"Hagrid's Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure" has crash-landed its way into the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
The brand-new roller coaster officially opens June 13 at Universal Studios Florida's Islands of Adventure, and with 50 mph speeds, sharp turns, a dead-end peak and a dramatic drop — during perhaps the wildest moment, the track plummets 16.5 feet — it's a must-hit attraction inside Hogsmeade. And at nearly a mile long, it's not one of those on-and-off coasters; this thing is extensive.
With any incredible ride comes an unavoidable queue, and this one's no exception. But even while standing in line, there's plenty to experience.
Pumpkins and gourds galore: During the outdoor segment of the queue, you'll get a close-up look at the exterior view of Hagrid's hut. The grounds are in a bit of disarray, due of course to magical creatures' presences on the property, but mostly intact are plenty of gigantic pumpkins. You'll recognize the autumnal imagery from "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban." Massive bite marks in some of the vegetables are an early sign of what's to come on the ride.
Crossing the bridge to the castle ruins: Huge ivy-lined arches introduce the castle ruins. AOL chatted with a Wizarding World cast member who said one of her favorite elements of the queue is just over the bridge, where an amazing mermaid mural will jog your memory of that terrifying underwater competition during the Triwizard Cup in "Goblet of Fire."
Easter eggs? Nope, dragon eggs: Don't skim over all the eggs housed in one indoor room. Inside one of the right-hand cabinets, you'll spy the golden egg that once spoke secrets to Harry (after screaming at him). More subtle call-outs reside in Hagrid's lab, where a cast member teased that he wouldn't spoil anything, "but there's a lot of stuff from the Dragon Challenge."
Crocodile hunter: You'll miss this one if you aren't looking for it: Situated somewhere along the outdoor path, designers crafted a crocodile out of logs and rocks. That may seem irrelevant to the "Harry Potter" universe, but you might remember a brief moment that involves a crocodile heart in "Prisoner of Azkaban"; Ron throws one at Draco during a Potions lesson.
License to fly: During the Opening Celebration, fans got a close look at one of the motorbikes. The license plate is GDO 558, just as it was in "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One," when Hagrid scooped Harry up to head into the skies.
Motorbike or sidecar?: This is the big question. The ride seats people two-by-two, with one person gripping handlebars and the other strapped into the sidecar attachment. AOL rode in both, and suffice it to say that you're in for a thrill with either choice. That said, there is something particularly exciting about feeling like you're driving the thing! In any case, snagging a front-row spot is ideal for maximum impact.
It's not over when you get off the ride: The exit queue features its own remarkable elements. One cast member pointed out the knotted roots that stretch through as you make your way out of the Forbidden Forest.
Don't forget a water bottle, and maybe a small snack: You can never be reminded too many times that the Orlando heat is no joke! This is a long line, and while it's definitely worth the wait, you could spend quite a while in the outdoor part of the queue, so have those necessities on hand. (And go to the bathroom before getting in line!)