Total Orlando has Experienced a very Scary and Busy Weekend

We have waited for the past weekend for so long and now it’s over we are totally dead on our feet, excuse the pun.  Was it worth it?  Yes, every single second.  Universal have done it again, they have recreated our all time favorite annual event!

The 15th of September saw the opening of Universal’s 27th year of Halloween Horror Nights.  We attended a media event on Friday.  We also attended Saturday night with a group of friends.  You could say it was a pretty haunting weekend for us.

We don’t want to spoil the experience for those visiting, however, we felt that we had to  give a very brief rundown of what you can expect from the houses/maizes this year.


Houses/Maizes 2017

American Horror Story

American Horror Story was probably the most popular house last year and we are presuming this year will be just as popular.  American Horror Story is a more recent TV series and has a huge following.  We are not sure if that is why it is so popular or because it is pure genius.  We loved it this year just as much as we did last year.  This year’s house features different scenes and characters from last year.  Guests can expect scenes from Asylum, Coven and Roanoke.

Total Orlando Loved

  • The amount of scare actors located here
  • The smells they were totally disgusting
  • One of our favorite houses

Ash Vs Evil Dead

Universal wanted to create a house that lies somewhere in between comedy and horror, we couldn’t think of a better way to achieve this.  Based on the 1980’s and 1990’s Sam Raimi horror movies, guests can expect some great scenes whilst passing through the cabin in the woods and the morgue.

Total Orlando Loved

  • How much is going on in this house
  • The Theming
  • One of our favorite houses

The Horrors of Blumhouse

Take three of the most scariest horror movies ‘The Purge’, ‘Happy Death Day’ and ‘Sinister’ and you have one very scary house.  Whilst we all know The Purge and Sinister we know little about Happy Death Day as it isn’t due for release until 13th October.  However, if the house is anything to go by it is going to be pretty spectacular.

Total Orlando Loved

  • Everything about this house.
  • One of our favorite houses.

Dead Waters

Based on the scare zone ‘Bayou of Blood’.  Universal have previously used scare zones based on houses, but never a house based on a scare zone.  We loved the scare zone last year, however, we found this house a little disappointing.  Although the set was actually one of our favorites, brilliantly themed Universal.

What Total Orlando Loved

  • The set was very detailed

The Fallen

Based on light and dark, good and evil.  The house has many creatures flying and crawling around in the darkness.  There are some great jumpy moments here.   The flying creatures are definitely one of the most impressive things about the whole HHN event.

Total Orlando Loved

  • The flying creatures above at the end are really creepy, don’t forget to look up.

The Hive

The Hive is based on vampires, forget beautiful vampires with kind souls, these ugly blood suckers are out to scare you and they do that with their sheer ugliness.  I personally wouldn’t rate this as very scary.

Total Orlando Loved

  • The props were probably amongst some of our favorites.

Saw

Based on another extremely popular horror movie ‘Saw’.   The house plays a lot on suspense and sounds.  There are ample memorable traps from the franchises throughout the house.  We love the Saw franchise, however, I felt they played a little too much on the victims.

Total Orlando Loved

  • The authentic sounds, they totally creeped us out.
  • The authenticity of the victims and their fate.

Scarecrow

An abandoned farm house in Nebraska and a heap of scarecrows is all this house needs.  The house is super dark and literally has a scarecrow at every twist and turn.  This house is a great scare maize, we witnessed some guests turn away at the entrance, scary from beginning to end.  This was a firm favorite with lots of visitors.

Total Orlando Loved

  • Scarecrows literally at every turn – lots of scary moments.

The Shining

The Shining is one of the most well known horror movies of all time .  The 1980 classic from Stanley Kubrick has finally arrived at HHN. The experience is designed in a way to play on psychological horror, in other words if you are looking for blood and gore you won’t find it here.  Guests will encounter many iconic characters and scenes from the movie including, the hedge maze, the bear, the axe, the bar and of course our all time favorite scare twins ‘The Grady Twins’.

 

Total Orlando Loved

  • The Grady Twins.

  • The bar – one of the most impressive areas of the whole event, we totally loved it.

Our Favorites

We shouldn’t really do this but we have.  This is the list of our favorite houses, 1 being the favorite, 9 being the least favorite, although there is something we love about each and every house.  We know as it gets busier and closer to Halloween it can get super crowded with long wait times, this is the order we would visit.

  1. American Horror Story
  2. The Horrors of Blumhouse
  3. Scarecrow
  4. Ash Vs Evil
  5. The Shining
  6. Saw
  7. Fallen
  8. Hive
  9. Dead Waters

Scare Zones

The scare zones are an extremely important feature of the Halloween Horror Nights as they set the whole mood of the park.  Check out our separate blog on The Scare Zones.


Academy of Villain’s

This was our only disappointment of the whole weekend!  The show had to be cancelled due to damage to the stage during Hurricane Irma.  They are currently rebuilding the set and the show should commence within the next week.

We watched this show last year and it was by far our favorite part of the whole horror nights.  I guess we have a great excuse to go back!


Bill and Ted Farewell

2017 was the last year for Bill and Ted after 27 years of performing, we feel there are going to be a lot of very disgruntled guests.  However, please give Universal a chance, we are sure they have something spectacular to replace Bill and Ted, and dare we say it?  We think it has run it’s course, it is time for a change!


Pricing

Event tickets range from $ 59.99 – $ 83.99

Frequent fear passes range from $ 91.99 – $ 599.99

We opt for the Frequent Fear which gives us access most nights apart from a Saturday.  The ticket cost is $ 102.99 and we visited eight times last year.  We think that is pretty good value!

Is It Worth It

Every single dollar!  Halloween Horror Nights are some of the best night out’s we have had.


Top Tips

  • Dress appropriately and check the weather before you leave.  Always wear comfortable footwear, preferably closed toe shoes.
  • Do not touch the scare actors.
  • Pick your visit carefully.  Peak nights can see wait times up to 3 hours.  If you can go in September you will see much shorter lines.
  • Don’t bypass a quiet restroom, take a bathroom break whenever possible.
  • There are lots of plain clothes security around the park.  Don’t do anything you shouldn’t.
  • Plan well in advance, decide which houses you really want to visit.
  • Regular parking rules do not apply.  Parking is not free after 6:00 p.m.  Valet parking is not free to annual pass holders.
  • Don’t take your kids, it really isn’t an event for kids.  Apart from the scares there are lots of adults drinking alcohol.
  • If you are going to drink alcohol, don’t drive.  Take an uber they are super reasonable.

Happy Halloween!