Everyone knows Universal Studios Hollywood is an amazing destination for families. But if you’re looking to shake things up with fun, fresh date ideas in Los Angeles, look no further than our city’s own theme park! Whether it’s mom and dad’s big night out on the town, or you’re in those first few rendezvous with someone new, a day at the theme park is a great way to get some QT with your crush. Here’s my itinerary for a grown-up — dare I say, romantic? — day at Universal Studios Hollywood that’ll get you all heart-eyed.
Take a Walk Around the World
Can’t hop on the next jet across the globe? All good, just take a stroll through the Upper Lot at Universal. Head over to the French Street Bistro for a coffee and a pastry, appropriately situated on a block modeled after the streets of Paris, a city where it’s impossible to not fall in love.
Keep looping around, and you’ll find yourselves on the streets of Manhattan. You might not be traipsing through the West Village, but you’ll catch the ambiance of this oh-so-romantic city. And if your date is an animal person (major green flag, in my opinion), you definitely don’t want to miss Illumination’s The Secret Life of Pets: Off Leash. It’s a super impressive dark ride that’ll put a big smile on your face.
PRO TIP: Before you go, get the full scoop on the ride based on The Secret Life of Pets by reading our attraction guide. And while you’re at it, check out the episode of Discover Universal’s “Ride Guys” video series on it, too.
Get a Taste of Movie (and TV) Magic
Speaking of traveling the globe, why stop there? Make time for the world-famous Studio Tour, where you’ll get a behind-the-scenes look at movie magic. The Studio Tour a quintessential Los Angeles activity that makes for fun, adorable date vibes. Not only will you get to peek at backlot sets like Little Europe and Colonial Street, but you’ll get thrills, too: an encounter with the shark from “Jaws,” a dead-eyed stare from a certain creepy guy from “Psycho,” and come face-to-face with the big ape himself, King Kong. Perfect opportunity to squeeze your date’s hand a little too hard.
Take a Tropical Vacay
No shade to urban vacations, but is there anything better than a tropical getaway with that special person? Especially one with dinosaurs involved. Make an excursion to the Lower Lot and hop aboard Jurassic World – The Ride. Once you reach the water ride’s (literal) splashy ending, hit the Jurassic Café for a bite. (I can’t say no to the Slow Roasted Mojo Pork.) And don’t skip a drink at Isla Nu-Bar while you’re down there — the tiki-themed drinks will make you feel like you’re honeymooning. Hey, maybe you actually are!
Dive Into Ancient History
Next stop, Egypt! Pop over to the Revenge of the Mummy – The Ride, just across from the Jurassic World – The Ride. With the use of sophisticated motion picture technology and stellar animatronics, you and your loved one will get catapulted into a haunted tomb on a wild indoor roller coaster. Just try to make it out without getting your soul cursed for eternity — that’d really put a damper on the whole “romantic date” thing. (And peep Discover Universal’s attraction guide to before you go!)
Catch Some Live-Action Special Effects
Have you ever wished you could be inside an action movie? At Waterworld, you basically are. The 20-minute production includes a smashing (pun intended) array of pyrotechnics and special effects that’ll leave you mind-blown (pun also intended). Only in Los Angeles does a fun date include world-class stunt performers, right? It’s perfect for grown-ups, and the story, stunts and jump-scares are a perfect excuse to snuggle up a little closer to your boo. Learn more by reading our attraction guide.
Pose with Iconic Couples
You’re not the only one on a date at Universal Studios Hollywood! From Shrek and Fiona to Frankenstein and his Bride to Homer and Marge Simpson, the theme park is covered with iconic couples for you to meet. You’ll encounter many of them around the Hollywood section of the theme park (on the Upper Lot), but keep your eyes peeled as you explore every land.
Cozy Up in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter
It’s time to step into The Wizarding World of Harry Potter! Take a spin through the plethora of Hogsmeade shops, including Honeydukes, Ollivanders and so much more. (If you want to turn date night up a notch, you can even pick up some dress robes at Gladrags Wizardwear.)Then, stop in for a drink at Hog’s Head and enjoy Butterbeer, which comes in hot, frozen, and cold varieties. Take a look at Discover Universal’s guide to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter before you go!
Dinner for Two at CityWalk
But wait, there’s more! Just because you’re done with the park doesn’t mean the fun’s all over. Have a peaceful, sit-down dinner with your boo at Universal CityWalk Hollywood. There are tons of great restaurants in this action-packed strip, depending on your mood. Looking to spice things up? Margaritas and carne asada at Antojitos Cocina Mexicana are a must. Want classic, romantic date vibes? There’s always spaghetti and a glass of red at Vivo Italian Kitchen. Hitting the town with a sweet tooth? Try the Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savory Feast Kitchen. The choices are basically endless.
Snuggle Up at the Movies
WHEW, it’s been a long day! What better way to relax than by catching a flick in the comfiest movie theater seats in all of Los Angeles? That’s exactly what you’ll find at Universal Cinema. (Seriously, those recliners go all the way back, you’re basically in bed.) This theater always has the biggest blockbusters showing. So grab a ticket to that superhero flick — it’ll help you muster up the courage to hold your date’s hand!
That’s our guide to a perfect date at Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal CityWalk Hollywood! What’s your favorite romantic activity? Let us know in the comments below!