Friday, March 19, 2010

Universal Studios Singapore: Sentosa - Review and Tips

On 18 Mar 2010, I visited Universal Studios again.

This is my second visit, and my first when all the rides opened since yesterday.

This is my review for the preview of Universal Studios.

Today, I did something different, I had breakfast before entering the park.

Tips: Do not wear sandals, wear sneakers if you are riding roller coasters, sandals may fly off.

Tips: Do not bring too much stuff, lockers are charged $3 per 20 minute, and bags cannot go on some rides.

Tips: Bring a raincoat or buy a disposable one when you get there, it costs only $1.50 or so. Lots of attractions get you wet, and it rains in Singapore, unexpectedly.

Tips: You do not have to bring too much bottled water, there are plenty of water fountains around in the park

And I used public transportation.

Taking the RW8 is not hard, from the subway (MRT) just follow the signs to "Resorts World" and it will take you to the bus outside Vivo City.

The bus costs $2 per way, it is convenient and fast. You can also take the monorail which cost $3. When you arrive, follow the signs into Resorts World and look for Universal Studios.


The Universal Studios Singapore is located at Sentosa. A southern island off Singapore. Quite accessible by Bus and Trains (Harbor Front MRT Stop)


Weekday: Children (S$48), Adult (S$66), Senior (S$32)
Weekend:  Children (S$52), Adult (S$72), Senior (S$36)
2 Day Pass: Children (S$88), Adult (S$118), Senior (S$58)
Yearly Fun Pass: Children (S$238), Adult (S$318), Senior (S$188)
Yearly Superstar Pass: Children (S$828), Adult (S$1098), Senior (S$738)

The Carpark:

It fits 2000+ cars for B1 and B2, but parking is not cheap and traffic is bad. (Strangely, Carpark seemed full as well)

Finally, I arrived at Universal Studios. (With my mom who is 70 years old)

Operating Hours:

9 am - 6 pm (Trust me, be there early to avoid crowds.)
If you are there for the soft launch, (Mar 2010) they allow only 3,000 visitors as they are getting the staff ready and still doing some fine tuning. (Great move) You can afford to arrive a little later as there is no crowds for the rides. (So don't get the express pass) Otherwise, Be there before 9 am. 30,000 visitors a day will see you queue up for EVERYTHING!

Inside Universal Studios

There are many shows which you need to take the time and go to the shows.

Tip: When you first enter Universal Studios Singapore, get the free maps to orientate yourself. Though the place is not too big, it is good to know where are the cool stuff you want to visit.

Here is a --> link  <-- to the map too.

Basically, I wanted to go to Scifi World first, and so I took the Anti-clockwise route.

On my way there, I saw Kung Fu Panda running by.

Navigation in the park is not hard, lots of sign everywhere. Now to first stop: BSG

The first ride of the day: Battlestar Galletica: Human. (RED)
This seems really high, 14 stories up with speeds up to 90km/h, probably the fastest roller coaster ride there is today. A little intimidating for my mother who is 70 years old, but hey, who wants to live forever!

Strangely, there was no queue, lots of people watching, no one riding. I wonder what could be the reason. It does not look that intimidating. There is a long walk before the ride, quite interesting stuff to see, but otherwise, a waste of time. I reckoned if there was a queue, it would be interesting stuff to see while waiting.

Time for the Ride.

I'm not sure how to review this. In terms of speed, it is indeed one of the fastest rides I've got on, but there is no continuous big loops, just some small ones, and the tight corners does it me hurt a little from the change in direction. The weightlessness felt does last for some time in the really big drop, and overall, I would say the ride is kinda fun, but my 70 year old mom would disagree, as she says it is "scary" and she would not recommend it to seniors. I would say, try it -- at least once.

Then I took the BSG Ride: Cylon in the Rain.

In this ride, your feet is hanging in the air, the screws around more, but I still feel that the BSG Ride: Human is much faster.

Note: When I asked the staff how many "G-forces" does the ride pull. None of they could answer and one replied "two".

I've talked to some staff while I was buying some BSG Shirts and Gifts, and they did not watch BSG before, and think Cylons were just "Robots"

Well Universal Studios, you definitely need more training there. Get staff to watch the series!

