Walt Disney World Holiday decoration on Main Street
  • Nov 23, 2022
    Please note that experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer. We asked the panelists

    What is your best advice for celebrating the holidays at a Disney destination?

  • Hi there and welcome to planDisney! 

    I absolutely love the holiday season at the Walt Disney World Resort. From new snacks to fun entertainment, there’s a lot to enjoy!

    If you’re coming for the holidays, my best piece of advice would be to plan in advance. Not only should you purchase your tickets and book your hotel, but you should also get a “game plan” for all the things you’d like to do while you’re on your holiday vacation. Disney Parks Blog is a great resource that shows you all that’s happening across the Resort. Maybe you want to prioritize seeing a specific Park all decked out for the holidays (I love Animal Kingdom) or maybe you want to celebrate the season at Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. Have your “must-do” attractions and experiences top of mind so they’re pre-planned and you know which day you’ll be enjoying them. 

    But remember to leave room for spontaneous interactions and fun! Some of my favorite memories are when I was passing by a character spot that had a short wait or enjoying a show in passing. One really great way to explore many holiday traditions in one location is to spend a day in EPCOT enjoying the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays!

    Final Tip: If you’re planning to head into the Theme Parks on a specific holiday like Christmas or New Year’s Eve, have your Theme Park Reservation booked as early as possible because they tend to book up pretty quickly around the holidays. 

    I hope this “Bit By Bryanna” helps you celebrate the season!
  • thumbnail image for Anna

    Happy holidays! You couldn't have picked a more magical time to visit Walt Disney World!

    Spend some time to soak up the sights, sounds, and scents of the season - along with a litlte "snoap" to get you into the holiday spirit. Visit as many of the Disney Resorts Collection hotels as you can. Each is decorated in theme with the resort itself, and some of the trees are positively majestic (I'm looking at you, Disney's Wilderness Lodge!). I highly recommend making a dining reservation after sunset so you can see the brilliant, twinkling lights at the resorts in all of their Christmas splendor. 

    The sweet, spice-filled scent of gingerbread fills the air at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa. A life-sized gingerbread house adds a delightfully delicious note to the lobby, and you can purchase some incredible gingerbread treats. Disney's Beach Club resort shares the holiday happiness that is gingerbread, only this time, it's a life-sized carousel right in the lobby of the resort that is bringing the holiday cheer. Save some time to visit the resort lounges for a special seasonal cocktail!

    Oh, Christmas trees! Stroll through Disney Springs, where you may not only get to enjoy some genuine Florida snowfall through the magic of Disney "snoap," but you'll also find some of the most stunning Christmas trees anywhere, decorated and themed to the most beloved Walt Disney World characters or attractions. Grab a bite to eat, but make sure you stay for some of the fantastic holiday entertainment. 

    You'll find the magic of the holiday season isn't limited to the theme parks - so make time to explore a little bit more of the wonderful world that is Walt Disney World. 

  • thumbnail image for Amy

    The holiday season is one of my favorite times to visit Walt Disney World Resort –– with incredible decorations, special holiday events, and tons of festive treats, it feels like everything is sprinkled with an extra layer of pixie dust!

    For an extra dose of holiday cheer, be sure to plan some time in your schedule to explore the Disney Resorts Collection hotels.  Between the huge, beautifully-decorated trees and the mind-blowing gingerbread displays, even Scrooge McDuck would be filled with couldn't resist the holiday spirit.  During a visit to EPCOT, my family loves to take a break from the park, exit through the International Gateway (located between the France and United Kingdom Pavillions) and check out the holiday displays at the Resorts around Crescent Lake.  My kids' favorite features are definitely the working, gingerbread carousel in the lobby of Disney's Beach Club Resort and the replica of one of the BoardWalk locations that you can find in the lobby of Disney's BoardWalk Inn (this year, it's inspired by BoardWalk Deli and it's adorable). The, after topping off our Resort stroll with a holiday treat – usually a hot chocolate – we can head right back to EPCOT to enjoy the rest of our day in the park!


    Another can't-miss tradition for our family is choosing a holiday ornament to take home with us from each Walt Disney World Resort vacation.  Our go-to spot is Disney's Days of Christmas, located at Disney Springs. For a small fee, you can even have your ornaments personalized right in the store –– we always add the year to ours to help us remember each and every visit. And the best part?  The store is open year-round, so you can choose an ornament and get a little dash of that holiday feeling, even if you're visiting in July!

