One of my favorite times to visit Universal is during the Halloween season when Halloween Horror Nights is happening! Despite the fact that I love horror movies and haunted houses, I definitely can’t handle them alone. My best friend Kerry (who also loves the horror things) came to visit for the weekend, and we couldn’t wait to check out this year’s Halloween Horror Nights (HHN) at Universal Orlando!
I’ve attended the event just about every year for the past 9 years, so this wasn’t my first rodeo (or Kerry’s – who came a couple years ago for the event)! While I’m not sure anything will ever top the first year I went, this year was a pretty good one!
We lucked out this year since this was only the second weeeknd of HHN 25, so the crowds weren’t AS bad as they will be as it gets closer to Halloween AND there were special perks for annual passholders, allowing us to head into the park before the gates opened to the general public. That said, we did opt to splurge on the express passes, which are more than worth it. Yes, it’s an expensive night, but at least you’ll be able to make it to all of the houses/rides/events, and not have to wait in crazy lines all night.
So, which houses were the best? Here’s our definitive ranking from best to worst:
- The Walking Dead: The Living and the Dead – We might be a little bias on this one, but we’re huge fans of TWD! This was the first and last (yes we hit this one twice) house we did. The first time around we screamed our heads off, and the second we tried to take in more of the scenery. There is SO much detail that goes into these houses after all!
- Jack Presents: 25 Years of Monsters and Mayhem – OH MY GOD THIS HOUSE. Narrated by the creepy clown, Jack, we were hoping we’d get out of it without having a clown run-in. NOPE. There’s literally a room full of identical clowns. FULL. So terrifying.
- Body Collectors – Recollections – The mental institution haunted house gets me EVERY TIME.
- Freddy vs. Jason – We had higher hopes for this one considering it was all about 2 classic horror films/characters, but there was a bit of disconnect, with showing the Jason story, then showing the Freddy story, then them fighting at the end. There were still a few good scares in there though!
- The Purge – The masks from The Purge creep me out big time in the movie and in real life! I was expecting it to be much scarier (because the masks) but it was less intense than I expected (which is both good and bad).
- Insidious – I was a little out of the loop on this house since I haven’t seen Insidious 2, but nonetheless, the demons were out in full force and this one got a few jumps out of us.
- Asylum in Wonderland 3D – This one was kind of like Alice in Wonderland, with lots of neon lights, 3D glasses, and the best part? The spinning room where you think you’re going to topple over. So crazy to look at in 3D. But otherwise, just kinda meh.
- An American Werewolf in London – The best part about this one was that it’s set in London. They had this house fairly recently at HHN, but I think it was better last time around (from what I remember).
- Run – Blood, Sweat, and Fears – Honestly, I’d just skip this one altogether. We couldn’t quite figure out anything going on in it and didn’t jump or scream once while we were in this house. When we walked out at the end we both looked at each other and shook our heads “no.”
Is Jack the Clown not the creepiest thing you’ve ever seen?! Despite hating clowns, we decided to check out the Carnage Returns show. It was just weird and very culty. We weren’t fans. On the other hand, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure was a great show to sit in on, and also catch a break from scary things, laughing at how ridiculous celebs are.
Overall verdict for HHN 25? Thumbs up. This is always my favorite Halloween event to attend! In fact, I think I’ll be heading over to Orlando again in the next couple weeks to attend again. It’s that much fun! Already looking forward to next year’s – and hoping that more of the classic horror films will be back for houses next year!
Have you been to Halloween Horror Nights? Will you be attending this year?