It’s never too early to get into the Christmas spirit at Walt Disney World!
And sometimes that means as early as June — during the busy summer travel season and before the Halloween festivities commence.
Christmas at Walt Disney World
Disney just announced that Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party (MVMCP) is returning to Magic Kingdom on select nights from November 8 through December 22.
Plus, they’ve given us a lot of details on what we can expect to see at the other parks, as well.
Here’s what we learned:
Magic Kingdom – Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party
Magic Kingdom hasn’t held MVMCP since 2019; can you believe it has nearly been three years?!
Just like Disney After Hours Boo Bash replaced Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party in 2021, Disney Very Merriest After Hours served as a MVMCP placeholder last year.
But, Disney park fans can rest easy in knowing MVMCP and MNSSHP are both making comebacks in 2022.
While we, personally, enjoyed Very Merriest After Hours (much more than Boo Bash), knowing the full-blown holiday party is coming back to Magic Kingdom makes us want to make snow angels for 2 hours while eating a whole roll of cookie dough as fast as we can.
Here’s what you can expect at Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party this year:
- MVMCP will take place on 24 select nights
- It will be held after normal park hours from 7 p.m. to midnight (can enter with party ticket only as early as 4 p.m.)
Entertainment and offerings
When it comes to entertainment, most everything looks to be back, including:
- Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade
- Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks
- Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration castle stage show
- A Totally Tomorrowland Christmas Show on the Rockettower Plaza Stage
- Club Tinsel dance party
- Disney Junior Jingle Jam dance party in Storybook Circus
- Character greetings with characters decked out in their holiday best
- A festive holiday overlay on The Jungle Cruise (which is available during non-party hours, too), plus MVMCP exclusive transformations of Tomorrowland Speedway, Space Mountain, Mad Tea Party, and Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor
- Complimentary cookies and hot cocoa
- A range of holiday treats and drinks (for purchase)
- Special Disney PhotoPass opportunities
- And, a holiday-themed special 50th Anniversary commemorative keepsake
MVMCP Ticket Information
Guests of select Walt Disney World Resort hotels, including Swan and Dolphin Hotels and Shades of Green, can begin purchasing tickets as early as June 30.
Tickets may be purchased online or by calling 407-939-4240.
Guests not staying onsite can purchase tickets via the phone number and link above beginning July 7.
Ticket prices will range from $149 to $199. The event dates are:
- November: 8, 10, 11, 14, 15, 17, 18, 20, 22, 27, 29
- December: 1, 2, 4, 6, 8, 9, 11, 13, 15, 16, 18, 20, 22
Disney Vacation Club and Annual Passholders can receive a $10 discount on their tickets.
Important: Those with MVMCP tickets do not have to purchase additional day theme park tickets or make theme park reservations in order to enter Magic Kingdom on their designated party day. But, remember, you can only enter as early as 4 p.m. If you want to visit Magic Kingdom prior to that time, you must have valid theme park admission and park reservations.
Epcot – The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays
Not to be outdone, Epcot is proud to announce the return of their seasonal festival, The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays.
This year, the Festival of the Holidays kicks off on November 25 and will likely wrap up on December 30.
And we are thrilled to also report that the Candlelight Processional will once again grace the American Gardens Stage.
We don’t yet know the narrators for 2022 and reservations for the popular Candlelight Processional Dining Packages (which guarantee you a spot for the show) aren’t quite on sale yet, so stay tuned for more information about both of those.
Look for other festival favorites to return as well, including the popular Holiday Kitchens, special vocal performances, the Storytellers from around the World, and the return of the Cookie Stroll.
Holidays go Cosmic
NEW! For 2022 – The music on Cosmic Rewind goes full holiday mode as the Guardians of the Galaxy swap out their Mix Tape for seasonal jams.
And, although Disney wasn’t super specific on this piece, it does kind of sound like Spaceship Earth will get a fun seasonal display, too:
“And as a special yuletide surprise for guests, the magic will continue as each park celebrates the season with a delightful rotation of unique heartwarming holiday-themed displays.”
Hollywood Studios – Sunset Seasons Greetings
There is no denying that we think Hollywood Studios is the *BEST* park for all things Holidays.
The decorations. The music. The snacks. We want it ALL!
It is old Hollywood charm, wrapped up in a pretty little bow, and we live for it each and every year.
That is why we are very excited to see that once again the Tower of Terror will transform with holiday projections, including a snowy corner of Arendelle, a Muppets gingerbread masterpiece, a Toy Story toy hotel, and a Dickensian village inspired by “Mickey’s Christmas Carol.”
