Make sure you check out these 5 free Christmas activities to do while in Walt Disney World the next time you visit! #4 is my absolute favorite!
Besides the going to the Epcot food & wine festival, enjoying Christmas time at Disney World is one of our favorite things to do!
Travis and I are on a tight budget leading up to our wedding in February. However, we still have our annual passes to Disney World. Even though it’s “free” for us to get into the parks, we always end up spending money on food and drinks while we’re in there so it’s not really cost efficient for us.
When we want a fun day at Disney for free during the holidays, we like to do these 5 free Christmas activities…
5 Free Christmas Activities to do at Disney World
- Walk around Disney Springs.
We always start our day at Downtown Disney. We like to get there early when it’s not as busy but if you go later at night then all the Christmas decorations will be lit up. It’s a win-win either way!
There’s also a new Christmas drone show that’s on display at night. I haven’t seen it yet but I’ve heard it’s awesome!
Since Downtown Disney has been transformed into Disney Springs, there are so many new things to do, places to eat at, areas to explore. We did a little bit of Christmas shopping while we were there and we ate at the new Blaze Pizza restaurant.
- Visit the Beach & Yacht Club to see the chocolate carousel.
I’ve been going with my family to see the carousel at the Beach & Yacht Club for years! We would go for dinner at Cape May Cafe and then wander around the resort, stare in wonder at the carousel, and then walk the loop around to visit the other hotels.
The chocolate carousel really is amazing, the horses are so life-like, they look like they’re about to prance right off the carousel. So, if you have time, I’d set aside an hour or so to stop at the resort just to see it.
- Watch a Christmas movie at the Fort Wilderness Campground.
Did you know that you don’t have to be staying at the resort to be able to watch the free movie at night at the campground?Here’s the movie list for the month of December.
They have a bunch of Christmas movies mixed in with classic Disney movies. We love watching the free movies, the atmosphere at Fort Wilderness is so festive. Make sure you stop by the main resort to see the giant tree in the lobby, it’s stunning.
If you want to do something really special, I can highly recommend the sleigh ride through the Fort Wilderness campgrounds. It’s not free but so worth it! You bundle up in a big blanket, cuddle up in the sleigh, sit back and enjoy the ride around the campground to see all the Christmas lights. They pipe Christmas music into the sleigh so you really get into the spirit.
- Go see the life-size gingerbread house at The Grand Floridian
The gingerbread house at the Grand Floridian is seriously a work of art! I’ve never seen one as big or detailed any where else.
The second you step foot into the resort your senses will be overwhelmed by the beautiful Christmas music being played on the piano, or by the festive live band, or by the smell of fresh gingerbread cookies being sold from the gingerbread house.
The Grand Floridian Resort already holds a special place in our hearts because it’s where we got engaged but I’d definitely say it’s one of the most festive Disney resorts! I instantly feel the Christmas spirit when we walk in.Make sure to look for hidden mickey’s and Disney characters painted onto the gingerbread house. I found a few but I’m sure I missed a bunch! There’s just too many places to look at!
We like to take the monorail to the Polynesian Resort to grab dinner at Captain Cooks before we go to watch the fireworks at the Contemporary.
I was really surprised with my meal, it was more of a soup than a stir fry but it was steaming hot, fresh, and delicious! It was loaded with veggies and it had a strong ginger flavor that I really enjoyed. Sometimes quick service food is bland but not at Captain Cooks!
If you aren’t in the mood for a quick service meal, make a reservation at 1900 Park Fare for a character buffet dinner with Cinderella, Prince Charming, and the ugly step sisters at The Grand Floridian Resort. The step sisters are a hoot and the delicious food is well worth the price!
- Watch the Magic Kingdom Christmas Fireworks at the Contemporary Resort
The Christmas firework show at the Magic Kingdom is my favorite, it’s just spectacular!
You don’t even need to go in the park to see it. If you check with the front desk at any Disney hotel they can tell you what time the MK fireworks start.
Plan to arrive at the outside deck (under where the monorail enters the Contemporary) at the Contemporary one hour before the fireworks start so you can get a seat. They have 3 rows of chairs out but otherwise you’ll have to stand. They even pipe the music in so it’s like you’re right there in front of the castle!
If You Have An Annual Pass
- Go to Epcot to see the Christmas traditions around the world. They also have a few food booths out with festive treats!
- Visit the Magic Kingdom to see the castle dream lights up close and personal! If you have time and a little extra money, buy a ticket to the Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party! It’s a night time event that has a fabulous Christmas parade, snow on main street, a Frozen stage show, and Christmas treats throughout the park.
Yes, that’s me wearing a candy cane mickey ear hat while we sat on main street in the bitter cold drinking hot chocolate. It was a fun night!
- Go see the new holiday show at Hollywood Studios. I’m still upset about the Osbourne Family Lights being taken out last year but I’m willing to give this new show a chance. Let me know what you think if you’ve seen it! If you get to the park before 4pm, stop at Starring Rolls Cafe and get a roasted vegetable croissant sandwich, they’re my favorite!
Pro tips – Disney starts celebrating the holidays early, usually the first week of November. So, go early to beat the Christmas crowds! The decorations usually stay out until the first week of January so if you can’t go early, you should **hopefully** be able to see them after Christmas too.
Also, I wouldn’t recommend trying to visit the parks on New Year’s Eve, they’re are always insanely busy and usually filled to capacity very early in the morning!
I hope you get to visit Disney World during the holidays and experience our favorite free Christmas activities! If you take any pictures and post them, please tag me using the hashtag #StaceyHomemaker so I can see it!
What are your favorite free Christmas activities to do in Disney World? Let me know in the comments!
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