  • thumbnail image for Greg

    The holiday season is upon us and is truly one of the best times of the year! Celebrating it at the Walt Disney World Resort is as magical as it gets! While there are countless holiday offerings at the theme parks, I suggest spending some time exploring the Disney Resorts Hotels. Each one is decorated with festive décor and some even have amazing holiday displays that are an attraction in itself. Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa constructs a life-size gingerbread house in the main lobby that even sells holiday treats to Guests throughout the day. With this resort being directly on the monorail line, it's a quick hop, skip, and jump from the Magic Kingdom or some of the surrounding resorts. 

    If you plan on staying at a Disney Resorts Hotel during your stay, look no further than Disney's Wilderness Lodge. The cozy, log cabin feel is perfect for the holiday season and the main lobby is decorated beautifully. There is a larger-than-life Christmas tree that sits in the center of the lobby with a massive stone fireplace just a few feet away. It's the perfect area to spend some family time after a long park day. Put on your best Mickey pajamas, grab a cup of hot cocoa, and relax with your loved ones!

    Happy holidays!


  • thumbnail image for Ashley

    When the Most Wonderful Time of the Year meets the Most Magical Place on Earth, you know it is bound to be spectacular! My advice for celebrating the holidays is to get advanced dining reservations for table service locations at Walt Disney World Resort Collection Hotels. Some of the best decorations and gingerbread displays are in the lobbies of the resort hotels, and you don't want to miss out (Guests without dining or resort reservations for the hotels cannot park at the resorts). If you don't want to drive, check out the Minnie Van Service, as it is the best way to get from resort to resort. One of my favorite displays is the gingerbread house at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa. It smells fantastic, but you can purchase yummy holiday treats from it.

    Also, some of the best dining is at the resort hotels, so it is a win-win. Also, the holidays are the perfect time to purchase Memory Maker! The holiday Photopass opportunities and added festive effects are perfect for next year's (or this year's) holiday cards.

    Happy Planning,

    Ashley F.
  • thumbnail image for Doug

    What a great time to visit Disney Parks! Nobody does the holiday season like Disney!

    With so many photo opportunities around every corner, Disney Parks like Walt Disney World can be a great place to capture your holiday greeting card picture. But remember when selecting your outfits that December in Orlando is likely warmer than December back home. Consider what looks festive but pick a comfortable outfit for those warmer Florida temperatures.

    Once you have that lifetime keepsake captured, remember to simply be in the park, rather than run off to another attraction. Sure, it is fun to hit all the rides, but strolling through the different lands, taking in the holiday decor, the sounds, the sights, and even the smells, makes for great memories.

    Finally, if you can make a trek to EPCOT, make sure to take in the different holiday decor from the different nations in the World Showcase. It is both festive, and a great way to get a slice of different cultures on your holiday vacation.

    Have a Magical Vacation!

  • thumbnail image for Ana Paula

    Ho-ho-hello there! Welcome to planDisney!

    Visiting the Most Magical Place on Earth during the Most Wonderful Time of the Year is, by far, my favorite thing in the entire world. If you're going to be visiting the Walt Disney World Resort during the Holiday season, I suggest that you purchase tickets for Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party. These are all sold out for 2022, but I would definitely keep checking back on the Disney Parks Blog for the 2023 dates!

    But, why is this party oh-so-magical, you ask? Well, simply imagine a night filled with complimentary cookies and hot cocoa, an enchanting parade, dance parties, special character meet and greets, attraction overlays, and SNOW ON MAIN STREET, U.S.A.! This is truly an unforgettable experience that you won't want to miss.

    Once you're back at your Disney Resorts Collection hotel for the night, I suggest that you don't miss out on the unique decorations. Some of my favorites include Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, Disney's Yacht Club Resort. Their Christmas trees are gorgeous, and they're both really close to the Theme Parks!

    Have a Happy, Merry, Holly, Jolly Holiday Season!

    Warm hugs,

    Ana Paula

  • thumbnail image for Kristin
    Season’s greetings! 

    There’s nothing I love more than celebrating the Holidays at the Disneyland Resort – it’s simply magical! This year, the Disneyland Resort is offering a new tour called Holiday Time at the Disneyland Resort Guided Tour. This walking tour includes a narration of holiday traditions in both parks, in addition to reserved viewing for A Christmas Fantasy Parade, yummy holiday treats, and even a wintry ride on “it’s a small world” Holiday! I’ve heard rave reviews for this tour, and I think it’s a great way to check off several holiday must-do’s in a matter of hours! 

