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Pedestrian-friendly Universal Orlando Resort has got spunk, spirit and attitude. With fantastic rides, excellent children's attractions and entertaining shows, it's comparable to Walt Disney World. But Universal does everything just a bit smarter, funnier and more smoothly, as well as being smaller and easier to navigate. Instead of the Seven Dwarfs, there's the Simpsons. Instead of Mickey Mouse, there's Harry Potter. Universal offers pure, unabashed, adrenaline-pumped, full-speed-ahead fun for the entire family.

The Universal Orlando Resort consists of two (three by the time you read this) theme parks: Islands of Adventure, with the bulk of the thrill rides, and Universal Studios, with movie-based attractions and shows (including the Wizarding World of Harry Potter). Volcano Bay will open in 2017 as a water park of thrills and splashes and state-of-the-art rides through a 200ft volcano.

Universal's dining/entertainment district is CityWalk and it has five resort hotels (a sixth, Universal's Aventura Hotel, will open in 2018). Hotel guests receive fantastic perks, including access to Harry Potter fun an hour before the gates open. Water taxis and pleasant walking paths connect the entire resort.