride receives appreciation for its charming ambience and the nostalgia it offers. It is a hit among the kids and the story and theme are easy to understand even if you are not informed about the movie.

The adults also have mostly positive things to say about the experience as it is a nice change of pace from other rides and a good way to relax and have fun.

A few incidents of visitors falling, getting stuck or injured have occurred over the years which led to compensations and legal procedures but security measures are in place along with an alert staff.

Featured Image: Universalorlando.com

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