Complete Guide to Disneyland to Universal Studios Hollywood

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Complete Guide to Disneyland to Universal Studios Hollywood

This article is your complete guide to traveling from Disneyland to Universal Studios Hollywood! Because so many families are happy to have these amazing theme parks opened once again. And here at The Park Prodigy we are thrilled to help you plan unforgettable family vacations! So one of the most common questions we receive from those visiting the California theme parks is often regarding a way to make travel arrangements from one park to the other.

That’s why, we are going to help our readers determine what is the best way for their group to travel back and forth from Disneyland to Universal Studios, knowing that if they decide to visit Universal Studios first, they generally will need to simply reverse the process to get from Universal Studios to Disneyland. We hope you find this post helpful, and if you are planning a trip to Disneyland or Universal Studios be sure to check out our other FREE vacation planning tools. Our goal at The Park Prodigy has always been to help you save time on your next vacation and find the best time to buy Disneyland tickets and of course Universal Studios Hollywood Tickets. 

If you are not a Californian, this article will be a great resource for you as well as you try to determine the best way for your family to get from Disneyland to Universal Studios Hollywood on a future vacation.

SPECIAL NOTE: If you’re looking for our Disneyland Crowd Calendar be sure to go straight to the link below!

 Disneyland Crowd Calendar

Is Universal Studios Near Disneyland?

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So, how far is Universal Studios from Disneyland California? While many Florida theme park fans are accustomed to the two parks being less than a half-hour apart, things are a bit different in California. The distance between Universal Studios and Disneyland California is about 35 miles. It might not sound too far, but Californians love their cars and with roads that can be jam-packed with vehicles at all times, it means the Disneyland to Universal Studios drive time can be anywhere from an hour to two hours.

So, while physically the distance from Disneyland to Universal Studios California is not too far, the travel time is guaranteed to be a big part of your day one way or the other. As a travel party, you will need to determine how you’re getting from Disneyland to Universal Studios, how much money you want to spend and what’s best for your family. In the end the question is not is how far is Universal Studios from Disneyland, but how are you going to get there?

Once you see your options for traveling from Universal Studios Los Angeles to Disneyland, you might feel better qualified to determine what is the best way for your family to get from Disneyland to Universal Studios Hollywood.

Drive Yourself in Your Own Car from Disneyland to Universal Studios 

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If you drove yourself to Disneyland and are wondering how far is Universal Studios from where you’re at and how long it will take you to get there, driving yourself may be your best bet, especially if you have your family with you. While driving on California roads can take nerves of steel, the convenience of managing your own schedule, being able to stop if a little one needs to go the bathroom, and being able to travel to other nearby tourist and historical sites may make this a good option for your travel party to cover the Universal Studios California distance from Disneyland.

Driving Directions:

  • Take I-5 North.
  • Keep left to continue on US-101 North.
  • Take Exit 11B toward Universal Studios Boulevard.
  • Continue on W.C. Fields Dr. Drive to Universal Studios Blvd.

Approximate Cost: Gas, $25 parking fee at Universal and possible snacks for the drive.

Traveling Tips:

  • Plan your travel time to avoid busy road times – such as rush hour or weekends. California roads are notoriously busy.
  • If driving in unknown areas stresses you out, this may not be the best way for you to travel from Disneyland to Universal Studios.
  • If your family would like to explore other areas or would like to only do a half-day at Universal, this could be a great way to accommodate those desires.
  • If you’re a local Californian, this may be a piece of cake and your best choice for transportation from Disneyland to Universal Studios.

Related Article: The Best Time to Visit Disneyland 

Drive a Rental Car  From Disneyland to Universal Studios Hollywood 

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If you did not bring your own vehicle on your Disneyland vacation, but really want to go spend a day at Universal Hollywood, you might want to look at renting a car, especially if you have a larger family or a family with younger kids. Much like driving your own car, you’ll want a driver in your group who is comfortable driving in an unknown area with lots of other vehicles. But many people prefer this choice because of the flexibility it gives them. If the kids just tucker out from the day at Universal or someone isn’t feeling well, you can simply hop back in your rental car to travel from Universal Studios back to the Disneyland area in a jiffy.

Driving Directions:

  • Take I-5 North.
  • Keep left to continue driving on US-101 North.
  • Take Exit 11B toward Universal Studios Boulevard.
  • Continue on W.C. Fields Dr. Drive to Universal Studios Blvd.

Approximate Cost: $40 rental car fee, gas, $25 parking fee at Universal and snacks for the drive.

Traveling Tips:

  • There are plenty of car rental places in the Disneyland area. Some will even drop off and pick up from Disneyland resorts.
  • Since you have a car, take a moment to pick up less expensive snacks or water to get you through your travel days, or stop and see another site along the way.
  • Beware of added expenses such as insurance or car seat rental.

Take the L.A. Metro (aka Bus/Rail) from Disneyland to Universal Studios Hollywood

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If you’re looking for the least expensive transportation between Disneyland and Universal Studios, then this will be your choice for how to get from Disneyland to Universal Studios.

