Boo. To. You. Happy Halloween!
Halloween at Walt Disney World is the most spook-tacular time of year.
Don’t worry, even though there are grim grinning ghosts, Disney World’s celebrations are family-friendly and far less frightening compared to another Halloween Orlando-based event that many people love.
But, if you’re not into super scary celebrations or are traveling with little ones, Disney World Halloween events are the way to go.
Whether you’re a local or planning a Disney Halloween trip, it’s important to know the ins and outs of spooky season at Disney World, including dates, special events, treats, decorations, and more.
If you’re wondering about the Disney World Halloween events happening in 2022, grab some candy corn (sorry, not sorry, it’s the best) and keep reading.
Disney World Halloween 2022 dates
Spooky season at Walt Disney World usually begins in early August and runs all the way through the end of October (and sometimes even until November 1).
The dates for Magic Kingdom’s special ticketed event are a good way to judge when Halloween-time starts.
Not only is Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party (MNSSHP) returning in 2022 (yay!), but it kicks off on August 12 and runs through October 31.
And keep in mind decor usually goes up a few days prior to this.
So, if you’re traveling to Disney World in August, prepare yourself for all things Halloween at Magic Kingdom extremely early in the season.
We’ve visited Disney World plenty of times during Halloween and it still feels strange to be celebrating Halloween during a hot summer day.
But, if anyone can pull it off, it’s Disney.
Magic Kingdom during Halloween
Magic Kingdom is the only Disney World theme park that decorates for Halloween.
The majority of decorations, treats, and events will be found here.
Keep in mind not everything that occurs at Magic Kingdom for Halloween will be available to all park guests.
Let’s break it down.
Halloween fun available to all Magic Kingdom guests
- Decorations (Mickey Pumpkins and other fall decor along Main Street, U.S.A)
- Most merchandise
- Most treats, snacks, and drinks
- Select Disney PhotoPass Magic Shots (be sure to ask all PhotoPass photographers if they have any spooky-themed Magic Shots)
Halloween fun only available to Magic Kingdom guests with special event tickets
- Special ticketed events (includes parties like MNSSHP and After Hours); you must have a ticket in order to attend
- Certain merchandise (select items are sometimes exclusive to special events)
- Exclusive event treats, snacks, and drinks
- Characters in Halloween costumes (rarely do they ever come out during the daytime — this isn’t Disneyland, unfortunately)
- Halloween parades (Boo to You) and other cavalcades, if available (daytime guests will see regularly scheduled entertainment, like the Festival of Fantasy Parade)
- Trick-or-treating around the park
- Special entertainment, like the Cadaver Dans, dance parties, stage shows, and more
- Exclusive PhotoPass Magic Shots
- The chance to wear a Halloween costume inside Magic Kingdom
Are special Halloween events at Magic Kingdom worth the price?
It’s truly hard for us to answer this question with a definitive yes or no.
What we can say is…
It ain’t no Disneyland, where select characters roam in Halloween costumes all day long. Yes, Disney California Adventure also hosts a special ticketed event — Oogie Boogie Bash — but Halloween hits different at the happiest place on earth.
Side note: If you can ever visit Disneyland and Disney California Adventure during their holiday celebrations, do it! We can say with 100 percent certainty that you won’t regret it.
But back to Disney World Halloween events…
They are fun and offer the chance to experience rare moments that we as park guests normally don’t get to.
But, these special events cost a big chunk of change. A Disney World vacation is already so expensive. No longer can the average family travel here without breaking the bank.
That’s not to say it isn’t still a magical time, but…
When it comes to making a decision like whether or not you should buy tickets for events like MNSSHP, you have to decide what is worth the cost, what isn’t, and if there’s somewhere else you’d rather spend your money.
If you do attend the party, you will most certainly have fun (keep in mind it takes some planning). It’s great for groups who want to stay up late or those who enjoy party exclusive-offerings.
Otherwise, you can simply enjoy the Halloween decorations (which truly are great), the limited-time treats, fun Magic Shots, and cute merchandise available to every guest with a standard theme park ticket and park reservation.
Plus, Magic Kingdom isn’t the only place to enjoy Halloween. Keep reading!
Halloween events at Disney World hotels
While the Disney World Resort hotels don’t go all out for Halloween, there are certain limited-time goodies and activities available.
Yes, you can find Halloween treats at Quick Service locations (read more about these treats below), but there are some really other fun Halloween activities at the resorts.
