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A Hoppin' Overview of Universal Orlando Resort Events in 2023

Universal Orlando Special Events 2022 - PinterestWhen it comes to putting on spectacular events, Universal Orlando Resort doesn't hold back. Universal Studios Florida has long been home to one of the nation's premier events — Halloween Horror Nights. If scary isn't your style, you'll find other year-round, family-friendly Universal Orlando events such as Mardi Gras and Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter! Our Frog Family leaps at the chance to experience as many of the annual events as we can, and we know yours will, too!

We wanted to provide you this complete guide to Universal Orlando events in 2023 and beyond because the Universal Studios concerts, parties, festivals and events are some of the best reasons to visit! You will find more resources and tips for planning your Universal Orlando Resort trip inside our Orlando Planning Guide. You'll also find all of the Universal Orlando events listed on our Crowd Calendar, which is the easiest way to see the best times to visit. Note: These Universal Orlando Resort events appear in the order that they are held throughout the year. We don't yet have confirmed dates for all of the events, but we'll be adding them to this page as soon as they become available!

Complete Guide to Universal Orlando Resort Events in 2023 and Beyond


Rock the Universe (Universal Studios Florida) — Jan. 27 to 28, 2023

A separately ticketed special event, Rock the Universe is Florida's biggest Christian music festival. Universal Studios Florida closes at 6 p.m. for the event, but guests with concert tickets are able to enter the park starting at 4 p.m. On Jan. 27, check out performances from Skillet, Tauren Wells, Bethel Music, Rend Collective, Evan Craft and Katy Nichole. On Jan. 28, you can rock out to music from Zach Williams, Matthew West, Dante Bowe, Anne Wilson, We Are Messengers and Cain.


Mardi Gras: International Flavors of Carnaval (Universal Studios Florida) — Feb. 4 to April 16, 2023

Universal Orlando Events - Mardi Gras

This Universal Orlando rite of passage takes place each spring on select dates at Universal Studios. Highlights of this family-friendly event include the Mardi Gras parade through the park and live concerts. With flashy floats created by Kern Studios, the company that has created Mardi Gras floats in New Orleans since 1947, this event is as authentic as it gets (while still remaining kid-friendly)! You can check out authentic New Orleans bands. Plus there are Universal Studios concerts from big names in rock, pop, country and more! (In 2022, we rocked out to Sugar Ray and Styx! Leap and I were truly living our best lives.) There is always plenty of Cajun food and drinks to fill you up. Check out our tips for Mardi Gras at Universal Studios for more deets!

Mardi Gras at Universal Studios is included with regular park admission. See all of the partying for yourself!


Fourth of July Celebration (Universal Studios Florida) — July 4, 2023

Universal Orlando Special Events 2022 - Fourth of July Celebration

Fourth of July festivities at Universal Studios Florida returned in 2022 and we couldn't have been hoppier! Frogs enjoyed a high-energy band, live DJ, meet and greets with beloved characters and patriotic-themed performers and stilt walkers. The celebration culminated with a special fireworks display that frogs could view from anywhere in the park. All holiday activities were included with admission to Universal Studios. We can't wait to be back next year!


Halloween Horror Nights 31 (Universal Studios Florida) — September to October

Universal Orlando Events - Pumpkin Lord Icon

The biggest Universal Studios Florida event of the year is held on select nights every fall. For horror fans and those of you who just like to be scared, Halloween Horror Nights is not to be missed! The park is transformed from a bubbly theme park into a place of terror. "Scare zones" are set up while creatures roam about. Think you're safe? Ha! You might just find a zombie breathing down your neck. The big lure of the night is the movie set-quality haunted houses themed around popular TV shows, classic and current films and sometimes even video games or music videos.

This event is not intended for children and is a separately-ticketed event. In fact, you'll probably need our Halloween Horror Nights guide just to make it through the night. Tickets are currently on sale, and we highly recommend buying tickets in advance. Save some green on a single-night dated ticket by purchasing through Undercover Tourist!

Prepare yourself for Halloween Horror Nights with walkthroughs of some of the haunted houses on our YouTube channel. Check out our favorite house of this year's event below!

Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle — September and October

Universal Orlando Events - Dark Arts

The Dark Arts of Hogwarts Castle projection show made its first (dark) mark in 2019 and plotted a vengeful return to Universal's Islands of Adventure in 2021 and 2022. As darkness falls, Death Eaters (followers of the dark wizard, Lord Voldemort), infiltrate the streets of Hogsmeade as green light and fog permeate the village, right before the images of dark creatures and Voldemort himself cloak the castle walls. The show runs on select nights from dusk until the park closes.