    The Holidays at the Disneyland Resort are a true feast for the eyes. In Disneyland Park, you won’t want to miss the “it’s a small world” Holiday Lighting, or the enchanting winter transformation of Sleeping Beauty Castle

    Inside Disney California Adventure Park, you’re going to love Disney ¡Viva Navidad! Street Party – it’s a lively, vibrant, and fun celebration through Paradise Gardens Park. This party even features special guests, including Mickey and Minnie Mouse in their fiesta best!

    I also recommend a visit with Santa Claus inside Redwood Creek Challenge Trail – I just love the forest setting for this merry meet-and-greet. You can also check the Disneyland app to easily spot Santa throughout the Disneyland Resort! 

    To end the night with holiday cheer, head back to Disneyland Park to find a spot to watch the “Believe… In Holiday Magic” Fireworks Spectacular. The festive fireworks, combined with heartwarming music, and even a sprinkling of snow, truly brings the joy and wonder of the season to life. 

    I can’t wait for you to experience the magic of the holidays at the Disneyland Resort!
  • thumbnail image for Mandy

    The holiday season is my absolute favorite time of year to visit Walt Disney World Resort. With the festive decor, twinkling lights and smell of gingerbread around every turn, there just seems to be extra magic in the air.


    With so much to do, see and taste throughout the theme parks, it's easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the festivities. But I suggest that you slow down and really soak in the sights, sounds and magic of the season. My favorite thing to do during the holidays is to grab a holiday-themed snack and rest in the hub of Magic Kingdom Park or take a leisurely stroll down Hollwood Boulevard in Disney's Hollywood Studios to take in the gorgeous details of the decorations and enjoy the holiday music. There's just nothing like being at The Most Magical Place on Earth during the most wonderful time of the year!


    Don't forget that the magic is not limited to the theme parks! I recommend planning a downtime day to sleep in, rest, explore and dine at one (or six!) of the incredible Disney Resorts Collection Hotels. Have some hot chocolate at Disney's Wilderness Lodge. Grab some gingerbread at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. Make an Advance Dining Reservation at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge (My favorites are Boma - Flavors of Africa and Sanaa). Take a horse-drawn Holiday Sleigh Ride at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort. The complimentary Disney transportation makes it so easy to Resort-hop, and no matter where you choose to visit, you are sure to get in the holiday spirit.


    I hope you have the most memorable and magical vacation and a holly jolly time!


    Stay merry and bright,


  • thumbnail image for Lisa

    The Holidays at the Walt Disney World Resort is the most wonderful and magical time of the yEAR to visit! There's so much fa la la la fun in store for your family! Be sure to check out all of the holiday offerings and plan based on your family's interests. I highly recommend making some advanced dining reservations. Whether you start or end the day with a special meal, it's the perfect way to spend time as a family while enjoying great food!

    Speaking of food, don't miss EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays! You can sample delicious sips and bites from the Holidays Kitchens to get a taste of a variety of cuisines from around the world. The Candlelight Processional is a great way to end a Disney day and will fill your heart with the spirit of the holiday season. 

    If you have made your shopping list and checked it twice, you can find holiday gifts at Disney Springs! When you are done shopping for happily whatever you are after, pick up a map for the Christmas Tree Stroll and find all 20 of the beautifully decorated trees. You can return your completed map at one of the map distribution locations for a special surprise. There are more 60 dining options to choose from when you are ready to get off your feet and enjoy some great food!

    No matter what you decide to do during the holidays at The Most Magical Place on Earth, you're sure to have the merriest vacation on Earth!

    Wishing you all that's merry and bright!


  • thumbnail image for Eean
    When the last Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party of the year has concluded, Mickey's Once Upon a Christmastime Parade is usually shown twice daily at Magic Kingdom Park through the end of December. Same for Minnie's Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks, which are performed each night at 8:15 PM from December 23- 29, 2022, to regular park guests. Both of these special events are "not to be missed!" 

    The Fantasy in the Sky Fireworks are a great way to ring in the New Year at Magic Kingdom Park. They are shown at 6:30 PM and 11:50 PM on both December 30 and 31. If you can't make it to the parks, the Disney Parks Blog often hosts a live stream you can watch from your living room couch in your pajamas!

    Have a fa la la la fabulous time with the ones you love!

  • thumbnail image for Ashley

    The Holiday Season at the Walt Disney World Resort is undeniably magical. While the decorations, larger-than-life trees and Snow on Main Street U.S.A. tend to steal the show, there are plenty of other ways to delight in the holiday spirit throughout the resort!