If there are specific activities happening at your hotel, there should be an activity schedule posted (most likely in the lobby). Or, ask a Cast Member!
Fort Wilderness’ Halloween Festivities
These are only just a few of things you can expect at Fort Wilderness.
Note: If you aren’t a camper, you can stay at the Fort Wilderness Cabins and still participate in all of the fun below.
First, the decorations. Did we say the decorations? Campers go all out with the decor they bring to set up at their campsites. It’s pretty remarkable.
It’s like Clark Griswold on Christmas, but with more taste and sometimes even a Disney spin.
Take a look:
And at nighttime:
With Fort Wilderness having a campsite decorating contest, it’s no wonder campers go all out.
FYI: Campers do the same when it comes to the holiday season.
Golf Cart Parade
Next at Fort Wilderness’ Halloween extravaganza (not an official name, but totally should be), is the Halloween Golf Cart Parade
Golf cart parades are a holiday Fort Wilderness staple. They even have parades for Christmas and July 4th. This is serious business. They even declare winners.
For Halloween, guests decorate their golf carts like you would your home. And these aren’t just any standard decorations.
These golf carts are transformed into masterpieces, like a massive Magic Band box. You read that right. They even throw out candy! It’s so much fun.
Other Halloween Fun
That’s not all, either. Fort Wilderness, of course, also has a pet costume parade and contest.
The resort is even known for having a mummy run, where teams dress up someone with toilet paper to resemble a mummy. The “mummies” then have to run and are judged for their toilet paper attire.
Chip ‘n’ Dale have also been known to wear Halloween costumes (similar to like they’ve worn at Magic Kingdom – below) during Chip ‘n’ Dale’s Campfire Sing-A-Long, which is temporarily unavailable at the moment.
If you’re staying here when these Halloween events are scheduled, you should be able to find registration forms for select activities at the Outpost, the Settlement, or the Meadow Trading Post.
“Return to Sleepy Hollow”
There’s also “Return to Sleepy Hollow,” which includes a showing of the 1949 animated Legend of Sleepy Hollow inside Tri-Circle-D Ranch stables.
The Headless Horseman even makes appearances!
Typically, “Return to Sleepy Hollow” runs on select weekends in late September and October, along with the last full week leading up to Halloween.
These were the dates in 2018 (the last time the event was held): September 28-30, October 3-7, October 10-14, 17-21, 24-31 at 8 and 10 p.m.
In 2018, the special event also included a dessert party at 9 p.m. before or after the movie depending on which showing guests watched.
This event could be booked in advance (60 days prior) by calling 407-WDW-TOUR.
We’ll keep you in the loop if or when more concrete details are shared.
Can you visit Fort Wilderness during Halloween if you’re not a resort guest?
This is tricky, but the closer it gets to actual Halloween (October 30 and 31), the stricter they sometimes are about letting in non-resort guests.
You could try visiting, but know you might be turned away. They’re known to check MagicBands.
But, some campers set up shop for several weeks. We recommend (depending on your visit) to try exploring Fort Wilderness and the Halloween decorations around early to mid-October.
You may have a better chance of gaining entry than on actual Halloween.
While fireworks viewing inside Magic Kingdom hits differently, you don’t have to be in the park to enjoy fireworks.
Whether they’re fireworks from the normal, everyday nighttime spectacular or the ones that go off during MNSSHP’s Disney’s Not-So-Spooky Spectacular, you can see and hear them from nearby resorts.
The beach at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort is a great area to not only watch the fireworks, but also hear the music (it’s usually piped in).
Depending on how late California Grill at Disney’s Contemporary Resort is open and based on when Disney’s Not-So-Spooky Spectacular runs (in 2019 it had one showtime at 10:15 p.m.), you may be able to catch the fireworks from the restaurant’s balcony.
The same can be said for ‘Ohana at Polynesian. Both dining locations also pipe in the show’s music.
Note: In order to enjoy fireworks from California Grill and ‘Ohana, you must have dining reservations.
Other Resort Halloween Activities
Here are other ways resorts celebrate Halloween:
- Cast Members usually carve and decorate pumpkins, which they then put on display at select resort hotels (like Contemporary and BoardWalk). Keep your eyes peeled around late October for these to possibly show up.
- On or around October 31, most resorts have complimentary Halloween activities, including costume contests, arts and crafts, Halloween movies, and more. Check your hotel’s daily schedule that should be on display in the lobby.
