The annual Mardi Gras celebration at Universal Orlando Resort starts this month, February 3. This event strives to make it feel like an all-park party, from the decorations, street performers, delicious foods, to the full-on parade float complete with tons of beads.
The best part of the event? It’s all included in your regular theme park admission, no extra cost.
Let’s break down how to party at the annual Mardi Gras party.
Inspired by Carnaval celebrations around the world, you’re sure to find something for your taste palate.
For 2023, food booths featured international flavors from Belgium and Brazil to Colombia and the classic French Quarter. A popular dish last year was the Mofongo Trio Flight, which is a mix of smashed plantains, from the Puerto Rico booth inspired by the Carnaval Ponceño celebrated on the island.
Another fan-favorite was the classic Jambalaya hailing from NOLA inspired by the traditional Mardi Gras carnival, featuring bold Cajun flavors.
A party isn’t complete without music. There’s no exception for Universal Orlando’s biggest party of the year.
Annually, this event showcases a star-studded lineup of performers to throw concerts on Music Plaza Stage right in front of Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit. A range of genres are on display, with artists from Patti LaBelle to 3 Doors Down and Sean Paul.
Along with the live performances, you’ll find energetic dancers and stilt performers all around the park handing out festive beads to guests. To keep the energy up, brass bands and roving musicians spread Mardi Gras cheer to all park-goers.
All of this is on top of the entertainment found within the attractions and in-park shows found on a regular day at Universal Orlando Resort.
You won’t want to miss the impressive Mardi Gras parade making its way through the streets of Universal Orlando Resort. Modeled after the intricate and beloved floats from New Orleans, these bring the same grandeur to sunny Orlando.
All the floats follow a central theme, last year it was “Mythical Realms of Madi Gras” which incorporated fantastical creatures that would be native to Bourbon Street. Knowing the theme makes watching so much more fun, as you get to point out the invisible thread between each one as they pass by.
You can even ride a parade float and toss beads into the crowd.
In years past, guests have been able to try their luck securing a spot with Virtual Line in the Universal Orlando app or by guaranteeing a spot by purchasing a Float Ride & Dine pass. This pass includes a three-course meal at one of their participating restaurants along with a spot on the float starting at $84.99 plus tax per person.
Whichever way you choose to experience the parade, you’re sure to enjoy it.
For a convenient and affordable stay, check out Rosen Inn Closest to Universal.
Located only 5 minutes away from Universal Orlando Resort, no resort fees, and complete with a complimentary shuttle service to and from Universal Orlando Resort. You can even see some coasters and Universal’s Volcano Bay from select rooms!
This location is the perfect home away from home when visiting Universal’s Mardi Gras.
This year’s celebration has loyal fans waiting for the official announcement that reveals the musical guests, the new food offerings, and this year’s theme.
Ready to party like they do in the “Big Easy”? Start planning your trip today!