When Does Disney World Christmas Start
So when does the 2021 Christmas season at Disney World start?
2021 Holiday season at Walt Disney World will be officially kicked off on November 12th, for the Spirit of the Season celebration. Its important to note that this year is going to be unlike any other Disney Christmas season we have experienced before, as WDW will also be celebrating its 50th Anniversary!
Luckily for all of us youll have plenty of time to visit Disney World during Christmas as the holiday season starts the minute Halloween is over. When the last Boo Bash After Hours Party ends on November 1, Magic Kingdom turns into a winter wonderland, as if Halloween didnt just exist the night before. All four Walt Disney World parks will be transformed with yuletide cheer by mid-November.
How Much Are Disney Very Merriest After Hours Tickets
Tickets range from $169 to $229 for select nights in November and December and start at $249 for Dec. 19 and 21 on Disney World’s website. Annual passholders and Disney Vacation Club members can get $10 off on select dates in November.
Tickets for the 2019 holiday event started at $94.
This year’s tickets go on sale on Aug. 20 for the general public. Disney resort guests will be able to buy tickets starting Aug. 17 for event nights during their stay.
Only Disney Very Merriest After Hours tickets are accepted for entry to the event. Not only will standard theme park tickets be rejected, but regular Magic Kingdom guests will have to leave the park before the event starts.
Contributing: Bailey Schulz, USA TODAY
A Meal At Minnies Holiday Dine At Hollywood & Vine
Foodies, rejoice: Hollywood & Vines Christmas menu is sensational. Photo by Laurie Sapp
The best way to celebrate Christmas is with a big, delicious meal. You can do that during the holiday season at Disneys Hollywood Studios by dining at Hollywood & Vine for Minnies Holiday Dine. Advance Dining Reservations are strongly recommended.
The typical meet-and-greets are distanced, and last year, instead of a buffet, Disney offered a prix fixe meal. The restaurant is decked out in holiday décor, and youll leave with a special autograph card from your favorite Disney characters.
Recommended Reading: Disney World Dining Plan 2021
How Is Disney Very Merriest After Hours Different From Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party
Disney Very Merriest After Hours is later and shorter than Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. The festivities run from 9 p.m. until 1 a.m., but ticket-holders can enter the Magic Kingdom as early as 7 p.m. for a total of six hours in the park. In 2019, Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas ran from 7 p.m. until midnight, but guests could enter the park at 4 p.m. for a total of eight hours in the park.
Guests will not be able to get up close to their favorite characters, who in the past donned their holiday finest for the festivities. Throughout the pandemic, up-close character meet-and-greets have been suspended to allow for social distancing.
Disney World, Disneyland:Masks required for all indoor attractions, transportation
Snacks will be different, too. While endless cookies, hot cider and hot cocoa were included with admission to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, Disney Very Merriest After Hours guests will get ice cream, popcorn, bottled drinks and unspecified holiday treats. Of course, additional food will available for purchase.
Pricing is also different this year.
Special Christmas Snacks At Disney World
Free snacks abound during Very Merriest. Photo courtesy of Disney
Very Merriest also includes exclusive holiday snacks and sips, meaning you wont be able to get certain Christmas treats at Magic Kingdom unless you stick around for the After Hours party. Get the full list of 2021 Disney World Christmas food and drinks here.
We do know that you will have access to FREE snacks like ice cream, popcorn, soda, and a seasonal treat during Very Merriest. As much as you can stuff in your face.
Read Also: Disney World Tickets Fast Pass Cost
Christmas Party Overview And Tips
Here are the main things from Mickey’s Very Happy Christmas Party:
- Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmastime Parade
- A Totally Tomorrowland Christmas Show
- Christmas overlays of attractions
- Complimentary cookies and hot chocolate
- Snow on Main Street USA
- Fireworks Holiday Dessert Party at Tomorrowland terrace
- Tony’s Most Merriest Town Square Party
Don’t worry, below we will explain in detail what each option is!
It is worth noting that after December 22, the standard daytime parade at Magic kingdom becomes Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade.