Disney World Halloween character dining
You can find Halloween-themed character dining at — no, not Magic Kingdom — but at Hollywood Studios!
Minnie’s Halloween Dine takes place during select months (usually August through November) at Hollywood & Vine. We don’t know 2022 dates yet.
Typically, you’ll be able to meet Minnie, Mickey, Pluto, and Goofy in Halloween costumes! Yes, they’re adorable as you can imagine.
Reservations here for lunch and dinner are highly recommended, so make sure you book as soon as you can (60 days in advance)!
We’ve dined here many times before and it’s definitely improved over time.
Character dining experiences are far from cheap, but if you’re looking to do something extra special (and Halloween-themed), Minnie’s Seasonal Dine is a solid choice.
Disney World Halloween decorations
One of the most asked questions we get is, “When do Halloween decorations go up at Disney World?”
This is a very good question. Usually, Halloween decorations will begin to appear in early August. In 2021, those famous Mickey Pumpkins arrived on August 9 for guests to enjoy.
Seeing as this year’s MNSSHP begins on August 12, it seems more than likely decor will pop around the same time as last year.
Decorations will remain through the end of October, with holiday decorations going up as early as the first of November.
It’s important to note that the only decor guests with standard theme park admission will get to see are the Mickey Pumpkins and other fall decor along Main Street, U.S.A.
During MNSSHP, the castle will have spooky coloring and projections, along with the Haunted Mansion and other areas showcasing special lighting.
Keep in mind that even though Magic Kingdom is the only park that decorates for Halloween, Disney Springs also has their own fall and Halloween decor.
Wearing Halloween costumes at Disney World
Both kids and adults are allowed to wear Halloween costumes during special events like MNSSHP or if a Disney Resort hotel is having a costume contest.
Disney also has attire guidelines, even when it comes to dressing in a Halloween costume.
Below are the rules, as stated by Disney.
For Guests ages 13 and under:
- Costumes and some costume masks may be worn; masks must provide unobstructed peripheral vision at all times with openings that allow the eyes to be fully seen.
For Guests 14 Years of Age or Older: Costumes may be worn according to these guidelines. Guests who do not adhere to these guidelines may be refused entry into, and/or removed from Disney parks, unless his or her costume can be modified to meet the above standards:
- All Guests may dress as their favorite character, but may not pose for pictures or sign autographs for other Guests.
- Costumes must be family-friendly and may not be obstructive, offensive, objectionable or violent.
- Costumes may not contain any props or accessories that resemble or could easily be mistaken for an actual weapon.
- Costumes may not contain sharp objects, pointed objects or materials that may accidentally strike another Guest.
- Layered costumes or costume props that surround the entire body are strongly discouraged and may be subject to additional security screening.
- Costumes may not reach or drag on the ground. (for example, full-length Princess dresses)
- Capes may be worn if the length does not go below the waist.
- Themed T-shirts, blouses, sweatshirts and hats are acceptable.
- Acceptable accessories include: transparent wings, plastic light sabers, toy swords and tutus. Costume headwear may be worn as long as it does not cover the face.
- Costume masks of any kind may not be worn.
Trick-or-Treating at Disney World
If you’re looking to do some trick-or-treating at Disney World, you can do so while attending MNSSHP.
There are different treat stops, where you can pick up candy that’s included with your party ticket.
There are also select locations offering allergy-friendly treats.
As for resorts, on actual Halloween, there is usually trick-or-treating offered and sometimes only to resort guests (but you can always ask to make sure).
Be sure to check your resort’s activity guides to see what is available on Halloween, including trick-or-treating.
Disney World Halloween merchandise
Whether it be general Halloween merchandise available to all guests or exclusive MNSSHP merch, there is always something new to buy during the Halloween season.
Here’s what we know will be on shelves (so far) for all guests.
The following will be available on shopDisney and at Disney World throughout Halloween season (and maybe even sooner).
Walt Disney’s Silly Symphonies, Skeleton Dance Crew Neck, Hooded Sweatshirt, and Zip Up Jacket
Halloween Spirit Jersey
Two-Piece Sleep Sets
Mickey Mouse Pumpkin Bubble Wand Lights
Halloween Mickey & Friends Loungefly
Jack & Sally Crossbody and Oogie Boogie Minnie Mouse Ears
Madame Leota Knit Duster and Constance Backpack
Hocus Pocus Mug and Corkcicle
Disney World Halloween Treats
You can find special Halloween treats at parks, resorts, and Disney Springs. Disney will release an official guide detailing what’s available and where.
