Holly Jolly Holiday Events in Orlando
Updated for 2020! Every holiday season, Orlando’s world-famous theme parks and resort hotels dazzle with jubilant cheer along with miles of garland and twinkling lights. Holiday traditions and joyful celebrations transform Orlando — Theme Park Capital of the World — into a magical wonderland guaranteed to have your family singing “fa-la-la-la” all the way home.
Celebrate the holiday season with our list of events, parades and lights, including several options at low or no cost, or included with theme park admission. Because the holidays are a joyous time — and no destination is more joyous than Orlando.
No destination works harder to safeguard your peace of mind, either, as many of our event organizers have joined theme parks, attractions, hotels, restaurants and other businesses in employing enhanced health and safety measures designed to protect you and your family while you’re celebrating!
Learn more: Healthy Travel & What’s Open
Please note: Many of Orlando’s traditional holiday season events are expected to return in 2021. Refer back to this page for additional 2020 events as they’re announced.
Holiday Events at Orlando’s Theme Parks
See how Orlando’s world-famous theme parks are celebrating the holiday season in 2020, all included with park admission!
Learn more: Orlando’s Theme Parks Welcome You Back
Holidays at Walt Disney World® Resort (Nov. 6 – Dec. 30, 2020)
To all who have been longing for this happy place, Walt Disney World Resort is thrilled to say: Magic is here. Magic is seeing the beautiful decorations on Main Street, U.S.A.® at Magic Kingdom® Park, the scent of gingerbread, the sound of a trolley bell and that first glimpse of Cinderella Castle lit up in green and red. Magic is Mickey and Minnie, dancing reindeer and the unforgettable sound of marching toy soldiers. Magic is merry strolls around World Showcase at EPCOT®, surprise celebrations down Discovery River at Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park, and incredible thrills and visiting a galaxy far, far away at Disney’s Hollywood Studios®. Your Disney Holiday dreams can become a reality. Magic is here!
Save on discount tickets: Walt Disney World Resort
Holidays at Universal Orlando Resort (Nov. 14, 2020 – Jan. 3, 2021)
Plenty of merry and all kinds of mayhem will take over Universal Orlando Resort as it unwraps its 2020 holiday celebration. Celebrate the most wonderful time of the year as Universal’s most beloved holiday traditions and characters come to life in reimagined ways that align with the destination’s enhanced health and safety procedures — from Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™, to the all-new “Universal’s Holiday Experience featuring Macy’s Balloons,” to character celebrations and appearances around the parks — and it’s all included in theme park admission.
SeaWorld® Orlando’s Christmas Celebration (Select Dates, Nov. 21 – Dec. 31, 2020)
SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration at SeaWorld Orlando is where holiday traditions are made, with delicious food, stunning live shows, delightful holiday shopping and joyous entertainment — all designed with enhanced health and safety measures in mind including limited capacity to create plenty of space for social distancing. Enjoy family fun and holiday traditions at SeaWorld!
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Holidays at LEGOLAND® Florida Resort (Nov. 27 – Dec. 31, 2020)
Celebrate your holidays the LEGOLAND way! This jolly time of year features a giant LEGO® Christmas tree, unforgettable seasonal shows, holiday characters, special treats, LEGO activities, twinkling lights and more during Holidays at LEGOLAND! An extra special gift for you — this festive event is included in general admission!
Save on discount tickets: LEGOLAND Florida Resort
Plus, check back for details about Universal Orlando Resort’s plans for the 2020 holiday season!
Holiday Events Throughout Orlando
Our theme parks aren’t the only places where you can deck the halls when you visit Orlando this holiday season. See some of the other holly, jolly events taking place all over town, and check back for more as they get added!
Colorful Christmas at Crayola Experience (Nov. 24, 2020 – Jan. 4, 2021)
Crayola Experience at The Florida Mall® invites you to add a big splash of Crayola color to your holiday season! Weave your way through fun holiday activities, including a sing-along musical show, animatronic holiday characters, a scavenger hunt and crafting unique gifts from the heart. It’s a holiday hullabaloo with “snow” much to do, and it’s included in general admission. Learn more.
Save on discount tickets: Crayola Experience
Dazzling Nights at Harry P. Leu Gardens (Dec. 1, 2020 – Jan. 3, 2021)
Close to downtown Orlando, Harry P. Leu Gardens will transform into a magical wonderland for this special event. The new, family-friendly adventure invites you to embark on a three-quarter-mile interactive holiday experience featuring a million dazzling lights, shining forests, magical displays and beautiful sculptures. Learn more.
Festival of Trees at Orlando Museum of Art (Select Days, Nov. 12-29, 2020)
Celebrate a season of joy with Festival of Trees at Orlando Museum of Art, just north of downtown Orlando in Loch Haven Park. This year, organizers are offering onsite and virtual options, and all of the unique trees on display are available for purchase. Learn more.
Give Kids the World Village: Night of a Million Lights (Nov. 13, 2020 – Jan. 3, 2021)
For the first time ever, experience the childlike wonder of the magical, whimsical Give Kids the World Village during a walk-through, fully immersive holiday light spectacular. Stroll the Avenue of Angels, aglow with more than 3 million lights; savor delicious treats; and enjoy the accessible rides and storybook attractions that have brought happiness and hope to critically ill children and their families from around the world for 34 years. Learn more.
