Since 2012, one of the most striking characteristics of Universal Orlando Resort has been its ever-changing roster of attractions; thanks to the phenomenal success of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and the unceasing drive of Comcast, NBCUniversal’s corporate parent, not a single year has gone by without a new experience of one sort or another debuting, whether that be a ride, restaurant, store, or hotel.
It can be a lot to keep track of, especially with a whole new parcel of land being developed – including a whole new theme park, Epic Universe, along with it. But don’t worry! Every announced addition, expansion, or replacement is listed here, starting with next year, 2023, and then moving on into the near future.
Given everything that has transpired last decade and everything that’s lined up for this one, we can honestly say this is the single most exciting time in Universal’s history. Experience the excitement for yourself by purchasing discounted admission to Universal Orlando Resort through Orlando Informer!
For current Universal Orlando Resort happenings, check out our Snapshot, which has the latest updates!
Universal Studios Florida
Universal Orlando’s very first theme park has continued to undergo a years-long transformation, replacing its older attractions with brand-new, updated content – and signs only continue to point to this being the case in the 2020s.
Illumination’s Villain-con Minion Blast
Opening: Summer 2023
Gru’s mischievous employees from the Despicable Me universe are taking over Production Central and transforming this area into Illumination Ave with an officially declared Minion Land. Despicable Me Minion Mayhem has resided in Universal Studios Florida since 2012. In Summer 2023, Gru’s laboratory will be joined by a neighboring attraction, Illumination’s Villain-con Minion Blast, and Minion Cafe, a new dining location. Read all about this attraction’s soft opening here.
Halloween Horror Nights 2023
Opening: Fall 2023
We anticipate Universal Orlando Resort’s long-time, annual tradition of nighttime frights to return to Universal Studios Florida in Fall 2023. While we await information of this fan-favorite, separately ticketed event, check out our guide from Halloween Horror Nights 2022.
DreamWorks Animation Land
Immerse yourself in a land based on beloved DreamWorks Animation films that will feature play areas and attractions themed after fan-favorite franchises like Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, and Trolls. Guests will also have the opportunity to meet with beloved characters like Gabby from Gabby’s Dollhouse. Read the announcement here.
Islands of Adventure
Universal’s first non-Studios-branded park in the world hasn’t seen anywhere near the amount of attention as its counterpart next door, but that doesn’t mean it’s been left alone; what construction projects it’s received have tended to be on the more impactful side, such as adding whole new islands on the map or replacing long-lived (and massive) rides.
Universal CityWalk Orlando
Exciting changes aren’t just happening in the Theme Parks! This entertainment district is constantly being updated to provide fresh offerings for visitors to Universal Orlando. From food to fun, there’s always something to see at Universal CityWalk Orlando.
The fourth theme park at Universal Orlando has seen something of a bumpy ride over its short lifespan: announced in August 2019, put on hold in July 2020, and reactivated in March 2021 (all thanks to COVID-19, of course). Currently, construction is slowly ramping back up to pre-pandemic levels, and its opening date is still set for sometime in 2025.
What else do we know about one of Universal’s biggest projects of all time? It will be erected on the recently acquired south campus of the resort, which is located some 10 or 15 minutes away from the other parks and CityWalk. The concept art that has been released suggests that there will be four themed lands, but only one has, thus far, been revealed: Super Nintendo World, the potential game-changing addition that was first installed in Japan in 2021.
The swath of real estate that the new theme park will sit on actually has a long and convoluted history with Universal, and you can read all about it here.
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