Welcome to our guide on the magical and festive EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays!
The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays is a celebration at EPCOT Disney World, showcasing holiday traditions from around the globe. Visitors can experience diverse holiday customs, cuisine, and entertainment in the park’s World Showcase. Each country offers insights into its unique holiday celebrations.
All four of the EPCOT festivals happen once a year.
Out of all the different parks in Walt Disney World, EPCOT Disney World is the only one that offers festivals of any kind.
Introduction to the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays
The EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays, brings together holiday traditions from around the world, showcasing the beauty of diverse celebrations during this special time of year.
At the Festival of the Holidays, visitors can immerse themselves in the rich tapestry of cultures represented in the park’s World Showcase, where each country offers a unique glimpse into its holiday customs, cuisine, and entertainment.
As you plan your magical adventure to the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays, it’s essential to know when this fantastic event takes place.
Although the dates for 2023 haven’t been announced yet, we can look back at the 2022 festival for a rough idea of when to expect the festivities.
In 2022, the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays took place from November 25th to December 30th.
Keep an eye out for updates from Disney Parks to find out the exact dates for the 2023 EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays. We’ll be sure to share any information we come across as well!
Inclusion in regular EPCOT park admission
One of the most appealing aspects of the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays is that it’s included with your regular EPCOT park admission.
That means you won’t have to worry about any additional costs to enjoy the incredible array of holiday traditions, foods, and entertainment offered during the festival.
Just grab your park ticket, and you’ll be ready to explore the vibrant world of the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays without breaking the bank!
International Yuletide Extravaganza
The EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays is a true spectacle that transforms the park’s World Showcase into a dazzling wonderland filled with holiday cheer.
As you stroll through the various pavilions, you’ll be enchanted by the festive decorations, twinkling lights, and beautiful displays that capture the essence of each nation’s unique holiday traditions.
The atmosphere is nothing short of magical, inviting you to embrace the spirit of the season and experience the warmth of global celebrations at the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays.
Overview of holiday traditions and decorations from the 11 World Showcase nations
At the heart of the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays lies the incredible opportunity to explore the holiday traditions of the 11 World Showcase nations.
Each pavilion offers a distinctive and authentic taste of its country’s customs, cuisine, and entertainment during this special time of year.
From the lively Las Posadas Celebration in the Mexico Pavilion to the charming tales of Père Noël in the France Pavilion, the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays provides a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the diverse ways people around the world celebrate the season.
As you wander through the World Showcase, you’ll discover beautiful holiday decorations that reflect each nation’s cultural heritage and artistic expression.
By experiencing the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays, you’ll gain a deeper appreciation for the rich tapestry of global holiday traditions and create lasting memories that you’ll cherish for years to come.
A visit to the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays would not be complete without indulging in the delicious seasonal food offerings from the Holiday Kitchens.
These special kiosks are scattered throughout the World Showcase, serving up a scrumptious selection of dishes and treats that capture the essence of each country’s holiday cuisine.
As you journey through the park, you’ll find yourself tempted by mouthwatering aromas and the enticing promise of new flavors to discover.
The Holiday Kitchens are a food lover’s paradise, providing a unique opportunity to savor festive dishes from around the world during the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays.
Examples of popular dishes and treats from various countries
The EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays features an incredible variety of dishes and treats that cater to every palate.
Here are some examples of popular offerings from the Holiday Kitchens:
- Germany Pavilion: Indulge in a warm and comforting serving of Glühwein, a traditional German mulled wine, perfect for sipping as you explore the festive marketplace.
- American Adventure Pavilion: Savor a taste of home with a classic holiday favorite, Slow-roasted Turkey with Stuffing, Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans, and Cranberry Sauce.
- China Pavilion: Spice up your holiday season with the bold flavors of Chengdu Street Fries, topped with Chinese Chili Sauce and Crispy Wonton Strips.
- Italy Pavilion: Treat yourself to the sweet delight of Tiramisù al Caffè, a coffee-flavored dessert that will leave you craving more.
- France Pavilion: Indulge your sweet tooth with a Bûche de Noël, a traditional French yule log cake filled with chocolate and hazelnut ganache.
- Japan Pavilion: Experience a fusion of flavors with the delightful Sushi Christmas Tree, made with fresh seafood and decorative touches.
These are just a few of the many delectable dishes and treats available at the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays.
So be sure to bring your appetite and let your taste buds embark on a culinary adventure as you explore the Holiday Kitchens and savor the flavors of the season!
One of the most charming and engaging aspects of the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays is the presence of Holiday Storytellers.
These talented performers play a vital role in bringing the festival to life, captivating guests with tales of their country’s unique holiday traditions and folklore.
As you journey through the World Showcase, you’ll encounter these storytellers, who not only entertain but also educate and inspire.
They share stories that reflect the heart and spirit of their culture, helping visitors gain a deeper understanding of the holiday customs celebrated around the globe during the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays.
Highlights of specific storytellers and their cultural tales
Each World Showcase pavilion features a Holiday Storyteller who shares the captivating tales of their nation’s holiday traditions.
Here are a few highlights of specific storytellers you can encounter during the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays:
- Mexico Pavilion: Join the spirited Las Posadas Celebration, where a lively performance recounts the story of Mary and Joseph’s journey to Bethlehem and the search for a place to stay.
