The Walt Disney World parks are magical at any time of year, but at Christmas they become even more magical than ever thanks to stunning decorations, towering Christmas trees and hundreds of thousands of glittering lights! That’s not all though, there’s an exciting line-up of Christmas entertainment to look forward to. With so much to see, it can be hard to know where to start. That’s why we’ve put together a handy guide of this year’s top seasonal events…
One of our favourite things about Christmas at Walt Disney World, is seeing the iconic Cinderella Castle illuminated with glittering lights- there’s around 200,000 in total! Make sure you bring your camera and have your phone charged up, as you’ll want to take plenty of pictures of the stunning decorations. There’s Christmas trees, wreaths, giant baubles and garlands everywhere. The main event at the Magic Kingdom is Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. This is an after-hours event that requires a separate ticket, but really lets you experience a true Disney Christmas.
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party
At Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party you’ll be able to enjoy a whole host of special events. You’ll also get the chance to meet the Disney characters dressed in their finest Christmas attire, ride the park’s most popular attractions in the dark and try the mouth-watering Christmas cuisine. Here’s what you can expect…
Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration
This fun-filled stage show needs to be on your must-see list. Mickey is hosting his very own Christmas celebration and has invited along some of his closest friends, including you! Minnie, Donald, Goofy and Pluto will be there dressed in their fanciest Christmas clothing, as well as Woody & Jessie, Snow White & Dopey, Alice & the White Rabbit, Peter Pan and many more.
Sing along to classic Christmas carols and watch in awe as the castle glows with impressive holiday illuminations. Look out for some snow in the grand finale too!
Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade
Arrive early to get the perfect viewing spot, as a series of elaborate floats glide along Main Street USA. There’s music, lights, dancing gingerbread men and of course, lots of your favourite characters. Look out for the likes of Anna & Elsa, Mickey & Minnie and the adorable Olaf to name a few. There’s also a special guest riding a sleigh. Any guesses who it might be?
A Frozen Holiday Wish
This spectacular show is simply unmissable! Frozen sisters Anna and Elsa lead the show on the Castle Forecourt Stage. They’ll be joined by their friends Kristoff and Olaf in a fun-filled performance, with music and laughter from start to finish. The grand finale comes when Queen Elsa gives the entire park a very special gift, as she transforms the castle into a beautiful ice palace!
Disney’s Hollywood Studios
Sunset Seasons Greetings
The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror is one of the most iconic Disney rides and this year, it’s getting a special makeover for the festive season. A spectacular light projection show will take place on the façade of the tower. Watch in awe as your favourite characters unique Christmas stories come to life before your eyes in a burst of colour.
Mickey and Minnie will be reminiscing about Christmas, while the Toy Story characters wonder which new toys will arrive on Christmas day, and Olaf dreams of his own Christmas wish. You’ll see the tower covered in colourful wrapping paper, before changing into a winter wonderland and a giant gingerbread house. You’ll also notice the billboards that line the street, spring to life as you walk past, so keep a look out. There’s even snow falling from overhead.
Jingle Bell, Jingle Bam!
Jingle Bell, Jingle Bam! made its Christmas debut at Disney’s Hollywood Studios last year, and the night-time spectacular is back for this year’s celebrations too. This is another stunning light projection show that plays out on the front of the Chinese Theater. Wayne and Lanny (from ABC’s Prep & Landing) are the hosts of the show and are on a mission to locate Santa, who seems to have gone missing just before the big day! Join them on their exciting adventure to recue Christmas.
As the buildings come alive, you’ll see iconic scenes from Disney Christmas movies, like Mickey’s Christmas Carol and The Nightmare Before Christmas. Holiday hits will ring through the park, and there’s plenty of special effects, fireworks and even a bit of snow!
Epcot International Festival of the Holidays
Epcot’s World Showcase is made up of 11 different ‘countries’ giving you the chance to experience their food, culture and iconic landmarks all in one place. During the Christmas period, you’ll be able to see first-hand how each country celebrates the festive season, try tasty seasonal snacks, and learn all about their Christmas traditions. Make sure you spend some time visiting each pavilion and admire the beautiful decorations. You might even find some to take home.
This is one of the most popular Christmas events at Walt Disney World and is something you really should make time for. The Candlelight Processional is an incredible performance where a celebrity narrator retells the biblical Christmas story, accompanied by an amazing 50-piece orchestra and choir. This year, the celebrity line-up includes Whoopi Goldberg, Warwick Davis, Kurt Russell, Neil Patrick Harris and Jodie Benson, to name just a few.
The event is free to attend (with your Disney tickets) but is extremely popular, so make sure you get there early so you don’t miss out!
Disney’s Animal Kingdom doesn’t celebrate Christmas in as big a way as the other Disney parks, but you can still get your festive fix if you're visiting. Admire the huge Christmas tree adorned with animal-inspired decorations, have your photo taken with Goofy (dressed as Santa!), Minnie & Mickey, and head to Tusker House to see the impressive 3-foot long gingerbread feature.
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