This parade is a big part of Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, but it’s just one of the MVMCP’s entertainment pieces, with others totally exclusive to the event.
In exchange for not having to pay more to attend the Christmas parade after December 22, you will face some of the worst crowds of the year at Walt Disney World.
If you want the best of both worlds, there are other tricks you can use to avoid crowds during the Christmas and New Year weeks. So, obviously, there is an exchange.
Now that we’ve established the entertainment you can expect at parties, let’s give you more details, tips and our analysis of whether Mickey’s Very Happy Christmas Party is worth the money.
MVMCP does not offer as much entertainment or as many unique characters as Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party, so it is not really necessary to use some kind of advanced plan to maximize your time.
Walt Disney World Christmas : Very Merriest After Hours Party Holiday Food Entertainment
The holiday season begins at Walt Disney World in November which allows for plenty of time for guests to plan a seasonal vacation to one of the Happiest Places on Earth! Typically you can expect the holiday décor to remain up until early January. This year’s holiday season will begin on and run through the end of December
Read on to find out everything you need to know for enjoying the holiday season at Walt Disney World.
Get exclusive access to prices on hotel & tickets just for Mickey Visit subscribers. Don’t miss our travel hacks newsletter!
Don’t Miss: Cheap Walt Disney World Packages
Animal Kingdom Holiday Eats & Treats
- Peppermint Cream Cheese Mousse Peppermint cream cheese mousse, peppermint sauce, peppermint candy pieces, and chocolate dirt
- Horchata Mousse Snow Globe Golden coffee crémeux, gingerbread sable cookie, coriander chantilly, elderflower meringue, bourbon caramel, and candied pecans
- Pork T-Bone Apple-brined pork, sweet potato variations, boniato mash, and ginger-pear butter
Very Merriest After Hours Videos
Tickets for this event are on sale now and can be ordered by calling or through your Dreams Unlimited Travel Specialist as part of your package/room reservation.
In 2021, this special event will be held from 9:00 p.m. until 1:00 a.m.
Tickets range from $169 to $229 plus tax for select November-December nights and $249, plus tax on December 19th & 21st. Annual Passholders and Disney Vacation Club Members can take advantage of a $10 discount on select event dates in November. These dated event tickets do not require an additional day theme park ticket or Disney Park Pass theme park reservation.
SOLD OUT dates are highlighted in red.
|DATE||ANNUAL PASSHOLDER AND DISNEY VACATION CLUB MEMBER TICKET PRICE|
|Mon, Nov. 8|
|Thu, Dec. 2||$209|
|Thu, Dec. 9||$209|
2021 VERY MERRIEST HIGHLIGHTS
Dont miss this merriest of evenings at Magic Kingdom! This year’s highlights include:
- Character sightings
- Minnies Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks Show
- Mickey & MinniesVery MerryMemories New stage show
- Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmastime Parade
- After-hours access to Magic Kingdom park and less time waiting in line for popular attractions
- Holiday-themed attraction overlays and Cinderella Castle projections
- Snowfall on Main Street, U.S.A.
- Holiday treats, ice cream, popcorn and bottled beveragesall included with the cost of admission
- Themed food and beverages available for purchase
- Holiday-themed Disney PhotoPass photo opportunities
- Special lighting, music and more!
You May Like: Walt Disney World Official Album
Holiday Season At Magic Kingdom
The main focus of celebration in Magic Kingdom Park will be the Disney Very Merriest After Hours but the park will be fully decorated for all guests to enjoy along with plenty of holiday treats and merchandise to enjoy.
The special holiday projections from last year will return on most nights on Cinderella Castle, alternating periodically with the castles transformation into a Beacon of Magic for the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World Resort.
What Is Disney Very Merriest After Hours
The After Hours events at Disney World allow guests to access the park and select attractions after hoursthat is, for a few hours after the regular Magic Kingdom park hours. After park closing, access to the rides is limited to ticketed guests.
The last of these, Villains After Hours, was the only one that had unique entertainment / offerings of the same sort that we expect from Very Merriest After Hours .
