My First Trip to Universal Studios! #AMaryHoliday

As an LA native, you’d be surprised at the amount of California ‘traditions’ I’ve yet to do. One being visit Universal Studios Hollywood. Its been on my bucket list for quite a while as I love Psycho. I’ve long heard one of the must-see’s of their back lot tour is seeing the Bates Motel. Well, guess what my boy treated me to for my Christmas gift? We went on Saturday and I had the time of my life!

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My 1st Visit to Universal Studios

Their current highlight at Universal Studios is Grinchmas paying homage to How the Grinch Stole Christmas. You get to meet Mr. Bah Hunbug himself, his adorable pup, Max, and see the park transformed to Whoville. The residents of the town couldn’t be sweeter, and there’s a nightly snowfall perfect for a romantic moment or the child who has yet to see snow.

We ‘accidentally’ started out at the attraction in Stage 13: the House of Horrors. It seemed innocent enough, the lobby has parts from the Thing and a Chucky doll. As you enter a dark room, a greeter tells you to have fun, but alerts you to not touch the ‘actors’ and they will not touch or grab you. Actors? Why are there actors? My friends, this is a maze of literal HELL. I was subjected to walking through some of the darkest halls I have ever seen then finding myself in a Chucky Doll Factory, a real-life Chucky jumping at me, Mother Bates opening a shower curtain with her knife coming towards me and more. Thank goodness Mike held me tight and we hung behind our group so we knew what was coming. I would walk ever so fast past what ever the heck might be jumping out to us.

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Must-See’s

Moving on. A must-see for Mike was their Waterworld show. Waterworld? That mediocre 90’s movie? I was skeptical, but this is one of their most awesome attractions. An outdoor half hour show filled with stunt performers, water and fire right before you. I was amazed as I witnessed actors literally on fire as they jumped into the water and hanging on to only a wire as they swung to safety across the stage. There are many surprises I won’t share but will have you in awe if you see it.

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Next up, the tram tour! Anyone visiting LA or if you are local like moi and just not done this yet, GO. It’s amazing to see how many of the films we love were filmed right here, all with fiber glass buildings and special effects created. I loved King Kong 3D. We’re taken through a tunnel & Director Peter Jackson asks us to put on our 3D glasses (above) and we then return to Skull Island. We see the Ape himself as he fights off dinosaurs that could easily take out our tram. The effects are amazing. There were many youngsters and babies on the tour, but they did not seem scared. I would feel ok taking a child on the tour, but do know, everyone is taken on the King Kong segment, so some parents may want to hold off if their kids get scared easily.

Jaws, Western towns, Wisteria Lane from Desperate Housewives, New York City and once again, Whoville, are just afew of the other stops you will make on the ride. When you go by the Bates Motel, you might just see Norman peering out from the front desk, awaiting your arrival.

Hop on the Rides

Something else I just loved were the RIDES. We made it on the Simpsons, Transformers, the Mummy, and Jurassic Park. My favorite was probably the Simpsons. Similar to Transformers, these are amazing 3D rides. On the Simpsons, you actually never leave the room you’re in. The effects making it feel like a crazy roller coaster ride in a car to save Springfield was truly impressive.

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Universal Studios is currently running a great deal; buy a day for Grinchmas, get a pass for 2014! Can you beat that? Mike and I will be there much next year and I hope to see you! xo

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(*All pictures by my boyfriend. Not Mary.)

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