Right now, all we know are the limited-time offerings for “Halfway to Halloween.”
Check out those here:
Sleepy Hollow (available April 28 through August 13)
- Lady on the Gravestone 50th Chilling Chamber Pop: Citrus cake crumbs, raspberry buttercream, and blue crisp pearls (New)
Available at Liberty Square Popcorn Cart and Various Outdoor Vending Carts (available April 28 through May 1)
- Jack Skellington Popcorn Bucket (Limit two per, person per transaction while supplies last)
The Ganachery (available April 28 through May 1)
- Sister’s Elixir Hot Cocoa Bomb: Dark chocolate cauldron filled with hot cocoa mix and marshmallows topped with an edible image of the Sanderson Sisters and a chocolate broom stirrer
Gideon’s Bakehouse (available April 28 through May 1)
- Get an exclusive trading card during Halfway to Halloween. Each four and six cookie box will feature one of the sixteen cards, plus be on the lookout for a bonus card for those waiting in line featuring Barnabas Mephistophelittle! (Limit of one per person while supplies last)
- Pumpkin Spice Shadow Cakes: Chocolate-dipped spice cakes with a pumpkin buttercream filling (New)
- Frankenstein Cake Slices: A three-layer chocolate cake covered in cookies and cream buttercream and loaded with M&M’s
- Valentina Cake: Classic red velvet cake covered in a light and fluffy cookies and cream marshmallow buttercream
Available at Various Outdoor Vending Carts in West Side (available April 28 through May 1)
- Mickey Mummy Popcorn Bucket (Limit two per, person per transaction while supplies last)
Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa (available April 28 through May 1)
- Hocus Pocus “Amuck” Cakes: Rich devil’s food cake with “peanut boo-tter” filling decorated to resemble all three Sanderson Sisters
Stay tuned for the official 2022 Disney Halloween Foodie Guide!
“Halloween” attractions at Disney World
During MNSSHP, there are select rides with Halloween overlays, including Mad Tea Party, Pirates of the Caribbean, Space Mountain, and Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor Comedy.
If you don’t attend MNSSHP, there aren’t really “Halloween” attractions at Disney World.
But, there are a few attractions we recommend that will certainly get you in the spooky mood (and will make you also scream, as one sometimes does on Halloween).
- Haunted Mansion: for obvious reasons
- Space Mountain: it’s pitch black and far from a tame roller coaster
- Big Thunder Mountain Railroad: ride at night (we swear it goes much faster)
- Tower of Terror: you drop 13 stories down a haunted elevator shaft — need we say more?
- Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster: there’s nothing quite like blasting off directly into a roller coaster loop
- Dinosaur: some find this ride the scariest on property and who can argue with darkness and dinosaurs that jump out
- Expedition Everest: an even more thrilling ride at night (and maybe an even scarier one with Disco Yeti)
Other Popular Fall Activities
Epcot Food & Wine Festival
While it doesn’t have the spooky theme or offer Halloween treats, it’d be remiss if we didn’t mention the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival.
The annual festival usually takes place during Halloween-time at Disney World. And, 2022 isn’t any different.
The 2022 Epcot Food & Wine Festival begins July 4 and runs all the way through November 19, for a total of 129 days.
You can keep track of this year’s special event via our complete Epcot Food & Wine Festival guide.
Visiting when it’s both Halloween and Christmas
If you time it right, there is a way to experience both Halloween and Christmas at Magic Kingdom during one trip.
Better yet, there’s even a way you could see not just Halloween and Christmas, but also do MNSSHP, Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party (MVMCP), and Food & Wine (which ends in November) all at once!
You’ll want to make sure you’re there for the very last MNSSHP party and the very first MVMCP. But, this will only work if you have a week-long trip.
In 2022, the last MNSSHP is October 31. While we don’t know yet if MVMCP is returning in 2022, back in 2019 the first Christmas party occurred on November 8.
Again, if you have a week-long trip, you could hit up both parties.
But, if you can’t make both parties or can only do 1, there is a way to just see both sets of decorations.
Halloween decorations will be up through October 31 and Christmas decorations begin going up as early as November 1.
Tell us your favorite about celebrating Halloween at Disney World in the comments!
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