Last week, we trekked up to Los Angeles for a peek into some Grinch-y goodness. That's right, it's time to celebrate the holidays at Universal Studios Hollywood! We hung out on the backlot, ate some festive food, and saw snowfall in the park. That's quite a sight for Southern California, I must say.
Holidays at Universal Studios
The fun kicks off right at the entrance, which is all decked out in Whoville style.
Everyone takes a photo with the globe at the exit gates, of course, but my favorite is another shot. Don't miss the quintessential Hollywood picture opportunity, just through the front gates of the park.
There are a ton of big kid-friendly rides and experiences, but with our little dudes we just love to make a bee-line straight to Super Silly Fun Land. There are a ton of free play opportunities, and the Minions like to hang out in this area too!
For a late breakfast or early lunch, grab some of the cute treats at Mel's Diner. The Who Hash is a good deal, and it's delicious. There's a ton of seating, too. Nate and I usually take the opportunity to cool our heels while our kids run around the alcove for a bit.
Wander through the displays in this area for a real-life, up-close look at some Hollywood sets.
We even saw a show being filmed in this area! They had all sorts of signs up explaining that passersby may wind up being in the final cut. So cool.
The decorations for the holidays are beautiful in this area, and they put a lot of interesting ornaments in the displays.
This little walking tour will take you right to the center of the park, Universal Plaza. Right now it's all decked out as Whoville for Grinchmas! There are a ton of performances all throughout the day by the people of Whoville, Saturday and Sunday this weekend and daily from December 14 – December 30. The Who-liday Singers are pretty darn entertaining. There's also a storytelling show of Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas with Cindy-Lou Who herself.
Best of all, you can get pictures with the people of Whoville, Max the dog, and the Grinch himself!
We always head down to the Studio Tour to enjoy a nice, relaxing ride in the middle of the day. On the stroll over there from Grinchmas, you'll see a melty snowman statue to the right. There are usually characters posing for pictures in this area, and there's a hilarious comedy duo that sometimes appears in the windows above and shouts hysterical commentary down at the crowd. We were amused by their banter for a good half hour.
Christmas in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter kicks off around 5:30pm, going now through January 6. This area of the park does reach capacity, so I recommend getting in no later than 5. Hot Butterbeer is being sold at kiosks and at the Three Broomsticks restaurant, which also has some great holiday fare right now. Hogwarts castle transforms during an incredible light projection show around 5:30, 6, 6:30 and 7pm (again, get there early for a viewing spot!) and snowfall happens every 15 to 30 minutes randomly throughout the night.
My kids love to check out the train just inside the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and there's a large door down the street to the right that occasionally shakes and fumes from an apparent dragon escape attempt. My absolute favorite thing to do in this area is shopping. The shops are all decked out with cool knick-knacks, ornaments and candy. The Frog Choir is around, too, with Hogwarts students and their giant throaty frogs singing holiday songs.
We typically nab an ornament or two for our tree. Since the first time we dressed as Minions for Halloween, it's become something of a tradition to get an ornament in the theme of our Halloween costumes for the tree. This is a great time to grab any Hollywood Christmas decor you could possibly want!
On our way out, we visited Santa Claus himself over at Universal Citywalk. I recommend parking at Jurassic Parking if you can, so your car is right near the big tree and you get a nice, festive walk through all the shops on your way in and out of the park.
Have you ever experienced the holidays at Universal Studios Hollywood?