Thats because unlike other After Hours Events, Very Merriest After Hours will also serve as a replacement for the former Mickeys Very Merry Christmas Party. In its capacity as a replacement for that event, it will also have unique entertainment, food, and character sightings. More on this stuff below.
We also visited and reviewed Disney After Hours Boo Bash, which debuted in August and which also has some elements of a former holiday party .
Also Check: Average Cost Of Disney World
Disney World Christmas Party : Very Merriest At Magic Kingdom
Disneys Very Merriest After Hours includes seasonal favorites featuring Mickey and Minnie. Photo courtesy of Disney
This year, to experience the full Christmas magic of Magic Kingdom, youll have to pay an additional fee to attend the limited-capacity Very Merriest After Hours event. Very Merriest is offered on 24 select nights running from Nov. 8 through Dec. 21. This is Disneys current replacement for Mickeys Very Merry Christmas Party.
Very Merriest starts at 9 PM each night and lasts for a whopping 4 hours.
New this year for Very Merriest is Mickey & Minnies Very Merry Memories, a new form of holiday entertainment at Magic Kingdom.
See 2 Fireworks Spectaculars At Magic Kingdom
Ticket holders for the 4-hour Disney Very Merriest After Hours will be permitted to enter Magic Kingdom Park as early as 7 p.m.
Christmas at Disney World Packages
This means you can also take in EARidescent magic that will be part of The Worlds Most Magical Celebration, from the brand-new fireworks spectacular Disney Enchantment to the transformation of Cinderella Castle into a Beacon of Magic,
Christmas Party at Disney World
That means you could experience two different and unique fireworks shows in one night!
Don’t Miss: Undercover Tourist Disney World Tickets
The Two Best Walt Disney World Parks For Christmas
It may be the most wonderful time of the year, but at Walt Disney World, its also one of the busiest. In addition to cooler temperatures and time off school, guests flock to Walt Disney World during the holidays for some Disney magic enhanced with Christmastime extras in all all four theme parks.
But not all parks are equal in their holiday offerings. Lets take a look at which parks are most worth the cost in dollars, crowds, and effort in making park reservations.
Water Park & Sports Option
This option adds special visits to water parks and smaller attractions to your park tickets. Each visit can be one of the following:
- admission to Blizzard Beach water park
- admission to Typhoon Lagoon water park
- admission to ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex
- round of mini golf at Fantasia Gardens
- round of mini golf at Winter Summerland
- round of golf at Oak Trail family walking course
The extra cost on top of a Base Ticket is a flat $74.55, for any length of ticket.
The number of visits you get with the Water Park & Sports option is equal to the number of park days on the ticket. A 1-Day ticket has both 1-day of major park admission and 1 visit, a 3-Day ticket has both 3 days of major park admission and 3 visits, and so forth. This is an incentive to buy the longer passes, so that youll get more visits for your money.
When you add the Water Parks & Sports option to a Base ticket, it extends the validity length of the ticket by one day. That doesnt add any park admission days, but does give you one extra day to use all your park days and special water park & sports visits. For example, a 7-day ticket normally is valid for a 10-day span, but adding Water Parks & Sports makes it valid for an 11-day span.
The chart below has the prices for all tickets with Water Park & Sports. You can also compare all of the ticket options on our full chart of all regular Walt Disney World ticket prices.
Water Park & Sports Ticket Prices
Read Also: Tent Camping Near Disney World
Magic Kingdom Christmas Events
As arguably the merriest Disney World theme park, Magic Kingdom is a joy to visit during the holiday season. Limited-time treats with a Christmas twist are a foodie favorite from year to year, as are Disney World Christmas decorations.
Magic Kingdom Christmas decorations traditionally deck the halls all up and down Main Street, U.S.A., with even Cinderella Castle getting in on the holiday spirit. Typically, the castle is draped in special Disney World Christmas lights called Dream Lights, a wintry transformation that makes Cinderellas grand abode glisten like Elsas ice palace. But, unfortunately, this popular Disney World Christmas castle display was left out of the Christmas preparations last year and wont be making its return in 2021 either.
