EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays

Take a Closer Look at One of EPCOT’s Four Annual Festivals: International Festival of the Holidays

EPCOT Festival of Holidays disney

EPCOT seems to be in continual Festival season. There are currently four festivals annually: The Festival of the Arts, running typically from January-February; Flower and Garden Festival, usually March-July; Food and Wine Festival, lately running from July-November; and the Festival of the Holidays, Thanksgiving-New Year’s. This year’s EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays is set to kickoff November 25, 2022. Featuring holiday traditions from around the world, Holiday kitchens highlighting international holiday foods, the holiday cookie stroll, and, of course, the incredibly popular Candlelight Processional, this is a great way to celebrate the holidays. So let’s get ready to celebrate the season with merry décor and entertainment from all over the world!

Entertainment – Fun for All Ages

Personally, I like the Festival of the Arts and Festival of the Holidays, because it’s so much more than food! The Festival of the Holidays has holiday traditions and presentations all over the World Showcase, plus musical celebrations, and, of course, food and beverages!

Olaf’s Holiday Tradition Expedition Scavenger Hunt

Guests can go on a Scavenger Hunt throughout the World Showcase. While exploring, join Olaf and search for holiday traditions. First, purchase your map and stickers from select Festival merchandise locations in EPCOT. Then, look for Olaf statues based on your map. Next, using the stickers on your map, mark the “tradition” Olaf has found in each pavilion. Finally, whether you complete the expedition or not, take your map to Creations or World Traveler at International Gateway to redeem for a special holiday keepsake! Redemption valid through December 31, 2022, or while supplies last. While not free, this is a fun way for kids and kids-at-heart to traverse the Festival! Price: $9.99 plus tax

festival holiday Olaf epcot disney
epcot festival holidays joyful christmas kwanzaa
JOYFUL! A Celebration of the Season

Head to the World Showcase Plaza stage and enjoy gospel, R&B, and holiday songs from the Joyful! ensemble. During this show, you’ll celebrate Christmas and Kwanzaa. Additionally, it will happen daily at 2:40 PM, 3:45 PM, 4:50 PM and 6:10 PM. Also, this is FREE and included in your EPCOT admission (and park reservation!) as part of the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays.

epcot holiday cookie stroll
EPCOT Holiday Cookie Stroll

Given that it’s the holiday season, enjoy a different take on eating around the World. In fact, this foodie challenge has got to be the easiest one to complete! If you purchase 5 cookies from any of the official cookie stroll locations featured in your Festival Passport, then collect a matching stamp for each cookie purchased, head to the Holiday Sweets & Treats! Once you’ve collected your 5 stamps, bring the stamped Passport to Holiday Sweets & Treats to receive a specialty treat! This activity is fun for all ages and can be completed at your leisure between now and December 30, 2022, so if you don’t want to eat 5 cookies in one day, you don’t have to!

Cookie Stroll Locations and Cookies
  • Nochebuena Cocina: Alfajores – Vanilla Shortbread Cookie with Dulce de Leche and Coconut
  • Yukon Holiday Kitchen: SNICKERS®-Doodle Cookie made with SNICKERS® Bar pieces 
  • L’Chaim! Holiday Kitchen: Black and White Cookie (plant-based) 
  • American Holiday Table: Chocolate Crinkle Cookie  
  • Bavaria Holiday Kitchen: Linzer Cookie 
  • Holiday Hearth Desserts: Gingerbread Cookie 
  • Sunshine Seasons: M&M’s® Sugar Cookie 
  • Connections Café: Sugar Cookie 
Holiday Storytellers

Accordingly, the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays celebrates holidays all over the World! While in Mexico, join the fun and pageantry of Las Posadas with dancers, piñatas and the music of Mariachi Cobre. Then, Norway gets into the mischief of the holidays. No, not with Loki, but with a mischievous magical barn Santa who visits with Sigrid, a Norwegian holiday storyteller. In China, celebrate the Lunar New Year with the Chinese Lion Dancer, then head to Italy. Once there, you will hear the tale of La Befana! This kind-hearted witch visits the sleeping children of Italy on the Eve of the Epiphany. Over in Japan, hear the story of the Daruma doll and the Japanese customs of the New Year.

Then, between Morocco and France on the World Showcase promenade, hear the story of Hanukkah, including the music and traditions from all over the world. While in France, visit with Santa, or Pere Noel, and rediscover the magic of Christmas through the letter of a child. Then it’s on to the UK, where Father Christmas shares the traditions of the United Kingdom and shares his good cheer for a Happy Christmas. And finally, explore holiday customs from the various regions of Canada on a musical tour of the Great White North with the Canadian Holiday Voyageurs. Show times will be available on your My Disney Experience app daily and in the park’s Times Guide.

