Epcot goes all in for Christmas at WDW. The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays is just amazing. Epcot gets all dressed up for the holidays and throws a big party. In fact, Dad thinks Epcot may be the most Christmasified of all the Disney Parks. (Yes, Dad likes to make up words.)
The Christmas decorations at Epcot are amazing – Photo by WDW Shutterbug
Uncle Walt loved Christmas. He went all out to have a huge Christmas celebration at Disneyland and that tradition has been kept alive through the years. I think Uncle Walt would have loved Christmas at WDW and especially at Epcot.
The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays
A Christmas Tree and Fireworks, does it get any better? – Photo by WDW Shutterbug
The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays is a great celebration of the season of joy and love. All day long the celebration goes on and it ends with a big bang.
The day includes special holiday shows, storytellers telling the story of the holidays around the world, incredible concerts and the best fireworks show ever.
Epcot gets all dress up in it’s holiday finest with Christmas decorations everywhere.
Here’s what’s included in The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays…
Joyful! A Gospel Celebration of the Season
Joyful! A Gospel Celebration of the Season in Epcot – Photo by Cliff Wang
Do you like Christmas music? Duh. Who doesn’t. Around our house we play Christmas music year round.
One of the most “joyful” shows during Christmas in Epcot is Joyful! A Celebration of the Season. This show is performed on the fountain stage in Future World several times a day.
Here, listen to the opening of the show.
Pére Nöel reads a letter – Photo by Judd Helms
All 11 countries have a representation of the holidays in their countries. Some of the stories are downright funny. I’m not going to spoil all the fun and tell you what each says, but here is an overview.
- Mexico – Fiesta de Navidad – a mariachi band and dancers share the joy of the holidays.
- Norway – Sigrid tells funny tales about the mischievous Christmas Gnome named Julenissen.
- China – performers ring in Chinese new year with a lion dance.
- Germany – Helga tells the tale of the first Nutcracker.
- Italy – La Benafa talks about how Italy celebrates the Epiphany.
- The American Adventure – Santa and Mrs. Claus, Hannukah, and Kwanzaa are presented in this pavilion.
- Japan – a doll seller shares about the Daruma doll.
- Morocco – a multi-cultural storyteller gives information on celebrations that bring the “sprice of life”.
- France – Pere Noel reads a letter from a little girl about the Magic of Christmas.
- United Kingdom – Father Christmas talks about the traditions in the U. K.
- Canada – explore the seasonal customs of the Great White Notrh with the Canadian Holiday Voyageurs.
Performance times are staggered so you can see the shows at different times through the day. Consult your park map for the showtimes on the day you visit.
The Candlelight Processional
The Voices of Liberty join in the Candlelight Processional – Photo by Laurie Sapp
Come hear the story of the birth of Jesus and enjoy some incredible music and a celebrity narrator reading the story right out of the bible.
The Candlelight Processional is simply the best holiday show at Walt Disney World and one of Dad’s favorite things during Christmas at WDW. It’s just incredible.
Candlelight Processional Dining Package
The best way to watch the Candlelight Processional is to add the Dining Package. What could be better than a good meal and a great show. With the Dining Package you get a reserved seat into the show.
Most of the Epcot restaurants are available with the Dining Package.
The Voices of Liberty
The Voices of Liberty during Christmas at WDW – Photo by Laurie Sapp
During Holidays Around the World, the Voices of Liberty change their show from the patriotic songs to Christmas music.
Yep, Dad really wants to sing with the Voices of Liberty, especially at Christmas.
The Voices of Liberty signing The First Noel – Video by DisneyParks
Don’t miss this!
IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth
The holiday section of IllumiNations:Reflections of Earth is awesone – Photo by Disney Photo Snapper.
Dad absolutely loves fireworks, but for some reason, I’m not a big fan of IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth. I can’t explain it. BUT…
That all changes during The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays. IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth during the holiday season is nothing short of SPECTACULAR!!!!
Disney adds an extra “Peace on Earth” section to the regular show at the end and it’s something special. The sky truly lights up to brighter than daylight at the end.
This is Dad’s favorite fireworks show at WDW. That’s saying something.
Chip & Dale’s Christmas Tree Spree
Much like at the other festivals, there is a fun, low-cost scavenger hunt guests can participate in around World Showcase. You can buy a mat at select gift shops, then hunt for hidden ornaments – marking the ones you find on your map with stickers.
Once your map is complete, return to where you bought it and recieve a surprise!
Dad’s Bottom Line
Christmas at Walt Disney World is just about the best thing anywhere. Epcot maybe the best place to experience it. The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays is a must-see.