However, that isnt because of COVID-19. Instead, its due to the icons 50th-anniversary makeover and an evening offering known as Beacons of Light, where the park icons will light up throughout the night with the glow of pixie dust and over five decades of family fun and theme park magic. In addition to Beacons of Light, guests will also get to enjoy a colorful kaleidoscope of holiday projections throughout the evening.
And while it hasnt been officially announced yet for this year, the Jungle Cruise will likely make its merry metamorphosis into the Jingle Cruise once again for 2021.
Disney Very Merriest After Hours
Magic Kingdom Christmas Entertainment
Christmas At Disney World
Celebrating Christmas at Disney World is a magical experience. Photo by Sara Bryce
Last year, Walt Disney Worlds Christmas celebrations looked a lot different because of COVID-19 protocols. Christmas parties were cancelled, Santa meet-and-greets were altered, and the world-famous Candlelight Processional at EPCOT didnt happen for the first time in Walt Disney World history.
While were certainly not out of the COVID woods yet, Christmas at Disney World in 2021 is beginning to look a lot like, well, the Christmas at Disney World were used to, with some continued alterations .
Wait before you head to the parks for Christmas, make sure youre outfitted with some new 2021 Disney Christmas merch. Or, ya know, just put it on your Christmas list Santas got some elves at shopDisney, right?
Also Check: Top Rated Hotels Near Disney World
Disney’s Animal Kingdom Christmas Events In 2021
The holiday highlights at Disney’s Animal Kingdom are the festive flotillas, which have returned for 2021! Catch Mickey and Minnie, along with all of their friends, cruising down the Discovery River in their holiday best. Santa Claus himself is making a special appearance by boat before he switches it out with his sleigh for his trip around the world on Christmas Eve. Find out more on what you can expect at Animal Kingdom during the holidays.
Returning for 2021, Discovery Island comes to life with life-sized, artisan-sculpted puppets of winter animals that include reindeer, foxes, polar bears, penguins and more. These “Merry Menagerie” puppets are accompanied by serenading musicians, and they interact with guests to create a fun and festive atmosphere. We loved how adorable they are, and we could even reach out and pet them!
On Discovery Island, we always admire the sparkling white decor against vibrant animal-inspired luminaries and wireframe lanterns. At night, the Tree of Life awakens for special holiday-themed stories, which alternate with the new Beacons of Magic projections. Meanwhile, in Asia, the theatre district is decorated in celebration of Diwali, the holiday festival of lights in India. Even in Pandora, Christmas found its way to the alien land with colorful lights hanging from Pongu Pongu!
The Naughty: Its Expensive
The only thing worse than the crowds during Christmas week is the price tag. Vacationing at Walt Disney World is expensive vacationing at Walt Disney World during Christmas weekpeak travel seasonis take out a mortgage on my house expensive. And it gets worsethis year, Christmas and New Years Day both fall on a weekend. That means that itll be even more expensive to fly. Although I will say, many airlines have been dropping prices recently with all the uncertainty around travel. Itll be tough to find a good price this close to the holiday, but if your airline offers the perk of matching lower prices or credits for price drops, then Id recommend checking in on a daily basis to see if the price has gone down.
Recommended Reading: Disney World Weather By Month
Secure Your Tickets Before Your Trip
Many people leave to buy their tickets arriving in Orlando or even on the day of the park.
We do not in any way recommend that you do this for a variety of reasons, such as:
If you buy tickets on time, you will not be able to book your Disney FastPass + in advance.
You will not be able to schedule your park days as required at the time of a pandemic.
You will lose valuable minutes of park in line to buy your tickets.
AND MAINLY, you will pay more because tickets at the box office are more expensive than buying in advance!
So be sure to secure your tickets! Use the discount coupon PDP when purchasing your tickets on the Uncle Orlando Travel.
Or if you prefer, ask for a quote with a sales consultant directly on your whatsapp, just click here!