I’m Just Here For the FOOD!

epcot festival of holidays
EPCOT Festival of the Holidays

Finally, let’s talk about the scrumptious bites and the merry libations available in all the Holiday Kitchens. Kitchens open November 25 and, while there have not been menus released, we do know which kitchens we’ll be able to nosh at!

International Holiday Kitchens
  • American Holiday Table – American Adventure Pavilion
    During your visit to the US, enjoy traditional dishes reminiscent of grandma’s cooking at the American Adventure Pavilion.
  • Bavaria Holiday Kitchen – Germany Pavilion
    Willkommen! Certainly, you’ll want to help yourself to heartwarming holiday dishes and refreshing beverages at the Germany Pavilion.
  • Las Posadas Holiday Kitchen – Mexico Pavilion
    Feliz Navidad—celebrate with mariachi dancing and south-of-the-border fare at the Mexico Pavilion!
  • Le Marché de Noël Holiday Kitchen – France Pavilion
    Feast on très magnifique fare, wine and specialty cocktails from the France Pavilion.
  • Shanghai Holiday Kitchen – China Pavilion
    Have yourself a merry little meal—tempt taste buds with popular plates and potables from the China Pavilion!
  • Shi Wasu Holiday Kitchen – Japan Pavilion
    Please your palate with an array of festive dishes and drinks served at the Japan Pavilion.
  • Tangierine Café: Flavors of the Medina – Morocco Pavilion
    Travel to the Morocco Pavilion for delicious kebabs and cocktails.
  • Tuscany Holiday Kitchen – Italy Pavilion
    Mangiare—savor a seasonal take on some of the world’s best-loved food and beverages at the Italy Pavilion!
  • Yukon Holiday Kitchen – Canada Pavilion
    Jingle your bells with delightful dishes and libations from the Great White North—at the Canada Pavilion.
Additional Locations
  • Chestnuts & Good Cheer Holiday Kitchen – Near Test Track Presented by Chevrolet
    Chestnuts roasting on an open fire… As the name suggests, you can enjoy cinnamon-glazed nuts and holiday beverages.
  • The Donut Box – Near Test Track Presented by Chevrolet
    Enjoy a classic dessert dressed up in a little holiday cheer when you try one of our seasonally-themed donuts!
  • Holiday Hearth Desserts – The Odyssey Pavilion
    Discover the hearth you’ll call home, with holly jolly desserts, hot cocoa and so much more.
  • Holiday Sweets & Treats – Near Port of Entry
    Rock around the Christmas tree with tasty desserts and festive sips sure to top the “nice” list.
  • L’Chaim! Holiday Kitchen – Between Morocco and France Pavilions
    Propose a toast to life—sink your teeth into classic deli noshes with a side of New York flair.
  • Mele Kalikimaka – Near Port of Entry
    Savor the flavor of fabulous, festive food and beverages from the islands of Hawai‘i.
  • Nochebuena Cocina – Near Port of Entry – NEW!
    Delight in a delicious plant-based offering while celebrating the happiest season of the year!
  • Funnel Cake – Between the American Adventure Pavilion
    Satisfy your sweet tooth with a new holiday classic: Sweet Potato Casserole Funnel Cake.
  • Joffrey’s Coffee & Tea Company – Throughout EPCOT
    Salute the season with the usual selection of coffees, plus a tasty holiday-themed treat!
  • Refreshment Outpost – Between the China and Germany Pavilions
    Chow down on this year’s holiday surprise: Peanut Stew with sweet potatoes, mustard greens and roasted peanuts. (Sorry, guess it’s not a surprise now.)
  • Refreshment Port – Showcase Plaza
    Savor the flavor of holiday poutine and toast the season with specials like Coquito Soft-serve, also available with Spiced Rum.

Candlelight Processional

festival of the holidays candlelight processional
Candlelight Processional

Before you go, enjoy the Candlelight Processional! Together with a celebrity narrator, hear the story of Christmas, recounting the biblical tale of a savior born in Bethlehem. While the production takes place, hear stirring songs of hope and joy performed by the orchestra and massed choir. What’s more, these shows are FREE with paid admission to EPCOT and a valid park reservation. Shows run nightly at 5:15, 7:00, or 8:30, running concurrently with the Festival. Guests can either wait in line or book a dining package to reserve a seat. For more information, click here!

Not to mention, Walt Disney World Resorts and theme parks will be decorated for the holidays and each park will offer celebrations, as well as Disney Springs! And get tickets for Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party! Don’t miss the holidays at Walt Disney World! Get your FREE vacation quote today!

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