When you’re preparing for an elegant holiday, Loews Portofino Bay is the place to be for the perfect mix of theme park thrills and refined relaxation. Before your stay, you’ll want to learn how to navigate around Universal Orlando Resort, and this page includes everything you’ll need to know to move between Portofino Bay, Universal CityWalk Orlando, and the Universal Orlando theme parks (Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure).
This page also includes information on the shuttle service from Portofino to SeaWorld, Aquatica (SeaWorld’s water park), and Volcano Bay, Universal’s water theme park.
How do I get from Portofino Bay to CityWalk, Universal Studios Florida, and Islands of Adventure?
Portofino Bay is one of the more isolated resort hotels, yet it is still connected by the waterway to the Universal theme parks and CityWalk. While this means that it might take a few minutes longer to get to your entertainment destination, it also endows the venue with a secluded and immersive atmosphere; when you are strolling along the cobblestone pathways in the Harbor Piazza, all you can see is the hotel and the bay stretching out before you.
Keep in mind that Portofino’s relative removal from the Universal parks certainly does not mean it is far away; it’s still effectively the closest resort to the parks, after Hard Rock Hotel and Royal Pacific Resort, with several transportation options.
Universal’s complimentary water taxis begin operating 30 minutes before Early Park Admission, and run continuously until 2:30 am every single day of the year. Most of the resort hotels have their own dedicated water taxis, so you will be picked up from the hotel and brought directly to the CityWalk dock every time, and vice versa. However, there is just one dock at CityWalk where all boats arrive and depart.
This purpose-built walkway is roughly four-fifths-of-a-mile and brings you from the Harbor Piazza, past Hard Rock Hotel, to the CityWalk entrance next to Universal Studios Florida, and back. The path is extremely easy to follow, beautifully landscaped, and safe, because it never crosses any public roads. View the photo tours below to see for yourself.
Universal operates a bus service that runs continuously between the resort hotels and the general guest drop-off area near the Universal parking garages. Because the bus drop-off location puts hotel guests at basically the same distance from the parks as day guests parking at Universal, it serves no function as a time-saver. The only advantage may be for guests with disabilities who need to rent a wheelchair for the day, since wheelchair rental is available on the second floor of the transportation hub, where the bus drops you off (an elevator is available here). Note that ECV rentals are still only available inside the parks. We recommend you check with the front desk to confirm bus services and pickup times.
How do I get to Volcano Bay?
A designated shuttle bus will carry guests from Lowes Portofino Bay directly to the Volcano Bay water theme park, located all the way on the other side of Universal Orlando property (right next-door to Cabana Bay Beach Resort). The bus leaves approximately every fifteen minutes.
How can I get to SeaWorld and Aquatica?
Universal’s hotels provide complimentary scheduled transportation, called the Connector Shuttle, to SeaWorld and Aquatica (SeaWorld’s water park). We emphasize scheduled because it is very important to understand that the bus does not run continuously; rather, in general, it picks up and drops off once in the morning and once in the evening – check with any Vacation Planning Center desk to reserve pick-up and drop-off times for your visit.
Portofino Bay garden walkway – photo galleries
This gallery is included because the garden walkway connects CityWalk to Hard Rock Hotel and then Portofino Bay Hotel. You will walk this route first, but continue on instead of turning into the Hard Rock pool area.
This gallery picks up from Hard Rock Hotel and takes us all the way to Portofino Bay Hotel.