Festivals. Concerts. Food. (That's our personal fave!) Events are some of the biggest reasons to visit Walt Disney World Resort. Many of the Disney World events have become so popular that people time their trips just to attend! Here is the full schedule of Disney World events in 2023 to help you plan your visit.
Be sure to catch the ongoing Disney World's 50th Anniversary Celebration now through March 31. Seperately ticketed events continue to return, like the popular Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party, and recently Disney After Hours at Magic Kingdom and Disney's Hollywood Studios. We update this post throughout the year as new event details are released and dates are added.
For those of you who have already picked your dates, this post also serves as a guide for what will be hoppening while you're there. You'll find all of the Walt Disney World events in 2023 on our Crowd Calendar. You can also see crowd levels and park recommendations on the days that events are taking place. We've even got a whole post detailing some of the very best times to plan a Disney World trip in 2023. Be sure to bookmark this page if you've got a trip coming up to stay up-to-date on all of the exciting events to come!
Full Schedule of Events at Disney World in 2023 and Beyond
Disney World's 50th Anniversary Celebration — Oct. 1, 2021, to March 31, 2023
It's the big 5-0! "The World's Most Magical Celebration" kicked off Oct. 1, 2021, and will run through March 31, 2023! Guests can take in special entertainment, including a new cavalcade at Magic Kingdom, and new nighttime spectaculars with "Harmonious" at EPCOT and "Disney Enchantment" at Magic Kingdom. Each of the park's icons become "beacons of magic" each evening, in addition to featuring special EARidescent decor, lighting and more. Characters don their best party attire, and several new additions have opened throughout the celebration. The very first? Remy's Ratatouille Adventure opened Oct. 1, 2021, in EPCOT, and Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind opened on May 27, 2022!
JANUARY AND FEBRUARY
Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend — Jan. 4 to 8, 2023
The Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend features Goofy's Race and a Half Challenge, Dopey Challenge, runDisney Kids Races, Walt Disney World 5K & 10K, Walt Disney World Half Marathon and the headlining race, the Walt Disney World Marathon. The courses of the longer races take runners through all four Walt Disney World Resort theme parks.
If you're planning a trip that overlaps with a race, you should know that Disney races are some of the Disney World events that will bring in heavy crowds. Crowd levels are usually affected by the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend since the event brings in thousands and thousands of runners and spectators each year. Traffic around the resort is also affected by the Walt Disney World Marathon. When visiting during this special event, expect travel time between the Disney parks to take longer. We have a separate post on what to expect at the Disney World Marathon if you want to start planning!
Disney After Hours — Jan. 4 to April 19, 2023
Disney After Hours returned to Walt Disney World this year with select dates available at Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios! These separately ticketed events allow guests to stick around after normal park hours with limited crowds. That means you’ll encounter little-to-no lines while you wait for rides, character meet-and-greets and other experiences at the parks. Plus, you'll get complimentary popcorn, ice cream and bottled beverages throughout the night! Check out our Disney After Hours guide for more details.
EPCOT International Festival of the Arts — Jan. 13 to Feb. 20, 2023
Grab a paintbrush, and let your imagination flow! Running from Jan. 13 to Feb. 20, 2023, this EPCOT festival celebrates visual, performing and culinary arts. There are gallery exhibits, living statues, artist appearances and much more that take place during the festival — including the popular Disney on Broadway Concert Series.
EPCOT International Festival of the Arts is included with admission to the park, but there may be separately ticketed events within the festival itself if you are looking for additional experiences such as culinary classes or art workshops. Here is our full guide to the EPCOT International Festival of the Arts to inspire you.
Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend — Feb. 23 to 26, 2023
Inspired by the Disney Princesses, this event celebrates strong, determined women. Weekend events include the Disney Princess 5K, Disney Princess Enchanted 10K, Disney Fairy Tale Challenge and the headlining event, the Disney Princess Half Marathon. The half marathon takes runners through Magic Kingdom and EPCOT. Traffic around the parks is typically affected by this race every year.
MARCH - JULY
EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival — Early March to Early July 2023
As the second event in the lineup of the EPCOT festivals, the EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival blossoms each spring. This festival features tons of topiaries spread throughout the park. There is an abundance of food offerings at the outdoor kitchens scattered around World Showcase and Future World to enjoy while admiring the character topiaries. The 2022 festival ran from March 2 to July 4.
Guests can also delight in the hundreds of butterfly species residing at the festival's screened butterfly house. Plus the Garden Rocks Concert Series was back at the America Gardens Theatre on select nights. EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival is included with regular admission to EPCOT. This is one of the most colorful and popular Disney World events!
runDisney Springtime Surprise Weekend — April 13 to 16, 2023
Formerly the Star Wars Rival Run Half Marathon, this all-new runDisney event offers up a new theme each year. The 2023 theme will be Pixar themed with the Cars 5K, Monsters Inc. 10K and Toy Story 10 Miler.
Disney H2O Glow After Hours — late May to late August
After a two-year hiatus, Disney H2O Glow After Hours returned to Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park in 2022! The water park hosted the after-hours parties every Saturday night from May 28 to Aug. 27. This separately ticketed, tadpole-friendly evening event features DJ dance parties, specialty food and drink, and a chance to enjoy your favorite water attractions glowing at night. We soaked up all the fun at the first event of the season — check out our guide to H2O Glow After Hours for all the hoppin' details as we expect this event to return again in 2023!
EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival — Mid-July to mid-November 2023
The popular EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival runs every fall and ran from July 14 to Nov. 19 last year. If you're looking for Disney World events with plenty of food and drink, this is one of them! The festival features more than 25 international marketplace kiosks, which offer tapas-sized portions of regional specialties, as well as recommended wine and beer pairings.
The Eat to the Beat! Concert Series also returned in 2022, along with Mariachi Cobre, JAMMitors and Voices of Liberty. This is a major event, and we recommend using our EPCOT Food & Wine Festival guide to help you make the most of it! EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival is included with regular theme park admission.
AUGUST – DECEMBER
Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party — mid-August to Oct. 31, 2023
Boo to you — Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party is back at Magic Kingdom Park! This separately ticketed event offers guests the opportunity to stay after normal park hours in their costumes to enjoy unique characters, attraction overlays, treat stops, photo opportunities and specialty food and drink. Enjoy exclusive entertainment like Mickey’s Boo-To-You parade, Hocus Pocus Villain Spelltacular stage show and Disney’s Not-So-Spooky Spectacular fireworks. Head over to our not-so-scary guide for all the details from the 2022 parties!
Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend — Nov. 2 to 5, 2023
The Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend combines the magic of a runDisney race with the festivities of the Food & Wine Festival. Races usually include the Disney Fall Feast 5K, Kids Races and the Half Marathon. Half-marathoners and Disney Two-Course Challenge participants can celebrate at an exclusive post-race party at the Food and Wine Festival.
NOVEMBER AND DECEMBER
Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party — November to December
Celebrate the holiday season with Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party, back at Magic Kingdom Park! This special event occurs after regular park hours and requires a separate party ticket to enjoy all its exclusive offerings. Running from 7 p.m. to midnight on select nights, the party features rare characters, special entertainment, jolly-good treats, ride overlays and more! There is even “snowfall” on Main Street intermittently throughout the night. The 2022 parties ran from Nov. 8 to Dec. 22.
Enjoy big highlights such as Mickey's Once Upon A Christmastime Parade, Mickey's Most Merriest Celebration castle stage show and Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks. There are also plenty of opportunities to meet your favorite Disney characters, some of whom are decked out in their holiday finest. Check out our festive party guide for all the exciting details!
While Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party is a separate event, there are still many festive holiday Disney World events. Each one brings merriment with the right touch of Disney. Let our complete guide to Disney World holiday events be your holiday planner! (Consider it our gift to you.)
EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays — Late November through December
EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays celebrates many holiday traditions. Storytellers from many of the countries, such as La Befana at the Italy pavilion, recount holiday customs from their respective countries. Santa Claus even makes special appearances too! There's also seasonal food from each country available for purchase. Buon appetite! Last year's festival occurred from Nov. 25 to Dec. 30.
The Candlelight Processional tells the story of Christmas with a celebrity narrator, accompanied by a 50-piece orchestra and mass choir. The Candlelight Processional is typically performed three times nightly. Much like other EPCOT festivals, the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays is included with regular admission to EPCOT. We have tips on all of these festivities (and yes, the food too) in our full guide!
Holiday Celebrations at Disney's Animal Kingdom — November and December
Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park started celebrating the jolly season last year on Nov. 11. Guests could wave at favorite characters in their holiday best, as well as Santa, in Festive Flotillas along Discovery River, as well as meet characters in festive outfits in DinoLand U.S.A. The Merry Menagerie, life-size animal puppets of penguins, foxes, polar bears and more, create a winter wonderland at Discovery Island. At night, guests could check out the Tree of Life Awakenings — Holiday Edition, during which the tree shimmers and sparkles along to a musical score. There were also special seasonal decorations and food to enjoy around the park!
Holiday Celebrations at Disney's Hollywood Studios — November and December
The holidays at Disney's Hollywood Studios began Nov. 11, 2022. Share a meal with Santa Goofy, Minnie Mouse and friends at Hollywood & Vine for a Christmas feast. Sunset Season's Greetings lights up Tinseltown as snow falls and dazzling projections light up the Hollywood Tower Hotel to tell special holiday tales from your favorite characters. Enjoy a special holiday finale to the Frozen Sing Along, featuring our favorite snowman, Olaf. Plus guests can catch Santa driving by in a special seasonal motorcade!
Holiday Celebrations at Disney Springs — November and December
The main highlight of the holidays at Disney Springs is the Disney Springs' Christmas Tree Stroll, with fun Disney-themed trees throughout. In the evening, guests visiting Town Center encounter a magical snowfall. Enjoy lots of festive food, including Jock Lindsay's Holiday Bar, returning again with holiday decor and a limited-time menu. Plus, you can spend one-on-one time with Santa!
We hope you found this list of Disney World events hopful as you plan your visit. By now you've realized that the parties, festivals and events are some of the best reasons to visit! If you're looking for more tips, check out the When to Visit Orlando page on our Orlando Planning Timeline!
Related: Complete Guide to Disney World Holiday Events