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Get Set for a Universal Orlando Summer!

Get Set for a Universal Orlando Summer

Heads up everyone arriving in Orlando on or after June 14 – you’re in for an absolute treat at Universal Orlando, as they have just unveiled a host of new attractions for this summer!

Not only will we see the opening of their new DreamWorks Land at Universal Studios, but there will also be extra live entertainment in the park, as well as an all-new Wizarding World of Harry Potter show over at Islands of Adventure.

This summer extravaganza is exactly what we were hoping to see when Universal suddenly shut down the former Woody Woodpecker KidZone area last year and announced the DreamWorks development.

And that will be the BIG news on June 14 when this latest section of the park officially opens, but look out for more here, including – wait for it – a brand new daily Parade. But let’s start with the BIG news.

DreamWorks Land

DreamWorks Land

Universal made the surprise announcement that its KidZone area was closing, ahead of a complete makeover, in January 2023, but there was no initial confirmation of what would replace it. Then, last summer, the DreamWorks transformation was unveiled and we waited eagerly for the details.

Happily, we now know exactly what is coming to provide all the additional children’s fun and games, starting on June 14. The key elements will include FOUR interactive play areas:

King Harold’s Swamp Symphony: Create music at this fun area where the lily pads are not merely decorations but the keys to the melody. As visitors step, touch and interact with them, the enchanted lily pads awaken the frog choir, each pad bringing a unique note to life.

*Shrek’s Swamp for Little Ogres: *This play area is designed with the smallest ogres in mind, boasting four thrilling slides, a splash-filled wet play zone and a playful playground paired with Shrek’s iconic outhouse.

Mama Luna Feline Fiesta: Based on the thrilling world of Puss in Boots 2: The Last Wish, here children can play with Mama Luna’s cats as interactive screens are activated by buttons, bells, maracas and levers. Keep an eye out as everyone’s favourite swashbuckling feline may also make an appearance or two.

Po’s Kung Fu Training Camp: The much-touted section featuring Kung Fu Panda invites guests to step into an immersive play zone inspired by the films as Panda Village comes alive with interactive features such as water cannons, dump buckets, giant fans, gongs and merry-go-round noodle bowls.

Then there will be The DreamWorks Imagination Celebration, a live show that highlights all the classic children’s films “in a multisensory live show that will bring beloved DreamWorks stories to life like never before.”

Finally, The Trollercoaster will provide the ride thrills for the junior brigade, adapting the old Woody Woodpecker’s Nuthouse Coaster in a completely new way to ensure lots of themed excitement.

CineSational: A Symphonic Spectacular

CineSational: A Symphonic Spectacular

Universal surprisingly shut down their Cinematic Celebration show last year, ending a five-year run as the Studios’ big night-time finale. Now, also starting on June 14, the lagoon will come to life with an exhilarating new show that celebrates the emotional power of music by leveraging the iconic scores and scenes from blockbuster films that have inspired Universal’s cinematic history.

The presentation will include the Warner Bros. Pictures Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts films, as well as blockbusters such as Jurassic World, Jaws, Shrek, Ghostbusters, Back to the Future, How to Train Your Dragon, E.T., Fast and Furious, Minions, The Mummy and King Kong.

Just as awe-inspiring as the moments featured during the show are the impressive technologies and special effects that bring it to life. The next-level lagoon extravaganza features 228 fountains that reach heights up to 131ft, super-sharp 4K projection mapping, an original composition featuring newly arranged scores meticulously crafted to each scene, and – the crowning glory – more than 600 drones, all coming together to envelop guests in a breath-taking display of unforgettable cinematic moments.

Hogwarts Always

Hogwarts Always

Over at Islands of Adventure, guests visiting The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade will delight in a new night-time adventure (on select nights). This incredible projection show will take guests through iconic moments of a school year at Hogwarts – all set against the majestic backdrop of Hogwarts castle.

From supply shopping in Diagon Alley and the exhilarating ride aboard the Hogwarts Express to participating in the Sorting Ceremony, celebrating the House Cup winner and much more, this visually stunning experience promises to captivate witches, wizards and Muggles of all ages.

The show will feature four different endings that celebrate each Hogwarts house and will culminate with a colourful pyrotechnic display. Fans should also listen for dialogue from beloved characters like Professor Dumbledore, Hagrid, the Sorting Hat and more throughout the show.

Trolls Land Universal

Universal Mega Movie Parade

Beginning July 3, some of the most beloved stories from Universal’s films will leap off the screen and land on the streets of Universal Studios for a spectacular daily celebration of iconic Universal Pictures movies E.T., Back to the Future, Jaws, Ghostbusters, Jurassic World, plus Illumination’s Minions and Sing and DreamWorks Animation’s Trolls and Kung Fu Panda.

The all-new Universal Mega Movie Parade will replace the Superstar Parade that closed in June last year. It will be Universal’s biggest daytime parade to date, combining 13 brand new floats, nearly 100 performers – including dancers, skaters, stilt walkers, poi performers and more – and special effects to create a jaw-dropping experience where guests can relive classic film moments in a whole new way.

In Universal’s own words, “Guests will watch in awe as they see the massive 16ft Stay Puft Marshmallow Man atop the Ghostbusters float, the colourful Caterbus and giant rainbows on the vibrant Trolls float, a live marching drum line performing the iconic soundtrack of Jaws alongside a float themed to the film, and – for the epic finale – a Gyrosphere, Raptors and fierce T-Rex aboard the Jurassic World float. Fans should also pay close attention to the parade to see if they can spot additional details that nod to iconic elements from the films.”

And that completes a fabulous line-up of new attractions and entertainment in two of Orlando’s best theme parks. It amounts to a real bonanza of extra appeal for all our visitors this summer, and we think it might just add up to the best value, too (so don’t forget to make sure you have your tickets in advance!).

What new element will you be most excited to see at Universal Orlando? Tell us about it on our Facebook, X and Instagram pages.