Universal Studios - Hollywood

December 30, 2013

Before you reach the main entrance, you need to go through the CityWalk, an overpriced shopping mall. Parking costs $15, but you can save your money if you park on the other side of the highway and don't mind walking 10 minutes (which I did). 


The first stop is WaterWorld, full of special effects like in the movie including a jumping plane in flames that can send some people running towards the emergency city 


On the opposite side you can see some sets that make you feel like you are in the middle of Paris 

The House of Horrors is a winding maze where you face off some classical monsters such as Frankenstein, Chucky and the Wolfman.

House of Horrors

You can meet some famous characters along the way.

There are seasonal presentations, this time the turn was for Jake, Elwood and a cool blues band.

On Animal Actors you can see how animals are trained.

On Universal Plaza the main attraction was the Grinchmas Tree including live acts from the Grinch, his dog Max and Whoville characters.


On Special Effects Stage you can learn some secrets to make movies, including CGI, stop motion and 3-D techonology.

Special Effects Stage

On Shrek you can see a short 3D movie (well more like 4D if you include the shaking of the chairs and water on your face)

Lots of places to eat and if you are on a diet you can have turkey legs at The Flintstones Bar-B-Q.

The Flintstones Bar-B-Q

Don't skip the virtual rollercoaster at the Simpsons Ride.

From the upper lot you go down to the lower lot where you can meet some interesting people.

Including views of the lower lot and Hollywood.

At the lower lot you can start by taking the ride at Revenge of the Mummy. You get catapulted at 45 mph (72 km/h) against a wall before coming back in full reverse to your original position. Make sure you bring an empty stomach if you suffer of motion sickness.

Transformers The Ride 3-D uses flight simulation technology, at the end you get thanked by Optimus Prime even if all you did was screaming 

Jurassic Park shows you some cool "real-life" dinosaurs including a 50-foot T-rex. You end the ride with a plunge down on a 84-foot waterfall 

You end your journey with the Studio Tour (some people prefer to do this one first). Many things to see but these are some of the highlights:

You can see how sets are created making you believe you are in New York City

Cars from famous movies and TV series

Sets from Jurasic Park including a ride on the largest 3-D movie on King Kong 360 3-D created by Peter Jackson.

There is a flash flood atraction as well

The tour winds through a neighborhood with the essentials to film a western movie.

There is a scale model used during the making of King Kong (2005) when the Venture arrives to Skull Island.

This set was used for the movie Earthquake (1988) and looks like a San Francisco subway substation including flood and a burning gasoline truck.

There is animatronic attraction where you can see a shark jumping as in the Jaws (1975) movie

You have the opportunity to see a general purpose sets such as the neighborhood Wisteria Lane from Desperate Housewives.

Because of the holidays it was a staged act featuring the Grinch.

The tram passes the Bates Motel where you can see the famous scene from Psycho where Norman Bates carries a corpse.

The tour ends by a set occupied by a crashed plane build for War of the Worlds (2005). The plane was chopped into pieces before it was transported to Universal