Heading to Orlando during the holiday season? Universal Orlando Resort is celebrating the Christmas season with its annual Holidays at Universal Orlando from November 17, 2018, through January 6, 2019. Guests of all ages will be mesmerized by the lights, shows, and excitement going on throughout the Universal parks and CityWalk. Don't forget to make reservations when you can, things can get a bit crowded this time of year.
What happens during Holidays at Universal Orlando?
During the Christmas season, families can visit all the usual theme park attractions and rides, plus enjoy special holiday entertainment that is included with park-to-park admission to Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure.
As always, families that stay at one of Universal's on-site hotels receive benefits that include early admission to the theme parks an hour before the public opening and complimentary water taxis to theme parks and the CityWalk dining-and-entertainment area.
Highlights in 2018 include:
- The holiday season kicks off with the Macy’s Holiday Parade at Universal Studios Florida. This year, visitors will enjoy watching giant Minion balloons, a massive Santa Clause and characters from your favorite movies like Shrek and Madagascar.
- Grinchmas comes to life throughout Seuss Landing at Universal’s Islands of Adventure. Families can enjoy a live retelling of Dr. Seuss’s classic holiday tale, “Grinchmas Who-liday Spectacular,” featuring the Whos from Who-ville, accompanied by an original musical score by Mannheim Steamroller. Guests can also meet The Grinch and the Whos and on select dates, enjoy a special character breakfast.
- The Wizarding World of Harry Potter will brighten up your holiday. Stroll down Diagon Alley and enjoy the festive decor and Christmas lights. Many of the stores have special holiday treats on the menu so make sure to check them all out. Hogwarts Castle will amaze you, too. It's completely lit up for the occasion and can brighten up any night sky.
- Mannheim Steamroller will return to the Music Plaza stage in Universal Studios for a concert on select nights to perform their memorable holiday hits. Performances are held on select nights.
- New Year’s Eve at Universal CityWalk is where to ring in the New Year. This evening event is geared for grown-ups and includes live entertainment and unique party zones—each with their own entertainment and signature drinks—along with six different clubs with live music, unlimited gourmet cuisine, and Orlando’s largest dance floor. The Universal parks also celebrate New Year's with live performances, pyrotechnics, and confetti at midnight.
The celebration continues at Universal Orlando’s four on-site hotels, where guests can celebrate with holiday buffets and dining events, tree-lighting ceremonies, Hanukkah candle lightings, visits from Santa Claus, holiday poolside "dive-in" movies, strolling carolers, holiday kids crafts, and family-friendly New Year’s Eve celebrations.
You'll also find holiday decor and music in the dining venues at Universal Citywalk.