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First Glimpse at Universal Orlando Skull Island Reign of Kong

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of visiting Universal Orlando for their Celebration of Harry Potter event and while there I was able to see some of the progress for the brand new Skull Island Reign of Kong. Sure the area was fenced off and I really only got a glimpse of what was visible over the fence, but from what little I could see looked awesome. Way back in the 90’s, my favorite ride at Universal Orlando was Kongfrontation. I can still remember the smell of being in the subway-themed queue and feeling the adrenaline rush of seeing the giant ape himself, King Kong. I was sad to see it go, but now Kong is back and ready to amaze again. Today I’m going to give you the first details of the new Universal Orlando Skull Island Reign of Kong ride – and it sounds EPIC!

Skull Island Reign of Kong
Skull Island Reign of Kong – Great Wall

Universal Orlando Resort’s Islands of Adventure, Skull Island Reign of Kong, opens to guests Summer of 2016. Always at the forefront of the latest ride technology, this amazing 3D experience will bring the next generation of the King Kong legend to life for fans both new and old alike. This multi-dimensional experience takes place in a wildly exotic world and in true Universal fashion, is filled with surprise.

Skull Island Reign of Kong – NEW Ride Details

The adventure begins as you set out to explore an island rife with prehistoric creatures of unknown origin –and the legend of a beast still undiscovered. You find yourself at a campsite of the 8th Wonder Expedition Company, the research team leading your adventure.

Once beyond camp, the menacing terrain shows signs of a native presence; beating drums draw you toward an ancient temple. Moving deeper into the ruins reveals a lost shrine – and proof you are not alone. You ignore warnings to turn back.

You board a specially designed expedition vehicle that will take you deeper into the island. Mysterious sounds pierce the air and you hear chanting. And then – you confront an enormous temple wall, complete with carvings and images that seem to pay homage to something you cannot quite comprehend. The temple’s massive wooden doors slowly open, revealing a labyrinth of caves.

Inside the caves, you meet your expedition leader – and suddenly find yourself in the midst of a raging struggle between creatures of incomprehensible size and ferocity. Then, as those creatures turn on you, there is an even more enormous, earth-pounding presence – bigger, closer and more overwhelming than you can possibly imagine. It is Kong. But is he friend or foe?

The 40-foot-long, 17-ton expedition vehicle will use a sophisticated positioning system to independently navigate a rough, jungle road through unpredictable terrain. The front and back axles that support the vehicle’s 45-inch wheels can be steered individually, allowing the vehicle to take sharp turns and pull off complicated maneuvers. It will be one of the most immersive and realistic ride experiences on Earth – all within one of the most immersive and realistic theme park experiences ever created.

As guests board their expedition vehicle, they will meet one of the five guides who will be their driver – each with a distinct personality.

· Becky Callahan: The loose-cannon cowgirl who isn’t fazed by the dangers awaiting her on Skull Island.

· Will Denham: The fresh-faced, adventure-seeking younger cousin of famed movie director Carl Denham.

· Jinks Costanza: A hardened New York City ex-con who is wary of the island’s mysteries.

· Kalana: A mystical descendent of the natives who first settled on the island.

· Charles “Doc” Jordan: A PhD student in paleontology who took time off from his studies to explore the world.

This all comes together to be what will be one of the longest Universal ride experiences ever created. Between these newly released ride highlights and the first ever seen Skull Island image, Universal is clearly working hard to provide us with an unforgettable experience. Even from far away, the attention to detail was superb and I know this ride is going to feel as if we’re truly out in the wild. King Kong has come a long way since his days of wreaking havoc in New York City and I’m ready to see him back and wildly in action in this epic new ride at Universal Orlando, Skull Island Reign of Kong.

Danielle Knapp

Danielle is an Associate Editor at The Fairytale Traveler specializing in lifestyle, family and products. She's a married mom of one, is an Orlando, FL native and writes on her blog about living the geeky life. She has a love of all things nerdy, is a bit of a crazy cat lady, and enjoys baking and crafting with her son. She can often be found with her nose in a good book or playing at Disney.

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