Disneyland does not provide a Disneyland to Universal Studios bus or a shuttle between Disneyland and Universal Studios, so you’ll need to hop on public transportation for this budget-friendly route. The travel path will take you on several different modes of transportation, but here’s the general route you’ll take if you decide to use this option to cover the Disneyland and Universal Studios distance.

  1. Board the 460 Bus near Disneyland (Check out the Metro’s website to find the nearest stop to where you’ll want to board.)
  2. Get off at Figueroa and 7th
  3. Transfer to the Metro Red Line (Subway) at 7th Street and Metro Center Station
  4. Get off at the Universal/Studio City Station
  5. Take Universal Studios’ free shuttle to the park (it runs about every 15 minutes)

This transportation to Universal Studios from Disneyland will take you the absolute longest. You may be traveling up to 2 ½ hours just to go one way depending on the amount of stops that need to be made as you wind through the streets and highways.  And while about 35 miles is how far is Universal from Disney, this mode of travel will add up to a lot more miles.

Approximate Cost: A one-day pass with included transfers is about $7 per adult.

Traveling Tips:

  • Be organized and aware. This trip requires several different modes and transfers so make sure you are aware of when and where you need to make a transfer.
  • Park tickets for Universal are more expensive at the gate. Purchase your tickets before you get there to save some money.
  • Many locals use these modes of transportation so if your children are shy around lots of strangers, this could make them uncomfortable.

Related Article: The Cheapest Time to Visit Disneyland 

Bus Tours from Disneyland to Universal Studios Hollywood 

For many people, a vacation means not having to deal with everyday stresses like traffic. If this is you or your family, you may want to take a tour bus from Disneyland to Universal Studios Hollywood. While there is not a free bus from Universal Studios to Disneyland, it is a service provided from outside sources for an additional charge. Some of these tour busses give interesting facts and tidbits along your route and some are more like shuttles, simply getting you from one destination to the next. For someone who likes to leave the driving to someone else, this might be how to travel from Disneyland to Universal Studios with the least amount of stress.

Approximate Cost: $40-$50 per person

Traveling Tips:

  • The least flexible option, carefully check departure times to make sure you don’t miss your bus, especially on the ride back. That is not the way your want to find out how far away is Disneyland by paying for an unexpected taxi ride back to your resort.
  • Some bus tours offer the option of buying your Universal Studios park ticket with the bus ticket. Check prices to make sure this is the best value for your money.
  • It will cut out on the amount of time you can spend in Universal Studios so if you want to use every moment you get by purchasing a park ticket, this may not be the best option.
  • Depending on your party, this may be a nice relaxing way to travel the distance from Disneyland to Universal Studios CA. Many people enjoy sitting back and saving their energy for the park.

Take a Lyft/Uber or Taxi from Universal Studios to Disneyland 

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One of the most costly options, you may choose to hire an Uber/Lyft/Taxi to bring you from Disneyland to Orlando Studios and back. While we list it as one of the most expensive, if you have a family of 3 or 4 (and don’t mind all scrunching into a car with a driver), it could actually be less expensive than purchasing tickets for each of you to take a tour bus or shuttle from Disneyland to Universal Studios.

Approximate Cost: $125 round trip, depending on time of day and type of car you choose (larger cars and vans are often more money).

Traveling Tips:

  • Look for coupons to use, especially for Uber or Lyft. You might find online coupon codes that will take $10-$20 off one way.
  • If you have more than one person in your group, it might not be too cost prohibitive, especially when you consider the convenience.
  • It’s probably the easiest, quickest, and least stressful way to discover how far is Disneyland from Universal Studios Hollywood.
  • It allows you the most time in the park since you can plan to leave well before the park opens and then stay until the very last person leaves the park.
  • Check your seats before you get out of the vehicle. You don’t want to accidentally leave anything behind.

Related Article: Ultimate Guide to Disneyland’s Galaxy’s Edge

So, while many people ask, “are there shuttles from Disneyland to Universal Studios?” and “how far is Disney from Universal?” you will find that with a bit of research, you can easily plan to sneak in a little visit to Universal Studios when you are vacationing in Disneyland. We’re excited that our California residents get to start us off with these park visits and look forward to when the rest of us get to join them. We’ve all missed being able to visit Disneyland and Universal Studios Hollywood.

When is The Best Time to Visit Disneyland?

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Our Disneyland Crowd Calendar is the best tool to help you get the most out of your time in the parks. We break down park crowds, park hours of operation, ticket prices, and average temperature. We also break down the best time to visit Disneyland based on specific times of the year and special events.

Now’s the time to book it! Let us help you celebrate getting through one of the hardest years ever by planning a Disneyland vacation today!

Michael Belmont

Michael Belmont is the owner and chief editor at Theparkprodigy.com, an authorized Disney and Universal travel agent. He specializes in Disney and Universal theme park tickets and vacation packages, as well as daily park plans to help optimize vacation time. Michael and The Park Prodigy have been featured on ABC’s Florida affiliate, WTFV, as well as over 10 Disney focused blogs. As owner, Michael manages The Park Prodigy blog and social media, a Disney themed podcast, and a Disney and Universal focused YouTube channel. Prior to starting The Park Prodigy, Michael was a long time Disney and Universal enthusiast, frequent visitor of the parks, and even served as a Walt Disney World Cast Member in Orlando, Florida!