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Celebrate the Season with Holiday Events in Orlando, Florida

“Dashing through the sun ?… in a car ? or minivan… ov’r I-4 we go… laughing all the way…. ?? HO HO HO!”

Yes- jingle bells WILL be ringing, even in the pool, while eating a candy cane in the 80 degree beautiful weather that is the norm for Orlando in December!

Related: Tampa Bay’s Best Holiday Events for Families

A quick sleigh ride from Tampa this jolly time of year to experience spectacular holiday events in Orlando has me so excited for the season!

I’m down for all the holiday fun this year, and yes, even if it’s socially distant… I’m going to try and make the best of it while also making some memories along the way for our fam!

So find your best Christmasy mask ? and let’s dash away to some of my favorite holiday events in Orlando!!

With bells and masks on, Orlando holiday events you won’t want to miss:

Disney Springs

This is THE shopping destination of the Southeast and with holiday excitement along every step of the way, the entire family will love this destination!

Orlando Christmas Disney Springs

Walk through Disney Springs looking at the Disney Springs Christmas Tree Stroll, or participate in the social distant Holiday Scavenger Hunt!

Let It Snow each night at Town Center and West Side so be sure to surprise the kids here! And of course there will be surprise and delight entertainment sprinkled throughout the park each day and night too!

And of course, stay for a feast at any of the amazing restaurants that Disney Springs has to offer!

Pro Tip- Reservations can be made on the My Disney Experience App so you won’t have to wait!

Walt Disney World Resort

All four theme parks are dressed up for the holidays with holiday décor and all the holiday treats galore too! Venture to Walt Disney World Resort and head to one of the four parks and experience a little magic as you wander the Park and enjoy the season with the ones you are with!

At Magic Kingdom Park, favorite Disney characters don their holiday best and celebrate the season in a series of special cavalcades, complete with holiday floats and music.

From Mickey and friends trimming a tree to surprise character cavalcades bring holiday spirit to the streets of the Magic Kingdom throughout the day.

holidays in orlando magic kingdom (Kent Phillips, photographer)
(Kent Phillips, photographer)

Park-goers can keep an eye out for Santa, as he glides down the parade route in his sleigh. At night, holiday magic brings a festive look to Cinderella Castle with special projection effects, producing a kaleidoscope of colourful designs that will light up the eyes of everyone on Main Street and beyond.

Pro Tip: Florida Residents can purchase up to a 4-day ticket that equates to $62 per day! 

Santa’s Workshop Experience at ICON Park 

ICON Park Santa Orlando Christmas

Hop over to ICON Park and make a reservation for the best way to see Santa this season!  In a very socially distant environment (BEHIND PLEXIGLASS) you and the kids can still see Santa and even have that magical picture taken WITHOUT A MASK!

This expierence also comes with a free ride on The Wheel at ICON Park for the kids and 50% off admission to The Wheel for guests of the kids!

Pro Tip- Book reservations online and in advance to receive a free train ride at ICON Park with your reservation!

Sea World

Gather your family and join all of your festive friends at SeaWorld®’s Christmas Celebration™ on select dates through December 31. SeaWorld transforms into a winter wonderland sparkling with holiday cheer, excitement, and over 3 million beautiful lights.

Experience award-winning entertainment like the show-stopping ice-skating extravaganza Winter Wonderland on Ice.

Meet Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer or head to Wild Arctic® and visit with Santa himself. Create unforgettable holiday memories with a magical Christmas celebration you can only find at SeaWorld.

Universal Studios

Festivities include the all-new “Universal’s Holiday Experience featuring Macy’s Balloons,” where guests can get up-close with larger-than-life parade balloons and floats like never before!

For all the Harry Potter fans, decorations and musical performances along the streets of Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley will happen daily and you won’t want to miss the lighting at The Magic of Christmas at Hogwarst Castle!

Of course, a holiday classic and fan-favorite is Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch, as he celebrates Ginchmas with The Whos in Seuss Landing.

Crayola Colorful Christmas

New this year, guests can create a 3D gingerbread ornament, enjoy a musical light show and sing-along with reindeer friends and other life-sized animatronic characters. All activities are designed with enhanced cleaning, social distancing and reduced contact measures.  Super fun and safe for the little ones!

Legoland Resort

LEGOLAND Christmas

What child doesn’t have Legos on their list! This cheerful holiday event features festive shows, including all-new musical stage show, The Very Merry Mix-Up.