- Norway Pavilion: Gather around to hear the mischievous tales of Julenissen, the Christmas gnome, and his playful antics during the holiday season.
- France Pavilion: Listen to the enchanting stories of Père Noël, the French gift-bringer, as he shares heartfelt letters from children and the magic of the holiday season in France.
- Italy Pavilion: Meet La Befana, the kind-hearted witch, who shares the tale of her search for the Christ Child and her tradition of delivering gifts to children on Epiphany Eve.
- United Kingdom Pavilion: Delight in the tales of Father Christmas, who recounts the evolution of holiday traditions in the United Kingdom and shares the joyous spirit of the season.
These are just a few of the many talented Holiday Storytellers you’ll encounter during the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays.
Be sure to take the time to listen to their stories, as they provide a captivating glimpse into the diverse and fascinating holiday traditions celebrated around the world.
Entertainment and Activities
The EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays is brimming with captivating entertainment options that cater to guests of all ages.
Throughout the World Showcase, you’ll find a variety of live performances, musical acts, and shows that celebrate the diverse holiday traditions of each nation.
From lively dance performances to the mesmerizing sounds of international musicians, the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays offers a rich tapestry of cultural experiences that will leave you feeling enchanted and inspired.
In addition to the Holiday Storytellers and the Candlelight Processional, the festival showcases a variety of seasonal entertainment, such as the popular “JOYFUL! A Celebration of the Season” show, featuring uplifting gospel, R&B, and holiday music that is sure to get your feet tapping and your heart singing.
Information on family-friendly activities and experiences
The EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays provides a wealth of family-friendly activities and experiences that create lasting memories for visitors of all ages.
Children can participate in fun and engaging holiday-themed crafts and activities, such as the Holiday Cookie Stroll, where they can collect stamps from various cookie stations throughout the World Showcase and earn a special surprise upon completion.
For the young and young-at-heart, the festival also features a delightful scavenger hunt starring everyone’s favorite mischievous snowman, Olaf.
Guests can purchase a map and set out on an adventure to find Olaf hidden throughout the World Showcase, discovering unique holiday traditions from each country along the way.
No matter your age or interests, the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays offers a wealth of activities and experiences that will spark joy, inspire curiosity, and create lasting memories as you celebrate the magic of the holiday season at Walt Disney World Resort.
The EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays is the perfect opportunity to shop for unique and exclusive merchandise that captures the spirit of the event.
As you stroll through the World Showcase, you’ll discover a variety of shops and kiosks offering festival-themed items that make great souvenirs and gifts for loved ones.
From festive apparel and accessories to delightful home décor and keepsakes, the exclusive merchandise available during the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays allows you to take a piece of the magic home with you.
Popular items and collectibles
Some of the most popular items and collectibles available during the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays include:
- Festival-themed apparel: Show off your holiday spirit with festive shirts, sweaters, and accessories featuring beloved Disney characters and the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays logo.
- Holiday ornaments: Adorn your tree with beautiful and unique ornaments representing each of the 11 World Showcase nations, as well as festival-specific designs.
- Limited-edition pins: Collectible pin enthusiasts will love the assortment of limited-edition pins commemorating the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays, featuring favorite Disney characters and holiday scenes.
- Home décor: Bring the warmth and joy of the festival into your home with exclusive home décor items, such as festive dishware, holiday-themed throw pillows, and decorative signs.
- Festival-exclusive snacks and treats: Indulge in some of the unique snacks and treats available only during the festival, like special holiday-themed popcorn buckets, seasonal candies, and more.
These popular items and collectibles are just a sampling of the fantastic merchandise available during the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays.
Be sure to explore the many shops and kiosks throughout the park for even more unique and memorable souvenirs that celebrate the enchantment of the holiday season at Walt Disney World Resort.
Tips for Visiting the Festival
To make the most of your visit to the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays, it’s helpful to plan your trip during less crowded times.
While the festival is a popular event that attracts many visitors, weekdays, especially Mondays through Thursdays, tend to be less busy than weekends.
Keep in mind that the park may be busier during the Thanksgiving weekend and other holiday breaks, so planning your visit during off-peak periods can help you enjoy a more leisurely experience at the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays.
Recommendations for navigating the event and making the most of the experience
To ensure you make the most of your visit to the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays, consider the following recommendations:
- Arrive early: Get to the park early to maximize your time at the festival, allowing you to fully explore the World Showcase and enjoy the various entertainment options, activities, and food offerings.
- Plan your day: Before your visit, review the festival guide and map to identify the shows, storytellers, and activities that interest you the most. Create a schedule to help you prioritize your time and ensure you don’t miss any must-see experiences.
- Pace yourself: With so many delicious food options available at the Holiday Kitchens, be sure to pace yourself and sample small portions throughout the day. This will allow you to try a variety of dishes without feeling overwhelmed or too full.
- Take breaks: The EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays offers a lot to see and do, so be sure to schedule breaks throughout the day to rest, recharge, and take in the festive atmosphere.
- Dress for the weather: While Florida winters are typically mild, the temperature can fluctuate, and evenings may be cooler. Be sure to wear comfortable clothing and bring layers to ensure your comfort throughout the day.
By following these tips and planning your visit thoughtfully, you’ll be well-prepared to fully enjoy the magical experience that the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays has to offer.