There is no better place to celebrate the holiday season than at Walt Disney World. The resorts are all amazingly decorated and the parks are no exception. Disney prepares all year for the holiday celebrations; watch episode 5 of ‘Inside Disney Parks’ to see how they were busy preparing all the way back in July:
Each Disney Park has its’ own holiday offerings. Below is a line-up of what is being offered in 2016:
Magic Kingdom Park:
along with the fabulous decorations making Cinderella’s castle the focus of the park, the Magic Kingdom also offers special character meets & holiday treats throughout the park.
Perhaps the biggest celebration in Walt Disney World is Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, offered in the Magic Kingdom on select nights from Nov 11th – Dec 22nd. Keep in mind that this is a separately ticketed event. This festive holiday experience is an entire blog article to itself so I will not go into detail here. You will be able to experience a light snowfall on main street and make your way to various stations to collect collect different cookies and various drinks. You will need to purchase tickets in advance to be able to attend this marvelous holiday party. You can find price & date details HERE
The Jungle Cruise attraction has now been re-themed to the Jingle Cruise for the holidays. The attraction now includes holiday decorations and a new story line, dialog and even a few holiday jokes. It might be cheesy, but still a fun & festive experience.
Totally Tomorrowland Christmas is a fun dance party stage show in Tomorrowland starring Mike from Monsters Inc and Buzz Lightyear from Toy Story. This show usually occurs during the Christmas Party, but is currently listed on the schedule, during regular park days during Thanksgiving week from Nov 20 – Nov 26
A Frozen Holiday Wish, stage show and castle lighting on the stage in front of the castle. Starring your favorites from Disney’s Frozen, Anna, Elsa, Olaf and Kristoff. As of today this stage show in front of the castle will occur nightly at 6:30 from Nov 7 – Dec 31 2016. CLICK HERE for my video of the full show. The video, with my little camera, does not do this show justice, be sure to see it in person. 🙂
Holiday Wishes Fireworks, Celebrate the Season will be showing during the Christmas party but is also currently listed on regular park days for Christmas week from Dec 23 – Dec 31.
On November 4th the magic Kingdom began an all new nighttime show on the castle entitled ‘Once Upon a Time‘. This show replaced the ‘Celebrate the Magic’ show and features Mrs. Potts from Beauty and the Beast leading guests through various Disney bedtime stories. If you want to watch my video of this event, CLICK HERE to find the full video on my YouTube Channel
In Epcot all of the countries have been included in the holiday celebration. During Holidays Around the World, you can lean about the holiday customs of 11 different countries throughout the World Showcase. Each country will have a story teller (usually the Santa for their culture). This extravagantly costumed person will be scheduled during certain times of the day to share their holiday traditions with guests. I can attest to the fact that all of these immersive experiences are both entertaining and educational. Don’t forget to take the time to taste a few of the holiday treats in the different countries.
In Epcot you will also be able to meet Santa and Mrs. Claus outside of the American Adventure Pavilion
Each year Epcot holds the Candlelight Processional which tells the biblical story of Christmas by a celebrity narrator surrounded by the rich sounds of a live choir and orchestra. This is an inspiring and uplifting experience that I highly recommend the next time you visit Epcot during the holiday season. Some of the narrators for 2016 are Whoopi Goldberg, Steven Curtis Champman, Neil Patrick Harris, Cal Ripkin Jr and more. This show has become such a HUGE success that I highly recommend reserving seats for a meal through the Candlelight Processional dining package. This will guarantee you a spot at one of the 3 daily performances: 5:00pm, 6:45pm, & 8:15pm Nov 25 – Dec 30.
CLICK HERE for a full video of the 2016 Candlelight Processional narrated by Steven Curtis Chapman
Holidays Around the World in Epcot will offer some new food kiosks along the World Showcase from Nov 25 – Dec 30. You will be able to sample some traditional holiday food. You collect a special food passport (like the passports that they had out during the Food & Wine Festival) and you can follow along and check off your favorites or the samples that you have tasted.
