2021 Walt Disney World Christmas/Holiday Celebrations – What We Know


UPDATED 10.15.21

Holidays at Disney is as magical as you’d think it would be – even the Grinch couldn’t help but feel warmed by everything Disney does to celebrate. In this post I’ll gather all the info I can find about the season in 2021 and how that could affect your family’s upcoming trip.

If you have any questions – ask away!

Photo: Disney

MAGIC KINGDOM

Seasonal decor will be everywhere – they change it up every year, but it always looks magical.

Attraction overlays are back. For example; Jungle Cruise becomes the Jingle Cruise and the Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor adds holiday jokes.

Happily Ever After, the nighttime fireworks and castle projection show will have ended.

Cinderella’s Castle will alternate between the 50th Anniversary “Beacon of Magic” lighting and special holiday projections.

It’s going to SNOW inside Magic Kingdom from time to time.

There will be a ‘separate admission’ after-hour events called Disney Very Merriest After Hours

DADVENTURE TIPS: Disney gets the Christmas feeling going early in the year (before Thanksgiving). If you’re a November visit family (like my family often does) be ready to get out the decorations and holiday music for as soon as you get back home – you’ll not want the holiday magic to go away.

BIGGEST TIP: All the dates you see listed below for the special event means Magic Kingdom will be CLOSED before it gets dark. If seeing the MK lit up at Christmas is a must-do for your and your family, and you’re not going to pay for the special event – be sure MK is on your agenda for the few nights a week they don’t have the special event!


Photo: Disney

DISNEY VERY MERRIEST AFTER HOURS

DATES:

November 8, 9, 11, 12, 14, 16, 18, 19, 21, 23, 28, 30
December 2, 3, 5, 6, 9, 10, 12, 14, 16, 17, 19, 21

TIME:

Admission starts at 7:00pm and the event ends at 12:00am

PRICING:

Tickets range from $169 to $229, plus tax. ($249 +tax on December 19 and 21)

Remember, these are tickets separate from your Magic Kingdom passes earlier in the day. If you’re in the park for the day, you’ll have to leave and if you have tickets to the after hour event, come back in.

BUYING TICKETS:

Guests of select Disney Resorts can book their tickets starting August 17th. The general public and start booking on August 20th.

WHAT YOU’LL SEE & DO:

Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks

Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade (That’s right – a REAL PARADE!)

Smaller lines for favorite attractions such as; Haunted Mansion, Big Thunder Mountain, Dumbo, Space Mountain, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Jungle Cruise, Peter Pan’s Flight and more.

Club Tinsel dance party in Tomorrowland.

Complimentary snacks that include ice cream, popcorn, holiday goodies and some beverages.

Disney characters throughout the park – dressed in all their joyous holiday duds.

The Reindeer Wranglers bring their holiday hoedown to the streets of Frontierland, performing seasonal songs with a distinctive country flair. 

 “Mickey & Minnie’s Very Merry Memories” – join Mickey and his pals for a celebration filled with music, dancing and nostalgic yuletide fun. Presented on the Cinderella Castle Forecourt Stage, the show features nods to classic Magic Kingdom holiday stage shows, including “Mickey’s Twas the Night Before Christmas,” “Celebrate the Season” and “Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration.”



DADVENTURE TIPS: This is a LOT of money to spend on a late night event. If you have very little kids, make sure they’re up for it – especially if you’ve already been running around a park all day. If you are staying on property – go back to the resort and find a quiet time/nap to work in to be sure you don’t have sleeping/crying kids the whole event.


photo: Disney

HOLLYWOOD STUDIOS

The projections on the Hollywood Tower (Called Holiday Tower at Christmas time) will feature looks from a snowy Arendelle (Frozen), Toy Story toys, Muppets gingerbread and a Dickensian village inspired by Mickey’s Christmas Carol.

Catch sight of Santa cruising down Hollywood Blvd. in his candy-apple red convertible during the Santa Claus Merry Motorcade

Hollywood & Vine Restaurant will bring back Minnie’s holiday menu with visits from her friends in their holiday finest (Santa too!).

The Frozen Sing-A-Long will have a holiday finale with Olaf (inspired by Olaf’s Frozen Adventure). Catch sight of Santa cruising down Hollywood Blvd. in his candy-apple red convertible at Disney’s Hollywood Studios during the Santa Claus Merry MotorcadeThe projections on the Hollywood Tower (Called Holiday Tower at Christmas time) will feature looks from a snowy Arendelle (Frozen), Toy Story toys, Muppets gingerbread and a Dickensian village inspired by Mickey’s Christmas Carol.

Santa Clause will be featured in a “motorcade” down Hollywood Blvd.

Hollywood & Vine Restaurant will bring back Minnie’s holiday menu with visits from her friends in their holiday finest (Santa too!).

The Frozen Sing-A-Long will have a holiday finale with Olaf (inspired by Olaf’s Frozen Adventure).


photo; Disney

ANIMAL KINGDOM

Tree of Life will have special holiday edition projections inspired by nature.

Characters will continue to ride in the ferry boats down Discovery River, with seasonal music and in their holiday best outfits.

Discovery Island will spring to life with a Merry Menagerie of winter animals, realized in the form of life-size, artisan-sculpted puppets. Reindeer, foxes, polar bears, penguins and more interact with guests, accompanied by serenading musicians as they create a whimsical display and playful atmosphere for guests of all ages to enjoy.

Spot Santa voyaging across the Discovery River, spreading the joyous spirit of the season from a festive flotilla.


photo: Disney

EPCOT

The EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays returned November 26 – December 30th.

Candlelight Processional Returns! This heartwarming production at America Gardens Theatre features the Voices of Liberty and a choir of Disney cast members, a live orchestra, and celebrity narrators retelling the traditional Christmas story. This year’s celebrity narrators will include Chita Rivera, Jodi Benson, Alton Fitzgerald White, Lisa Ling, Steven Curtis Chapman, Blair Underwood and Pat Sajak. More to come!

Holiday Kitchens around the World Showcase – they cook up treasured recipes from around the globe – from slow-roasted turkey and holiday pot pie to pumpkin gingerbread cheesecake and peppermint sundaes. A new offering, Chestnuts & Good Cheer Holiday Kitchen, will dish out fire-roasted chestnuts and cinnamon-glazed almonds and cashews, filling the air with delightful aromas.

Olaf’s Holiday Tradition Expedition Scavenger Hunt is another fun family activity for guests of all ages. Search for holiday traditions Olaf has gathered from around the world – and lost along the way! Purchase the map and stickers from select festival merchandise locations while supplies last.

Holiday performances by Voices of Liberty

The EPCOT Cookie Stroll. Purchase any five cookies – such as the delicious SNICKERS®-Doodle Cookie made with SNICKERS Bars or the tasty Chocolate Crinkle Cookie made with DOVE® Dark Chocolate – from any of the official Cookie Stroll locations featured in the Festival Passport and collect a matching stamp. Once you’ve collected all five stamps, bring your passport to Holiday Sweets & Treats to receive a specialty cookie!

Las Posadas at Mexico Pavilion

Canadian Holiday Voyageurs in the Canada pavilion

Chinese Lion Dance celebrating the new yearin China

Hanukkah storytellers along the promenade in France, Italy, Japan, Norway and UK

Santa near the American Adventure

photo: disney

DISNEY SPRINGS


Christmas Tree Stroll – featuring elaborately decorated, Disney-themed, trees.

Magical Snow Fall!

Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar becomes Jock Lindsey’s Holiday Bar with limited-time menus of holiday favorites.

Of course, the best place to shop for all the Disney fans in your life.

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