It may only be June, but we’re already thinking about Christmas and the holiday season in Disney World!
We’ve been patiently waiting for Disney to announce what we can expect from the holiday season this year, since 2021 brought us Disney’s Merriest After Hours event instead of Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, but we now know that the Christmas party is returning, so let’s take a look at what else has been confirmed to return to Disney World this holiday season!
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party
First and foremost, we know that Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, a special ticketed event at the Magic Kingdom will be returning this year with 24 parties throughout November and December. The party is returning with many of the fan-favorite entertainment options like Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration stage show, Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks, and Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade!
Also during the event, you’ll get to see Disney characters all dressed up for the holidays, snow on Main Street, U.S.A., and you’ll be able to grab some complimentary cookies and hot cocoa, too. Also during the party, you’ll have the opportunity to dance the night away at not one but three different dance parties around the park! Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe will be turned into Club Tinsel, at the Rockettower Plaza Stage in Tomorrowland, you can join Stitch, Buzz Lightyear, and Mike Wazowski for a Totally Tomorrowland Christmas, and over in Storybook Circus, you can take part in the Disney Junior Jingle Jam and dance with characters from popular Disney Junior shows!
Also during the event, in celebration of Disney World’s 50th Anniversary, guests will have access to three different photo ops AND they will take home a special commemorative keepsake in honor of the anniversary.
Holiday overlays will also be returning, like the world-famous Jingle Cruise (which is also available during daytime hours), plus there will be overlays for other rides like Mad Tea Party, Space Mountain, Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor, and the Tomorrowland Speedway for party attendees only.
And for a NEW attraction overlay, Disney has shared that instead of the typical songs you can get on Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind in EPCOT, during the holiday season, guests will be able to hear festive mixes instead!
EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays
Much like the other festivals, the Festival of the Holidays features holiday food booths from around the world, though Disney hasn’t yet shared which ones will be returning. The Candlelight Processional, which is an event that tells the story of Christmas with a celebrity narrator, orchestra, and choir, will also be returning, but Disney did not share dates.
As in years past, Santa Claus will be making appearances at the festival and Disney shared that he will “join storytellers from around the world” around the World Showcase. Also returning is the Holiday Cookie Stroll. To participate in the Cookie Stroll, you grab a Festival Passport and visit the booths at the festival that are taking part in the stroll, buying cookies along the way. When you’ve bought five cookies (and received five stamps in your passport), you get a prize for completing the stroll!
Park Icon Festivities
Once the sun sets, the park icons will be lit up with holiday decorations! At Magic Kingdom, Cinderella Castle will be lit up with holiday projections (on nights when Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is not taking place).
Spaceship Earth at EPCOT, Tower of Terror at Hollywood Studios, and the Tree of Life at Disney’s Animal Kingdom will also get special holiday projections that will rotate with the Beacons of Magic each night.
Guests will also have the opportunity to see and meet Santa Claus throughout the holiday season! He will be making appearances in Animal Kingdom on the Santa Claus Flotilla on the Discovery River, and around EPCOT during the Festival of the Holidays.
You’ll also be able to spot him in the Santa Claus Motorcade in Hollywood Studios, and you’ll be able to meet him in Disney Springs, too!
In terms of entertainment, For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration in Hollywood Studios will be getting a holiday finale that features Olaf!
At Animal Kingdom, the Merry Menagerie will be returning, as well. The Merry Menagerie consists of artisan-sculpted puppets of arctic animals, and they are very cute. Also at Animal Kingdom, you’ll be able to see the Discovery Island Drummers Festive Flotilla, which is the holiday version of the drummer flotilla that can be seen now.
Disney Springs is getting in on the fun with snow in the Town Center plus the Disney Springs Christmas Tree Stroll, which is a scavenger hunt to find all of the decorated Christmas trees throughout Disney Springs.
You’ll also be able to catch live entertainment and Toy Soldier Stilt Walkers, and Snowflake Skaters in Disney Springs, as well.
And if all that wasn’t enough, there will also be special PhotoPass Magic Shots and lenses throughout Disney World during the holiday season, so make sure to keep your eye out for those.
Festive Food Offerings
And finally, we come to our favorite part: the food! First up, Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar in Disney Springs is once again turning into Jock Lindsey’s Holiday Bar.
Hollywood & Vine in Hollywood Studios is also being transformed into Minnie’s Holiday Dine, and other limited-time treats will make their way around the parks and Disney Springs, as well. Disney hasn’t shared what treats we can expect from this holiday season, but we’ll be on the lookout for more news.
Disney also announced that a brand new holiday merchandise collection will be coming to the Disney parks. It includes things like spirit jerseys, ears, a Loungefly backpack, and more.
And of course, the parks will be decorated with a large Christmas tree in the Magic Kingdom, and festive touches around the other parks and Disney Springs, as well.
We’ll be bringing you more updates as Disney continues to celebrate Halfway to the Holidays, so make sure to stay tuned to DFB for all the latest!
Will you be heading to Disney World this holiday season? Let us know in the comments!