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TRAVEL & ENTERTAINMENT: Universal Studios Hollywood Delivers Non-Stop Summer Fun with Its Blockbuster Rides, Attractions and Lands
Jun 24, 2022
by Jan Miller
Spending a day at Universal Studios Hollywood is like no other. The popular theme park brings some of the most popular franchises in film history to life and readies for non-stop summer fun with its blockbuster rides and attractions, including the return of “The Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts TM Castle” in “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.”
As the hottest movies of the year hit the big screen, Universal Studios Hollywood is the only place in Los Angeles to catch the action after the credits roll and become immersed in one-of-a-kind blockbuster attractions. After watching the epic conclusion of Universal Pictures’ “Jurassic World Dominion,” which opened as the #1 movie in the world, guests can experience “Jurassic World—The Ride” where they will be caught in the middle of an extraordinary battle between the Indominus rex and her arch-rival, the Tyrannosaurus rex. Then come face-to-face with Blue at the Raptor Encounter and excavate dinosaur fossils with the kids at the interactive DinoPlay.
Minions continue to run amok at Universal Studios Hollywood as the theme park prepares for the theatrical release of Illumination and Universal Picture’s newest film, “Minions: The Rise of Gru,” on July 1. Join Gru, his daughters and the mischievous Minions on a heartwarming and thrilling ride. Start your adventure in Gru’s home, where you’re recruited for his latest scheme – one where you’ll become an actual Minion. After making it through “Minion training” things don’t go as planned! Within moments, you’re launched into an unforgettable trip through his super-villain laboratory. The laughs keep coming after the ride with an interactive, Minion-inspired dance party.
From Monday, June 27 through Sunday, July 17, mischievous Minions will take center stage at Universal Plaza, where guests can meet the newest Minion, Otto, along with fan favorites Jerry and Dave before they set off on an adventure aboard the “Despicable Me Minion Mayhem” ride. The Minion activation also features exclusive experiences for guests, including interacting with a 16-foot Minion squishy and engaging in a specially-created Minion-themed game through Sunday, August 14.
Family fun continues on Illumination’s award-winning ride “The Secret Life of Pets: Off the Leash!” where guests become transformed into stray puppies looking for their forever homes. Join Max, Duke, Gidget, Snowball, and all your favorite Pets characters for a thrilling ride through the streets of New York City.
A can’t-miss attraction is the immersive “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter” land. Enter through the towering castle gates and make your way down the familiar passageways and corridors of Hogwarts™ School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Visit iconic locations such as Dumbledore's office, the Defence Against the Dark Arts classroom, the Gryffindor™ common room, the Room of Requirement, and more. Then get ready to soar above the castle grounds as you join Harry Potter™ and his friends on an unforgettably thrilling adventure, coming face-to-face with an array of magical creatures. This amazing attraction uses groundbreaking, state-of-the-art technology (and a little magic) to create a one-of-a-kind ride.
“The Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts Castle” returns with a dazzling light and special effects projection display set against the backdrop of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. As night falls on Hogsmeade village, guests can enjoy an awe-inspiring spectacle that showcases the four houses of Hogwarts: Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff and Slytherin, accompanied by a special musical arrangement based on original scores from the film series.
Also, don’t miss the “Transformers” experience while you’re there. TRANSFORMERS The Ride-3D is an immersive, next generation thrill ride that definitely blurs the line between fiction and reality.
I suggest that before you even begin to explore all the fabulous rides and lands at Universal Studios you begin your visit by taking the world famous Studio Tour, which offers a real, behind-the-scenes look at movie making secrets. From its humble beginnings over 50 years ago, Universal Studios Hollywood has remained true to its roots of immersing guests in the awe-inspiring world of movie-making magic, providing remarkable access to movie sets on a real working studio lot. Its once celebrated “Glamour Trams” have evolved to become the now world-famous Studio Tour and a hallmark attraction, bringing millions of guests onto areas of an authentic movie and television studio typically restricted to authorized movie production personnel and into that elusive world motivated by three compelling words: lights, camera, action.
On this tour visitors can experience the largest street movie set in Hollywood history as you visit 13 city blocks on 400-plus acres of historic studio lot, built with creative consultation from Steven Spielberg himself. Along the way you’ll laugh along with comedian Jimmy Fallon, the video host of the Studio Tour. The star of “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” introduces entertaining clips seen on HD monitors in the trams to augment the live Studio Tour guide narration. This amazing behind-the-scenes tour of a real working movie studio lasts approximately 60 minutes, and worth every second! Universal Studios even offers Studio Tours in Spanish on select days.
This summer also sees the return of the “Special Effects Show,” a fast-paced and entertaining behind-the-scenes peek at the world of Hollywood movie-making magic. The Special Effects Show will run daily from Friday, July 1 through Sunday, August 14, then weekends only, beginning Saturday, August 20.
Preparing for a visit to Universal Studios Hollywood to experience the Best Day in L.A. is easy with a series of convenient online tools that range from Universal’s interactive mobile app and website and all-new Discover Universal hub, designed to help maximize trips for the ultimate visit.
More information is available at www.UniversalStudiosHollywood.com. Like Universal Studios Hollywood on Facebook and follow @UniStudios on Instagram and Twitter.
Universal CityWalk, which offers a plethora of shops and restaurants, is literally just around the corner from Universal Studios, and admission is free. More information is available at www.CityWalkHollywood.com.
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Photo caption: Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts Castle – Wizarding World of Harry Potter.