The smell of Christmas ham may still be wafting through the house, and you may still be walking past those last three Christmas cookies that no one really likes, tempting you to break your New Year’s resolution to lose weight.  So why on earth am I talking about Christmas at Walt Disney World already?

If you’re a DVC owner, you probably know why.  We are already coming up on the 11 month booking window for next Christmas, and if you want the resort preferences you want, you’ve got to book early!

For those who are always on the fence about whether or not to book their Walt Disney World vacation during the busiest time of the year, here are the reasons why we do.

Christmas Dinner at Artist Point – The Wilderness Lodge location just screams Christmas.  The rustic lodge with the roaring fireplace and the giant Christmas tree make this a natural choice for the holiday.  The cozy, warm feeling of Artist Point is as close to Christmas dinner at home with family – if your family lived in a Norman Rockwell painting – as you’re going to get.  The food is delicious (is it wrong that my mouth is still watering over the pork belly and corn and crab salad I had?), and the location ideal.  It’s a perfect Christmas meal.

The Decorations – Remember the year that you had all that free time at Christmas after the shopping, wrapping, baking, cooking and cleaning, so you decided to deck every hall in your house with boughs of holly, elegant wreaths, themed Christmas trees, and giant gingerbread houses?  Yeah, me neither.  But guess what?  You’ll have all of that at Walt Disney World!  Wreaths and garlands dripping with ornaments, trees that soar towards massive ceilings, and life sized carousels and gingerbread houses can be found in every corner of the resorts.  The best part?  You won’t get sap in your hair setting the tree up, and you don’t have to vacuum all the pine needles out of the carpet.

The Lights – I wish I could say that our house is like the Griswold Family Christmas, where the dad wants so many lights on the house you can see it from outer space.  It’s not.  My husband is the king of understated Christmas lights.  We usually have a battery operated candle in each window, but the batteries usually die by December 4th, and they don’t usually get replaced until the following year, when my husband decides it’s cheaper to throw the lights out than replace the batteries, and the whole process begins again.  Any other lights are usually put out by the kids and I, and I gotta tell ya, if it’s cold, I’m darn near tempted to dump the light box into the bushes, plug in the first plug I find, and pray it’s on a string of lights that actually works.

The Osborne Spectacle of the Dancing Lights is the ultimate holiday light display.  Snow, music, and millions of lights makes it more festive than I could ever dream at home!  No matter how ambitious I am with my own lights, there’s just nothing that compares with the amazing display.  You just want to walk down the street hugging people.  Seriously.

Candlelight Processional – If you are lacking Christmas spirit at home, you will surely find it here.  This is a narrated story of the birth of Christ, read by a celebrity narrator, with the accompaniment of a brilliant choir and amazing orchestra.  There is nothing better to do on Christmas eve than to enjoy a wonderful family meal, followed by the Candlelight Processional, followed by Illuminations.  It’s another hug everyone experience.

So, I’ve convinced you to be on the phone with me later this week to make your reservations for Christmas, right?

Well, yeah, there are a few things we don’t love about Christmas at Walt Disney World.  It is crowded.  You can expect lines for attractions to top 90 minutes or more.  There is some stress trying to get dining reservations and the room you want at the resort you’d like.  And it’s really tough to pack a family’s worth of Christmas presents and decorations in your carry on bags for the plane.

But honestly, some of our best family vacations are the ones we’ve spent at Walt Disney World at Christmas.  We make it our annual holiday destination.

10 thoughts on “Christmas at Walt Disney World – What We Love, What We Love Less”

  1. Well, Anna. I love this. You described the Wilderness Lodge to a “t”. I love, love to see Disney all decked out for the holidays. Only, I have to go and be back before Christmas actually hits. We like to go early December before the crowds get crazy. We get to see it all, and then we are back home before it is time to bake all those cookies, and leave them out for Santa. Maybe it’s because we are that Griswald house…all decked out in white lights, the wreaths are up, the Santa collection is all over the place, and the smell of baked cookies and fresh pine trees fills the air. So, I love to go to Disney at this time of year, but except for the big gingerbread house, I haven’t found a way to convince Jim we should do that, I get to go and love all that Disney does for the holidays, and then come home for the holidays. It is the best of both worlds. Next year, come on over…we are just on the other side of the bridge!

    1. I might have to take you up on that! We are usually home on the 26th, so we can celebrate with the grandparents and the aunt, but I do think we scaled back on decorations since going away for the holidays.

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