First Look at Epcot International Festival of the Holidays

Happy Holidays from Epcot!! As we transition from November to December, Epcot has transitioned from Food & Wine to Festival of the Holidays. Can you imagine a more perfect combination than the holiday season and the magic of Disney? Let’s take a look a some of the great things the festival has to offer this year.

Epcot International Festival of the holidays kicked off this past Friday, November 29th and continues through December 30th.

As was the case when Epcot International Food & Wine Festival kicked off back in August, guests are welcomed into the park by construction walls. This isn’t exactly an ideal first impression of Epcot as you begin your day in the park to experience the festival. Park guests have to navigate through a maze of walls to make their way to World Showcase before they can start to enjoy the festival. This is only a minor setback though.

For guests who weren’t quite ready for Food & Wine to end, there are 25 locations available throughout the park that offer holiday-inspired food and drinks, including options in all 11 of the pavilions around World Showcase. Whether you are looking for traditional American holiday-inspired options or want to experience traditional holiday food and drinks from around the world, you are sure to find something that will satisfy your cravings.

As you make your way around World Showcase, there is so much more to do than just eat and drink. You can experience each country’s holiday music, decorations, and cherished traditions, including holiday storytelling.

For those of you with a sweet tooth, you can pick up a Festival Passport and complete the Holiday Cookie Stroll as part of your journey around World Showcase. You can collect stamps at each of the five cookie stroll locations to add to your Passport. Once you’ve collected all five stamps, show your completed Passport to a cast member at Sweets & Treats Holiday Kitchen to receive a complimentary Santa Mickey Sugar Cookie.

While supplies last, you can also purchase a Cookie Stroll Cookie Jar to help you collect all five cookies. These cookie jars can be purchased at any of the Holiday Markets throughout World Showcase.

The highlight of the festival for many people is the Candlelight Processional. Every night of the festival there will be three show times. Park guests are treated to a telling of the story of Christmas by a celebrity narrator, accompanied by a choir and 50-piece orchestra. For a full list of this year’s celebrity narrators, click here.

Seating for the Candlelight Processional tends to fill up very quickly and the lengthy stand-by line doesn’t always guarantee a seat in the theater, so you will want to plan ahead and arrive as early as possible to get your spot in line, if you opt for the stand-by option.

For guaranteed seating in the theater, you can purchase the Candlelight Processional Dining Package. There are 16 participating dining locations available with this package. Guests who purchase the dining package still must purchase a park ticket in order to enter the park. Guests will receive their seating voucher that guarantees their seat for the Candlelight Processional while they are dining.

A full line of brand new festival-exclusive merchandise is available in stores and marketplaces throughout Epcot. There are a ton of great options for gifts for the Disney fans on your list this holiday season. Be sure to stop by these locations and see what is available this year.

From food and drinks to music, decorations, holiday traditions, merchandise, and various entertainment options, there is fun to be had for all ages at this year’s Epcot International Festival of the Holidays.

We hope you enjoy the festival, and have a wonderful holiday season!! We will be in the parks as often as we can, so if you see us, please feel free to stop us and say hello.

What are you looking forward to most at this year’s festival? Let us know in the comments.

And, as always, make sure to click the “Follow” button on this site so you can be notified immediately when a new blog post is published. Also, if you aren’t doing so already, be sure to follow us on social media so you can stay up to date on all of our Disney adventures.




XOXO, Halie and Danny

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