Sail Away to a Magical Winter Holiday with Disney Cruise Line

This holiday season, give a gift that’s both nautical and nice: a cruise on the Disney Magic, Disney Wonder, Disney Dream or Disney Fantasy, all decked out with holiday cheer. Starting early November, Disney Cruise Line adds sparkle to each ship during Very Merrytime Cruises, with traditional “turkey day” fanfare, Christmas feasts, “snow flurries” and New Year’s Eve galas. But the best part might just be relaxing on deck instead of shoveling snow.

During these voyages through the new year, special stem-to-stern holiday events include:

  • “Mickey’s Tree-Lighting Magic” in the atrium lobby on the first night of the cruise, where Disney characters lead holiday carols and the lighting of the glittering, three-deck-tall tree.
  • “Santa’s Winter Wonderland Ball” in the atrium lobby, where Disney cruisers welcome the guests of honor, Santa and Mrs. Claus, with a grand celebration featuring Broadway-style entertainment, favorite Disney characters and classic holiday tunes. This evening of enchantment is made complete when a special pair of royal sisters joins the party and causes a flurry of “frozen” fun as a magical snowfall overtakes the atrium.
  • Dickens-inspired carolers carrying the spirit of the holidays throughout the ship while singing holiday classics, sometimes with the help of favorite Disney friends. At the end of the cruise, children will have the opportunity to join the carolers onstage for a special farewell show.
  • Family holiday activities including building gingerbread houses and meeting Santa Claus.
  • Youth holiday crafts such as decorating stockings and gingerbread men cookies, making holiday cards and creating holiday animation cells.
  • “Deck the Deck Holiday Party,” a tropical celebration with Disney friends leading games such as hula hooping and limbo under oversized candy canes, along with dances for the whole family like the “Yuletide Slide” and a conga line around the pool.
  • A special holiday edition of the cheerful farewell celebration on the final night of the cruise, with beloved Disney characters and the ship’s crew in an engaging musical finale led by Mickey Mouse.

On Thanksgiving Day, guests will enjoy a bountiful Thanksgiving Day feast and visits from Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse dressed in traditional Thanksgiving attire. Also during the special Thanksgiving voyages, NFL football games will be broadcast live on the ships’ outdoor, jumbo LED screens – Funnel Vision – located near the family pool.

Christmas morning at the atrium lobby tree Santa Claus and his helpers will have a surprise for all the kids, and guests will delight in a special musical performance from the children. A traditional Christmas Dinner will be served that night in the dining rooms.

Christmas services will be held on Christmas Day with a midnight mass on Christmas Eve. Hanukkah services will be held each day, Dec. 12 to Dec. 20.

Special holiday décor adorns each ship from bow to stern, anchored by a three-deck-tall tree in the atrium lobby. The 20’ tall tree is uniquely decorated to complement the existing colors and overall theme of the lobby, including a custom star that is as unique as the ship. All together, the Disney Magic, Disney Wonder, Disney Fantasy, and Disney Dream have 402 garlands totaling 3,768’, 126 wreaths ranging from 24” to 60” and 130 trees ranging from 24” to 8’.

When the ships stop at Disney’s private island in the Bahamas, Castaway Cay, during the holidays, the celebration continues with “snow flurries,” a decked-out Christmas tree, Disney character meet-and-greets and holiday island music.

For an extra sprinkle of holiday joy, special amenities are available for stateroom delivery. Purchased in advance of sailing, these include holiday-themed gift packages and treat baskets and even mini Christmas trees decorated with ornaments, red berries, mini carnations and a bow topper. Plus, during the holiday cruises, the Disney Cruise Line holiday merchandise collection and ever-popular Disney Cruise Line ornaments will be available in the gift shops.

To ring in 2018, voyages during the holiday include a special New Year’s Eve party, complete with music, sparkling wine in commemorative flutes and a midnight countdown.

To celebrate the holidays, the Disney Magic sails four-, five-, seven- and eight-night Bahamian cruises, five- night Eastern Caribbean cruises, and a five-night Western Caribbean cruise departing Nov. 11 to Dec. 24; the Disney Wonder sails seven-night Western Caribbean cruises, and seven-night Bahamian cruises departing from Nov. 10 to Dec. 22; the Disney Dream sails three- and four-night Bahamian cruises departing from Nov. 10 to Dec. 22; and the Disney Fantasy sails seven-night Eastern and Western Caribbean cruises departing from Nov. 11 to Dec. 23.

To learn more about Disney Cruise Line or to book a vacation, visit disneycruise.com, call Disney Cruise Line at 888-325-2500 or contact a travel agent.

New Year’s Ever Park Hours and Entertainment Times Released for Walt Disney World

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If you’re planning on ringing in the new year at Walt Disney World, here is a guide to the most important information for welcoming 2016 at the Walt Disney World Resort.

Magic Kingdom

  • Park Hours: Morning EMH 7am to 8am. Park Hours: 8am to 2am.
  • Holiday Wishes at 6:30pm on December 30 and 31 2015
  • Fantasy in the Sky New Year’s Eve fireworks at 11:50pm on December 30 and 31 2015.

