Magical Guide to Events at Walt Disney World In 2023 For A Better Vacation

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Need to know what is happening at Disney World this year? Here is your complete guide to events at Walt Disney World in 2023 before you plan your vacation.

Planning a trip to Walt Disney World is a thrilling experience, but let’s face it, it can also be a bit overwhelming.

Don’t worry, I’m here to help you navigate the excitement and create a magical vacation that exceeds your wildest dreams! As you’re planning your trip, it’s important to keep in mind some of the high-profile events happening at Disney World, as they can lead to higher crowd levels. But fear not! Even with more people around, your vacation can still be absolutely enchanting!

events at Walt Disney World - Whitney eating a Dole Whip and laughing with friends outside of camera frame

Regardless of what is on the calendar of events at Walt Disney World, all you need is smart planning to ensure you can experience everything you’ve been dreaming of. Let’s work together to create a vacation itinerary that will leave you and your loved ones with unforgettable memories that will last a lifetime!

Walt Disney World Resort Theme Park Reservations

Before we jump into the calendar of events at Walt Disney World, one of the first things you’ll need to know is Walt Disney World Resort continues to operate with the Disney Parks Pass Reservation System in 2023. This system requires guests to have a Park reservation and a valid theme park ticket to enter any of the four Walt Disney World Resort theme parks.

Reservations are made online through the Walt Disney World website and availability can be checked before buying tickets or booking a vacation package.

It is important to note that on April 18th the reservation system changes slightly for Annual Passholders.

Passholders do not need to have Disney Park Pass Reservations to visit Walt Disney World Theme Parks after 2 p.m. except when visiting Magic Kingdom on Saturday or Sunday.

Your Magical Guide to Events at Walt Disney World in 2023

Oh boy, do I have some exciting news for you! Walt Disney World has released its events list for 2023, and let me tell you, it’s looking amazing! While we’re still waiting for the official word on some events, we’ve included as much information as possible, so you can start planning your unforgettable Disney vacation today!

From fantastic festivals to incredible experiences, these events are the perfect opportunity to create magical memories with your loved ones. So why wait?

Whether you’re looking to participate in the festivities or prefer to visit during the quieter off-season, there’s something for everyone! Don’t miss out on the fun – let’s get started on planning your dream Disney vacation as we take a look at these events at Walt Disney World!

events at Disney World - Whitney with the evil queen Character Dining

Disney World Events Calendar

January 2023 Events at Walt Disney World

  • January 1 New Year’s Day
  • January 1-3 Holiday festivities conclude
  • January 4-8 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend
  • January 14-16 UCA & UDA College National Championship at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex
  • January 14-18 Martin Luther King, Jr. Weekend
  • January 13 – February 20 EPCOT International Festival of the Arts

February 2023 Events at Walt Disney World

  • Through February 20 EPCOT International Festival of the Arts
  • February 3-5 UDA National Dance Team Championship at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex
  • February 10-12 UCA National High School Cheerleading Championship at ESPN World of Sports Complex
  • February 17-21 Presidents Day Weekend
  • February 21 Fat Tuesday, Mardi Gras Week
  • February 23-26 Princess Half Marathon Weekend

March 2023 Events at Walt Disney World

  • EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival
  • March 10-11 Recreational Cheerleading Championship at ESPN World of Sports Complex
  • March 11-12 UCA International All-Star Championship at ESPN World of Sports Complex
  • March 12-April 15 Disney Spring Training at ESPN World of Sports Complex
  • March 17 St. Patrick’s Day
  • Spring Break season through March & April

April 2023 Events at Walt Disney World

  • April 2 Harmonious night show ends at EPCOT
  • April 3 EPCOT Forever night show returns
  • April 3 Happily Ever After fireworks returns to Magic Kingdom
  • April 4 TRON Lightcycle / Run opens at Magic Kindom
  • Spring Break Season through March & April
  • EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival
  • April 9 Easter Sunday
  • March 12-April 15 Disney Spring Training at ESPN World of Sports Complex
  • April 13-16 Springtime Surprise Weekend, runDisney
  • April 19-21 UCA World Cheerleading Championship at ESPN World of Sports Complex
  • April 22 Earth Day – Disney’s Animal Kingdom celebrates 25 years
  • April 27-30 The Summit All-Star Championship at ESPN World of Sports Complex
  • April 28-30 The Dance Summit All-Star Championship at ESPN World of Sports Complex
  • April 29 Dapper Day at Epcot
  • April 30 Dapper Day at Magic Kingdom
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May 2023 Events at Walt Disney World

  • EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival
  • May 4 Star Wars Day – May the 4th Be With You
  • May 5 Cinco de Mayo
  • May 5-7 The D2 Summit All-Star Championship at ESPN World of Sports Complex
  • May 14 Mother’s Day
  • May 27-30 Memorial Day Weekend

June 2023 Events at Walt Disney World

  • EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival
  • June 1 – August 31 runDisney Virtual Series
  • June 1 GayDays® at Disney’s Animal Kingdom #RedShirtDays
  • June 2 GayDays® at Disney’s Hollywood Studios #RedShirtDays
  • June 3 GayDays® at Magic Kingdom #RedShirtDays
  • June 4 GayDays® at Epcot #RedShirtDays
  • June 18 Father’s Day

