I get it! Not everyone longs to head to a major amusement park in Orlando. All you can imagine is the long lines with sweaty people jammed in together waiting for a 3-minute ride. Not fun!?!
Well, Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando know that so they have created special seasonal events. These events offer more to do than just the rides.
Epcot International Food and Wine Festival
Have you heard of Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival? Every year since the Food and Wine Festival’s inception, it has grown and lengthened in the number of days open for guests.
In 2019, the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival runs from August 29th through November 23rd.
On Disney’s website, they ask their guests to “[t]ake an enticing trek across countries and continents for intriguing cuisines. Prepare for pure epicurean excellence as our master chefs whip up delicious dishes true to the traditions of these inspirational nations—from France to Japan and beyond.”
Isn’t that a great opportunity? Taste foods from various countries without having to fly to each destination. You may leisurely walk through Epcot’s World Showcase to taste Gnocchi in the Italy Pavilion, then head over to the Japan Pavilion for some Tako-su, a vinegared octopus with cucumber. You can pair these tasty foods with beverages from each country. Sake, please.
Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights
Universal Orlando has grabbed hold of this holiday and amped it up. Halloween Horror Nights offer thrills and chills around every corner in Universal Studios on select nights from September 6th to November 2nd. At dusk on these select days, Universal Studios transforms itself into a place of horrors and screams.
From Universal’s website, “BINGE YOUR FAVORITE HALLOWEEN TV SHOWS AND MOVIES IN REAL LIFE.
Enter haunted houses inspired by biggest frights of the 80s including Netflix’s STRANGER THINGS, Ghostbusters and Killer Klowns From Outer Space. Plus, face terrors from Universal Monsters, Us and more.
You’ll never know what to expect from the demented minds behind our original haunted houses, except for twisted artistry and horrors around every corner: yetis, ghosts, parasites and more.”
Universal has created 10 haunted houses for you to scream and hysterically laugh your way through them. Warning: Children under 13 are discouraged from coming. No costumes or masks may be worn by guests.
New York City’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade comes to Universal Orlando. Universal partnered with Macy’s to bring you a holiday parade like no other in FL.
Universal states on their website, “The Minions join Santa Claus for Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s, a holiday favorite that also features characters from Madagascar and Shrek.
It's part of an incredible lineup of holiday festivities throughout Universal Orlando Resort™. Put a little mischief in your merry. You’ve Never Had a Holiday Like This.”
What sets this parade apart is the opportunity that they give their guests to assist with flying the super large balloons. Can you see yourself holding a rope from the Minions balloon and walking along the parade route as the crowds “ooh and ahh” as your balloon goes by?
Universal’s Mardi Gras - It’s Florida’s Biggest Party
Is there a reason for a party? You betcha!! Universal’s Mardi Gras is Florida’s biggest party which runs daily from February 1st to April 2nd. Universal Studios declares, “[i]t's unforgettable springtime fun for everyone. Enjoy nightly parades with outrageous street performers, colorful costumes and countless beads flying through the air. Catch some of the biggest names in music live in concert on select nights. Plus you’ll enjoy authentic New Orleans bands each night and mouthwatering Cajun food available for purchase.”
The floats in the parade look very similar to the floats that go down the streets of New Orleans because the creators of the New Orleans Mardi Gras parade floats partnered with Universal Orlando to create their parade floats.
Another unique feature of this parade is that you, the guest, may ride on a float and throw out beads along the parade route. Whoohoo!! Doesn’t that sound like it would be so much fun?