Next Stop: Accelerator

Huge "Cup" rides you see in most fun fairs... What is the big deal? A fancy name? Well, I tried it out with my mom.

This is not even scary by any means. I could have lunch in there for hours and fell nothing. I tried spinning the "cup" and spinning in too many axis does not make it more wonderful in any way.

Next Stop: Revenge of the Mummy

This is an indoor roller coaster ride. It is mostly dark with scary sounds around you. It gets fast at times, lots of loud noises and great special effects. As it started to drizzle outside, this was by far my favorite ride. AND YOU DO NOT GET WET!

As for seniors, my mom has this advice. "So Scary. It goes backwards too. Then kong kong kong... And all black. And turn turn turn..." I am not sure what it meant, but she said she liked the ride but she is not going on it again.

This video is a little dark and out of focus at times. You can't really see the roller coaster move, but it does get fast at times...

Next Stop: Treasure Hunter

This is the first ride of the day where there was a line. I guess 20 minutes is not that bad.

Just to make things clear, this ride, you get into one of these old looking vehicles on a track and it moves slowly around a short course. There is no surprises, nothing scary, fast or much interesting. It is a great way to get your adrenalin down from Revenge of the Mummy ride!

There are some creative ways to show the scarabs running, but nothing really that groundbreaking.. Definitely not a Thrill Ride. Sort of a ride for elderly people and maybe kids under 4.

Next Stop: Jurassic Park Rapids Adventure

I have taken this ride in other countries as well, and I've always loved it, but I can't recall if I was going to be wet, but heck, since I'm here, I might as well go for it!


The ride is a pretty bumpy ride, with interesting Dinosaurs to see on the way, some will get wet, some with be relatively dry, and some till be soaked! I thinking knowing that you MAY get soaked is the big thrill. As the raft rounds corners, you are anticipating when the plunge will come as I think everyone does not really want to get soaked when you are on this ride. It is exciting because of the suspense as you move around the rapids, turning around corners.

So after the ride... I was soaked both times!! I would sat head to toe, all wet. It was fun though, and in a weather like Singapore, you will be dry after the next few rides. So please don't leave this ride to the last! Get on this ride early before your other outdoor rides to allow time to dry off!

Next Stop: Canopy Flyer

I would say this will be the perfect ride to dry off. Flying in the air with your feet off the ground. So for people walking below, watch out! Wet people may be dripping water on you!!

This ride is actually kid friendly as well, not too fast, just a little high. If you are afraid of heights, this will be a thrill ride for you, otherwise, it is nothing compared to Battlestar Galatictica "Cylon" ride. But as I said before, I dried myself off by 50% after this ride.

After all the rides, I started wondering around USS to look for nice photo spots to take photos while drying off. It is a great time to look at your watch to see if any show are available too, so you can catch it since you are around.  For those who are tired, it is also good to take a short break for drinks and snacks.

Next Stop: Dino-soarin'

What to say about this ride... Well, it is another kiddy ride. The plastic Pteranodons fly round in circles and you press a white button which makes you go up. Sounds simple? Yes it is, except that on my ride, the white button is faulty and I can't control the height of the Pteranodon. 

Next Stop:Waterworld

Waterworld is a show with stunts, explosions and lots of water! It is an interactive show which viewers could get wet. Rather fun and interesting to watch.

Here are some clips from the show.

At the show, there are a few zones,
Blue zone: You may get soaked.
Green zone: You may get wet.
Other zones: You are too far away from the action.

It is a good idea to arrive earlier to get a good seat for the show.

For me, I'm sitting at the Greenzone because I am filming it.

The show is fun, and it is actually quite amazing what they can fit on that stage!

Other attractions at The Lost World

Amber Rock Climb - This is a rock climbing which you need to pay $$ more to try it.

Next Stop: Far far away land

Ride: Shrek 4D -- "Frogging"

The entrance and the waiting area is very nice. great details on the walls. Then you enter an area before the show where there is a guide that keeps saying the word, "Frogging" (Singapore way of saying flogging) As you are in Singapore, you need to expect a lack luster crowd and everyone seemed tired and unenthusiastic.

Then you collect your 3-D goggles (or they call it Ogre Vision) and you proceed to the show. This show is very fun and interactive as you can feel the things happening on the screen.