It also looks like the holiday show will alternate with the nightly Beacon of Magic transformations.
In addition, you’ll get to see the Santa Claus cavalcade again driving down Hollywood Boulevard, along with the limited-time addition of Olaf to “For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration.”
And of course, Minnie Mouse will be hosting a holiday feast at Hollywood & Vine. Only this year, it will once again be served buffet-style.
One thing we didn’t hear anything about was news on Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!, the seasonal nighttime projection and fireworks show. Like nearly all of Hollywood Studios’ nighttime shows, it has yet to make a return since the end of the 2019 holiday season.
We aren’t holding our breath, but the fact that we didn’t hear anything about it today doesn’t make it feel that likely that we’ll see it in 2022.
Do you see why we love Hollywood Studios so much at Christmastime? With free seasonal entertainment, a fantastic atmosphere, and the only spot where you can dine with characters dressed up in their holiday finest, Hollywood Studios is *the* place to be at Christmas.
Animal Kingdom – Holiday Festivities
For years and years, Animal Kingdom was like the forgotten toy during the holiday season.
But, thankfully, that is no longer the case.
Disney has invested a lot of money into the creation of decorations that fit into the vibe of the park.
Our favorites are the gorgeous snowy white rooftop luminaries and bird lanterns.
They go nicely with the Merry Menagerie puppets that are returning for 2022:
Although Animal Kingdom doesn’t have a nighttime spectacular, at night they do use projections to transform the Tree of Life.
Look for the Tree of Life – Holiday Edition to return this November and December.
In addition, we will also see the return of the Festive Flotillas, including:
- Santa Claus Festive Flotilla
- Discovery Island Drummers Festive Flotilla
If you hope to spend one-on-one time with Santa to snag a pic or share your wish list, Magic Kingdom and Disney Springs will be the only 2 places you’ll be able to do that.
You’ll be able to catch in a Motorcade at Hollywood Studios and over at Epcot, he’ll join his other storytelling friends in the World Showcase.
Disney Springs – Christmas Tree Stroll
Similar to last year, in place of the former Disney Springs’ Christmas Tree Trail, guests will be able to enjoy the modified Disney Springs Christmas Tree Stroll, meaning trees will be scattered throughout, instead of in one area.
We really love the “stroll” vs. the trail. Yes, that means more walking, BUT, having the trees spread out throughout the entire Disney Springs area just feels more organic and turns it into a scavenger hunt.
Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar will also turn into Jock Lindsey’s Holiday Bar again, with special decorations and a limited-time holiday menu.
And, during the evenings, Disney Springs Town Center will be home to magical snow (which will help you forget about all the money you’re spending while you shop!).
But wait…there’s more!
The Disney PhotoPass Studio in Disney Springs will have some new virtual backdrops you’ll want to check out.
And finally, Santa is planning to spend some time at Disney Springs this year, where you’ll once again be able to book a spot (likely using the same virtual queue system from years past) with everyone’s favorite head elf.
Resorts – Gingerbread Displays and Decorations
There is just something extra magical about returning to a resort all decked out for the holidays!
Look for that heartwarming tradition to continue in 2022 (including all the fabulous trees!), along with the return of select gingerbread displays.
What we didn’t hear about
While we got a lot of news, there are some things we didn’t hear about from today’s announcement:
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party:
- Dessert parties and Tony’s Most Merriest Town Square Party during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party (this was a thing in the past, but it is unknown if they will return)
- Specifics on what the character interactions will be like for the party
- News on the Dream Lights (honestly, we don’t think they’ll be back until at least the end of the 50th Anniversary Celebration)
- Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!
- Candlelight Processional narrators
- Release date for Candlelight Processional Dining Packages
If you’d like to experience the holidays at Disney World this year and want help with booking a hotel and purchasing special event tickets, we recommend contacting Small World Vacations.
- Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party Returning In August 2022
- After Hours Coming to Epcot, H20 Glow Returning to Typhoon Lagoon
- Disney After Hours Returning to Disney World in 2023
- Disneyland Announces 2022 Holiday Events, Including World of Color – Season of Light
- Walt Disney World Closing Theme Parks Due To Tropical Storm Nicole
- Disney After Hours: Is It Really Worth It? - March 20, 2023
- Where to meet Moana at Disney World - March 15, 2023
- Mirabel and Moana meet & greets coming soon (plus lots more updates) - March 15, 2023