On November 14th Hollywood Studios will debut a new nighttime holiday show which follows the Star Wars Galactic Spectacular show on some nights & replaces it on other nights. The ‘Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!’ show will be displayed on the Chinese Theater and will be lead by the popular elves in Disney’s Prep and Landing. The projections, fireworks & lasers guarantee to get you in the holiday spirit. CLICK HERE for my full video of this show on YouTube.
Hollywood Studios will also have a notable opening that is not holiday related. The grand opening of Pizza Rizzo on Nov 18th. This new Muppet themed pizza restaurant will offer personal pizzas and other quick service food.
Minnie’s Holiday and Dine Dinner at the Hollywood & Vine Restaurant will take place daily from Nov 7 – Jan 3. During this dinner hosted by Minnie Mouse herself her pals Mickey, Donald, Daisy and Santa Goofy will join her all dressed in their Christmas best. be sure that you make reservations well in advance for this holiday meal.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom park will be fully decked out for the holidays and this tree is one of my favorites. Just look at all of the detail in each one of the larger-than-life ornaments. Keep your eyes peeled for a meet with Santa Goofy making appearances around the park.
Donald’s Happy Holiday-O-Saurus Dance Party will take place in DinoLand USA from 12/18 – 12/31. Check the daily times guides for party times.
Not only will the parks be offering spectacular holiday cheer in 2016. Disney Springs has a new line-up of holiday activities. A festive atmosphere will welcome guests to this spectacular shopping district. There will be a nightly tree lighting ceremony, carolers and holiday dance parties.
You can walk along the new Christmas Tree Trail through a gentle snow fall with toy soldiers and carolers. The trail will begin at Once Upon a Toy. Be sure to admire the detail of the 15 different trees themed after Disney Characters. The themes announced on Disney Parks Blog will be Mickey & Minnie Mouse, Disney Villains, Moana, Beauty and the Beast, Little Mermaid, 101 Dalmatians, Muppets, Mulan, Cinderella, Princess and the Frog, Frozen, Jungle Book, Alice in Wonderland, Tangled and Mary Poppins. The tree tail will run from November 11th through January 8th.
Experience Festival of Toys at the Once Upon a Toy Fountain in the Disney Springs Marketplace. Toys will magically come alive for an interactive holiday dance party nightly on the plaza. Plus, there’s a pin trading, nightly tree lighting ceremony and more.
During the holiday season Disney Springs will be showing off brand new drone technology as 300 drones light up the night sky in Disney Springs Starbright Holidays; This will occur nightly at 7:00pm & 8:30pm. See a special sample video by Disney Parks blog HERE
Don’t forget to share your wish list with Santa at Santa’s Chalet. You will need to check in and will be given a pager by one of the elves. It will page you when it is time to return to the line. Be sure that you have a good camera handy or that you have purchased Disney’s Memory Maker package. There will be a Photopass photographer standing by to snap those precious & unforgettable moments with Santa.
Santa will be greeting guests daily from Nov 25th – Dec 30th from noon to 10:00pm From Dec 25th – Dec 30th Santa Goofy will greet guests while Santa prepares for next year.
Stitch’s Holiday Gift Hunt Stitch has lost his shopping list & needs you to help him complete it. Pick up a location map and gift stickers at once of 4 locations: Once Upon a Toy, Super Hero Headquarters, Welcome Center or World of Disney information desk. There are 11 stores on the list to hunt for Stitch & match the stickers to. Once complete, visit one of the pick up locations for a limited-edition completer button. THis runs throughout the holiday season from 10:00am until 11:00pm
If you have time for a festive round of golf, be sure to visit Disney’s Winter Summerland Course where you can play on 2 different courses that feature Christmas Decor and Santa. This course is located just right outside of Disney’s Blizzard Beach water park which will be closed this holiday season for refurbishment. Unless included with your ticket this course is an added cost
All of the parks and resorts offer fabulous holiday celebrations and I plan to attend each and every one this holiday season. be sure to watch my Facebook page, You Tube Channel and blog for my personal reports.
My name is Melissa and I am a Florida local. I am also a travel agent. I plan to experience each and every one of the above listed holiday celebrations in person this year. Consider booking through a travel agent for your next vacation. It never costs extra to you & you get expert advice and planning assistance. Holiday packages for 2017 are already open, what are you waiting for? Contact me for a free quote.