Gatorland’s Holiday Ho, Ho Ho-Down (Weekends Through Dec. 20, 2020)
Included with park admission, this holiday experience at Gatorland features holiday displays, interactive characters and holiday singers throughout the park, as well as a Very Merry Train ride. Festive food items will also be available for purchase. Keep an eye out for the Social Distancing Skunk Ape! Learn more.
Save on discount tickets: Gatorland
The Nutcracker (Select Dates, Dec. 4-20, 2020)
Witness Orlando Ballet’s presentation of the beloved holiday tradition at downtown Orlando’s Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts. Early booking is recommended for this beloved annual tradition! Learn more.
Oh What Fun!: A Holiday Festival
At Lake Nona Town Center, visit Central Florida’s most magical, open-air winter wonderland for outdoor skating, dazzling decorations, festive treats, snow, and nightly entertainment guaranteed to spread some much-needed holiday cheer. Santa will be making appearances throughout the night along with special guests from the North Pole. Snow will fill the sky every hour, on the hour while the Merry Measures sing all your favorite holiday carols. Learn more.
Orlando Winterfest & Holiday Market (Dec. 3-6, 2020)
Enjoy a magical winter wonderland of festive tradition, attractions, live events and shopping at the Orange County Convention Center on International Drive. The winter scene and celebration will be the backdrop of a memorable experience for all ages this holiday season! Learn more.
Santa Is Here at The Mall at Millenia (Nov. 11 – Dec. 24, 2020)
Take a keepsake photo with Santa in magical Hollyville, exclusively at The Mall at Millenia. Visits will be contactless, and Santa will be distanced from visitors. Learn more.
The Santa Workshop Experience at ICON Park® (Through Dec. 24, 2020)
An Orlando tradition since 2002, The Santa Workshop Experience has a new home at ICON Park. Enjoy a unique, socially distanced photo opportunity with Santa, including options to take your own photos and videos or select a professional photography package. Learn more.
8th Annual Violectric Holiday Show (Dec. 12, 2020)
Enjoy a holiday show that truly rocks at this special concert, taking place at Lake Eola Park’s Walt Disney Amphitheater in downtown Orlando. Free and open to the public, with seating capacity limited by 50% for enhanced safety, the 90-minute live concert will feature traditional holiday songs mashed up with classic rock tunes and modern hits, delivering a fun-filled, energetic and highly unique holiday show unlike anything you’ve seen or heard before. Learn more.
Winter Park Christmas Parade (Dec. 5, 2020)
Central Florida’s longest-running holiday parade returns for its 68th year with this fun event hosted by the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce. Learn more.
Holiday Happenings at Orlando Hotels & Resorts
See how some of Orlando’s most popular resorts are celebrating the season, and check back for more details as they become available.
Encore Resort at Reunion
From Dec. 21-25, enjoy a relaxing holiday season at Encore Resort at Reunion. Festivities include a Winter Wonderland for children for all five days, plus Storytime with Santa & Mrs. Claus on Dec. 23, and Encore’s Jingle Bell 5K Walk/Run on Dec. 24.
Gaylord Palms Resort
Through Jan. 3, 2021, Gaylord Palms is offering several ways to celebrate the holiday season. First, a new, interactive event, I Love Christmas Movies™, invites you to walk through scenes from some of your favorite holiday films, including The Polar Express, A Christmas Story, Elf, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, and The Year Without a Santa Claus. Other Christmas attractions include Snow Flow Mountain, Snowball Build and Blast, and more.
JW Marriott Orlando Bonnet Creek Resort & Spa
The brand-new JW Marriott Orlando Bonnet Creek Resort & Spa will have numerous holiday extras for guests. The fun includes a Gingerbread House Workshop in the Palm Ballroom on Dec. 19 & 22, complimentary offerings in the lobby and holiday coffee specials at JW Market from Dec. 19-26, and holiday dining at on-site eateries Sear + Sea and Unreserved.
Margaritaville Resort Orlando
Margaritaville Resort Orlando is excited to deck the halls this holiday season as it transforms to an island-winter wonderland! The hotel’s signature selfie spot, a 13-foot flip flop sculpture, “blown out on a pop top,” will be decorated with a giant Santa Hat. On Thursday through Sunday evenings starting Nov. 26, a variety of holiday entertainment will be showcased throughout the Margaritaville Hotel and the Promenade at Sunset Walk. Sing along with holiday carolers and goof around with mischievous elves. Keep an eye out for Santa as he makes an appearance at the Promenade during this special time of year.
Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort
Beginning Nov. 27, the legendary Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort will give the young and young-at-heart a chance to experience the sights, scents and sounds of the holidays. The socially distanced reindeer games for guests include Santa and Mrs. Claus Meet-and-Greets on select nights through Dec. 22, the famous life-sized Chocolate Holiday Santa Scene, cookie decorating, a dancing lights show, and more.