    For starters, don't miss the holiday snacks! I spend as much time making a list of must-try holiday treats as I do planning which parks and attractions to visit. You can say that I'm a bit like our friend Pooh, easily persuaded by that "rumbly in my tumbly." Disney Parks Blog offers Foodie Guides, including one for the holiday season at The Walt Disney World Resort. Take a look ahead of time and make sure you have your favorite snacks in hand as you take in the beauty of The Most Magical Place on Earth during the holidays! For me, nothing says "holiday cheer" like delicious gingerbread, so I make sure to stop for a Werther's® Original® Caramel Gingerbread Cookie Sandwich at Karamell-Kuche in EPCOT and I stock up on Ginger Snap Cookies from the Gingerbread House at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa to keep in my Disney Resort Hotel room!

    Equally important to a holiday trip to the Walt Disney World Resort are the holiday-themed ride overlays offered during this time of the year. Tomorrowland Speedway is filled with lights, giving your little ones an entirely different experience on this classic attraction. For the whole family, stop by Jingle Cruise where a witty Skipper will offer some dry holiday humor, making you feel right at home for the holidays!

  • thumbnail image for Crystal

    Visiting the Walt Disney World Resort theme parks during the holiday season is a unique experience because each of the parks is transformed for special holiday celebrations!

    Magic Kingdom's Main Street, U.S.A. is filled with beautiful holiday decorations that make the perfect holiday card photos. I recommend that you visit the Disney PhotoPass photographers when you're first entering the park to get the perfect pictures while everyone in your group is still fresh and excited for the day. You can even schedule a Capture Your Moment session for a private session with a Disney PhotoPass photographer to capture all of the magic of your holiday vacation!

    When you're visiting EPCOT, you'll enjoy the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays, where you can experience holiday celebrations from cultures around the world. My favorite part of the festival is the Holiday Kitchens because who doesn't love holiday food? My family loves the Pastrami on Rye at the L'Chaim! Holiday Kitchen and the Cheese Fondue from the Bavaria Holiday Kitchen!

    Disney's Hollywood Studios has some of my favorite holiday decorations. I love the vintage holiday decorations around Echo Lake! Plus, you don't want to miss Toy Story Land because Andy's done a great job decorating his backyard for the season. You'll even find that Buzz and Woody are decked out in adorable holiday outfits. And be on the lookout for Santa Claus as he makes his way through the park in a motorcade throughout the day!

    Finally, the decorations at Disney's Animal Kingdom are perfectly designed to match the park. I love the arctic animal puppets that visit Guests on Discovery Island. And after dark, be sure to watch Tree of Life Awakenings - Holiday Edition, where this Beacon of Magic will be transformed with holiday splendor!

    T-T-F-N, ta ta for now!


  • thumbnail image for Ariane

    Season's greetings!

    First, I recommend checking out Disney Parks Blog's "Disney Eats Foodie Guide" to see the seasonal meals and treats available. As a big foodie, I always love trying new food options, and the Holiday season has so many throughout the theme parks, Resort hotels, Disney Springs and special events!

    Second, I always love going to the Resort hotels to see the themed Christmas trees and gingerbread displays. To follow along with the gingerbread-making process, check out Decorating Disney: Holiday Magic on Disney+! It is always so impressive to watch the culinary team bring these displays to life.

    Lastly, I highly recommend picking up a festival guide at EPCOT's International Festival of the Holidays, or a park map if you are attending Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party. Both have so much information about the seasonal offerings available, it's like having your own little vacation planner! Also, I always take a look at the Candlelight Processional schedule before planning my trips. That way, I can see my favourite celebrities perform!

    M-ari Christmas and Happy Holidays! 

  • thumbnail image for Raquel
    Hello and welcome to planDisney!

    The Walt Disney World Resort holiday season is one of the best times to visit. 

    My best advice would be to take it all in and take plenty of photos to remember the experience. No matter what, do not feel obligated to do it all; break up the activities and save some for the next holiday season. Also, use this time to be intentional and experience things you would not usually experience. Besides, it is the holiday season, and you have so many notable activities to choose from. 

    Utilize the available Disney Skyliner or Bus and Monorail transportation to visit the amazing seasonal decor found at some of your favorite resorts. Again... have your camera ready. 

    You might be surprised, but planning a special dinner and getting dressed for the occasion is a memorable experience I have had during the holiday season with my family. Restaurants such as Citricos at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa and California Grill at Disney’s Contemporary Resort are two popular locations to explore having that meal. By the way, you will have the best view of the Disney Enchantment fireworks from the balcony at the California Grill. 