Kids can write letters to LEGO Santa from the all-new interactive post office, Holiday Village Postal Service, and safely snap photos with favorite characters including LEGO Santa himself at the park’s socially distanced selfie-spots.

End the night with returning holiday favorite spectaculars, like the 30-foot-tall LEGO® Christmas tree coming to life with twinkling lights and festive sounds.

Give Kids The World

Give Kids the World Orlando

The non-profit resort, dedicated to providing cost-free vacations to kids with life threating-illnesses, opens its doors to the public this holiday season for this fully immersive walk-through holiday light spectacular, featuring more than three million glittering lights.

Admission includes unlimited access to the Village’s wheelchair-accessible attractions and complimentary holiday treats. Staggered entry times promote social distancing and masks will be required for all guests ages 2 and above.

Dazzling Lights at Harry P. Leu Gardens

Dazzling Nights Orlando

This is a new family friendly three- quarter-mile interactive holiday experience with photo opps in front of a 30’ Christmas tree, interactive ground lights that when stepped on light up and ring like holiday bells, a 65’ long immersive tunnel, “snow” and holiday music.

The event is entirely outdoors and designed to ensure adequate social distancing with timed entries.


Best Orlando Resorts for Long Winters Naps

Take a super short road trip and settle in for a long winters nap at one of the area’s finest resorts so you can spend a few days exploring all the holiday events in Orlando this season.

Swan and Dolphin 

No North Pole weather here!  Santa on vacation at his favorite resort in Orlando before he heads to work!  Visit Santa, Ms.Claus and their elf, Kandy Kane, while you sip hot coco poolside near the grotto and decorate cookies too!

Orlando Christmas Disney Swan and Dolphin

The Swan and Dolphin also has fun reindeer games to play along with deals through out the holidays. Just a short walk to Disney’s Boardwalk and Epcot and within the Walt Disney World Resort so you can take advantage of complimentary theme park transportation too! It’s a beautiful hotel to escape to for some holiday fun!

Pro Tip- Use the code SANTA when booking to get the SPECIAL HOLIDAY BONUS: Book a 2nd room for up to 50% off! Call 888.828.8850 or 407.934.4000 for the best available rate!

Gaylord Palms 

SO. MUCH. CHRISTMAS!  New this year, guests can walk through their favorite Christmas movies in the “I Love Christmas Movies” immersive experience, including 13 scenes from holiday favorites such as “The Polar Express,” “A Christmas Story,” “Elf” and more.

They can also play in the “Florida snow” at the all-new Snow Factory, which features a hilly ice coaster and a snowball making machine, have breakfast with the Grinch!

The St. Augustine Atrium has its halls decked with the most beautiful décor and the live evening shows like Cirque Dreams Unwrapped and The Greatest Story will be something you won’t want to miss.

Pro Tip- Be sure to check the website for deals and packages before you visit!

The Ritz Orlando and The JW Marriott Orlando, Grande Lakes 

Did you know you can book a complimentary photographer session with your family while you are on vacation here?  Family vacation pictures are the best! Genius! *Pictures available for purchase.

For holiday festivities, both guests and non-guests may join the pastry team for Gingerbread School or Santa’s Teddy Bear Tea for a festive spin on traditional tea with an ornament craft and a socially distant Santa greeting.

Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort

All is calm and all is bright here at the Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort!  Their festive décor and elegant festive atmosphere will have you in the mood to celebrate the season as soon as you walk into the lobby.

Experience Good Morning Breakfast with Goofy & His Pals character breakfast offered at Ravello on Saturdays or roast s’mores by the fire with peppermint bark at PB&G! Lots of fun holiday activities at the pool and with Kids For All Seasons! Holiday “dive in movies” will also be something to remember!

Pro Tip- Enjoy 20% off their Room Rate with the ability to move your stay date, at no charge, should your plans change.  Book by December 31st 2020.


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Laura Byrne
Laura Byrne is an award-winning former television news journalist who spent 15+ years in newsrooms across the state of Florida including Sarasota, Tallahassee, Fort Myers and right here in Tampa Bay where she still freelances on occasion. She covered the political beat, crime beat and every day breaking news during her time in Florida newsrooms, but is now focused on sharing positive news stories and events with families in Tampa Bay. She is a proud mommy of two little boys who keep her on her toes and laughing every day. Her goal is to inspire families just like yours to get out and play and experience all that Tampa Bay and our great state of Florida have to offer! She encourages you to share your stories and upcoming events so we can spread the good news.

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