As if Walt Disney World was not spectacular enough throughout the year, wait until you see how they transform the parks for Christmas!
The Christmas season is truly stunning at Walt Disney World. The Magic Kingdom is transformed into a holiday wonderland with 200,000 dream lights (icicle lights) adorning Cinderella Castle. This is a sight you must see!
A special holiday celebration, Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, is held on select nights during November and December at The Magic Kingdom.
Holiday music fills the air and snow has even been known to fall on Main Street U.S.A.! Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade features all of your Disney favorites, as well as gingerbread men, reindeer and elves, dancing down Main Street. Some special Disney characters make an appearance at this Christmas event as well, including: Jiminy Cricket, Scrooge McDuck and the elusive Seven Dwarfs! (be prepared to show up early to meet these 7 Disney superstars – as lines begin forming early and stay long throughout the evening). Of course, the parade finale features the one and only Santa Claus in his sleigh.
You can see Buzz Lightyear, Stitch and your favorite Monsters Inc. characters in Tomorrowland, starring in the Totally Tomorrowland Christmas show.
The “Celebrate the Season” show, in front of Cinderella castle, features Mickey, Minnie and friends in their own version of The Nutcracker. Complimentary cookies and hot cocoa are available all evening, and it’s beautiful to see the park decorated for the season while visiting some of your favorite rides and attractions.
Holiday Wishes: Celebrate the Spirit of the Season, features a beautiful fireworks show, set to traditional Christmas carols and holiday tunes.
This event will definitely put you in the holiday spirit! Like the Halloween Party, Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party requires a special ticket for admission, and the Magic Kingdom closes to the public at 7 PM for this event.
The other Walt Disney World theme parks celebrate the holidays in their own special ways as well.
In Epcot’s World Showcase, storytellers share holiday traditions from their countries. You can even meet Father Christmas in the United Kingdom or Santa and Mrs. Claus in the American Adventure pavilion. Kwanzaa and Hanukkah are celebrated in World Showcase as well.
One of the most popular events at Epcot during the holiday season is the Candlelight Processional. Celebrity narrators and a choir with live orchestra retell the Christmas story at America Gardens Theatre. Some of the more popular narrators have included, Neil Patrick Harris, Whoopi Goldberg and Amy Grant. You can find more information on 2013 narrators here: https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/events-tours/epcot/candlelight-processional/. To make sure you have a seat for this popular event, Candlelight Processional dining packages are available with dinner at select Epcot restaurants, and include a special location for fireworks viewing and guaranteed seating. To make your reservation, call 407-WDW-DINE. Be advised that reservations fill up quickly.
Illuminations (Epcot’s nightly fireworks and water show), adds a special finale for the holidays as well. One of the most beautiful holiday surprises can be found at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights transforms the Studios backlot into a virtual city of lights. The cityscape buildings are adorned with millions of lights and animated displays that are synched to holiday music. Snow flurries add to the magic of this event. The magic of this display cannot be described — this is one event you must see for yourself!
Disney’s Animal Kingdom celebrates the holiday season with Mickey’s Jingle Jungle Parade, which runs at 3:45 daily.
Outside of the theme parks, Disney’s resort hotels are all dressed up for the holidays as well. Each is decorated in its own special way. Some of the decorations you will not want to miss: the life-size gingerbread house at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort, and the unbelievable gingerbread carousel at Disney’s Beach Club Resort (with candy ponies and oversized candy-cane poles).
Animal Kingdom Lodge and Fort Wilderness each have a unique collection of holiday decorations, and all of the resorts add special touches that reflect their theme. The lobby at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge (while always a beautiful sight) is breathtaking during the holiday season, with a multi-story tree, miniature teepee ornaments and antler wreaths. You will definitely want to make time during your visit to see all of the gorgeous holiday displays!
Planning a Disney vacation this fall/winter? Contact me today to learn more about Disney’s Halloween and Christmas holiday special events.
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