July 2023 Events at Walt Disney World

August 2023 Events at Walt Disney World

September 2023 Events at Walt Disney World

  • EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival
  • Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party
  • Halloween Time at Walt Disney World Resort
  • September 3-6 Labor Day Weekend
  • September 15-17 Rosh Hashanah
  • September 24-25 Yom Kippur

October 2023 Events at Walt Disney World

November 2023 Events at Walt Disney World

  • EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival
  • Holidays Begin: Spirit of the Season
  • Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at Magic Kingdom Park
  • EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays
  • November 1-2 Dia de Los Muertos
  • November 2-5 Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon, runDisney
  • November 23 Thanksgiving Day

December 2023 Events at Walt Disney World

  • Holidays: Spirit of the Season
  • Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at Magic Kingdom Park
  • EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays
  • December 2-3 Dapper Day Events
  • December 7 Hannukkah begins
  • December 15 Hannukkah end
  • December 25 Christmas Day
  • December 31 New Year’s Eve

New Rides Coming to Walt Disney World in 2023

Are you ready for some magical excitement? At Walt Disney World Resort, there’s always something new and amazing to explore, alongside the classic attractions that we all know and love.

Whether you’re a seasoned Disney-goer or a first-timer, the thrill of experiencing the latest rides and attractions is second to none! So, without further ado, let’s dive into the newest attractions at Disney World that are just waiting to be explored.

New Rides Coming to Walt Disney World - Tiana's Foods Sign

From heart-pumping rides to immersive experiences, you’ll find plenty of options to satisfy your thirst for adventure and thrills. And that’s not all – we’ll also take a look at the highly anticipated attractions that are coming soon to Disney World! Get ready to embark on an unforgettable journey that will leave you and your loved ones spellbound!

Don’t forget to mark these events at Walt Disney World on your calendar!

2023 and Beyond: New Walt Disney World Attractions

  • TRON Lightcycle Run opens on April 4th at Magic Kingdom
  • Tiana’s Bayou Adventure is coming soon in 2024 to Magic Kingdom
New Rides Coming to Walt Disney World TRON Lightcycle Run attraction photo

Entertainment at Walt Disney World Resort in 2023

Now, are you ready to be transported to a world of enchantment? Walt Disney World Resort is constantly finding new ways to share the magic and bring smiles to the faces of guests of all ages. With so much to see and do, you’ll be spoiled for choice!

From classic favorites like the Frozen Sing-Along Celebration, Country Bear Jamboree, and Mickey’s PhilharMagic to the thrilling experience of “It’s Tough to be a Bug”, Disney World has something for everyone. And when the sun sets, the fun is far from over!

You won’t want to miss the spectacular fireworks displays, dazzling parades, and mesmerizing night shows that light up the sky and leave you in awe. So what are you waiting for? Come and immerse yourself in a world of wonder and create magical memories that will last a lifetime!

Entertainment at Walt Disney World Resort - Happily Ever After Returns to Magic Kingdom

Welcome Back to Disney Fan Favorites

While included in the list of events at Walt Disney World above, here is a short recap of dates to keep in mind for 2023.

  • Harmonious through April 2023 in EPCOT
  • Disney’s Enchantment through April 2023 in Magic Kingdom
  • Disney’s Happily Ever After returns in April 2023
  • Epcot Forever returns to Epcot in April 2023
  • Disney’s Not-So-Spooky Spectacular during Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party returns to Magic Kingdom in August
  • Minnie’s Wonderful Christmas Time Fireworks during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party returns to Magic Kingdom in November
Entertainment at Walt Disney World Resort - Epcot Forever Returns

More Tips for Disney World in 2023

Are you feeling the excitement building? AHHH!! With all the upcoming events at Walt Disney World, you’re in for an unforgettable vacation that you’ll cherish forever! But wait, there’s more!

To ensure your trip is nothing short of magical, we’ve gathered some fantastic resources to help you plan and prepare for your adventure.

From insider tips to expert advice, we’ve got you covered every step of the way! So, get ready to experience the trip of a lifetime, where every moment is filled with wonder and enchantment. Let’s get planning and create a Disney vacation that will exceed your wildest dreams!

Dining Plans

Disney Dining Plans are BACK in 2024!

Magical Guide to Events at Walt Disney World In 2023 For A Better Vacation 3

Disney Genie+

Disney Genie+ is your pass to skip the wait!

Sadly, the FastPass+ System has been retired so now we use the Disney Genie+ system.

I LOVE the Tip Board for when we have specific attractions we want to see on a specific day, like birthdays. Plus, it’s FREE!

Early Theme Park Entry 

Are you ready to experience even more magic during your Disney World stay? Say hello to Early Theme Park Entry – the perk that lets you enter each of the four theme parks 30 minutes before they open to the public!

That’s right, guests of Walt Disney World hotels get exclusive access to Magic Kingdom Park, EPCOT, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park. And for guests of Deluxe and Deluxe Villa Resorts, you also have the option of enjoying Extended Evening Hours on select nights.