If you have watched "Avatar" you cannot compare the level of 3-D to that movie as Shrek is still a cartoon. But with water spraying on you, the wind in your face, the chairs rocking while there is a chase scene, Shrek 4-D promises to entertain both the young and old.

It is even fun to watch a second time!

Do not sit too far forward as you do not get the "Wind" and the experience as much as say, the middle rows.

Note: You may get wet. And you will find out when you are there!

Next Stop: Enchanted Airways

This is yet another roller coaster ride. Not very fast, probably for kids too.

There are other attractions at Far Far Away.

Magic Potion Spin is a Kiddie Ferris wheel located at the exit of Shrek 4-D
Donkey Live is located in the corner of Far Far Away, and it is a kids singalong with Donkey.

I would recommend stopping by Friar's for a $2 soft serve ice cream. Yum!

Next Stop: Madagascar

There is King Julien's Beach Party-Go-Round. (Another kids ride)

Madagascar: A Crate Adventure (Coming soon)

Gloria's Snack Shack.

Come to think of it, there is nothing much at Madagascar!

Except for this:

And yes, the penguins are stealing the show!

Next Stop: Hollywood.

It is past 1pm, and time for lunch!


As I had a heavy breakfast, I picked the Celebrity Cafe as I've tried Loui's NY Pizza Parlor and Mel's Drive-in and the food did not impress me at all. They may be value for money, but I'm not that hungry!

There was a $10 meal discount per ticket, and for $2.20 I had a cake, an ice cream, a Milk shake and an Iced Milo Mocca. It was good! Service was a little slow, and all my food except my Milkshake arrived, and my Milkshake arrived 15 minutes later.

I would recommend this place as the sandwiches looks delicious along with other baked goods...


Rain arrived and it came hard and heavy! As Hollywood Area is sheltered, it is a good place to avoid the rain.

I walked around the park and only the outdoor thrill rides are halted in the heavy rain. When the rain reduces to a drizzle, you could take BSG rides and the other roller coasters again.

This was a great opportunity to enter the different merchandise area to look at what is available for souvenirs.

There was lot of neat stuff for sale, and we bought some as our tickets included a $5 off any store any purchase, and we combined it for a $10 discount, but we ended up spending over $50.

Next Stop: Monster Rock Show.

There are a few Monster Rock shows daily. Located at the Pantages Hollywood Theater, this show promises to Rock your world!

The stage is fantastic, the way the actors utilize the lights, explosions and stage design in their dance is pretty good. This is not to be missed.

Tips: Arrive early to get a good seat. You want to be in front to be close to the action where the actors do come down and run around the area and interact with the crowd.

Next Stop: New York

There is a Rockafellers performance after the Monster Rock Show and we rushed over to catch it.

This is a street performance, which is very exciting to watch. Like the other shows, this encourages audience participation too!

It does not last that long, and it is fun to watch!

Next Stop: Lights Camera Action!

This is a sound stage which becomes a setting for a major hurricane about to hit New York City. I will not spoil the surprise of what is going to happen, but it is pretty good! You get to see a hurricane right before your eyes. Talk about 3-D!

There is one more attraction I did not review "Stage 28" located in New York.

I did not really look hard for it as it is located in a corner and I'm not sure what it is. The description on the map says "A state-of-the-art sound stage for motion picture and television production."

I guess you can find out and tell me about it



I really like going to Universal Studios Singapore as it seems like a rather fun place for children (taller than 107 cm to take all the rides) and thrilling enough for adults.

The food is relatively ok and affordable. There are many other activities to do besides the rides, and it should promise a fun filled day for the family. If you want to visit the whole park, I would recommend arriving early to avoid crowds and go for the ride you want to take.

For $66 per adult, I would say it sure beats flying overseas to HK Disneyland or other even further theme parks, and the price includes a $10 meal and $5 discount on gifts. I'm not sure about the annual packages, and you can try out the park before "upgrading" to the annual package if you like it so much.

I personally would not pay $318 to go there for a year (with blackout dates)

After the park close at 6 pm, I would recommend walking over to Palio, an Italian restaurant located at Hotel Michael at Resorts World Sentosa for one of the best Italian food in Singapore.

Hope you enjoyed the review,

-- Robin Low

Some Youtube playlist on USS.