Top 10 BEST Things to Do at Universal Orlando in the Summer: The Ultimate Summer Bucket List Revealed for 2024!

With summer just upon us, it’s prime time to get yourself down to the Sunshine State to visit Universal Orlando.

The incredible rides, attractions, food and drink options as well as the beautiful Floridian climate make the theme park the perfect place to spend any part of your summer.

In celebration, here’s a list of the top 10 best things to do at Universal Orlando in the summer to help you put together your ultimate summer bucket list! 

Universal Orlando Resort Ticket at Universal Studios Florida. Keep reading for the best things to do at Universal Orlando in the summer.

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1. Cool Down at Volcano Bay 

In the dog days of summer, there’s nothing nicer than to cool down at an incredible waterpark, and Universal

Universal Orlando Resort Volcano Bay with Cabana Bay Beach Resort in the Background. Keep reading for a full guide to the best things to do at Universal Orlando in the summer.

Orlando has just that. Volcano Bay, which prides itself on its carefree island theme, is fun for the whole family.

A few of the absolute best rides at Volcano Bay are: 

  • The Ko’okiri Body Plunge (A 125-foot tall, 70-degree drop slide) 
  • Kopiko Wai Winding River (Lazy River) 
  • The Onyah & Ohno Drop Slide (Thrilling fast twists with one serious abrupt splash at the end) 
  • Maku Puihi Round Raft Rides (Splashing good time riding through a dark, winding, cavernous tunnel on enormous rafts) 
  • Krakatau Aqua Coaster (A thrilling shoot through the volcano on a canoe with three other guests…. This one’s fast!) 

Get Your Universal Orlando Resort Tickets Today! CLICK HERE.

2. Explore Dreamworks Land at Universal Orlando

June 14, 2024, brings the much-anticipated Dreamworks Land to Universal Studios Florida.  

Christmas at Universal Orlando Holiday Parade featuring Macy's Shrek and Fiona

This epic new area brings inspiration from some of the best of DreamWorks Animations like Shrek, Trolls, and Kung Fu Panda.  

Come out and meet the beloved characters, discover Shrek’s Swamp, hop on for a fun ride on the Trollercoaster, explore Panda Village, and fill your phone with tons of photo-ops.

There will be endless photo-worthy snaps and family fun moments to be had in this vivid world of creativity.

3. Stay at Universal’s Endless Summer 

There’s no more perfect way to honor summer than by staying at a resort named after the glorious season itself. 

Universal's Endless Summer Surfside Inn and Suites. One of the best hotels at Universal Orlando Resort.
Photo Courtesy of Universal Orlando Resort

Universal’s new Endless Summer Resort is comprised of two hotels

Both hotels feature pools with incredible views (the pool at the Surfside is even surfboard-shaped), and with standard rooms starting at about $120, it won’t cost you an arm and a leg to enjoy an endless summer all year long—dare we say a universal summer? 

Get up to 25% off of your Universal Orlando Vacation with Groupon TODAY!

4. Watch Cinesational: A Symphonic Spectacular

An all-new nighttime show is debuting on the waters of Universal Studios Florida on June 14, 2024.  

CineSational: A Symphonic Spectacular is an exhilarating lagoon show where you can witness and feel the magic of music.  

Universal Orlando Resort lagoon at Universal Studios Florida. Keep reading to learn how to plan your ultimate summer bucket list at Universal Orlando Resort.
Universal Orlando Resort lagoon at Universal Studios Florida

Iconic scores of beloved blockbuster films come to life using more than 600 drones, 228 fountains reaching heights up to 131 feet, 4K projection mapping, and much more to create this breathtaking new show.  

5. Try the New Butterbeer Popsicle

Butterbeer is very much the signature drink of the Wizarding World. It is one of the must-have beverages whenever you visit Universal Studios along with its variations.   

Well, this magical treat has just taken on another enchanted transformation.  

The new Butterbeer Popsicle is an icy two-toned lolly and a cool way to enjoy Universal Orlando’s Wizarding World on a hot Florida day 

Butterbeer Stand in Harry Potter World Hogsmeade Universal Orlando Resort Islands of Adventure. Keep reading to find out all you need to know about what to do this summer at Universal Orlando Resort
Butterbeer Kiosk

Made to resemble the signature Butterbeer drink you can now add trying the new Butterbeer Popsicle to your Universal Orlando ultimate summer bucket this summer.  

