Guests flock to Walt Disney World for the holiday celebration, which brings festive décor, themed merchandise, seasonal food & beverage offerings and entertainment all across all four theme parks, Disney Springs, and the resort hotels. But this year will look a little different because of COVID-19.
The holiday magic will begin Nov. 7 through Dec. 30, and will have the current health and safety measures in place. Experiences that draw big crowds will be on hiatus this year, such as Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party and Candlelight Processional at EPCOT.
Gingerbread men and elves will join Disney characters in cavalcades through Magic Kingdom on festive floats, and on Main Street, U.S.A., toy soldiers will march with the Main Street Philharmonic. Disney characters dressed in their holiday finest will also appear in festive flotillas at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, holiday promenades at EPCOT and merry motorcades at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Santa Claus will make time for special pop-up appearances at each location.
Special projection effects will give a festive look to Cinderella Castle this holiday season, with a rotating series of designs including a Christmas sweater and a regal overlay of red, green and gold ornamentation.
Minnie Mouse will be hosting a yuletide gathering for all her friends at Hollywood & Vine at Disney’s Hollywood Studios starting.
The EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays will kick off Nov. 27. Holiday kitchens will return around the World Showcase promenade, offering favorite dishes such as slow-roasted Turkey with Stuffing at the American Holiday Table. JOYFUL!, will present a journey through R&B, Gospel, contemporary and traditional Christmas and holiday music, while Voices of Liberty will use their eight-part harmonies to share songs of the season at the America Gardens Theatre.
A collection of elaborately decorated Christmas trees will spring up throughout Disney Springs, and in the evening, guests visiting areas within Town Center, West Side and The Landing will encounter a snowfall. To top it off, Jock Lindsey will once again be turning his hangar bar into Jock Lindsey’s Holiday Bar complete with delightful holiday décor and a delicious limited-time menu filled with festive favorites.
Disney resort hotels will deck their halls for the holidays, including iconic Christmas trees in lobbies and other festive flourishes. Gingerbread displays will not return to the Resort hotels this year due to physical distancing guidelines.
At Walt Disney World Resort, important updates have been implemented to promote enhanced cleaning, social distancing, and reduced contact. Park attendance is managed via the Disney Park Pass reservation system—to enter a park, both a park reservation and valid admission for the same park on the same date are required. Annual Passholders can make theme park reservations for up to 3 days at a time, and for their length of stay if staying at a Disney Resort or other select hotel.