So don’t miss out on these amazing perks and get ready for a truly enchanting vacation!

MagicBand+

MagicBand+ replaced the original MagicBand. Now you can customize and purchase your MagicBand+ any time before or during your vacation! It’s so much fun!!

MagicBands are typically synced to the My Disney Experience app, which allows you to remain hands-free and less tied to your cell phone during your trip. (Although Disney Genie+ kind of ruins that but I digress.)

When you connect the My Disney Experience app to your MagicBand+ you will have access to:

  • Theme park tickets, simply tap in at the gate (you can even add them to your Apple Wallet!)
  • Theme park reservations, linked to your ticket
  • Lightning Lane and virtual queue entrances
  • Restaurant reservations
  • Disney Resort hotel room, tap to unlock your room
  • For purchases, tap the Magicband+ on the scanner to pay

In 2023, guests can still use older MagicBand models and their smartphones to utilize some of the features of MagicBand+. Time will tell if this continues in 2024.

Guests staying on property at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel and Annual Passholders have access to discounted MagicBands once their vacation package is linked to their My Disney Experience account.

Disney PhotoPass Service

Getting a Memory Maker before your Disney vacation is one of my top recommendations! When you add Memory Maker to your vacation package, you’ll receive unlimited downloads of all PhotoPass photos taken during your vacation.

PhotoPass photographers are located throughout the parks in some of the most beautiful and iconic photo spots. It’s a great way to get everyone in your family in the picture. Especially when the calendar of events at Walt Disney World is looking crowded.

You can add Memory Maker when you book your package for just $169 for 2023. If you wait to add it, you can do so, but the price goes up to $199 if you wait until three days before your vacation begins.

Memory Maker includes:

  • Photos taken at more than 100 locations:
    • Iconic spots at all 4 parks
    • Select character meet-and-greet locations
    • Select attractions
    • Portrait studios
  • Over 75 unique Magic Shots, including Super Zoom and Tiny World Magic Shots
  • Capture Your Moment or Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique experiences (sessions booked and sold separately)
  • Access to create, download, and save your Disney PhotoPass video memories

You can also reserve a 20-minute Capture Your Moment photo session during your Disney vacation.

Capture Your Moment Photo Sessions are available at all 4 theme parks: 

  • Magic Kingdom Park
    • Main Street, U.S.A. & Cinderella Castle
    • Fantasyland & Beyond
  • EPCOT
  • Disney’s Hollywood Studios
  • Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park

Want more time to strike a pose and more photo options? Book 2 Capture Your Moment sessions back-to-back. You’ll get 40 minutes with your photographer and the chance to visit at least 2 different photo locations.

These spots fill up quickly so check the list of events at Walt Disney World above and see if your vacation is during one of the busy times of the year. If so, book soon!

Park Hopping

Park Hopping at Walt Disney World looks a little different in 2023. If you haven’t been back in a while, it’s important to know that all guests with a park hopper ticket can begin park hopping at 2:00 p.m. Park hopping tickets are still an excellent value, allowing you to visit more than one of the four theme parks on any given day.

There’s no need to make a reservation for your second theme park. In the rare case that a Theme Park reaches capacity in the afternoon, you will get a push notification on the My Disney Experience app to let you know that Park Hopping has closed at a specific theme park. In that case, you can stay in the Park you started or choose another available Theme Park. So make sure your notifications are turned on!

Disney’s Water Parks

If the crowds at Disney Parks during the events at Walt Disney World are too much for your liking, I highly recommend spending a day or two at Disney’s Water Parks!

Disney Water Parks - Blizzard Beach Mickey Raft

Water Parks at Walt Disney World continue to delight visitors throughout the year. Walt Disney World Resort has two water parks on property:

These sometimes overlooked water parks also can be added to your Walt Disney World vacation with the Water Park and More tickets.

Disney’s Blizzard Beach

Blizzard Beach is designed to look like a ski resort that has melted into a watery wonderland. With exhilarating water slides, a lazy river, a wave pool, and Frozen themed kid’s play area, Blizzard Beach is the perfect place to cool off and have fun in the sun.

Plus, the park offers plenty of dining options and rental services for towels and lockers. Whether you’re looking for an exciting adventure or a relaxing day with family and friends, Disney’s Blizzard Beach is a must-visit destination for any Disney fan!

Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon

Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon offers a unique tropical experience with its towering palm trees and island vibe. It’s a popular destination for guests looking to take a break from the main theme parks and enjoy a day of fun in the sun. Compared to its counterpart, Blizzard Beach, Typhoon Lagoon’s tropical theme creates a distinct and relaxing atmosphere for guests to enjoy.

Disney's Typhoon Lagoon map

Theme park reservations are not required at this time for Disney’s Water Parks. Disney’s Blizzard Beach is closed currently for refurbishment while Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park is open!

Magical Guide to Events at Walt Disney World In 2023 For A Better Vacation 4

Are there any events at Walt Disney World that I missed? Are there any events at Disney World that I missed? I hope our list of events at Walt Disney World has been helpful and allows you to create the most magical vacation.

Magical Guide to Events at Walt Disney World In 2023 For A Better Vacation 5

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