Formerly known as "Holidays around the World," the Epcot International Festival of the Holidays will run from November 29 - December 30 in 2019. Like other festivals at Epcot, it is included with the price of your admission.
During the Epcot International Festival of the holidays you can expect to see the items listed below.
Full details for 2019 have not yet been released but we do expect things to look similar to how they looked in 2018 (below):
In this article
In the outdoor American Gardens Theater in the American section of the World Showcase, celebrity narrators read a presentation of the Christmas story. A huge choir and 50-piece orchestra are also a part of this very moving event.
This 40 minute show takes place 3 times a day and for the first time, you'll be able to catch the magic over the Thanksgiving holiday. The dates for the Candlelight Processional in 2018 were from November 22 through December 30th with show times at 5:00, 6:45 and 8:15 p.m.
There is no cost to attend, although it is very popular so securing a seat can be a challenge.
One way to guarantee a seat is to book a Candlelight Dining Package.
Bookings for 2019 Candlelight Processional Dining Packages began on July 3.
Here are the restaurants and meal services available:
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner:
- Ale and Compass (Yacht Club)
- The Garden Grill Restaurant (The Land pavilion)
- Trattoria Al Forno (Boardwalk)
Lunch and dinner:
- Biergarten Restaurant (Germany pavilion)
- Chefs de France (France pavilion)
- Coral Reef Restaurant (The Seas pavilion)
- Nine Dragons Restaurant (China pavilion)
- Restaurant Marrakesh and Spice Road Table (Morocco pavilion)
- Rose & Crown Pub & Dining Room (United Kingdom pavilion)
- San Angel Inn Restaurante (Mexico pavilion)
- Teppan Edo and Tokyo Dining (Japan pavilion)
- Tutto Italia Ristorante & Via Napoli Ristorante e Pizzeria (Italy pavilion)
- La Hacienda de San Angel (Mexico pavilion)
Prices will vary (depending on the restaurant) but in 2019 the Candlelight Processional Dining Packages prices started at:
- Breakfast: $40 adults / $23 kids (plus tax)
- Lunch: $52 adults ' $16.99 kids (plus tax)
- Dinner: $57.50 adults/ $24 kids (plus tax)
For that price you will receive:
- Meal with appetizer (for lunch and dinner), entree, dessert, non-alcoholic beverage (or, if the meal is a buffet, you get 1 buffet meal)
- Reserved section to sit in during Candlelight Processional
- People using the Disney Dining Plan can use 2 Table Service credits to pay for the package.
A few narrators for 2019 have been confirmed. More narrators will be announced in the upcoming weeks and months, although it isn't usual for a few spots to remain open until fall.
- 11/29-12/1 - TBD
- 12/2-12/5 - Neil Patrick Harris
- 12/6-12/7 - Whoopi Goldberg
- 12/8-12/12 - TBD
- 12/13-12/15 - Gary Sinise
- 12/16-12/18 - Pat Sajak
- 12/19-12/21 - TBD
- 12/22-12/24 - Steven Curtis Chapman
- 12/25-12/26 - Edward James Olmos
- 12/27-12/30 - TBD
Reservations for the Candlelight Processional Dining Packages can be made on the Disney World website or by calling 407-WDW-DINE.
Take a look at a sampling of a show that was hosted by my pretend BFF, Neil Patrick Harris, who normally narrates CP for a couple of nights.
For most people, a trip to Epcot and the Festival of the Holidays isn't complete without sampling food and drink from around the World Showcase. From late November through the end of December you can find special treats in 12 themed Holiday Kitchens serving up traditional holiday foods and drinks from several different countries and regions of the world.
Chip and Dale's Christmas Tree Spree
Chip and Dale's Christmas Tree Spree invites guests to search out special ornaments as they traverse the World Showcase. To participate, guests simply need to pick up a map (available from many of the shops in Epcot for $6.99) and then keep their eyes open for the ornaments. Once spotted, there are special stickers you can add to your map. After complete you can take your map to Disney Traders to exchange it for a special holiday-themed surprise!
Holiday Cookie Stroll
This fun addition for 2018 invited guests to the Festival of Holidays to try tasty cookies from around the World Showcase. Cookies were available to purchase at specific "Cookie Stroll" locations and with every cookie you try you'll be given a stamp. Collect 5 stamps before the Festival of the Holidays ends and you'll receive a complimentary cookie and a cold glass of milk!
Special ending to Illuminations
In years past during the holidays Disney would add a different ending to their popular Illuminations nighttime show. This ending (or "tag" as it is sometimes called) was a definite fan favorite.
In 2019, however, Illuminations will have its final performance on September 30. No word yet on whether the replacement show (Epcot Forever) will have any sort of special holiday additions.
Want to catch the holiday ending of Illuminations one last time? You can see it in the video below at the 13:09 mark.
Special entertainment during Festival of the Holidays at Epcot
Enjoy the sights and sounds of the nations of World Showcase, as each country’s holiday heritage comes to life amid joyful music and time-honored traditions. Guests will discover an entertaining celebration of Hanukkah in a new location along World Showcase promenade, where a fun and interactive band interweaves the music of Hanukkah with jazz, Latin, rock and even hip-hop influences. Other returning holiday favorites include JOYFUL! A Gospel Celebration of the Season and Canadian Holiday Voyageurs.