Skip to main content

New Offerings at Universal Studios Hollywood This 2016

  • Author:
  • Updated:
Hogwarts Castle and the Flight of the Hippogriff are among Universal Studios Hollywood's newest attractions (Courtesy Universal Studios Hollywood)

Hogwarts Castle and the Flight of the Hippogriff are among Universal Studios Hollywood's newest attractions (Courtesy Universal Studios Hollywood)

It’s an even better year for one of California’s favorite theme park destinations. Last year saw the opening of Universal Studios Hollywood’s hits like the high-octane, multi-sensory Fast & Furious Supercharged and the unique Nighttime Studio Tour. This 2016, the family-friendly theme park is taking it up a notch with the launch of not just one but two major attractions, including the much-anticipated Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Needless to say, there’s never been a great time to visit!

Here are a few awesome things families must check out at Universal Studios Hollywood this year.

(MORE:Family Survival Guide to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Diagon Alley)
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

Hogsmead at Universal Studios Hollywood (Courtesy Universal Studios Hollywood)

Hogsmead at Universal Studios Hollywood (Courtesy Universal Studios Hollywood)

It’s one of California’s much-awaited attractions, and the wait is almost over. Apparating in the heart of Universal Studios Hollywood this April 7 is the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, based on JK Rowling’s beloved magical world. Take the kids to explore the cobblestone streets of Hogsmeade, which is bustling with the famous series’ memorable establishments like Honeydukes, Zonko’s Joke Shop and the Owl Post. Families can participate in the grand tradition of wand fitting at Ollivanders (character wands are available), and then later visit Hogwarts Castle, where the super exciting, super immersive 3D-HD “Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey” ride awaits. The kids will want to go on this ride over and over again. Also in store, kid-friendly rollercoaster “Flight of the Hippogriff” and a treasure trove of Harry Potter merchandise for some good old retail therapy.

Traditional English Food AND Butterbeer

Shepherd’s Pie at Three Broomsticks (Courtesy Universal Studios Hollywood)

Shepherd’s Pie at Three Broomsticks (Courtesy Universal Studios Hollywood)

The only thing better than having a magical adventure at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is sampling the delicious fares that Harry Potter and his friends themselves feasted on in the books. And if the traditional English dishes served at Three Broomsticks and Hog’s Head are as good as their Universal Orlando counterparts, then families visiting Universal Hollywood are in for a delicious treat. English breakfast, lunch and dinner items like Bangers & Mash, Shepherd’s Pie and Fish & Chips are on the menu at Three Broomsticks, as is the addictive Butterbeer, based on the popular drink in the series, that come cold or frozen. We love the frozen version. Meanwhile, Hog’s Head serve WWoHP alcoholic drinks for moms and dad; Wizard’s Brew, Hog’s Head Brew and Fire Whisky, to name a few.

The Walking Dead

Scroll to Continue

Recommended for You

The Walking Dead maze at Universal Studios Hollywood (Courtesy Universal Studios Hollywood)

The Walking Dead maze at Universal Studios Hollywood (Courtesy Universal Studios Hollywood)

While not for the little ones, big kids and adults no doubt love one of Halloween Horror Night’s most popular mazes, an attraction that Lauren Cohen (Maggie) herself approves of. Everybody enjoys a good scare, right? The great news is Universal Studios Hollywood is turning the thrilling “The Walking Dead” maze into one of its permanent attractions at the park, expected to open in the summer. The chilling maze will feature more than state-of-the-art special effects and realistic animatronic zombies; although those are also in the mix. The walk-through attraction will also boast some live walkers as well as props and areas replicated from the AMC hit show, a feature that big fans of the series will really appreciate and find immersive. This one’s for families with big kids, tweens and teens; but beware, the maze has never been for the faint-hearted.

(MORE:Wizarding World of Harry Potter’s Diagon Alley Mixes Fire and Ice)

LudoBird at Universal Studios Hollywood (Courtesy Ludo Lefebvre)

LudoBird at Universal Studios Hollywood (Courtesy Ludo Lefebvre)

Chef Ludo Lefebvre’s popular LudoTruck may have permanently retired its engine a few years ago, but it doesn’t mean the end of the world renowned chef's fried chicken specialty. On March 26, LudoBird will officially open its doors to Universal Hollywood visitors at the CityWalk, a fantastic news for fried chicken lovers everywhere (and who isn’t?!) The second LudoBird location, the first one being at Staples Center, will boast a menu of delicious fried chicken creations like fried chicken sandwich and chicken strips, side dishes like the honey-drenched lavender biscuit and, of course, signature sauces.

Michelle Rae Uy contributed this to MiniTime. She is a travel writer based in Los Angeles and MiniTime's Head of Content, who spends her free time on adventures and film photography.

More from MiniTime:

15 Reasons to Travel More with the Kids

Great Spots to Get Back to Nature in the US Virgin Islands

How to Score Cheap Flights to the Caribbean


Universal’s Volcano Bay is one of the new at Universal Orlando attractions to look forward to in 2017. (Courtesy Universal Orlando)

What's New at Universal Orlando in 2017

Here’s a complete guide to what’s new at Universal Orlando in 2017, including the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, so your family doesn’t miss out on anything.


Reasons We Can’t Get Enough of Grinchmas at Universal Studios

Merry garlands, sparkling ornaments, thousands of string lights and white snow deck the movie-themed streets of Universal Studios Hollywood, turning it into a lovely winter wonderland.

Expected to open spring 2016, "Rivers of Light" will be an innovative experience unlike anything ever seen in a Disney park, combining live performances, floating lanterns, water screens and swirling animal imagery. "Rivers of Light" will come to life as a pair of mystical hosts comes to Discovery River bearing gifts of light. During the show, the hosts set out from the shore on elaborate lantern vessels for a dance of water and light to summon the animal spirits. (Disney Parks)

Top Ten Things to Do in Disney World for 2016

Every year they introduce new rides, restaurants and Disney magic. So if you’re planning your 2016 getaway, here’s what you need to know.


Europe's Six Family-Approved Movie Theme Parks

Individual, different and intensely memorable, movie theme parks in Europe provide an experience that is totally unique. There may be roller coasters and rides, but you can find yourself experiencing much more than that as some of the theme parks truly take visitors into another world.


Theme Park Attractions to Look Forward to in 2016

From super tall roller coasters that dive lightning fast to elaborately-themed new magical lands, parks are raising the bar with increasingly creative and high-tech attractions.

Kai, Master of Fire, showing off his skills at LEGOLAND California's NINJAGO World. (Photo: Michelle Rae Uy)

NINJAGO World: Where Kids Can Train Like Ninjas and Beat Bad Guys

Ninjago has its own land and ride at the LEGOLAND parks. Have you been?