    If you plan to visit the theme parks during that time, locations such as EPCOT have so much holiday goodness going on that you will get in the holiday spirit once you enter the parks. While you are at EPCOT, I encourage you to experience the Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Remix through December 30. 

    Overall, have fun and go with the flow this holiday season at Walt Disney World Resort!
  • thumbnail image for Michelle

    A very merry welcome to you!

    There's nothing quite like the holidays at Walt Disney World Resort! With so many favorite attractions touched with holiday magic, this is a recipe for an extra special trip. When visiting The Most Magical Place on Earth during the most wonderful time of year, we love to pick out our favorite attractions to ride together – a little like unwrapping a gift to ourselves! One of my favorite attractions at Magic Kingdom Park is Jungle Cruise, and there's nothing better than that... except during the holidays, when it's the Jingle Cruise! And as much as my husband is inspired by Living with the Land in EPCOT, he's even more excited to ride during the holiday season with its twinkling lights and holiday details. We both can't wait to experience Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind with the addition of seasonal music added to the classic playlist! While some families like to snap a family photo in front of a classic Christmas tree, we like to send out a ride photo to our family and friends. What better way to send joy to the world, right from Walt Disney World?

  • thumbnail image for Stacy
    My family loves to stay at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa during the holidays. On Christmas morning we order room service and devour hot chocolate chip pancakes! We then head down to the lobby to admire the life-sized gingerbread house. You can even purchase a gingerbread shingle for a yummy treat!
    We then head over to the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays. The holiday cookie stroll is my favorite activity because we can eat cookies around the World Showcase and collect stamps in our Festival Passport. Once five stamps are collected, you get a free cookie!

    Disney Springs is another Christmas favorite of mine because of all of the themed trees. Last year, I spent an evening sipping hot cocoa and walking around Disney Springs admiring the beautiful decorations! If you like trees, another great tip is to visit all four of the theme parks and admire the specially themed trees. My personal favorite is at Disney's Hollywood Studios!
  • thumbnail image for Taylor

    Celebrating the holidays at The Most Magical Place on Earth is the best gift you could ever get under your tree. The best advice I could give you on how to make the season merry, bright and extra pixie dusted is to make time to experience the season in places besides the theme parks. If you aren't attending Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party in Magic Kingdom Park, you could grab a gingerbread man from the stunning gingerbread house at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa and watch Minnie's Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks from a viewing area at the resort. Go and see the gingerbread displays at other resorts like the giraffe at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge or the carousel at Disney's Beach Club Resort. Tackle the Christmas tree stroll at Disney Springs. And of course, you'll need to check out the Foodie Guide at Disney Parks Blog to go on the best Christmas treat crawl you could ever dream of. But whatever you do, be sure not to spend the entire time rushing from one holiday headliner to the next. Stop and smell the peppermint and gingerbread with those you love. 

    Happy holidays y'all!

  • thumbnail image for Frances

    A Very Merry Welcome to You! Here are a few of my favorite events at Walt Disney World Resort!

    Over at Disney's Magic Kingdom Park, purchase tickets to Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party! This festive event happens on select nights, and you cannot miss seeing some of your favorite characters in person, whether it's Jack Skellington as Sandy Claws, or Mickey and Minnie Mouse donned in their holiday finest!

    At Disney's EPCOT Park, celebrate the magic of the holiday season at my favorite event, EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays! One of my favorite activities is the Holiday Cookie Stroll, purchase any 5 cookies listed in your festival passport, and once you have finished, take your passport to Holiday Sweets & Treats and receive a complimentary sweet! In the evening, bask in the wonder of Christmas at EPCOT Candlelight Processional, and listen to the story of Christmas narrated by a guest celebrity.

    ¡Feliz Navidad y prospero año nuevo!


  • thumbnail image for Jacqueline

    "It's the Most Magical Time of the Year!"

    This is the time to bask away and enjoy the holiday decor at both the theme parks and Disney Resorts Collection Hotels. Unique experiences await with specially-themed festivities, holiday meals, and Disney characters donned in their holiday finest. Adjust the itinerary to a more relaxed pace to experience this wonder of a place and most importantly, consider staying at a Disney Resorts Collection Hotel for many benefits and convenience.

    Rise and shine, power up the My Disney Experience App, summon the Disney Genie to set the tone of your day and save time waiting at Lightning Lane entrances with the Disney Genie+ service. Return to your Disney Resorts Collection Hotel to rest up for your "Extended Evening Theme Park Hours" or your "Disney After Hours" later in the day for that extra dash of Pixie Dust!

