In 2017, Universal Orlando Resort saw the opening of the Volcano Bay water theme park, the new ride Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon at Universal Studios Florida and the introduction of new holiday events. And, the resort is showing no signs of slowing down in 2018. With grand openings, upcoming announcements and a few surprises thrown in, it's shaping up to be another dazzling year. Here's our look at what's new at Universal Orlando in 2018 and beyond.
Fast & Furious – Supercharged
You'll be able to jump into the action when this new high-octane ride opens at Universal Studios Florida in the spring 2018. Get your picture taken with fifteen authentic Fast & Furious cars located throughout the queue. Then, hop aboard a party bus and hang on tight as you join your favorite characters from the popular film series on a high-speed chase through the streets of San Francisco. Dom, Letty, Hobbs and the rest of the crew are ready to welcome you into the Fast Family.
Universal’s Aventura Hotel
Adding to the already great lineup of on-site hotels, the Aventura will be a modern, sleek and nicely priced hotel opening at the Universal Orlando Resort this August. Enjoy amazing views out of your floor-to-ceiling windows in contemporary rooms. Relax with a drink or small plate 17 stories up in the air at the rooftop bar with panoramic views of all three theme parks including the centerpiece Volcano erupting nearby at Universal's Volcano Bay.
Special events: A Celebration of Harry Potter, Mardi Gras and more
This year's events include the return of A Celebration of Harry Potter later this month with special guests Stanislav Yanevski (Viktor Krum), James Phelps (Fred Weasley), Oliver Phelps (George Weasley) and others. Mardi Gras kicks off February 3, offering a slice of New Orleans at Universal Studios Florida featuring. Check out live bands, great food and a phenomenal parade. And, of course, the nation's premiere Halloween event, Halloween Horror Nights, returns in the Fall for its 28th straight year.
Holidays at Universal
The holidays at Universal Orlando were completely re-imagined in 2017. From the state-of-the-art projection show at Hogwarts Castle and new Christmas displays in the Wizarding World to the completely new Holiday Parade Featuring Macy’s with new floats and balloons, the holidays have never been better. Plus, don’t forget the classics like Grinchmas and Mannheim Steamroller. This year, all of that is returning, with a few new surprises as well. Mark your calendars, because the festivities begin mid-November 2018.
Look to the future
Get excited: A lot more is coming to Universal Orlando in 2018 – and beyond. Stay tuned to Best of Orlando for announcements on several new projects, including the new Harry Potter ride replacing Dragon Challenge at Islands of Adventure, an additional projection mapping experience for Hogwarts Castle, an all-new nighttime show for Universal Studios Florida, a new show replacing Terminator 2: 3D and upcoming attractions of Super Nintendo World. It's going to be an incredible year!
(Photos: Universal Orlando)
Orlando, FL – 1/10/18
By: Alicia Stella