Walt Disney World’s Festive Event Guide 2023

Have a holly-jolly holiday here in Orlando, Florida when you celebrate with Mickey and Minnie at Walt Disney World Resort! With so much to do and see at every park, your yuletide schedule will be jam-packed with enough magic to last you until the new year. 

Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom Cinderella Castle decorated with Christmas light for the holiday season.

Since each property has their own unique way of celebrating the holiday season, here is an extensive guide to Christmas at The Happiest Place on Earth! 

Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom 

Starting off with the obvious, Magic Kingdom is usually the choice destination for families around the holidays due to the festive decorations and exciting celebrations that are thrown on select nights. 

From November 9 through December 22, Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is an after-hours affair that will delight guests with live entertainment, special holiday attraction overlays, and meet-and-greets with fan favorite Disney characters. 

During regular Magic Kingdom hours, park-goers can still enjoy the gleeful decorations that don Main Street and make for some of the best photo opportunities on Disney property. Not only that, but the holiday-exclusive food offerings are generally available pre-party as well. 

However, if you’re looking for a Christmas parade featuring Saint Nick, or want to see a dazzling firework display, you’ll need to attend the event. 

Saint Nick makes his appearance at Walt Disney World.

Tickets for Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party are sold separately from regular admission into the park and can range between $169 and $199 per person.  

Hollywood Studios 

With a hop and a skip over to Hollywood Studios, we look at the brand-new “Jollywood Nights,” a Christmas bash comparable to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas but with a high-brow twist. 

Disney's Hollywood Studios Front Entrance during Christmas Time.

This event is after-hours as well and features swanky live performances and exquisite dishes throughout the park. 

To add to the element of exclusivity, guests are encouraged to dust off their most dapper attire for this nightly soiree. 

If you’re looking to indulge in the glitz and glamor of an old Hollywood holiday this year, Disney’s Jollywood Nights is the perfect soiree. 

Being that it’s the party’s debut, we can’t say for sure what to expect. However, due to Disney’s reputation of throwing premier holiday events here in Orlando, we have a suspicion that it will be as magical and as exciting as all their other happenings. 

EPCOT Festival of the Holidays 

Speaking of other happenings, EPCOT’s Festival of the Holidays is an all-day celebration that has become a tradition for many families. 

During daylight, guests can make their way around the World Showcase for the Cookie Stroll, a gastronomic journey through each country featuring its own themed cookie at each stop. 

Then at night, there is a gathering at The American Gardens Theatre for a celebrity narration accompanied by a mass choir and orchestral retelling of the beloved story of Bethlehem. Famous appearances in the past have included Whoopi Goldberg and Neil Patrick Harris, with this year’s lineup being equally as impressive.  

We highly recommend securing a dining package for this show, especially since that is the only way to guarantee a seat on busier nights. 

Disney’s Animal Kingdom

The seasonal celebration continues at the wildest park on property: Disney’s Animal Kingdom. In addition to the Tree of Life that is there year-round, you’ll find a larger-than-life Christmas tree with themed ornaments welcoming you into the park.

As you stroll Discovery Island, you’ll get to meet artisan-sculpted puppets of animals native to the arctic, such as, penguins, reindeer, foxes, and polar bears.

When the sun sets, you won’t want to miss the majestic icon come to life each evening with a holiday twist. 

Disney Springs

Disney Springs at night during Christmas time

If you’re looking for a free way to experience the magic of Disney holidays, visit Disney Springs, a dining, shopping, and entertainment complex. Spread throughout the neighborhoods are intricate Christmas trees, each decorated to their own theme.

Find each tree on the Disney Springs Christmas Tree Stroll to grab inspiration for your at-home décor. Not only can you meet the big man himself, Santa Claus, but you can enjoy interactions with Toy Soldier Stilt Walkers and Snowflake Skaters.

To truly get into the holiday spirit, “snow” in Central Florida is in the forecast for evenings around Disney Springs Town Center, making it a winter wonderland. 

Spend Your Holidays Here

Ready to head to Orlando for a Disney holiday getaway? Book your stay at one of our seven beautiful properties at Rosen Hotels & Resorts. From downtown Orlando to the convention center and theme parks, our hotels’ locations provide you with convenient access to all of Orlando’s top attractions. From affordable to luxury Central Florida lodging, we have something for everyone.  


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