New Year's Eve at WDW

by Jessica Hristov

Have you ever wondered how New Year’s Eve is celebrated at the Most Magical Place on Earth? There are celebrations and festivities at all four Walt Disney World theme parks! Some parks even stay open past midnight so you can watch the famous “ball drop” right from your favorite park! Here is how each park at Walt Disney World does New Year’s Eve!

Magic Kingdom

Magic Kingdom is one of the most popular parks to be at on New Year’s Eve! Did you know that is it the busiest day to be at Magic Kingdom throughout the entire year? If you plan to be here for the celebrations, I highly recommend coming earlier in the day and staying until the ball drops or the park closes. If you come later in the day, you run the risk of them turning you away at the gate due to max capacity. 

There are plenty of fun things to see and do at Magic Kingdom on New Year’s Eve. If you missed Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party this year, you have the extra special chance to catch Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade at 12 pm and 3:30 pm (you previously could see this exclusively at the Christmas party!) You can also catch Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration Stage Show at 7:45 pm, 9 pm, and 10 pm – these were also shown exclusively at the Christmas party. 

You can also see Magic Kingdom’s exclusive Fantasy in the Sky fireworks to ring in the New Year! This firework show is an amazing presentation of magical lights and colors and is the perfect way to celebrate New Year’s Eve! Fantasy in the Sky fireworks are offered on December 30th and 31st this year and will have viewings at 6:30 pm and 11:50 pm. Magic Kingdom is open from 9am to 1am on New Year’s Eve.


Epcot is another very popular place to celebrate New Year’s Eve at Walt Disney World. This is one of the best places to be because the crowds are a lot more spread out here. 

First up, come watch the New Year’s Countdown Fireworks show! This is one of the coolest things to see at Epcot on this special night. There is a countdown projected onto Spaceship Earth and a dazzling firework show lights up the sky! The countdown starts at 11:54 pm!

Another great way to celebrate at Epcot is to catch all of the New Year’s Eve parties “around the world” at World Showcase! There are typically live DJs and other forms of live entertainment and celebrations going on at each of the countries at World Showcase. One of the coolest things about celebrating “around the world”, is that when the clock strikes midnight in each respective country's pavilion, there is a festive announcement followed by a small, colorful fireworks show! Epcot is open from 9 am to 1 am on New Year’s Eve.

Hollywood Studios & Animal Kingdom

While the celebrations aren’t as big at Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom, you can still have fun here! Hollywood Studios does offer some New Year’s Celebrations, including a countdown to midnight and a cool firework show! You can also enjoy showings of the Wonderful World of Animation projections at 9 pm and of course Fantasmic at 8 pm and 9:30 pm. Hollywood Studios is open from 8:30 am to 12 am on New Year’s Eve.

Animal Kingdom has some fun things to do as well! This park closes the earliest on New Year’s Eve, so it is the perfect park to go to if you have little ones with an early bedtime! There are also DJs throughout the park playing fun music! Animal Kingdom is open from 8 am to 8 pm on New Year’s Eve.


In addition to all the special events in the theme parks, there are also a number of resorts offering specialty food and drinks for the New Year! Check out the full list of which resorts have special treats here!

Image by Walt Disney World



Walt Disney World is a wonderful place to celebrate New Year’s Eve. There are so many fun things to do and see -- you can even hop to every park if you want to! If you want to get the most out of your Disney New Year’s Eve experience, I’d recommend going to Magic Kingdom or Epcot because those are the parks with the most to do! Have a happy and safe New Year!

Have you ever celebrated New Year’s Eve at Walt Disney World?


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