Orlando presents nearly 60 Days of festive events this Christmas across theme parks, theater shows and at Orlando hotels
Orlando’s theme parks, attractions and hotels have amassed a huge program of festive activities with nearly 60 days of fun to be had.
From all-new theme park events to shimmering light shows and live performers, its all go in Orlando this festive season.
“November marks the start of the holiday season in Orlando, featuring new experiences and cherished signature events for the entire family,” said Casandra Matej, president and CEO of Visit Orlando.
HOLIDAY FUN AT THEME PARKS
Walt Disney World, Nov. 9 – Dec. 31
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party will return to Magic Kingdom Park for 25 select nights (Nov. 9 – Dec. 22). This separate-ticketed evening event will offer festivities, including Christmastime stage show “Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration,” “Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade” and “Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks.” In addition to complimentary cookies, cocoa and snowfall on Main Street, U.S.A, guests can experience “Frozen”-inspired.
EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays presented by AdventHealth (Nov. 24 – Dec. 30) will take guests on a global holiday celebration with a candlelight processional featuring celebrity narrators, storytellers, costumed performances and more than 15 Holiday Kitchens throughout the World Showcase nations.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom (Nov.11– Dec. 31) brings a holiday twist to nature. Discovery Island comes to life with artisan-sculpted puppets of arctic animals during the Merry Menagerie. As nighttime falls, a festive edition of the Tree of Life Awakening will begin.
Disney Jollywood Nights (select nights, Nov. 11 – Dec. 20), an all-new separately ticketed nighttime festive party at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, will combine Hollywood and holiday for a night of glitz and glamour. Meet classic characters, live entertainment and the return of the nighttime spectacular “Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!”. Guests can enjoy after-hours access to rides.
Universal Orlando Resort, Nov. 17 – Dec. 31
Grinchmas at Universal’s Islands of Adventure brings charm to Seuss Landing with The Grinchmas Who-liday Spectacular, a live retelling of the classic tale starring the Grinch. The Grinch & Friends Character Breakfast returns on select dates from Nov.17 – Dec. 31.
Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter features seasonal shows in both Hogsmeade at Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida. Once night falls in Hogsmeade, guests view a spectacular festive projection on Hogwarts Castle during “The Magic of Christmas at Hogwarts Castle” at Universal’s Islands of Adventure.
Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s, has characters from Illumination’s “Despicable Me” and DreamWorks Animation’s “Shrek” and “Madagascar” – along with larger-than-life balloons, dozens of floats, hundreds of festive performers and Santa at Universal Studios Florida in the evenings.
SeaWorld Orlando, Select dates, Nov. 10, 2023 – Jan. 2, 2024
During SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration, SeaWorld Orlando transforms into a winter wonderland featuring millions of sparkling lights throughout the park. Included with theme park admission, enjoy snacks, live performances, character dining add-on options, and Holiday Reflections: Fireworks Finale. During the Sesame Street Breakfast at SeaFire Grill, Sesame Street characters dress up in festive attire, while Dinner with Santa, is an opportunity to enjoy a holiday meal with Santa himself.
LEGOLAND Florida, Select weekends Nov. 24 – Dec. 31
LEGOLAND Florida Resort will deck the halls with Holidays at LEGOLAND, featuring a giant LEGO Christmas tree, seasonal shows, festive characters, special treats, LEGO activities, twinkling lights and more.
BEYOND THE THEME PARKS
Island H2O Water Park debuts an all-new island-themed holiday light spectacular, “Holiday Nights,“ (select nights from Nov. 8 – Dec. 31). The unique walk-through experience will feature twinkling lights, enchanting displays, live entertainment, a festive market and more.
The Orlando Museum of Art transforms into a winter wonderland during the 37th annual Festival of Trees, Enchanted Holidays (Nov. 10 – 19). Featuring more than 30 designer-decorated trees, gingerbread houses and wreaths, special events include an Opening Night Party, Breakfast with Santa and a children’s Reindeer Romp party.
Harry P. Leu Gardens showcases a million sparkling lights, shining forests, music and sculptures during “Dazzling Nights” (Nov. 24 – Jan. 6). The three-quarter mile, family friendly interactive holiday experience features a nighttime show with 100, 10-foot-tall beacons of light and a 30-foot-tall tree of shimmering, gold sequins. During the day, “Holiday Blooms” has floral and holiday themed displays throughout the garden.
Ivanhoe Village kicks off the holiday season with Jingle Eve (Nov. 18), a free family friendly event featuring a variety of yuletide festivities, including beer gardens, live music, arts and crafts vendors, food trucks, a children’s holiday village, a fireworks finale. The event will also feature the ticketed “12 Wines of Christmas” Wine Walk experience.
Crayola Experience’s Colorful Christmas (Nov. 18 – Jan. 7) returns with SNOWtastic adventures as visitors help save Christmas by piecing together riddles given by animatronic Christmas characters. In addition, guests will find a life-sized snow globe, complete with falling snow, a light show starring Scarlet and her singing reindeer and the chance to craft unique gifts.
I-Drive dazzles with a glittering lighting ceremony of a 50-feet Holiday Tree during the I-Drive District Holiday Tree Lighting (Dec. 1).
The 6th annual Oh, What Fun! Holiday Festival (Dec. 7-23) will transform the Lake Nona Town Center into Peppermint Square, with nightly snowfalls, live entertainment, festive photo ops and more.
Celebrating its 71st year, Winter Park’s annual Ye Olde Hometown Christmas Parade (Dec. 2), the oldest continuous holiday parade in Central Florida, will feature over 80 participating organisations, including marching bands, an appearance by Santa and more.
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex hosts Holidays in Space (Dec. 15-30), with Starflake’s Holiday Voyage, a nightly projection show on the massive exterior of Gateway: The Deep Space Launch Complex. In addition, festive décor fills the visitor complex, including a 50-feet tree with more than 61,000 pixels of light, an all-new Rocket Tree Trail Sponsored by L3Harris, astronaut nutcrackers, and more.
Gatorland’s Holiday Ho Ho Ho-Down will return on select dates starting Dec. 2. The family-friendly event is included with park admission and will feature live music, festive food and more.
The Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra presents “Home for the Holidays” on Nov. 25 in Steinmetz Hall at Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts. Conductor Mauricio Céspedes-Rivero will feature holiday favorites, singers and a few surprises.
The Abbey hosts Candlelight: Holiday special featuring “The Nutcracker” and more on select dates between Dec. 6-20.
The Orlando Ballet premieres a new production of The Nutcracker, Dec. 8-24, in Steinmetz Hall at Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts. It features entirely new choreography to create a fresh and whimsical experience complete with giant snow globes, fancy mice, and high-flying surprises.
The Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts welcomes GRAMMY Award-winning multiplatinum musician Mark Tremonti for the “Mark Tremonti sings Frank Sinatra Christmas Special” on Dec. 16 in The Walt Disney Theater.
The Hotel Meliá in Orlando Celebration brings ice-skating without the cold weather through an installment of an Eco-Rink. Now through Jan. 3, hotel guests can skate on an ice rink of synthetic ice panels.
Gaylord Palms presents ICE! featuring A Charlie Brown Christmas (Nov. 17 – Jan. 3), where guests experience an immersive, story-driven holiday showplace complete with larger-than-life ice sculptures and beloved characters re-created in three dimensions, along with frozen slides, and tunnels.
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