Holidays at Universal Orlando Resort — November and December

Christmas in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter (Universal Studios Florida and Universal's Islands of Adventure)

Universal Orlando Events - Celestina Warbeck

Holiday wishes do come true! Muggles are able to experience Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley trimmed with festive holiday decorations. Even the shops of the Wizarding World are trimmed! There are holiday-themed food and drinks, as well as entertainment.

Universal Orlando Events - Christmas at Hogwarts

The highlight of Christmas in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is a holiday show taking place on Hogwarts Castle. This incredible experience uses mapped-projection technology to "cast a spell" onto the castle and features iconic moments from the films.

Universal's Holiday Parade featuring Macy's (Universal Studios Florida) 

Cap each night off at Universal Studios Florida during the holiday season with Universal's Holiday Parade featuring Macy's as larger-than-life balloons and floats fill with favorite Illumination and DreamWorks Animation characters. During the parade, guests will see the Minions, Shrek, "Madagascar" characters and more. Santa also attends so he can light up the New York Christmas tree!

Grinchmas (Universal's Islands of Adventure) 

Universal Orlando Events - Grinchmas Wholiday Spectacular

For those of you who love the Grinch, there is no finer time to visit Universal's Islands of Adventure than during Grinchmas. Seuss Landing is transformed into the wonderful world of Grinchmas with the heartwarming live show, "Grinchmas Wholiday Spectacular." The show features some of your favorite Grinch characters. It's also set to music recorded by Mannheim Steamroller — who host an annual concert on select nights at Universal Studios Florida. Guests can also get up close and personal with the Grinch himself for pictures or autographs at Honk Honkers. The Grinch and Friends Character Breakfast also came back last year for the first time since 2019!

Are you planning on hopping to Universal Orlando Resort this year? Which Universal Orlando events in 2023 and beyond are you most looking forward to attending? Stop by the comments to tell us below!

Related: Halloween Horror Nights Orlando Survival Guide

Related: A ~Froggy~ Festive Guide to Christmas at Universal Orlando Resort

Hoppy planning!

Keep hopping, Mommy Frog!
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Jul 6, 2019 at 8:03 p.m. Stacey G Says...

Thanks for the great info.

Jul 6, 2019 at 8:03 p.m. Heather T Says...

Love the site! Great information and opportunities to save!!!

Jul 6, 2019 at 7:53 p.m. Amanda Hackathorn Says...

Cant wait to take my 4 boys here!

Jul 6, 2019 at 7:50 p.m. Molly B Says...

UT is the best!! Love them!!

Jul 6, 2019 at 6:28 p.m. Erica Ford Says...

Great info!!!❤

Jul 6, 2019 at 6:15 p.m. Jennifer Hogg Says...

I would LOVE to visit during Halloween or Christmas time!!

Jul 6, 2019 at 6:11 p.m. Jessie Xander Says...

Going in September to hopefully see the halloween decorations but can't afford the separate halloween event :(

Jul 6, 2019 at 6:07 p.m. Viviana Ortega Says...

I love the wizarding world of Harry Potter !!! And I haven’t been there in such a long time :(

Jul 6, 2019 at 5:54 p.m. Lisa Donoso Says...


Jul 6, 2019 at 5:48 p.m. Cori Says...

Looking into a Disney and universal trip

Jul 6, 2019 at 5:27 p.m. Hollie Hunt Says...

Can’t wait to take my son to Universal Studios!!!!!

Jul 6, 2019 at 5:24 p.m. Tina Says...

Excited for our first visit

Jul 6, 2019 at 5:06 p.m. Tiffany G. Smith Says...

Im so excited about visiting Disney for my 1st time.. Thanks for all the information..

Jul 6, 2019 at 4:57 p.m. 1st Timer Says...

I’m so excited for our trip next year!!

Jul 6, 2019 at 4:35 p.m. Brit Says...

Thanks for providing such a great opportunity.

Jul 6, 2019 at 4:07 p.m. Melanie Weltin Says...

I would love to take my kids to the Grinch event! Our family of 6 would be thrilled to attend! Yay!

Jul 6, 2019 at 3:35 p.m. Brittany Says...

This is amazing info!!

Jul 6, 2019 at 3:21 p.m. Natalie SH Says...