    Above all be prepared to make this season a tradition at The Most Magical Place on Earth!

  • thumbnail image for Jennifer

    Oh, there’s no place like Walt Disney World Resort for the holidays. When you pine for the sunshine of a friendly gaze, for the holidays you can’t beat h°o°me sweet h°o°me.

    My best advice for celebrating the holidays at your magical h°o°me away from h°o°me is to build beloved family traditions into your itinerary. If visiting Santa is a must-do for your family, plan a visit to Disney Springs (no theme park reservation required) and use the My Disney Experience mobile app to join the virtual queue to Meet Santa at Once Upon a Toy (three small lines at the bottom right of the home page --> Virtual Queues). Santa Claus currently welcomes groups beginning at 10:00 a.m., after he’s had a hearty breakfast and tended to the reindeer.

     If festive trees are an important part of your holiday experience, the Disney Springs Christmas Tree Stroll leads you on a quest to find 20 beautifully themed trees. This complimentary experience begins when you pick up a map at one of the five distribution centers. Mark the location of each tree with the corresponding icon sticker to redeem dozens of Disney Springs special offers through December 30. Head back to a map distribution center for a commemorative pin.

    The Holiday Cookie Stroll during the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays is a magical version of my family’s traditional cookie exchange. From now through December 30, purchase five cookies from any of the official cookie stroll locations and collect a matching stamp in your Festival Passport. You can even get five of the same cookie if you end up falling in love with the Linzer Cookie from the Bavaria Holiday Kitchen. Bring your stamped Passport to Holiday Sweets and Treats to redeem your delicious prize.

    Preserve your precious holiday memories by purchasing Memory Maker, the souvenir that includes unlimited downloads of all your Disney PhotoPass media. Purchase Advance Memory Maker at least three days in advance for a savings. Holiday step-in photo ops at Magic Kingdom Park, Magic Shots available with most Disney PhotoPass photographers, and pictures with Santa capture new twists on traditional holiday photos.

    My bonus tip for enjoying the holidays at Walt Disney World Resort is to purchase Disney Genie+ service for your park days. The holidays are a busy time at the parks and an investment in Genie+ allows your family to spend less time waiting in line and more time experiencing attractions together. You can purchase Disney Genie+ service via the Tip Board of the My Disney Experience mobile app any time after midnight each park day (three small lines --> Tip Board). I recommend purchasing by 6:45 a.m. so you can book your first Genie+ Lightning Lane attraction at 7:00 a.m.

    If you wanna be happy in a million ways, for the holidays you can’t beat h°o°me sweet h°o°me.

    Plan holiday magic; planDisney.

  • thumbnail image for Anne Marie

    The holiday season brings all the magic of Walt Disney World Resort to a whole new level!  Everywhere you look, there are beautiful holiday decorations -- take some time to really notice the details.  Each area of the theme parks and Disney Resorts Collection hotels have decorations specifically designed to reflect the atmosphere and ambiance of that particular location.  For instance, the lobby at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa has a magnificent Victorian Christmas tree, while the decorations at Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park have a handcrafted look, and those at Disney's Caribbean Beach Resort feature bright, tropical colors.  I adore the retro, kitschy Christmas decorations at Disney's Hollywood Studios, reminiscent of those from the Golden Age of Hollywood.  Also, pause and listen carefully: the Christmas music playing in the background is also specific to each location, such as Calypso-style, Christmas classics, or pop hits.

    The week between Christmas and New Year's Day tends to be very busy, but you can avoid the heaviest crowds by knowing how to zig when others zag.  The parks open early and close late at this time of year, so use the schedule to your advantage.  Crowds are heaviest late morning through early evening, so plan to "rope drop", take an afternoon break for a relaxing meal at your resort and a nap, and then head back to the parks in the evening and stay until park close.  If you can manage it, early Christmas morning sees lighter crowds than the rest of the week.  Eligible Guests should plan to also take advantage of Early Entry and/or Extended Evening Hours.

    If ringing in the new year with fireworks is on your to-do list, know that the spectacular Fantasy in the Sky fireworks at Magic Kingdom Park will be held on both December 30 and December 31.  Although the park will certainly be busy on both nights, it will be somewhat less so on December 30.  Have littles who can't stay up late?  Fantasy in the Sky will performed twice both evenings at 6:30 pm and again at 11:50 pm.

    Enjoy celebrating the holidays at The Most Magical Place on Earth!

  • thumbnail image for Nick

    Hey Howdy Hey Disney Fans!