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6. Enjoy the Universal Mega Movie Parade 

Universal Mega Movie Parade is said to be the biggest daytime parade for Universal Orlando yet.

So needless to say, this is definitely one of the best things to do at Universal Orlando in the summer with 13 brand new floats and close to 100 dazzling performers.  

Beginning July 3rd, 2024 this larger-than-life parade will be bringing your favorite classic film moments to life right before your eyes.

Iconic movie characters like the gigantic 16-foot Stay Puft Marshmallow Man, whimsically fun and colorful Trolls float, and many more of your beloved Universal’s films will have you in awe.  

Be sure to stay until the ferocious finale, it will be epic as Jurassic World closes off the extravaganza in a massively big way.  

7. Be Captivated by Hogwarts Always Castle Projection Show 

An all-new nighttime projection show will be coming to life against the spectacular backdrop of Hogwarts Castle in Hogsmeade.  

This captivating display will showcase memorable moments and adventures from the school year at Hogwarts that are iconic to all of us who love this wizarding story.  

Universal Orlando Resort Wizarding World of Harry Potter Hogsmeade and the Forbidden Journey Ride in Hogwarts Castle Islands of Adventure. Keep reading to find out how to plan your ultimate summer bucket list at Universal Orlando Resort.

Witches, wizards, and Muggles of all ages will be excited to hear that there won’t be just one ending but four different awe-inspiring endings for each Hogwarts house. 

WATCH NEXT: 27 Best Things to Do at Universal Studios Orlando for YOUR Trip!

8. Explore the New Tribute Store for 2024 

The Mega Movie Parade still marches on over at the Universal Orlando’s Summer Tribute Store.  

Universal Orlando Resort Mardi Gras Tribute Store at Universal Studios Florida. Keep reading to find out how to plan your ultimate summer bucket list at Universal Orlando Resort.

It is time for their new summer theme, and they have put together some fun experiences for Universal Orlando Resort guests to come fan out in.

Taking inspiration from the Universal Mega Movie Parade you can expect a wave of nostalgia from your favorite classic films along with exciting, themed rooms, plenty of must-have merchandise, and of course endless photo ops.   

Are you planning a Universal Orlando vacation soon? Get the Universal Vacation Planning Guide for your next dream trip!

9. Enjoy Delicious Summer Treats at Universal Orlando

Let’s get into some of the tasty food you can enjoy this year!

Universal Orlando Resort La Bamba Cafe Restaurant at Universal Studios Florida Chicken Bowl with Rice Corn Black Beans and Guacamole with NikkyJ
La Bamba Cafe at Universal Studios.

Dole Whip

What better way to cool off from the Florida heat than diving into a refreshingly delicious Dole Whip? It’s the ultimate way to satisfy a sweet craving and to cool off.  

Universal Orlando Resort NikkyJ eating Dole Whip at Wimpy's in Islands of Adventure Toon Lagoon having the best food at Islands of Adventure for cheap. Keep reading to learn what to do this summer at Universal Orlando Resort.
NikkyJ enjoying her Dole Whip at Universal’s Islands of Adventure!

This creamy pineapple-flavored soft-serve frozen treat is iconic! No need to go far, just head on over to Wimpy’s in Universal’s Islands of Adventure.  

The Flaming Moe

Try out Springfield’s signature specialty at Moes Tavern.

Universal Orlando Resort NikkyJ with Flaming Moe orange drink in Simpsons Land at Universal Studios Florida. Keep reading to find out all you need to know about what to do this summer at Universal Orlando Resort.

A bubbly citrus-flavored drink that is non-alcoholic. I can’t forget to mention the coolest part, it actually has smoke coming out of it!

Butterbeer Ice Cream

Florean Fortescue’s Ice-Cream Parlour is a must for any season with its unique flavors.

But this Butterbeer Ice Cream swirl of a cone is magically delicious!

The Brookie

Universal Orlando Resort is famous for The Brookie so it is without a doubt you have to add this to your 10 best things to do at Universal Orlando in the summer.  

Brookie Universal Orlando Resort Islands of Adventure. Keep reading for a full guide to the best things to do at Universal Orlando in the summer.

