Travel Guide: Celebrate the Holidays at Disney World

With out-of-this-world new attractions and plenty of holiday cheer, you don’t need to wait until spring break to visit the happiest place on Earth.

A wintry Magic Kingdom fireworks display. / Photo by Todd Anderson/Walt Disney World News

Getting There

What airline doesn’t fly nonstop from Boston to Orlando? Whatever flight you hop on, it takes just over three hours to trade cold weather and endless holiday to-do lists for palm trees and mouse ears.

Staying There

Featuring plush rooms with prime fireworks views, spectacularly landscaped grounds, and unparalleled service for adults and kids alike, the Four Seasons Resort Orlando feels a world away from the hustle and bustle of the theme parks—but don’t worry, when it’s time to hit the rides, they’re only a gratis luxury bus ride away.

The stunning pool area
at the Four Seasons Resort Orlando. / Photo by Don Riddle/Four Seasons Resort Orlando


Little ones in tow? Start the day off right with chocolate-hazelnut bomboloni and hugs from Minnie at the finest character breakfast buffet in Disney, which just happens to be right inside your resort. Then head over to Hollywood Studios to be among the first to experience the blockbuster new Star Wars attraction “Rise of the Resistance,” which lets everyday parkgoers go to battle with stormtroopers starting December 5. After getting your 10,000 steps in, you’ve earned some downtime back at the hotel: A deep-tissue massage at the pristine indoor-outdoor spa will surely soothe sore legs and feet; then again, floating around the sprawling pool area’s lazy river while the kids hit the water slides and rock-climbing wall sounds pretty relaxing, too.


Evening brings a choice: Head right back into the action or take a break from the parks? If it’s the former, you’ll want to make reservations to watch the sun set at Capa, the Four Seasons’ rooftop tapas bar/steakhouse, before moseying on over to the Magic Kingdom, which rolls out dazzling holiday décor, stage shows, and parades all month long. If it’s the latter, there’s no place better than Disney Springs, the area’s recently rebuilt entertainment complex, where you can chase Peking duck for two at Morimoto Asia with high-end shopping and live music. Whatever you do, you’ll be able to cap off the evening with an exhilarating Christmas-themed fireworks display: either directly in front of the castle, or from your guest-room balcony while wearing your pajamas. Magical, indeed.