    There is no better place to celebrate the most magical time of the year than in the Most Magical Place on Earth here at Walt Disney World Resort. There are so many ways to experience the holiday Magic across Walt Disney World, but I wanted to share with you my top recommendation to get you in the holiday spirit! SPOILER ALERT, it's all about the snacks!

    My family and I love snacking around Walt Disney World and our preferred method of travel is Disney's Monorail. The perfect afternoon involves a monorail ride to each of the Magic Kingdom resorts, Disney's Contemporary Resort, Disney's Polynesian Village Resort and Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa, to experience the holiday spirit themed uniquely to each of them. Each of these resorts will usually have a tree decorated with the theme of the resort and of course, all usually have unique holiday themed snacks you can only experience at each location. I would make sure you save some room for snacking at the Grand Floridian Resort for last. Here you will find an epic gingerbread house that is an actual working snack shop! Make sure to grab a few holiday treats while you marvel at the details of this magnificent structure!

    There are so many other reasons to visit many of the resorts across Walt Disney World for unique holiday treats and experiences. The working gingerbread carrousel over at Disney's Beach Club Resort is another marvel to put on your "To-do list"! Check out the Festive Foodie Guide to holiday treats at the resorts put together by our friends at Disney Parks Blog for all of the top treats!

    Happy Holidays, 


  • thumbnail image for Adrianna

    When it comes to celebrating the holidays with Disney, a Very Merrytime voyage aboard Disney Cruise Line is always at the top of my wish list. With the ship decked from bow to stern in beautiful decor, themed activities and festive entertainment, there is holiday cheer to be found every where you look. 

    You'll spot Disney Characters dressed in their jolly best and enjoy many opportunities to take holiday photos. I love to recommend packing matching sweaters or otherwise festive clothing for photos. I once saw an entire family wearing matching Christmas pajamas to take pictures with Santa Claus. It made for a great (and memorable!) photo opportunity. 

    All throughout a Very Merrytime voyage, holiday-themed activities are planned for guests of all ages. Activities and entertainment is listed in the Disney Cruise Line Navigator app within the daily activity schedule. You can press the heart icon next to any listing that you'd like to be sure not to miss. The app will send a reminder notification when the fun is about to begin for any of the activities that you've "favorited" in this way.

    Mickey's Tree Lighting Magic ceremony and Santa's Winter Wonderland Ball are both held in the atrium of the ship and are popular events. I recommend that you arrive fifteen to twenty minutes prior to the start of these shows for great viewing spots. You can sit near the front of the stage area, or choose a viewing spot on Deck 4 or 5 overlooking the merrymaking. 

    One final tip for celebrating the holidays at sea with Captains Mickey and Minnie, is to add a touch of the seasonal magic to your stateroom! A limited amount of holiday decor is available for purchase through Disney Cruise Line Onboard Gifts and Amenities. It's a great way to surprise your family with an extra gift for your high-seas holiday. 

    May your voyage be merry and bright, 



  • thumbnail image for Jane

    It had been a long held dream of mine to celebrate the Holidays with my family at Walt Disney World Resort. So when my Christmas wish finally did come true, the Disney planner in me tried to schedule and mega pixie-dust my families every move during our entire trip!

    However... upon our arrival at Walt Disney World Resort, I soon discovered the magic of a Disney Christmas could be found in all the little things which did not necessarily require scheduling at all.  My best and most simple advice to celebrate the Holidays at any Disney destination would be to plan to decorate your Disney Resorts Collection hotel room with some easy to pack decorations brought from home - why I even managed to fit in my suitcase a pop-up-style Christmas tree!

    Another core memory my family created during our Disney Christmas was holding a "Secret Santa". Everyone in my crew became a "Secret Santa" as they had just 1 other family member to secretly purchase an inexpensive present to gift on the morning of December 25th. It was a total joy to see the delight on everyone's faces, from the young to the simply young at heart as we gathered together around our Christmas tree to celebrate the Holidays within the most magical place on earth!

