This article is your complete guide to all of the EPCOT Festival of the Holidays entertainment and activity options that you can enjoy in 2024! And while EPCOT is one of our favorite places all year round, there is something that makes the holidays at EPCOT even more special! This may have something to do with the fact that the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays is in full swing from the day after Thanksgiving until December 30th. Filled with delightful entertainment, festive activities, and culinary delights.
No matter what EPCOT festival you attend, the list of things to see and do will seem never-ending. That’s why we have created this blog post to help you better plan your vacation at EPCOT for Christmas in 2024! If you’re in the beginning stages of planning your next theme park vacation and need additional help or are looking for discounted theme park tickets, check out our trusted travel partner The Park Prodigy!
What is the EPCOT Festival of the Holidays 2024
The Epcot Festival of the Holidays is one of the 4 annual festivals that takes place at EPCOT in Walt Disney World. This festival celebrates over 10 different holidays in various ways. As you enjoy the Festival of Holidays at EPCOT, you take a journey around the world immersed in a kind of festival global marketplace. Each of the 11 EPCOT pavilions around the World Showcase presents its unique seasonal customs. Some of these include music and dance, to authentic holiday dishes. It’s more than just a celebration; it’s an educational and enchanting exploration of worldwide holiday joy, wrapped in the magic of Disney.
While there is a lot to discuss about the EPCOT Festival of the Holidays, let’s start to break down the Entertainment and Activities that are available to all guests in the park!
What are the Entertainment options at the Festival of the Holidays?
- Candlelight Processional
- Holiday Storytellers & Global Holiday Traditions
- JOYFUL! A Celebration of the Season
- Voices of Liberty
- Spaceship Earth Light Show
What are the Activities at the Festival of the Holidays?
- Holiday Ride Overlays
- Holiday Cookie Stroll
- Olaf’s Holiday Tradition Expedition
- Seasonal Character Meet & Greets
- Gingerbread House Displays
Live Performances at Festival of the Holidays 2024
Historically, the Festival of the Holidays at EPCOT is known for its live performances. So we don’t see that changing for the 2024 holiday season. In fact, we feel that each year the festival performances grow in popularity. Specifically the main event, the Candlelight Processional. But each act on display offers a unique look at what celebrating that specific holiday tradition entails. Many of these performances are not just entertaining, they’re heartfelt and educational as well! As we explore each performance in detail, get ready to be captivated by the magic and diversity of the holiday season at Epcot.
The Candlelight Processional at Disney World is a cornerstone of the festival. This beloved event features a celebrity narrator who is different each weekend! In 2023 guests were able to enjoy the narration of celebrities such as Jordan Fisher, Luis Fonsi, Simu Liu, and more! Each narrator brings their own charm to the Christmas story alongside a mass choir and full orchestra. It’s a performance that truly captures the heart and spirit of the holiday season, making it a highlight for visitors at the Epcot Festival of the Holidays.
2023 Candlelight Processional Celebrity Narrators:
- Chrissy Metz: Nov. 24-25
- Luis Fonsi : Nov. 26-27
- Ann-Margret: Nov. 28-29
- Simu Liu: Nov. 30-Dec. 2
- John Stamos: Dec. 3-5
- Neil Patrick Harris: Dec. 6-8
- Marlee Matlin: Dec. 9-11
- Brendan Fraser: Dec. 12-14
- Eva Longoria: Dec. 15-16
- Joey McIntyre: Dec. 17-18
- Sterling K. Brown: Dec. 19-20
- Jordan Fisher: Dec. 21-23
- Steven Curtis Chapman: Dec. 24-26
- Audra McDonald: Dec. 27-28
- Lisa Ling: Dec. 29-30
Holiday Storytellers & Global Holiday Traditions
During the Epcot Festival of the Holidays, each World Showcase pavilion offers a unique glimpse into global holiday customs through storytellers and performances. Italy’s pavilion features La Befana in Epcot, the gift-giving witch, while the United Kingdom’s Father Christmas recounts tales of yuletide cheer. These storytellers do more than entertain; they provide cultural insights, weaving tales that reflect each nation’s holiday spirit. This blend of education and entertainment showcases the diverse ways countries celebrate the season. Making each pavilion visit an equally enlightening and joyous experience for all ages.
