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July 24, 2017

Universal Orlando Closing Dragon Challenge Roller Coasters September 5

Article written by:
Eric Gieszl, Editor

Orlando, FL – Universal Orlando today announced the closure of the Dragon Challenge roller coaster inside the The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade at Universal's Islands of Adventure theme park. The final day to ride the two B&M inverted roller coasters will be Monday, September 4.

After the closure Universal plans to remove the roller coasters to make way for an all-new Harry Potter based attraction. A few details about the new ride were shared today on the Universal Orlando blog:

  • This all-new thrill ride will take you deeper into J.K. Rowling's Wizarding World, where you will encounter some of your favorite characters and creatures. It'll be unlike anything we've ever done before and it will be fun for the entire family.
  • The new attraction will be one of the most highly-themed coaster experiences we've created. It will combine a new level of storytelling with an action-packed adventure…and a few surprises along the way.
  • Our award-winning Universal Creative team is once again collaborating with Warner Bros. and the production design team from the Harry Potter films to bring this new coaster experience to life.
  • This ride is going to redefine the category and transport you to thrilling places, drawing you into even more exciting adventures within the wizarding world. It's going to be the perfect addition to Hogsmeade.

Universal promised that more details on the new roller coaster will be revealed in the future.

Dragon Challenge, originally named Dueling Dragons, is one of the original attractions at Islands of Adventure theme park. When it opened in 1999 the two intertwined inverted roller coasters, one named Fire and the other Ice, from Bolliger & Mabillard dueled each other with five near miss moments. When Universal announced plans in May 2007 to built The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, the roller coasters were re-named Dragon Challenge and the lengthy indoor queue was re-themed.

Unfortunately two incidents involving riders and loose objects during the summer 2011 forced Universal to suspect the dueling aspect of the ride. The ride experience was never the same. Since Dragon Challenge lags behind in popularity among The Wizarding World attractions its no surprise that Universal will replace it with something new.

In the meantime, you've got just over a month left to get your final rides in before the Dragon Challenge ends for good.

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