  • thumbnail image for Jackie

    My family and I have been visiting Walt Disney World the week of Christmas for over 10 years now. It's such a fun and happy way to celebrate the season! I know a lot of people can be apprehensive about leaving their homes during this season for fear that they may be missing out on their holiday traditions. I remember feeling that way as well when we first made the change. My biggest piece of advice if you are visiting Walt Disney World during this time of year is to bring your traditions with you. They travel well, I promise! Some examples of that would be your Christmas morning breakfast. For my family, Christmas morning wasn't complete until we had cinnamon rolls. So now, we wake up and head to Magic Kingdom Park bright and early on Christmas morning. We take some family pictures in front of Cinderella Castle, enjoy a few of our favorite attractions and then make our way over to Gaston's Tavern for some delicious cinnamon rolls - just as if we were back home. Cookies for Santa was a big one that my daughter was concerned about when she was smaller. Instead of baking cookies, we now take a trip to Disney Springs and pick out some goodies for him at Goofy's Candy Co. We also stop by the food court to pick up a small thing of milk and some carrots for the reighdeer too. Then we leave them out, just as we would at home, for Santa to enjoy when he stops by for a quick visit that night. It may take a little bit of preplanning, but recreating your favorite family traditions with a touch of Disney magic is really easy and fun to do! 

  • thumbnail image for Mike
    With all the merry music, festive décor, seasonal snacks, and special events, Christmas is truly the most wonderful time of the year at The Most Magical Place on Earth. Choosing just one highlight is kind of like asking me to choose my favorite child. But I can't help but recommend Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party. And that's not because it's the only party I ever get invited to. The lower crowds and jolly atmosphere are the perfect way to get into the Christmas spirit. This is actually the one party the hosts don't mind you showing up early for! Although the party doesn't start until 7:00 PM, you can actually get into Magic Kingdom Park from 4:00 PM. Get yourself a hot chocolate and find a spot on Main Street, U.S.A., to watch Mickey's Once Upon a Christmastime Parade, before watching Minnie's Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks Show. This nighttime spectacular is an explosion of Disney joy that'll have you grinning from EAR to EAR.
  • thumbnail image for Carrie

    If you are heading to Disneyland Resort during the holidays make time to enjoy one of my favorite festivals, Disney Festival of Holidays in Disney California Adventure Park. 

    My family loves to plan a day or at least an afternoon/evening to take in everything the festival has to offer. Our first stop is to grab a few Sip & Savor Passes to make snacking our way through the marketplace kiosks easy for everyone. You can also grab a festival booklet that outlines each marketplace kiosk and every item/description they carry. This will help you decide how to redeem your tabs. Pro tip: You can order all your festival items in one transaction at any of the kiosk registers and then use your receipt to pick up your items at the corresponding location.

    While you enjoy all of your festival foods, find a place to sit and enjoy the holiday entertainment! Head to the Disneyland app for showtimes for Blue13 Dance Company, Phat Cat Swinger, Tina and the Sounds of Celebration!, Mostly Kosher, The Mistletoes at Pacific Wharf Stage, and Mariachi Divas, who all perform at locations throughout the park. 

    Eat, drink, and be merry, friends!

  • thumbnail image for Ryan
    The winter holiday season is one of the most magical times of the year at the Walt Disney World Resort! While there is an abundance of exciting things to do, like Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at Magic Kingdom Park or the Candlelight Processional at EPCOT, this panelist likes to take a very different approach to his holiday visits these days!

    My crew is fortunate to be able to visit Walt Disney World a few times each year, with one visit always planned for the holiday season. Since we visit frequently, we don’t have to “do it all” and that freedom helps us create a truly rejuvenating escape into Mickey’s winter wonderland. Normally we pack a lot of attractions into every visit to one of the four magical Theme Parks, but on our holiday trips we usually just stop at the attractions with unique holiday overlays, like Space Mountain at Magic Kingdom Park and Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind at EPCOT. We’ve already had great experiences at our other favorite attractions earlier in the year, so there’s no worrying about missing anything on a holiday trip!

    So, what do we do with all that extra time? Wander, explore, and enjoy! I know everyone talks about how amazing and magical the holiday décor is at Walt Disney World, but several years back I realized that I would gaze up at the enormous tree, snap a picture, notice the other decorations, say “Wow!”, and then treat it like any other visit. Nowadays, we slow down, exploring every nook and cranny and soaking up the holiday magic all around us.

    We visit the Theme Parks and some of our favorite Resorts, going into almost every shop, listening to every song, peeking into every restaurant, and just generally exploring! I shut off the planning part of my brain and just flow. Once you realize that you will always have magical experiences, and that you’ll never go hungry, allowing yourself to be immersed in the sights and sounds of the holidays is pure magic. Even for someone who has decades of visits to Walt Disney World under his belt, I still find something new and interesting I’ve never seen or experienced before on my holiday trips!

    The holidays can be a stressful time and it’s easy for a fast-paced holiday vacation to be a bit stressful too. If you can, I recommend trying a different approach to your holiday visit to the Walt Disney World Resort - see how it works for your crew!

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