Holiday Traditions Storytellers in EPCOT
|Days of the Week
|Sunday – Thursday
|11:05am, 11:55am, 12:45pm, 2:45pm, 3:50pm, 4:55pm
|Las Posadas presents dancers, piñatas and Mariachi music.
|11:35am, 12:20pm, 1:10pm, 2:05pm, 4:15pm, 5:20pm, 6:15pm, 7:10pm
|Barn Santa visits Sigrid, an unsuspecting Christmas storyteller.
|12:00pm, 1:00pm, 2:00pm, 3:00pm, 4:00pm
|Chinese lion dancers capture the happiness of celebrating the Lunar New Year.
|11:15am, 12:15pm, 1:00pm, 2:00pm, 3:30pm, 4:15pm, 5:00pm, 5:50pm
|La Befana, the benevolent witch who calls on children on Epiphany Eve, recounts her tale.
|11:35am, 12:35pm, 1:40pm, 2:40pm, 4:20pm, 5:15pm, 6:00pm, 6:45pm
|Ring in the Japanese New Year with the story behind the Daruma doll.
|Between Morocco & France Pavillions
|10:30am, 11:40am, 12:40pm, 1:35pm, 2:35pm, 4:00pm, 5:00pm, 5:45pm
|Storyteller Zachary narrates the global traditions and melodies of Hanukkah celebrations.
|10:00am, 11:05am, 12:10pm, 12:50pm, 2:20pm, 3:25pm, 4:30pm, 5:15pm
|Père Noël recounts the charming tale of a child’s letter while delving into his unique Christmas traditions.
|11:30am, 12:30pm, 1:30pm, 2:25pm, 4:00pm, 5:10pm, 6:00pm, 6:45pm
|Father Christmas, adorned in his rich holiday attire, unfolds the cherished traditions of the United Kingdom.
|1:40pm, 2:45pm, 3:50pm, 4:45pm, 6:00pm, 6:40pm
|The Canadian Holiday Voyageurs will get you rocking around the Christmas tree with their lively performances.
JOYFUL! A Celebration of the Season
JOYFUL! is an exhilarating concert at the festival, blending Gospel, R&B, and holiday classics into a vibrant celebration. This high-energy performance, a standout of the festival, captivates with soulful rhythms and dynamic talent, bringing a unique twist to beloved holiday music. It’s more than a concert; it’s an essential, joyous experience that embodies the festive spirit of the Epcot Festival of the Holidays, making it a must-see for all visitors.
Showtimes: 1:15 PM, 2:20 PM, 3:25 PM, and 4:30 PM at the World Showcase Plaza
Voices of Liberty
The Voices of Liberty is a world-renowned acapella group based in the American Adventure Pavilion at EPCOT. During the Festival of the Holidays, they bring traditional holiday songs to life with their stunning harmonies. Each performance by this group is a heartwarming testament to the power of the human voice. Resonating deeply with the spirit of the holiday season. The harmonious blend of their voices in the acoustically splendid setting of the pavilion creates an atmosphere that is sure to give anyone who hears it goosebumps!
Showtimes are posted daily on the My Disney Experience App.
Related Post: Where are the Candlelight Processional Dining Packages
Activities at Festival of the Holidays 2024
The Epcot Festival of the Holidays 2024 offers a plethora of activities that go beyond the usual theme park experience. From the interactive Olaf’s Holiday Tradition Expedition scavenger hunt to the delightful Holiday Cookie Stroll, each activity is designed to engage and enchant visitors of all ages. Guests can also marvel at intricate Gingerbread House Displays, meet beloved characters in seasonal attire, and experience holiday-themed ride overlays. These activities provide families with a unique opportunity to experience EPCOT in a whole new way. So let’s delve into each of the festival activities in detail below!
Holiday Ride Overlays
Besides the Haunted Mansion Holiday overlay in Disneyland, California, our favorite holiday ride transformation has to be Living with the Land Holiday overlay. Ever since 2019, this ride has been adorned with shimmering Christmas lights and festive decorations. As visitors gently sail through the EPCOT greenhouses, they’re greeted by wreaths, sparkling lights, and even a Mickey-themed reindeer display! Our favorite part of the ride is in the final tunnel. Festive lights on both sides of the boat create a magical atmosphere that we can only relate to the Disney World version of the “It’s a Small World” Holiday at Disneyland.
