You are trying to have a great family day out at Universal Studios Islands of Adventure. It’s a boiling hot day and the kids are winging because of the heat. Sound familiar? What can you do to cool down that doesn’t involve queueing for too long?
Pop-eye and Bluto’s Bilge-rat Barges obviously!
This brilliant ride is a firm favourite of my kids and has been for years! So much so that once they are on it I really struggle to stop them going round again…and again!
A word of warning – you will get wet! If its hot you probably won’t mind but not only is the ride wet and has the capacity to tip gallons of water on your head if you sit in the wrong seat, but also people can shoot you with water from above(more on that later!). One great tip, other than the obvious rain coats or ponchos is if you are bothered about your hair then take a shower cap! I take one to all parks in Florida and pop it on for every water ride or show! I might look odd but I like to think people must think I’m really clever and wish they thought of it too!
To get on the ride you have to walk onto a revolving platform and get into the moving raft. It’s not hard because the platform and the raft move at the same speed.
There are seat belts and helpful covered compartments in the middle to minimise belongings getting wet.
The ride is fast enough to be fun and gentle enough to be enjoyed by all. You twist and turn and drop through rapids, getting splashed often! There are ample opportunities to get wet and the most exciting part is watching a family member be the one to go down a slope backwards and get soaked!
The story behind the ride is that Bluto had stolen Popeye’s girlfriend Olive Oyl. Popeye has to try to get her back, facing the rapids and a giant octopus. You are surrounded by cartoon scenery and humor. Its great wet fun!!
As you come out the exit to the ride (if you can get the kids off!) if you turn left you will see a giant boat! This is the attraction Me Ship the Olive and is definitely worth a visit. It is a giant play area with different levels of cartoon fun to explore. There are slides from one floor to another, passages, climbing nets and activities such as a giant piano!
The best part of Me Ship The Olive for us though is something I mentioned earlier! If you go to the top you can use the free water cannons to shoot lots of water at people on Popeye and Bluto’s Bilge-rat Barges! My kids love doing this!
Me Ship The Olive also has some of the best views of Universal’s Islands of Adventure!
Taking a child with an ASD on Popeye and Bluto’s Bilge-rat Barges and Me Ship The Olive?
Universal do a disability access pass which you can get from guest services. For Popeye and Bluto’s Bilge-rat Barges you won’t have to queue. Just take the pass to the fastpass entrance and you will walk on the ride! Remember to keep the pass dry as it is made of paper!
It is necessary to get on the ride promptly as it carries on moving.
There are seat belts which must be worn.
You will get wet.
Unless your party is large you will need to share a raft with other people.
There are drying machines you can pay for opposite the ride and toilets very close by if you need to change.
Me Ship The Olive is hardly ever busy at the beginning of the day and is fun to play on.
The slides go from one floor to another so it’s possible to lose track of your child if they don’t stay close.
The slide is fast unless you are wet.
These two attractions are a good way to cool down and have a break at Universal’s Islands of Adventure.
Between the two attractions, near the toilets, are some tables and benches if you need a food break.
Popeye and Bluto’s Bilge-rat Barges and Me Ship The Olive are attractions at Universal’s Islands Of Adventure park in Orlando, Florida. You can find them by walking to the left as you enter the park and walking through Marvel land into Toon Land.