Goodbye, 2021! Hello, 2022!
It’s hard to believe it’s almost time to ring in the New Year. There’s no denying 2020 was difficult for obvious reasons, but 2021 certainly didn’t come without its challenges.
As for Walt Disney World, it’s pretty much returned to “normal,” with a few exceptions here and there. And come 2022, there’s even more to expect.
From the return of a beloved festival at Epcot, to a popular runDisney race and the ability for visitors to walk outside without dripping in sweat to more entertainment returning, plus lots of other exciting additions coming sometime next year, there are quite a few things to look forward to.
With that, let’s take a look at 5 things to look forward to in January 2022 at Walt Disney World.
Epcot International Festival of the Arts
The 2022 Epcot International Festival of the Arts kicks off on Jan. 14 and will run through Feb. 21, 2022.
Of course, there’s art and the extremely talented artists to look forward to seeing at the festival, but there are a few other things to expect as well, like:
- Return of the Disney on Broadway Concert Series. You can also currently book Dining Packages.
- 15 Food Studios around the World Showcase.
- The Wonderful Walk of Colorful Cuisine.
- Chalk artists (they are so talented)!
- Photo ops where you can step into famous artwork.
- A paint-by-number mural.
- Figment’s Brush with the Masters scavenger hunt.
- Performance and visual artists.
- Special festival merchandise.
It’s a shame this festival is so short, because it continues to prove to be one of Epcot’s best.
Check out our guide for the latest Festival of the Arts updates.
Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend
The runDisney Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend will be held from Jan. 5 through Jan. 9, 2022.
If you were hoping to run, it’s unfortunately too late because each event (including the virtual races) are all sold out.
Usually, runDisney events are very popular, so you always want to make sure to sign up as soon as registration opens.
But, there’s always next year! Be sure to check out the link below so you can add next year’s runDisney races to your calendar.
The 2022-2023 runDisney race season was announced. Take a look!
January is one of the best times to visit Walt Disney World. Why? Cooler temperatures!
It’s no secret that the parks can get extremely hot during certain months. But, January is different!
The temperatures are typically much more bearable. Heck, sometimes you can even wear long sleeves or a jacket.
Even though Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend, cheer competitions, and Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend are busier times of the month, if you visit around Jan. 19-30, you might just get cooler temps — and lower-than average crowds!
Be sure to read our complete 2022 Walt Disney World Crowd Calendar.
The Return Of New & Old Entertainment
During the 2021 Destination D23 event, Disney announced the return of entertainment, along with some new additions.
That’s right, you will finally get to watch Fantasmic! once again at Hollywood Studios, but that’s not all.
To be clear, exact dates have not been disclosed, but here’s what we do know about the following.
- Disney Adventure Friends Cavalcade: Expect both Pixar and Disney characters in this mini-parade coming to Magic Kingdom later in winter. It will even “feature the most characters of any cavalcade to date,” including Nick and Judy from Zootopia, Baloo and King Louie from The Jungle Book, Miguel from Coco, and more!
- Festival of Fantasy: The daytime Magic Kingdom parade will be back in early 2022. Cavalcades will continue to run, in addition to the parade.
- Finding Nemo: The Big Blue… and Beyond: The new reimagined musical at Animal Kingdom returns in 2022 with new storylines and set in the timeline of the movie Finding Dory.
- Fantasmic!: The nighttime spectacular is coming back to Hollywood Studios in 2022 — and with a brand new sequence featuring live performers, stunts, special effects, and a lineup of characters that have never been part of Fantasmic!
- Mickey’s Magical Friendship Faire: This is a special 50th anniversary twist on Mickey’s Royal Friendship Faire that will take place daily on the Cinderella Castle Forecourt Stage in early 2022. Expect a new original song called “Where the Magic Feels Like Home.”
Here’s what else was announced at the Destination D23 event.
More Additions To Keep Your Eyes Peeled For
While the following don’t have January start dates (that we know of), they are set to debut sometime in 2022. Here’s a brief refresher:
- MagicBand+: This new and improved MagicBand is coming to Walt Disney World and Disneyland in 2022. The wearable technology includes all of the same features as a regular MagicBand, but with some interactive additions. Current MagicBands and the free Disney MagicMobile service will remain available at Walt Disney World.
- Hey, Disney: They “Hey, Disney” voice assistant will arrive at both Walt Disney World and Disneyland in 2022. This new project is in partnership with Amazon for guests to use in their Disney Resort hotel rooms.
- Parking Trams: After a very long wait, parking Trams finally returned to Magic Kingdom in December, but trams at Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom, and Epcot, will come back throughout 2022.
There’s even more coming to Walt Disney World in 2022 (and beyond).
Other Things To Look Forward To At Disney World
There’s so much more exciting stuff to experience at the most magical place on earth.
As always, we’ll keep you apprised of any and all new Disney World information!
- How to Use Disney World’s Car Locator Feature in the My Disney Experience App
- Disney After Hours Returning to Disney World in 2023
- Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway Opens January 2023 at Disneyland, Plus More Disney100 Celebration Details
- After Hours Coming to Epcot, H20 Glow Returning to Typhoon Lagoon
- Disney World Removing 50th Decor, Mickey & Friends Get New Costumes, & More Updates