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Celebrate Lunar New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood

by Mommy Frog on January 12, 2023 Los Angeles

A note from Mommy Frog: Lunar New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood is a much smaller affair these days. In 2023, you can still enjoy Lunar New Year food and merchandise. 

Lunar New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood - PinterestIf you hop into Universal Studios Hollywood from late January to early February, you’ll be greeted with red lanterns and beautiful plum blossoms to celebrate Lunar New Year! The Universal Studios Hollywood Upper Lot and Central Plaza are festively decorated for the holiday, with special activities, character meet and greets and delicious food. Lunar New Year is the celebration of the start of the new year with the first new moon of the lunar calendar (usually falling in late January and ending on the first full moon). China, Vietnam, Korea and several other Asian countries celebrate this holiday (and Americans, of course), but anyone can come to appreciate and learn about this special celebration during Lunar New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood.

Celebrating Lunar New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood in 2023

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood-Hello Kitty in Lunar New Year clothes

Lunar New Year has not really returned in its full glory since the pandemic. In 2023, you can see some characters — such as Hello Kitty — in special clothing. It is the year of the cat in Vietnamese culture after all! It is the year of the rabbit in Chinese culture.

Celebrate Lunar New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood-Lunar New Year decor and menus

Hollywood & Dine has a special Lunar New Year menu with pork ramen noodles, noodle soup, steamed fish, teriyaki chicken, a Korean corn dog, themed drinks and more. Traditional entertainment, Mr. Ping's Noodle Shop and other celebrations in the plaza are not listed as being offered this year.

Celebrating Lunar New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood Pre-Pandemic

Lunar New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood - Family

Before the pandemic, Lunar New Year was a bigger affair at Universal Studios Hollywood. From outside the park gates all the way to Central Plaza, you’d see special Lunar New Year decorations. Once you entered the Central Plaza, you could read the fun fact signs to gain a better understanding of traditions, especially if this holiday is new for you. The menus were in English and several Asian languages. Celebrating Lunar New Year at Universal Studios made for hoppy family memories! We saw many families traveling from both far and near during our visit!

We will leave this here another year in case Lunar New Year festivities return in 2024.

Meet Characters During Lunar New Year at Universal Studios

Lunar New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood - Po

Lunar New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood - FoodCelebrate Lunar New Year with favorite characters dressed in the Lunar New Year holiday best. You can meet Hello Kitty and Minions in front of a Lunar New Year display. From "Kung Fu Panda," strike a pose with Po, Tigress and Mr. Ping. Choose a kung fu pose to try when you get your picture taken with Po. Mr. Ping is Po’s father, and he can be found in Mr. Ping’s Noodle Shop. He’s quite hilarious. After you meet Mr. Ping, you’re going to want to hop around the corner to try some of his dishes. You can also meet a Mandarin-speaking Megatron Transformer!

Taste Delicious Food at Lunar New Year at Universal Studios

Mr. Ping’s Noodle Shop sells delicious noodle dishes and Asian foods. We tried Pork Ramen, Po's Dumplings, Oogway Egg Roll and Sesame Balls. It was all so flavorful! Other choices include Secret Ingredient Noodle Soup, Beef Pho, Glass Noodle Salad, Asian Sausage on a Stick and Cherry Cheesecake. Yum!

Make a Lunar New Year Wish on the Wishing Trees

The colorful pink plum blossoms beckon you in. Pick up a red piece of paper to write a wish for the new year and clip it to the trees!

Lunar New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood - Art Class

Learn to Draw Po

Take an art class at Feng the Palace Artist's Stand and learn to draw Po.

Catch Cultural Performances on the Weekend

Lunar New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood takes place every day. But during the weekend, you’ll see cultural displays of martial arts and a lion dance!


Purchase Merchandise

You can purchase souvenirs to remember your trip. You can also play a game of skill with a guaranteed prize of a plush Hello Kitty or a Minion next to the merchandise cart. Lily says she likes those odds! Guaranteed Hello Kitty? Oh yeah! Hop into the stores to find a Lunar New Year cookie to take home and enjoy.

We frogs wish our readers great hoppiness and prosperity this year!

If you are celebrating Lunar New Year at Universal Studios, what are you most looking forward to? Share your excitement and ask questions in the comment section below. If you still need Universal Studios Hollywood tickets, your froggy friends at Undercover Tourist can help you save with discount Universal Studios Hollywood resort tickets.

Related: Universal Studios Hollywood Tips to Maximize Your Time

Related: When to Hop on Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass

Hoppy planning!

Keep hopping, Mommy Frog!
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