There’s so much to do at Walt Disney World during the Holiday season, and even more so with Disney’s 50th anniversary celebration going on too. The holiday festivities begin November 12, 2021 and go thru early January 2022. EPCOT begins a little later on November 26, 2021. In addition to special parades and entertainment, holiday decorations, special treats, and themed fireworks, there’s lots to do at the resorts and Disney Springs too.
Here are some holiday experiences you can enjoy during your vacation! Be sure to check your My Disney Experience app for daily showtimes and character experiences.
- Very Merry After Hours: This event is select nights between Nov 8-Dec 21 from 9pm-midnight and includes the Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade and Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks Show, character sightings, and unlimited holiday treats. Many rides will also be operating during the event.
- The “Jingle” Cruise: Enjoy a Christmas overlay at the Jungle Cruise including holiday jokes
- Castle projections: Each night Cinderella Castle will have beautiful projections of holiday themes!
- Snacks: Christmas Cookie Sundae and Christmas Cookie Milkshake at Auntie Gravity’s Galactic Goodies (Tomorrowland); Gingerbread Almond Cake Pop at Golden Oak Outpost (Frontierland); Mickey Cinnamon Roll with red & green icing (Main St Bakery); and Ginger Apple Funnel Cake at Sleepy Hollow (Liberty Square).
- Sunset Seasons Greetings: Each night Tower of Terror will have beautiful projections of holiday themes!
- Santa Claus Motorcade: Santa will travel up Hollywood Blvd in a convertible a few times each day. Check the app fortimes!
- Frozen Sing-a-long Show: Enjoy a holiday-themed ending featuring Olaf!
- Snacks: Sugar Cookie Snowman at ABC Commissary (Commissary Lane); Santa Belt Cookie at ABC Commissary and Catalina Eddie’s; Red Velvet Whoopie Pie at Backlot Express Cafe and Trolley Car Cafe; Holiday Brownie (found at most outdoor carts); Butterscotch Caramel Cannoli at PizzeRizzo (Muppet Square); Reindeer Mousse at Rosie’s All American Cafe and Trolley Car Cafe; Holiday Lunch Box Tart at Woody’s Lunchbox (Toy Story Land);
- Drinks: Frozen Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate with or without Black Cherry Bourbon at ABC Commissary, Backlot Express Cafe, Trolley Car Cafe, and PizzeRizzo; Christmas on the Beach with coconut rum at Oasis Canteen, Animation Arch Bar, and
Sunshine Day Bar.
- Tree of Life Awakening: Nighttime projections with shimmer and sparkles along with a heartwarming musical score.
- Santa Claus, Donald, Chip and Dale, and Discovery Island Drummers Festive Flotillas: These four separate floats can be spotting on Discovery River throughout the day.
- Merry Menagerie: Whimsical holiday puppet animals such as reindeer, polar bears, and foxes, can be found throughout the day by the Tree of Life in Discovery Island.
- Snacks: Pumpkin Cheesecake Mousse available Nov 25-28 at Satu’li Canteen (Pandora); Peppermint Cream Cheese Mousse available Dec 1-30 at Satu’li Canteen (Pandora)
- Candlelight Processional: Hear the stirring story of Christmas told by a celebrity narrator and beautiful choir. *NOTE: If you want to attend this you must get a seat well in advance. Check the app for up-to-date times!
- EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays: Starting Nov 26 enjoy treats and snacks throughout the World Showcase to celebrate the season. Be sure to pick up a Festival Guide booklet when you enter the park – they will be next to the park guide maps.
- Olaf’s Holiday Tradition Scavenger Hunt: Until Dec 31 for $9.99+tax, take a journey throughout the World Showcase to discover holiday traditions with Olaf. You can purchase your map at Disney Traders (entrance of World Showcase coming from Future World), Creations Shop (Future World), or World Traveler (International Gateway entrance).
- Holiday Cookie Stroll: Between Nov 26-Dec 30 find the 5-holiday cookie stops from your Festival of the Holidays guide booklet/passport. Also, if you find all 5 and can prove it with your stickers, you get a specialty cookie!
- Christmas Tree Stroll: There are a variety of Disney themed Christmas trees throughout Disney Springs to see!
- Let It Snow! Enjoy evening snow flurries on the West Side.
- Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar Holiday Takeover: Indiana Jones fans will enjoy this holiday-themed bar.
- Treats: Olaf Hot Chocolate Surprise, Santa Mickey Piñata, Gingerbread Ganache, Peppermint Bark, and Chocolate Christmas Cottage all at The Ganachery; White Chocolate Peppermint Eclair with White Chocolate & Peppermint Mousse, Santa Mickey Dome Cake, Holiday Parfait (bourbon white chocolate mousse, cranberry cherry panna cotta, maple chocolate ganache, and chocolate chiffon cake) all available at the Amorette’s Patisserie; and at AristoCrepes there are Cherry Jubilee Bubble Waffle (bubble waffle topped with vanilla ice cream, cherries jubilee filling, and whipped cream) and Santa Hot Crepe (sweet crepe filled with eggnog custard topped with chocolate sauce).
- Enjoy seasonal treats at your Disney hotel!
- At Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa be sure to check out the life-size Gingerbread House. It’s back for the first time since 2019!
- Visiting other Disney resorts to see their decor is so much fun during the holidays. I specifically love seeing the Boardwalk Inn, Pop Century has super fun trees, Port Orleans French Quarter has a twist of Christmas and Mardi Gras, Animal Kingdom & Wilderness Lodge have stunningly massive trees in their lobbies, and the Beach Club has a full gingerbread and chocolate carousel you can see (but not ride!)
- Have a vehicle? Visit the Fort Wilderness Campgrounds for an incredible display of lights! What makes this fun is that is not decorated by Disney but by the guests of the Campgrounds!