Last trip I walked around and figured out where all the cabanas are and if they are handicap accessible and thought this info may be helpful. I have attached an image with the cabana numbers on it - hopefully you can read my notes
Universal will not let you request a specific cabana (except for requests for handicap cabanas) when reserving but they will let you request at check-in so its helps to know what you want ahead of time and get there early if you want a specific request.
They offer 4 different cabana options (lower, upper, single, family):
Double cabanas consist of 4 cabanas - 2 lower and 2 upper. So when booking this is what you get when booking lower/upper. Individual cabanas are tagged with A-D on the cabana number. For example cabana 23 is a double, if booked lower your specific cabana might be 23A. Each seats 6.
Singles are standalone 1 story, no one is connected to your cabana or above. Each seats 6.
Family are the bigger cabanas that seat 16 people.
Prices are lowest to highest - lower, single, upper, family.
The handicap accessible cabanas have ramps to enter instead of stairs and you will not have to go through any sand to get to them, so these are the best when using a wheelchair, crutches, etc. There is a concrete walkway to all of them. If the cabana is not specifically handicap accessible then some of them you will be walking through sand to get to it.
Info for the handicap accessible cabanas (I think all of this info is correct but let me know if not).
Standalone singles - 8, 11, 12, 22
Lower level - 21 (2 lower cabanas)
Lower and upper (elevator to get to the upper level) - 17, 14, maybe 13 (not completely sure).
Now these are just my personal observations/opinions on cabanas:
– Most of the upper level cabanas will have awesome views of the park!
- The cabanas overlooking the wave pool (4-8) are in a great location and have an awesome view over the wavepool and volcano (truly amazing views) - in the summer these will get the best breeze (especially the uppers). Cons are that there isn’t a wall, bushes etc to block sun as much, they are right off the walkway through the volcano, people are constantly walking by and looking in so you won’t have as much privacy in the lowers, and there is no sand so no way to sit out in front of your cabana on a chair (but no sand is also a plus). In the summer if it rains these will be the most exposed (4, 5 probably less so than the others). But those views are seriously incredible
- Cabana 11, 12 are good if you have little kids and will be spending a lot of time at the kid play area, we have older kids so I don’t really prefer these cabanas for my family. And these are in the middle of everything so not as much privacy.
- 15, 16 are off by themselves so good for privacy but I think it is harder for the servers to get to those as often, especially when busy and 15 would be the worst since it is WAY in the back. I don’t think they rent these out unless completely booked up.
- 9, 10 - at the back of the wave pool. Great location for the wave pool and good shade since they bump up against some rocks, but not much privacy since they are right by some stairs.
- 17 - 23 - these are all in a good location. They are off the path a little bit and are in front of chairs so you can sit out if you want to. They do back up to the freeway but we didn’t really hear much noise from it. The lower levels will also have good shade due to the back wall and sun being blocked from the upper level. 17, 18 and 19 are by the Ohno and Ohyah drop slides so you can watch people coming down those all day.
- 13, 14 - these are the only ones with elevators. I don’t prefer these since my kids like the rapid river the most and these are far from it, but they have privacy and good shade so its all about preference. Also they are close to the kid play area.
- 1, 2, 3 - these are 2 family cabanas and a 1 single. So no choice if you need the family cabana. The single is great for access to rides, not so great for awesome views and as much privacy since you are on a pathway. And no sand/chairs in front of the cabana either (which can be a plus).
The prices vary based on the season. We rented a lower on a Monday in March for $199. In the summer I think they start at $399 or $449 and go up from there.
Hope this info helps!