Every year Halloween Horror Nights seems to get bigger and bigger, and so do the crowds. 2022 was one of the busiest years for Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood and given the line-up of attractions for 2023, we expect pretty much the same thing this year.
Below you will find some of our tips for making the most out of your Halloween Horror Nights experience. Some do's and don'ts and most importantly, what should be your "plan of attack" for the night.
You can also check out the HHN site for more information on tickets, hours, etc.
Updated September 10, 2023!
September: 7-10, 14-17, 21-23, 27-30
October: 1, 4-8, 11-15, 18-22, 25-29, Halloween Night
Recommended house order with early entry
This rundown of recommended houses is if you are using early entry. If you aren't doing Early Entry, we have a recommended house order list below.
Front of the Line tip: If lines are short when you get to the a particular attraction DO NOT use your Front of the Line Pass. Go through once in the stand-by line and then use your Front of the Line later in the evening. This way you get two trips through each House. With no backlot this year, getting back to a favorite house will be rather easy.
Updated September 10, 2023
Stranger Things OR Last of Us
During Early Entry (without Express), our recommendation is to do EITHER Stranger Things or Last of Us. NOT BOTH!
These two houses are among the most popular houses in the history of HHN so far. If you try to do both during early entry, one is going to be a very quick wait, and the other is going to be long, and you won't be able to do any other houses during early entry.
Do one of these houses first, then Exorcist and Holidayz in Hell (in that order) and then move up to the Upper Lot houses. Come back to do the house you didn't experience at the end of the night. Better to wait then, than at the beginning of the night.
Express Tip: If you have Express, this year it is recommended that you just go ahead and use it for all of the lower lot houses during early entry. You should be able to get through all 4 houses before the upper lot houses open.
Exorcist and Holidays in Hell
After completing either Last of Us or Stranger Things, you will be right at the entrance for both Exorcist and Holidayz in Hell. We recommend doing Exorcist first because as you exit The Exorcist, there is a path directly to Holidayz in Hell making it very easy to do both.
Monstruos: The Monsters of Latin America
This house opens at 6:30, and if you've utilized the strategy above, you should be up here right at 6:30 and have a walk-on for Monstruos. Fair warning however, this is a tent house and has some bright spots right at 6:30. At least for the next couple of weeks.
So if that is an issue for you, it is recommended that you head straight for the Curious George houses and come back to do Monstruos when you do Evil Dead.
Express Tip: You will not need to use your Express if you are here at 6:30. Go through once, and then come back and enjoy the house later in the evening.
Curious George Houses:
Chucky: Ultimate Kill Count and Universal Monsters: Unmasked
After exiting Monstruos, head straight through Hogsmeade and directly to Universal Monsters: Unmasked and Chucky: Ultimate Kill Count.
Our first recommendation was to do Universal Monsters and then Chucky. We are definitely flipping that. Definitely hit Chucky first and then Universal Monsters. The word of mouth for Chucky is VERY strong.
That being said, these are two VERY solid houses and are very much worth your time.
Express Tip: If you happen to get here and the lines or short (30 minutes or less), go through the Stand-By line and then use your Front of the Line so you get to experience each house twice.
Evil Dead Rise
After getting through the Curious George houses, head back through Hogsmeade and visit Evil Dead Rise. If you didn't do Monstruos at 6:30 do so now as everybody who came into the park at 7:00 is definitely heading to the lower lot or Curious George houses.
If you do need to do both, our recommendation is Evil Dead Rise first, and then Monstruos. It just makes the most sense due to where the entrance/exit of each house is.
Express Tip: Just like before, if the stand-by lines are relatively short (30 minutes or less) go through the stand-by line and then you can experience both of these houses one last time on your way out.
Death Eaters in Wizarding World and Terror Tram: The Exterminatorz
This is usually the part of the yearly guide where we tell you to take a break, grab a snack, etc. And this year the Death Eaters will once again be out in Wizarding World, so this is probably a great place to take that break.
Express Tip: If the line for the Terror Tram is relatively short, 30 minutes or less, you CAN go through the stand-by line and use your Front of the Line later. But remember, this experience generally takes 30-45 minutes from beginning to end and closes early, so you may not have time to do it twice. Plus, there's a LOT of walking on this one. =)
If you didn't take a break before now, it's a good time to do it. You can grab a snack in Springfield, at Dia De Los Muertos or Hogsmeade. In addition, single rider for Forbidden Journey was open during the event last year, so it's an easy trek from the Terror Tram over there.
Back to the Lower Lot:
Stranger Things OR Last of Us
It's now time to head back to the Lower Lot and visit the house you didn't visit earlier. Your wait WILL be long, 2 hours at least. So it's recommended that you grab a snack or two to enjoy in line.
RECOMMENDED HOUSE ORDER WITH NO EARLY ENTRY
Here is our recommended house order if you are getting to the event at 7:00PM.
And we do mean AT 7:00PM!
We saw people entering the event after 9:00pm last year, unless you have Express or a Frequent Fear Pass, don't be this person. You're not going to see much.
Check the wait times for the Lower Lot Houses. If they are 45 minutes or more, head to the Curious George Houses first. The lines will be there all night. Better to wait in some shorter lines and come back and wait for Stranger Things, Last of Us, Holidayz in Hell and The Exorcist.
Curious George Houses:
Lower Lot Houses:
Upper Lot Houses:
Remember, you can always get the After 11pm Express pass to make sure you can see everything without early entry.
There are also various food booths around the park.
After, let's face it, suffering through Jabbawockeez for the past few years, we are FINALLY getting not one, but two Halloween related shows. One is a "kind of" return of the fan favorite Slaughterworld, Purge: Dangerous Waters located in Waterworld. In addition, there will be a Blumhouse "Behind The Screams" show in the Dreamworks Theater.
In years past our guide has pretty much advised you to skip the live show during the event unless you really needed to see a dance show. Not this year! It's nice to have two shows back at the event to take a break and disperse crowds a bit more.
There are showtimes throughout the night, and since both shows are near the front of the park, we recommend doing these towards the end of the night. On opening night, there was no need to arrive for the Purge more than 15 minutes before show time. It's a HUGE theater.
Once you have completed all the houses you can hang around the scare zones and watch the talent, check the wait board to see if there are any short house or ride lines or if you have a Front of the Line Pass use up any trips you haven't already.
If you are brave enough, not tired enough, or want to experience a true Horror Nights Hollywood original, stay until the very end of the night and experience Chainsaw Chaseout. This is absolutely one of our favorite things every year, and we always make at least one late night trip to HHN to experience it (the benefits of having Frequent Fear).
Even if you're not staying for Chainsaw Chaseout, make sure you do some shopping, grab a t-shirt and hang out in the scare zones before heading out.
Drive home safely!
Last week we were invited out to Universal Studios Hollywood for the official grand opening of their all new Hello Kitty Store. It looks whimsical and fun as you'll see below. Lots of great merchandise for all.
We'll also take a look at the recently opened Laemmle Court and a look at Dreamworks Theater construction.
Pictures by Matthew Nelson
The store looks fantastic
Lots of great merchandise at every turn
These are sure to be popular
Lots of fun Universal spoofs
And of course snacks!!
Laemmle Court is now open and looks fantastic!!
As well as the Illumination store
No Universal Studios update would be complete without some Wizarding World
The new store additions blend in great with Universal Plaza
And soon with Dreamworks Theater
We're excited to check out Kung Fu Panda in the very near future!!
A few more pictures and video the park sent over to us.