Holiday Cookie Stroll
Featuring an array of unique cookies, the Festival of the Holidays Cookie Stroll lets you indulge in delicious festive cookies at various locations around the park. You can also collect a stamp for each cookie purchased in your Festival Passport. The best part is, after you collect five stamps, you can take your passport to the Holiday Sweets & Treats Holiday Kitchen to receive a complimentary cookie and milkshake! Last year, the bonus cookie was a Star cookie inspired by the new Disney film “Wish”. Priced around $3 each, these cookies are not only a delicious adventure for the young ones but also a budget-friendly activity. Plus, the stroll doesn’t have to be completed in one day! If you’re visiting the park multiple times, you can spread out the cookie sampling over several visits.
Holiday Cookie Stroll 2023 Locations:
- Bavaria Holiday Kitchen (Germany Pavilion)
- Cookie: Linzer Cookie
- Description: A traditional Austrian cookie, the Linzer features two shortbread layers with a jam filling, often dusted with powdered sugar.
- American Holiday Table (American Adventure Pavilion)
- Cookie: Gingerbread Cookie
- Description: A classic holiday favorite, this gingerbread cookie is often decorated with icing and embodies the quintessential flavors of the holiday season.
- L’Chaim! Holiday Kitchen (between Morocco and France Pavilions)
- Cookie: Black and White Cookie
- Description: Known for its distinctive half-chocolate, half-vanilla icing, this cookie is a soft, cake-like treat with a hint of lemon.
- Yukon Holiday Kitchen (Canada Pavilion)
- Cookie: Snickerdoodle Cookie made with SNICKERS® bar pieces
- Description: This is a twist on the traditional cinnamon-sugar snickerdoodle, enhanced with pieces of SNICKERS® bar for a delightful crunch.
- Nochebuena Cocina (near Test Track)
- Cookie: Spiced Chocolate Cookie
- Description: A rich chocolate cookie with a hint of seasonal spices, offering a warm and comforting flavor.
- Holiday Hearth Desserts (in the Odyssey Pavilion)
- Cookie: Peppermint Pinwheel Cookie
- Description: A festive cookie with swirls of peppermint, this visually striking treat is as flavorful as it is beautiful.
- Connections Café (World Celebration)
- Cookie: Holiday Sugar Cookie
- Description: A simple yet delicious sugar cookie, often decorated with festive icing and sprinkles.
- Sunshine Seasons (in The Land Pavilion, World Nature)
- Cookie: Jingle Sugar Cookie made with M&M’S® chocolate candies
- Description: A fun and colorful sugar cookie, dotted with M&M’S®, adding a chocolatey crunch to every bite.
You can also check out our Complete Guide to the Festival of the Holidays Cookie Stroll at EPCOT!
Olaf’s Holiday Tradition Expedition
For a festive family adventure, don’t miss the holiday scavenger hunt at EPCOT! Similar to Figment’s Brush with the Master Scavenger Hunt at the EPCOT Festival of the Arts, guests can purchase a map and sticker set for $9.99 plus tax at either the Creations Shop, Port of Entry, or World Traveler at International Gateway. All in hopes of helping Olaf collect holiday traditions around the World Showcase! Kids and adults will love finding Olaf at each pavilion and matching the lost tradition to their map. Upon completion, they can exchange their map for a delightful “Frozen” themed cookie cutter!
Seasonal Character Meet & Greets
During the holiday season, EPCOT’s beloved characters embrace the festive spirit with delightful touches to their usual appearances. As you wander through the World Showcase, you’ll notice many princesses in their iconic outfits, each adorned with a holiday-themed accessory like a festive bow. A special highlight is Belle, who dons her seldom-seen maroon Christmas dress from the Disney film “Beauty and the Beast: The Enchanted Christmas”! This meet and greet is rare and a much sought-after experience that adds to the magic of the occasion.
Gingerbread House Displays
In the American Adventure pavilion at EPCOT, guests are treated to a stunning display of gingerbread houses. These aren’t just any gingerbread creations; they include intricate replicas of iconic landmarks like the Lincoln Memorial and the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial. A highlight is the detailed gingerbread version of the American Adventure Pavilion itself! Showcasing the artistry and craftsmanship that goes into these edible masterpieces.
Related Post: What is the EPCOT Cookie Stroll?
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