As Disney World’s 50th anniversary gets closer and closer, we’re constantly learning new things in Disney World!
January was quite the month for news, and February was busy as well, but March had its fair share of important updates! We’ve seen 50th anniversary decorations, characters in new locations, and a Disney World water park reopened. Let’s dive into ALL of the biggest updates from this past month!
Opening Date for Ratatouille Ride and New Creperie
Some of the biggest news we got this month involved the upcoming Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure! That’s right, the ride officially has a grand OPENING DATE!
Also opening on October 1st is the new restaurant La Creperie de Paris! This new dining location will have both quick service and table service options, and their specialty is — you guessed it — crepes!
The attraction and restaurant seem ready to go, as we’ve got a sneak peek at the finished ride already. So far, this is the only major Disney World attraction we have any opening news on!
First Look at New Moana Rooms at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort is currently under a HUGE refurbishment. Not only is the monorail station demolished, but the resort is getting a Moana-inspired makeover. But this month, Disney gave us a sneak peek at what the new Moana hotel rooms look like!
Disney shared that “These reimagined spaces feature a new color palette inspired by the Pacific Ocean and its many islands, including details, patterns and textures from the hit Walt Disney Animation Studios film “Moana.”
There are several characters intertwined in the decor, and there are lots of hidden details to look for!
The refurbished rooms also feature new furnishings and fixtures. Disney shared that for the bathrooms, “Disney Imagineers took inspiration from the sandy ocean floor for the tiles and carved details in the vanity.”
We don’t know about you, but we love us a good Disney sidekick. In these rooms, you can hang with the lovable Hei Hei as you make coffee!
Reservation are currently available to book starting on July 19th of this year. We can’t wait to see the inside of these rooms for ourselves!
Blizzard Beach Reopened
So the Disney World theme parks may have opened up in July 2020, but the water parks remained closed. We knew that either Typhoon Lagoon OR Blizzard Beach would be opening on March 7th pending health and safety policies in the area, but Blizzard Beach DID open on March 7th!
The experience was pretty similar to the theme parks except for the mask situation. Disney does not allow masks while you are in the water. Face masks are required in designated areas which include park entrance and exit, shopping areas, food and beverage ordering areas, and restrooms, locker areas, and changing areas.
Masks are NOT required when walking around in between rides, relaxing in a chair, or waiting in line for water slides and attractions. A Cast Member did recommend keeping a mask with you at all times so that if you need to use the restroom or order food, you don’t have to go all the way back to your chair to grab it.
Overall, we had a great time, but it is certainly a different water park experience than before. There has been no information on when Disney World’s other water park, Typhoon Lagoon, could open up.
MagicMobile & Facial Recognition Are Being Tested
In mid-March, Disney introduced MagicMobile, a feature that allows your phone to be your MagicBand! Guests will be able to add a MagicMobile pass to their digital wallets, which can be tapped at access points.
Don’t worry! MagicBands aren’t going anywhere for the time being! You’ll still be able to wear your favorite MagicBand around your wrist, and it is even possible to switch between MagicBands and MagicMobile during your trip.
MagicMobile passes will be through the My Disney Experience app. MagicMobile has already launched for Apple phones and watches and will be coming to Android devices soon. We asked you to vote on our Instagram page about whether you would use MagicMobile or stick with MagicBands. A whopping 88% of you said you are sticking with MagicBands!
Another technological feature Disney is currently testing out is facial recognition to get into the parks. Before the park closures, guests would have to scan their finger after scanning their MagicBand. Now, if you are willing to participate, there are some facial recognition scanners available at park entrances.
Disney is testing this new system from March 23rd to April 23rd as of now. They will capture an image of your face, convert it into your own personal number, and associate that number with your park admission. Pretty cool, huh?
The experience is entirely optionally, and guests who participate must keep their masks on and take off hats and sunglasses. If this doesn’t sound like something you want to do, that’s no problem! You can head to one of the many regular traditional scanners.
Disney’s All-Star Movies Resort Reopened
Most Disney World resorts have reopened, but there are still a few that remain closed. On March 22nd, Disney’s All-Star Movies Resort reopened! We checked out the lobby after about a year of closures.
We also looked at the World Premiere Food Court! It was pretty similar to other quick service locations at hotels…
…and the Cast Members had adorable new costumes!
FINALLY, another value resort is open again in Disney World! We also stayed the night and did a FULL room tour.
EPCOT Flower and Garden Festival Began
EPCOT is known as the Disney festival park, and at the beginning of March, the EPCOT Flower and Garden Festival kicked off!
We took you along with us live as we visited each of the food booths and brought you the latest updates on the festival this year. The festival lasts until July 5th, so you have several months to visit this unique EPCOT festival!
Train to Disney World Could Be Delayed Until 2026
Magical Express, which takes Disney World resort guests from the Orlando International Airport to Disney World, will be discontinued in 2022, but there will be another option! A Brightline Train is currently in progress, but we could be waiting for it longer than we originally thought.
At first, the high-speed train was targeting a 2023 opening, but according to the Orlando Sentinel, we learned some more about the train and that passenger service from the airport to the Disney Springs station is now slated to start in 5 years. It may take a few more years than we thought, but this will be super convenient when it’s done!
EPCOT Transformation Updates
EPCOT is in the middle of a huge transformation, but it is making a lot of progress! Although we are waiting for big attractions like Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure and Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind to open, sometimes it’s nice to focus on the little things!
First up, EPCOT received some new flags at the entrance! They each have an original EPCOT symbol, and it’s super cool for Disney history nerds like us!
Following the gorgeous fountain, the new additions to the front really polish the look. Now, we’re just waiting for the rest of the park to catch up!
Meet Characters (From a Distance) In New Locations
There’s no doubt that character meet-and-greets are different than they were pre-closure. Guests may not be able to walk up and hug their favorite characters, but they are still out and about all over the parks and in cavalcades. This month we found characters in MORE locations!
Starting in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, we’ve seen Chip and Dale having a picnic…
…a gardener Donald Duck…
…and Goofy waving from above!
Over in EPCOT, we spotted Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, and Pluto in a new spot by Spaceship Earth.
Disney World is clearly stepping up its character game, and we are here for it!
Magic Kingdom Staple Closing for LONG Refurbishment
When you enter Magic Kingdom, one of the first shops you see on Main Street, U.S.A. is the Main Street Confectionery. Known for selling sweet treats and merchandise, this Magic Kingdom staple is closing for a lengthy refurb!
The shop closed on March 29th and the refurb is set to last until at least June 12th. As more park hours are released, the refurb could be scheduled for even longer. There has also been quite the shakeup on Main Street with Main Street Cinema selling confectionery goodies and The Chapeau closing as well.
That’s a wrap on the month of March in Disney World! We learned a lot, witnessed tons of construction (which is moving along nicely), and even saw some brand new technology in Disney World. We’ll be back in April to wrap up all of the biggest news, but in the meantime stay tuned to DFB for the latest updates!
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What was your favorite thing that happened in Disney World in March? Let us know in the comments!