Epcot

  • Park Hours: 8am to 1am.
  • IllumiNations Reflections of Earth with Peace on Earth Finale at 6pm
  • IllumiNations Reflections of Earth with New Year’s Eve Finale at 11:40pm

Disney’s Hollywood Studios

  • Park Hours: 8am to 12am. Evening EMH 12am to 2am.
  • New Year’s Eve fireworks at midnight
  • Fantasmic! 7pm, 8:30pm, 10:30pm.

Disney’s Animal Kingdom

As always, there will be no fireworks at Disney’s Animal Kingdom or Disney Springs.

  • Park Hours: 8am to 9pm.

Disney Springs

  • Cirque du Soleil area – DJ Tony Messina from 10:30pm to 3:30am.
  • Exposition Park on the West Side – Signal Flow from 7pm to 12:35am. DJ Dave Griffiths from 7:30pm to 1:15am.
  • Sunshine Highline on the West Side – Dominic Gaudious from 6:45pm to 12:30am. Mitch Corbin Trio from 7:30pm to 1:15am.
  • Water View Park at the The Landing – La Calle from 7pm to 12:45am. Nicholas Marks from 7:30pm to 1:15am.
  • Riverboat Square at The Landing – Nova Pop from 1pm to 5:45pm. DJ Luis Melara from 7:30pm to 1:30am,
  • Waterside Stage at the Marketplace – Drey – C from 6:45pm to 12:45am. DJ Steve Dunlap from 7:30pm to 1:15am.
  • Dockside Margaritas at the Marketplace – Steady Buda from 12:30 to 6:15pm. Bryan Malpass from 6:45pm to 12:15am.
  • Fountain Stage at the Marketplace – Right on Key from 7pm to 12:30am. DJ Robbie Gomez from 7:30pm to 12:05am.

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Operating Hours Extended on New Year’s Eve

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The operating hours at Disney’s Animal Kingdom have been extended for New Year’s Eve.

The park will now be closing at 10pm, up from the originally scheduled 8pm. There are no fireworks at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Full Entertainment Schedule for New Year’s Eve at Epcot

Courtesy of Disney Tourist Blog
Courtesy of Disney Tourist Blog

Epcot is the place to be for the most New Year’s Eve entertainment and here is the full run-down of what you can expect for the celebration this year.

Hours

Park hours: Future World 8am to 1am, World Showcase 9am to 1am.
Special hours – Universe of Energy 8am to 11pm, Innoventions 8am to 7pm, Agent P’s World Showcase Adventure 9am to 3pm.

Hat and Horn distribution is from 6pm to 9:15pm in Future World West at the Performing Arts Stage, Future World East along the Wonders Walkway, The American Adventure Pavilion, Germany Pavilion and Morocco Pavilion.

Transport

Friendship Boats will operate from 7am to 2pm at the International Gateway, with World Showcase Lagoon boats stopping at 4pm.

Live DJs

Future World Fountain Stage – DJ Scooter 7pm to 11:35pm, 12:10am to 1am.
Japan – Silent Groove 7pm to 1am.
American Gardens Theatre – DJ Steve Dunlap 2pm to 6pm
American Gardens Theatre – DJ Carlos Carrion 7pm to 7:20pm, 8pm to 8:50pm, 9:30pm to 10:05pm, 10:45pm to 11:35pm, 12:40am to 1am.
American Gardens Theatre – Orquestra Punto y Coma 7:20pm to 8pm, 8:50pm to 9:30pm, 10:05pm to 10:45pm, 12:05am to 12:40am.
China – DJ Dominic Morrison 7pm to 11:35pm, 12:05am to 1am
Italy – DJ Mark Sanchez 7pm to 1am
UK – DJ Dave Griffiths 7:30pm to 8pm, 8:30pm to 9:30pm, 10pm to 10:30pm, 11pm to 11:35pm,  12:05am to 12:15am

Fireworks

IllumiNations with holiday finale at 6pm
IllumiNations with New Year’s Countdown at 11:40pm

Bars

8 temporary bars will be in place around World Showcase, and 1 in future world, operating from 3pm.

Complete New Year’s Eve Entertainment Schedule for Magic Kingdom

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The Magic Kingdom will be hosting two nights of New Year’s Eve entertainment this year.

Park Hours

Dec 30, 8am to 1am with EMH 7am to 8am and 1am to 3am.
Dec 31, 8am to 2am with EMH 7am to 8am.

Entertainment

Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade – 12pm and 3:30pm
Frozen Holiday Wish – 6pm and 8:30pm
Celebrate the Magic – 8pm and 11:25pm
Main Street Electrical Parade – 6:30pm
Holiday Wishes Fireworks – 7:30pm
Fantasy in the Sky Fireworks – 11:50pm

Scenes from the new live-action movie Cinderella will be show on screens around the Castle Stage through the night, and photo opportunities with the Cinderella coach will be available in the Castle Courtyard.

Dance Parties

  • Near Country Bear Jamboree, Dec 30 – 8pm to 1am, Dec 31 – 8pm to 2am.
  • Castle Stage, Dec 30 – 9:30pm to 1am, Dec 31 – 9:30pm to 2am.

Complimentary Treats

Cosmic Rays, Columbia Harbour House and Tomorrowland terrace will be handing out complimentary cookies and hot chocolate from midnight to 1:30am.

Hats and Horns

On Dec 31, hats and horns will be distributed from 4pm at Tomorrowland Speedway, Splash Mountain, Adventureland Veranda, and near Little Mermaid meet and greet.