Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Christmas at Walt Disney World

My husband and I just returned from a wonderful four night, five day vacation at our favorite place, Walt Disney World.  We've been there a lot of times, but never at Christmas.  Being the big Disney fans that we are, it's been dream of mine for a long time to visit during the holiday season to see all the decorations.  So this trip was really a dream come true!

Get ready for a really photo-heavy post!   I took over 700 photos on this trip, but don't worry, I won't post them all!   

Upon entering the Magic Kingdom (which is, of course, the Happiest Place On Earth!), Disney sets the stage right away with beautiful lush greenery garlands across the front of the railway station.  Thick green garlands and red ribbons are the basis for nearly all of the decorations at WDW this time of year, as will become obvious over the next group of photos.

But before we go on, here's a shot of the front of the train station at night... I just love the lights in the Magic Kingdom!

The garlands vary based on what building they're on... some have fruit, some have ornaments, some have flowers, some have colored lights, some have white mini lights. 

Here's a peppermint-themed area called Candy Cane Garden where you can greet some of the Disney Characters.   The garlands here are filled with candy and red and white ornaments.

Lots of red bows, poinsettias and fruits on this pole and garland swags.

 We found these sweet trees on the second level of the railway station overlooking the entrance square.   Simple and pretty!

Heading down Main Street U.S.A., the garlands vary in style and decoration, but all are really thick and full, and all are lit with one type of light or another.   Some storefronts have matching wreaths, some have matching swags, some just have the garland.

The view of Cinderella's Castle during the day is enhanced by the white iron arms reaching out and holding large wreaths with white candle forms and red bows.   

That same view at night time is made magical by the incredible crystal-like lighting effects on the castle.  Just magical!

More garlands on Main Street U.S.A.   I spent a lot of time admiring the garlands, because I feel like even though Walt Disney World is this huge, larger-than-life experience, there are still ideas and inspiration that I can draw from the decor to put into our own home in years to come.   I just love the thickness and fullness of the garland greenery, and I think I can pull that look off here at home.

I think this was my favorite - I liked the painted pine cones, the sprigs of variegated holly leaves, and the red flowers all mixed together.  Very classic, very natural, and very simple.  

On the back side of Cinderella's Castle, there are some garlands and swags that look slightly different from the ones on the storefronts.  These are very "regal" looking with more of a bunting look to them.   The color scheme here is a regal royal blue with gold accents.   The photos don't capture the impact that you get in person, it's really a very pretty and impressive display.

During our long weekend, we hopped around from park to park and hotel to hotel, looking at a lot of different places and decorative styles.   At the Disney Hollywood Studios, the decor was more subtle and less over-the-top than at the Magic Kingdom.   With the exception of the fantastic light display at the Studios, there wasn't a whole lot of decor to be seen.   Here are a few shots of the more "mid-century modern" decorations at the Studios.

At Epcot, the Future World portion was not decorated for Christmas very much, but in most of the countries in the World Showcase, there was a lot of Christmas stuff to look at.  Here are some samplings of the pretty views.

We spent one afternoon looking at the decorations at some of the hotels near the Magic Kingdom.  My favorite is the Wilderness Lodge, because of the woodsy, grand-yet-homey feel to the hotel.  I loved the decorations here, from the 70+ foot high tree to the woods themed trees, swags and wreaths.  It was a beautiful sight!

At the Polynesian Resort, the decor incorporated lots of orchids and other tropical foliage. 

the Grand Floridian, with its Victorian architecture and styling, is very impressive for sure!    There was a Gingerbread House that was over 15' tall!

The grand staircase was beautifully decorated with gorgeous garlands that matched the rest of the Victorian themes.  

The hotel we stayed at was the Port Orleans - French Quarter resort.   Because the regular theme for that hotel is "Mardi Gras", the Christmas decorations were done in purple, green and gold colors.   I adored the lobby area which I found to be just so pretty!

I could keep posting photos for a long time and still not fully share all the lovely sights I saw on this beautiful property.    I barely touched on the huge gingerbread house at the Grand Floridian, and didn't even show any photos at all of the Osborne Family Lights Spectacular at the Disney Hollywood Studios!   Not to mention all the other sights and views that there were to see.

I think I'll leave it at this, and encourage you to visit during the holiday season too.  I'm so glad we went!   I'm hoping to use some of these photos as inspiration for next year's Christmas decorating in our own home.   Until then, I'll just keep enjoying the photos from this trip.

Thanks so much for visiting!   I'd love it if you left a comment to say hello!

Linking to:

Between Naps on the Porch:  Metamorphosis Monday
A Stroll Thru Life: Inspire Me Tuesday
Fluster Buster:  Fluster's Creative Muster
Savvy Southern Style:  Wow Us Wednesday
Ivy & Elephants:  What's It Wednesday
StoneGable:  The Scoop


  1. It is on my bucket list too to get to Disney World at Christmas to see the decorations. THANKS so much for sharing this!!! Everything they do is amazing.

    1. Pinky, you MUST GO! Everything is so beautiful! I'd advise you to avoid weekends though, they're almost just as crowded as the middle of the summer. Tuesday morning was perfect!!!

  2. Hi Jenny. New to your blog. Just came from Ivy and Elephants blog. I live about 3 and a half hours away in Miami and yes this place is magical. they decorate for every occasion, but Christmas is the prettiest of all. We wanted to go but had no where to leave the dog and their facility was full. Maybe in 2015 we will go again. My youngest daughter lives in Orlando with her dad attending college and she can hear the fireworks from her backyard, and see them from her uncles back yard. Beautiful to just sit outside in your yard and enjoy a beautiful display daily. Thanks for sharing your photos and by the way you could never take enough, You just want to take one in every inch of the parks and hotels that you can. Ana

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Ana! I love WDW, have been there many, many times over the years. Would love to live as close as you do, I'd have an annual pass for sure!

  3. Oh wow, how fun that you got to go to Disney World at Christmas time! The Christmas decorations are absolutely gorgeous! You did a great job with the photos!

    1. Hi Gina, thanks for stopping by. I just loved our visit at Christmas, it was a dream of mine for a long time and it finally came true.