Looking for something different to do at Universal Orlando Resort? If you’ve already experienced the amazing attractions and shows at Universal Orlando Resort’s three theme parks (Universal Studios Florida, Islands of Adventure, Volcano Bay), don’t think you’ve seen it all!
While the Backlot Tram Tour is long gone, Universal Studios’ (Florida) movie and adventure based resort harbors a few lesser known touring temptations worth checking out on your next visit.
Tours of Universal Studios date all the way back to 1914 (Universal City, California). The first guided tram tours arrived there in 1964. When Universal Orlando Resort opened in 1991, backlot tram tours whisked guests around the park for the first four years of park operation.
Today’s theme park has evolved into an amazing adventure of attractions, shows, and dining experiences. While tram tours are no longer a part of the Florida theme park, a host of informative tours offer diverse diversions at the resort.
For a grand overview of Universal Studios Florida or Islands of Adventure, a VIP tour provides perks perfect for “seeing it all.”
“The VIP Experiences include priority front-of-the-line access to all rides and attractions during the tour (based on itinerary), behind-the-scenes experiences and insider tips from our VIP tour guides, character meet-and-greets, reserved seating at shows, discounts at select Universal Orlando Resort™ owned and operated full-service dining and/or merchandise locations within the theme parks (with valid VIP Tour credential), complimentary valet parking (one vehicle, based on availability) and a continental breakfast.” –Universal Orlando Resort
VIP tours start at $189 per person (not including park admission). Private VIP tours are also available. Exclusive to only your party, they include a second meal as part of the package.
Men in Black Alien Attack Immigration Tour
A stroll through the queue at Universal Studios Florida’s Men in Black Alien Attack attraction contains delightful details (pay attention to the shadows in windows) and a glimpse of the main control center. For those eager agents desiring a closer look, an “immigration tour” delivers a deeper dive into those details. From intake forms to tabloid tips, examine desktop paperwork and props and have a close encounter with the twins.
This “secret” special privilege is not always available. However, should staffing allow, during slow times this exciting experience could be just a request away. Simply ask one of the attraction team members, letting them know you’d like to take the “Immigration Tour.” If the timing is right, an escorted (free) “walk on” to the control floor might be the next headline in your alien adventure.
Go Behind the scenes at Hard Rock Café
Get into the VIBE next time you dine at City Walk Orlando’s Hard Rock Café. VIBE, another “secret” guided tour, allows access to secret rooms filled with rock and roll treasures. From historic music magic to the artist autographs adorning the walls, this VIP tour takes diners to areas not normally accessed by guests. During the tour, which departs from the Woodstock Room, visit the John Lennon room and the Attic, a room filled with treasures from various worldwide Hard Rock Cafes.
This VIP experience takes up to an hour to complete. Availability depends on staffing. Upon check-in at the reservation desk, inquire about the VIP tour.
Any of the exciting experiences in this trio of terrific tours transform a fun trip to Universal Orlando Resort into a magical memory. For the VIP and Immigration tours, park admission is also required. Other opportunities are available for students (education group tours); details can be found on the Universal Orlando Resort website.