Thursday, February 22, 2024

REVIEW: The 2022 Holidays at Universal Orlando

The Holidays are back at Universal Orlando! The tradition continues as all the Universal Holiday favorites are returning this year; including Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, with “The Magic of Christmas at Hogwarts Castle” nighttime show – as well as the return of the Grinchmas Who-liday Spectacular and Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s.

REVIEW The 2022 Holidays at Universal Orlando

The Grinchmas Who-liday Spectacular continues to knock it out of the park. The show is more-or-less the same show you’ve seen, outside a few tweaks to costuming. Once again, the stage show is featured in the old Blue Man Group theater – offering a lot more comfortable seating and more capacity.

The Grinch is arguably the star of Universal’s Holiday offerings, and for good reason. The interactions with the “mean one” have always been memorable. If you’re looking to have a little more Green in your Holiday season, you can start your day at Circus McGurkus Cafe Stoo-pendous with The Grinch & Friends Character Breakfast; or book the Universal Holidays Tour for an exclusive Meet and Greet with the Grinch and his faithful dog, Max.

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Christmas in the Wizarding World, “The Magic of Christmas at Hogwarts Castle” nighttime show, and Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s round out the Holiday offerings with no changes and continue to be wonderful holiday traditions.

In recent years, Universal has shifted its focus to expanding its food offerings for seasonal events, and the Holidays feature some true standouts – including the Roast Beast Sandwich (available at Circus McGurkus Café Stoo-pendous) – a mini meatloaf sandwich featuring French onion soup-dipped roast beef with a cheddar cheese sauce – and even a “secret” sauce – served on a pretzel bun; and the Green Egg Brownie Pop, which is a brownie cake pop designed to look like the Green Egg from the popular book. We didn’t get a chance to try it but our sights are set on Santa’s Cookies and Milk “Shake” from Toothsome on our next visit.

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This year’s Holiday Tribute Store returns with four themed rooms inspired by Who-ville, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Earl the Squirrel, and New York vintage holiday decor. More merchandise is expected to be released soon, but Earl the Squirrel is front and center for most of the merch again, and there is a new, awesome Grinch popcorn bucket.

What’s most impressive about the Holidays at Universal is that we spent about 6 hours at the Resort, and we didn’t even do most of the other Holiday activities available.  The Holiday Tree Hunt is back, Mistletoe Pines Village looks to be returning, and the Red & Green Coconut Club is riding off the success of HHN’s Dead Coconut Club. Top-Selling holiday musical artist, Mannheim Steamroller, returns to Universal Studios Florida with live performances on December 3, 4, 10, and 11. That’s not even mentioning the holiday-themed food and beverage offerings, character encounters, seasonal décor, and activities at Universal’s hotels.

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We’ll be going back for more Holiday fun soon, especially to get more of that Roast Beast Sandwich and Cookies and Milk “Shake”.

The Holidays at Universal Orlando runs daily through January 1, 2023.

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