Dragon Challenge at Universal’s Islands of Adventure
`The entrance to Dragon Challenge at Universal’s Islands of Adventure.
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade
Restrictions and access
54 inches; loose articles must be stowed in lockers adjacent to the attraction’s entrance; has Express Pass access; also has a front row line for each coaster.
Two sentence insider summary
This high-speed, outdoor rollercoaster is an absolute must for thrill-seekers. Step inside the Triwizard Tournament, choose to ride the Hungarian Horntail or the Chinese Fireball, and test your mettle in the tournament’s first contest!
5 out of 5. But it is worth it.
On very busy days you may see a wait time as high as 45 minutes, but it is usually much lower. In fact, most days the wait doesn’t climb any higher than 10 minutes.
What you wish you knew before you experienced it
Many days you will probably spend more time walking from the attraction’s entrance all the way up the outdoor walkway and through the castle to the loading area than you will standing in line. Don’t forget to check out Ron’s car and the various Triwizard artifacts in the queue. In fact, after you ride the coasters, you may want to visit the queue again with your camera.
OI fun fact
Before the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, this ride — which is the longest duel inverted roller coaster in the world — was part of IOA’s Lost Continent and carried the name Dueling Dragons. Many locals still refer to it by that name.
This page presents a summary and guest reviews of Dragon Challenge. To learn insider secrets about this attraction, when you’re done with this page be sure to visit our Dragon Challenge: Secrets of the queue page, part of our Insider’s guide to WWoHP.
About the cessation of the dueling coasters
From OrlandoSentinel.com – October 19, 2011:
For more than a decade, the signature thrill of Universal Orlando’s “Dragon Challenge” has been the ride’s three near-collisions, in which the attraction’s two intertwined roller coasters, speeding along their tracks at up to 60 mph, pass within 18 inches of each other.
Riders will never experience that again.
Universal Orlando said this week it has decided to permanently end the practice of launching the two coasters simultaneously. The resort now bills the attraction as a “high-speed chase between two coasters.”
That decision follows an internal investigation into two summer accidents in which riders were apparently struck by loose objects while aboard the attraction. One was gruesome: A 52-year-old Puerto Rico man suffered a lacerated right eye and ultimately had to have the eyeball removed, according to his lawyer.
“We believe this is the best path forward for our guests and for the attraction,” Universal spokesman Tom Schroder said of the decision to permanently alter Dragon Challenge.
Precisely what happened in the two incidents remains a mystery. Universal will not discuss the findings of its review, though the resort’s statements in the aftermath of the two incidents — in which it reminded guests of its long-standing policy to secure all loose items before boarding the coasters — suggest that they may have been caused by items falling out of guests’ hands or pockets as the coasters raced along their tracks.
Dragon Challenge – HD video
Please note that this video shows the coasters dueling. As noted above, they no longer duel.
Dragon Challenge – map
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