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8 Ways to Celebrate the Holidays at Animal Kingdom and Experience the Magic

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Are you ready to celebrate the holidays at Animal Kingdom this Christmas season? Maybe you are just curious about what the Parks look like for the Holidays! It’s the most magical time of year around the most magical place on earth. Christmas around Walt Disney Resort is my favorite.

Holidays at Animal Kingdom

Our first year experiencing the magic of the Holidays was in November 2012. We brought our three-year-old, two-year-old, and seven-month-old. Bringing preschoolers to Walt Disney World Resort is an experience in and of itself.

Now we’re here! I can’t wait to share it all with you. Thank you, Walt Disney World Resort, for the one-day ticket and ornament. All opinions are my own.

Here are some highlights from Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Celebrate Holidays at Animal Kingdom | Disney Christmas

Disney’s Animal Kingdom will celebrate the holidays in full for the first time in its two-decade history (and yes, that makes me feel old), with enchanting entertainment and décor in new locations. Daytime and nighttime, guests will experience the majesty of nature and holiday magic.

1. A Yearly Christmas Tree Tradition to Celebrate The Holidays at Animal Kingdom

Celebrate Holidays at Disney's Animal Kingdom Christmas Tree

Did you know that each Park has its own Christmas tree with themed decorations? The Animal Kingdom Christmas Tree is decorated with traditional ornaments and hidden animals. Make sure you take the time to stop and really see the tree. Consider it a prelude to the holiday magic that awaits inside the park.

2. Celebrate Holidays at Animal Kingdom on Discovery Island

Celebrate Holidays at Disney's Animal Kingdom on Discovery Island

In the heart of the park, on Discovery Island, you find yourself immersed in a magical scene.

Throughout the day, live music fills the air as 10 stylized, life-sized animal puppets dance around you, greeting guests as they come to and fro.

As day becomes night, rooftop luminaries in animal shapes and bird lanterns throughout Discovery Island bringing a warm glow to the village. In fact, 148 animal-inspired luminaries cast a warm and festive glow throughout Discovery Island.

3. Holiday Overlay on the Tree of Life

As the sun sets, the Tree of Life awakens with a series of wintry tales emerging from within, backed by a familiar and heartwarming holiday musical score. Between awakening moments, the Tree of Life will shimmer and sparkle throughout the night, alive with the magic of nature and the spirit of the holidays. It even snows.

It’s truly magical.

4. Dinoland, U.S.A. Celebrates the Holidays

In Dinoland, U.S.A., you will rock out with the DJ-led “Holiday Hoopla Dance Party with Chip ‘n Dale” and plenty of interactive fun and games. Throughout the land, characters like Daisy Duck, Scrooge McDuck, Launchpad, Donald Duck, and Chip and Dale, gather for “Donald’s Dino-Bash!” and get into the holiday spirit with colorful costumes.

Fun Fact: 2,600 light bulbs will adorn the DinoLand U.S.A. water tower, giving the land a festive new look for the holidays.

5. Celebrating Diwali in Anandapur For Animal Kingdom

Diwali, the Holiday Festival of Lights in India, has inspired the residents of Anandapur with glowing flowers, lanterns, and more illuminating the main square leading to the waterfront stage, home to authentic and colorful cultural performances.

6. Holiday Celebrations in the Village of Harambe in Africa

The village of Harambe in Africa will welcome guests with a unique holiday presentation, fusing Western traditions with the colors and texture of authentic African celebrations; colorful costuming, and new music flavors for each performance.

7. Celebrate with Safari Donald Duck and Pals at Tusker House

Tusker House diners get their merry on as Safari Donald Duck and his pals spread holiday cheer.

8. Holidays in Pandora – The World of Avatar

Guests will find out-of-this-world holiday fun at Pandora – The World of Avatar. Ex-pats living and working on the moon of Pandora roll out a seasonal cheer with a display at Pongu Pongu of whimsical holiday décor, pairing vintage pieces from Earth with items handcrafted from materials indigenous to Pandora.

It was beautiful. I can’t wait to go back and explore more.

What are you most excited about celebrating the holidays at Disney’s Animal Kingdom? Do you have questions about anything I showed you? Let me know in the comment below!

Simplifying Family Christmas Planner

Simplifying Family Christmas Planner

With the Simplifying Family Christmas Planner, you can finally relax and enjoy the holidays. This 28-page guide includes everything you need to get ready for Christmas, from gift lists and budget sheets to baking lists and holiday menus. With all the details taken care of, you can focus on spending time with your loved ones. So go ahead and put your feet up – The Simplifying Family Christmas Planner has got you covered.

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