Christmas is my favorite holiday and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than at Walt Disney World where there are Christmas surprises in every direction you turn!
Magic Kingdom – First, don’t miss the magical transformation of Cinderella’s Castle into a frosty ice palace. The featured show in the past, Cinderella’s Holiday Wish, will be replaced this year with a ‘Frozen’ lighting ceremony, featuring characters from the instant icy classic. Queen Elsa will use her powers to transform the castle into an ice palace. This transformation usually takes place around 6:15 pm and is available to guests who are exiting the park before the party as well as guests with tickets to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas party.
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is a fun, festive event. Guests are required to purchase separate admission tickets, and can use this party ticket to enter the Magic Kingdom at 4 pm. This year, the Once Upon a Christmastime Parade will feature Olaf, Anna, Elsa and Kristoff from ‘Frozen’ along with traditional holiday favorites like gingerbread men, toy soldiers and more. The party features hot cocoa and cookie stations around the park as well as character meet and greets with sometimes hard to find characters (I saw Scrooge McDuck and all seven of the dwarves). Don’t miss the ‘snow’ falling on Main Street!
Epcot – Epcot’s Christmas celebrations commemorate holiday celebrations from around the world. Guests can taste seasonal favorites and learn about traditions from all around the world in World Showcase. You’ll also be able to hear a retelling of the Christmas story by a celebrity narrator with an orchestra and choir. In 2014, featured narrators include Neil Patrick Harris, Whoopi Goldberg, Marlee Matlin and Steven Curtis Chapman, among others. The show is included with park admission but there are special dining packages guests can purchase that include reserved seating.
Hollywood Studios – No Christmastime visit would be complete without visiting Hollywood Studios and the Osborne Spectacle of Dancing Lights. This event is an elaborate light display throughout Hollywood Studios that is set to music. You’ll find angels, reindeer, snowflakes, hidden Mickeys as well as a few pop culture holiday references (like the leg lamp from “A Christmas Story”). This year, some new additions include the Glow with the Show ears (ear hats that live up to their names) and a special ‘Frozen’ premium holiday celebration. While the lights are included with park admission, the premium holiday celebration and Glow with the Show ears are a separate purchase.
Resorts – Don’t forget to take some time to visit each of the different Walt Disney World resorts. Each resort has its own specially themed holiday décor. My personal favorites include the Grand Floridian Victorian Christmas and the Wilderness Lodge with its pine tree and pinecones. The Grand Floridian and other deluxe properties also erect life-size gingerbread houses. The transition from fall décor to Christmas time happens overnight. If you visit during early to mid-November, you might wake up to a beautiful Christmas tree in the lobby that was not there the night before! The campgrounds at Fort Wilderness are another fun holiday destination where guests decorate their campers, tents, and golf carts and enjoy viewing everyone’s creations.
Downtown Disney – If you visit during Christmastime, don’t forget to visit Downtown Disney’s Days of Christmas store for all of your holiday needs. During the holidays, Days of Christmas as well as at Ye Olde Christmas Shoppe in the Magic Kingdom, have artisans available to personalize your ornament purchases! Downtown Disney also has live entertainment, holiday décor as well as a place to meet Santa Claus and whisper your Christmas wishes.
Celebrate Christmas the Disney way! Contact me today to plan your Walt Disney World vacation. You can email me at Amy@TravelWithTheMagic.com or you can find me on Facebook. You can also call me at 1-800-670-4312, ext 129. I can’t wait to plan your MAGICAL vacation!