I would love to go for part of our honey moon and see Universal in late November <3

Jul 6, 2019 at 3:12 p.m. Jill Says...

We are just starting to plan our Disney trip, this site is AWESOME to help with that!!!!!

Jul 6, 2019 at 2:30 p.m. Jessica Bonte Says...

I really love Universal Orlando and have a lot of fun whenever I take a trip there.

Jul 6, 2019 at 2:24 p.m. Mandy Says...

Man, I can't wait to see HP world decked out for Christmas!

Jul 6, 2019 at 1:25 p.m. Aimee Munoz Says...

Need to go!

Jul 6, 2019 at 1:15 p.m. Holly Says...

I would love to expirence this with my son! I never went as a child, and as a full time single mom i would love the opportunity to give him this.

Jul 6, 2019 at 1:02 p.m. Sarah Lee Says...

Thanks for the dates around events will definitely effect our planning

Jul 6, 2019 at 12:50 p.m. KK Says...

I would be so excited to win!

Jul 6, 2019 at 12:33 p.m. Licia Dandridge Says...

I really enjoyed reading this, great post!

Jul 6, 2019 at 11:59 a.m. maria gentry Says...

Great post with lots of really useful information! Thanks.

Jul 6, 2019 at 11:14 a.m. Christine Says...

My dream is to one day be able to afford to take my kids to universal studios or Disneyland on a vacation. I want to give them a family vacation they would never forget.

Jul 6, 2019 at 10:42 a.m. Kt825 Says...

So many cool themes at Universal! I am excited to plan a trip!

Jul 6, 2019 at 9:39 a.m. ErinD. Says...


Jul 6, 2019 at 8:50 a.m. Chrissy FTW Says...

The Stranger Things house looks so cool!! :D I'm also loving the Mardi Gras lineup!

Jul 6, 2019 at 6:01 a.m. Megan Henry Says...

I am so ready to be back in Universal!!!

Jul 6, 2019 at 5:38 a.m. Darri Says...

Excited for Holidays at the parks this November, especially the Hogwarts Castle show!

Jul 6, 2019 at 5:22 a.m. Nickie Hobbs Says...

Love love love using Undercover Tourist for Disney and Universal discount tickets.

Jul 6, 2019 at 5:12 a.m. Andrea T Says...

Thanks for all the information. Hard to decide which event would be the most fun to attend!

Jul 6, 2019 at 4:19 a.m. Jennifer Biemler Says...

Would be great to get back there and relive my daughters wish trip!

Jul 6, 2019 at 3:49 a.m. Cassie Says...

Jul 6, 2019 at 1:42 a.m. Tweet30346 Says...

The Mardi Gras event sounds super fun!

Jul 6, 2019 at 1:12 a.m. Heaven-Alexis Brock Says...

I love Halloween but I'm always too afraid to go do anything Halloween related. I am excited about all of the events this year and in 2020! Maybe the Hogsmeade feast will be my favorite thing. #SlytherinHouse

Jul 6, 2019 at 1:12 a.m. Desirae Lastinger Says...

Love all the new Harry Potter attractions and events!

Jul 6, 2019 at 1:09 a.m. Kolby Baty Says...

Thanks for the tips!

Jul 6, 2019 at 1:05 a.m. JennaB Says...

I’ve never been to Universal but I would love to go!

Jul 6, 2019 at 12:46 a.m. Jordan noel Says...

Love this post

Jul 6, 2019 at 12:26 a.m. marlene a harris Says...

i love to take my grandkids

Jul 5, 2019 at 11:16 p.m. Vaca Anytime Says...

Great insider information. Super excited about our Orlando trip. Yayyyyy!!!!!

Jul 5, 2019 at 10:47 p.m. Heidi Simpson Says...

I can't wait to go!

Jul 5, 2019 at 9:50 p.m. Veronica Athay Says...

This site is so great! Planning our first big trip...thank you for the great info!

Jul 5, 2019 at 9:26 p.m. Rhonda Waite Says...

Would love to visit

Jul 5, 2019 at 7:40 p.m. Sarah Says...

Deciding on a destination for a 2021 trip.

Jul 5, 2019 at 7:25 p.m. Amy Anderson Says...

Thank you for the great tips!

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Undercover Tourist is the leading supplier of online discount tickets to Orlando, Florida-area attractions, including Walt Disney World® Resort, Universal Orlando Resort™, SeaWorld® Orlando, LEGOLAND® Florida Resort and more.

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