Scrumptious and velvety, this treat is a warm and gooey moist brownie with a baked chocolate chip cookie within. You can’t go wrong with this delicious summer treat at Universal’s Islands of Adventure. 

Moose & Goose Juice

Head over to Seuss Landing for a cold delight and their Seuss-inspired drinks.  

Quench your thirst with one of their frozen slushies! Whether it be the orange-tangerine flavored Moose or green apple sour-flavored Goose juice you will surely be refreshed.

10. Conquer the Best Rides at Universal Orlando

Is there anything better than Universal Orlando Resort for coaster enthusiasts? So here are the top 5 best rides at Universal Orlando that you need to add to your summer bucket list.  


This ride is ferociously wild!  

With launches reaching up to 70 miles per hour in just 2.4 seconds, 4,700 feet of track,  it has you doing swirly revolutions over the lagoon, and feeling weightlessness.  

This Jurassic World-inspired roller coaster takes you on a high-speed chase at raptor speed. It is one of the best things to do at Universal Orlando in the summer if you are looking for an adrenaline-filled attraction

Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure 

This epic Harry Potter-inspired coaster gives you two different experiences in one ride!

So you must try out both so you can find out which is your favorite! 

Universal Orlando Resort Hagrid's Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure in Islands of Adventure. Keep reading to learn how to plan your ultimate summer bucket list at Universal Orlando Resort.

Whether you mount the motorbike or saddle on into the sidecar you are sure to have a magical and wild ride!  

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There is so much to love from the intense g-forces, unique out-of-this-world launches, seeing some of the creatures that are shown in the Harry Potter films, and of course the incredible story-telling,   

Revenge of the Mummy 

Although Revenge of the Mummy doesn’t go upside but be prepared to still get scared.  

Universal Orlando Resort Universal Studios Florida The Revenge of the Mummy Ride Single Rider Line. Keep reading to learn how to plan your ultimate summer bucket list at Universal Orlando Resort.

From special effects including fire, scary scenes, and surviving a backward descent this steel launch coaster will unravel anyone’s nerves.  

Hipster Power Tip: You can get a discount on your Universal Orlando Express Pass only on The Park Prodigy!

Harry Potter and the Escape From Gringotts 

Attempting to defeat Voldemort and his gang, this 3-D roller coaster attraction takes you on an adventurous journey.  

With fire-breathing dragons, sightings of an infamous Deatheater, and talking goblins it’s one story coaster not to be missed at Universal Orlando this summer.   

The Incredible HULK 

Barreling through underground tunnels and zooming through a series of twists and turns, your experience in this top-secret research facility has you defying gravity.

Universal Orlando Resort Incredible Hulk Roller Coaster at Islands of Adventure. Keep reading to learn what to do this summer at Universal Orlando Resort.

The Incredible HULK is iconic at Universal Orlando debuting back on May 28, 1999. It was the first B&M coaster that featured a Marvel superhero as well as having a launch coaster design.

WATCH NEXT: 10 Things I’ll NEVER Do at Universal Orlando Again!

My Final Thoughts on Enjoying the Best Things at Universal Orlando Resort in Summer 

Well, ThemeParkHipster, that rounds up my list of the 10 best things to do at Universal Orlando Resort in the summer.  

Summertime at Universal Orlando Resort is incredible with endless things to do!

So, I hope this guide has helped you jump start your excitement for planning your ultimate summer bucket list for the best summer ever at Universal Orlando.  

10 Best Things to Do at Universal Orlando for Summer
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What’s the number one thing that you’re looking forward to doing at Universal Orlando Resort on your next trip? Let me know in the comments section below.

If you enjoyed learning things to do at Universal Orlando, then you’ll love these:

Until next time, Happy Park Hopping Hipsters!

Sarah Jordan Theme Park Writer and Florida Travel Expert Writer

About the Author

Sarah Jordan is a solo traveler enthusiast, professional travel writer, and proud mama to her rescue dog Coconut.

With a love for destinations across the globe, she made Epcot her first theme park and still treasures her EPCOT World Showcase passport to this day.

After finally following her inner wanderlust, she discovered the freedom and empowerment that solo travel brings. 

(Original Article Date: June 2, 2019/Updated by Editor on May 11, 2024)

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